Phone:508-495-0248
Phone:508-495-0248
Overlooking woods hole

Cape Cod sunset sail on the Liberté

August 7th, 2015 by Beth Colt

If you’re looking to get out on the water and do it in style, you’ve got to book a ride on the Liberté. Watching the sunset over the westernmost part of Cape Cod from the deck of a beautiful 74’ three-masted schooner is easily one of my best memories from this summer.

Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset

My friend Bonny and I had been waiting for some good weather to go out for a relaxing evening after work, and last Thursday turned out to be the perfect day. The air had that perfect end-of-July warmth, and there was enough wind to fill the sails and keep us cool as we made our way out into the Vineyard Sound. The crew was composed of Captain Chris and two experienced and friendly young women. Their teamwork allowed us to get our sunset sail underway quickly, and all we had to do was sit back and enjoy the sights and sounds while reclining in one of the boat’s many comfortable seating areas.

IMG_0757 IMG_0724

 

 

Once we were out of the harbor and all the sails had been raised, the crew offered full bar service with a selection of wine, beer, and cocktails. With glasses of pinot grigio in hand, Bonny and I toasted to the dog days of summer and laughed as we listened to Captain Chris’s tales from his time at sea.

IMG_0765

Captain Chris Tietje and his wife Jane had this sail boat designed and built just for them, and they live on it for most of the year. In the summers, they keep the boat docked in Falmouth Harbor (a 10 minute drive from the Woods Hole Inn) and take people out for a one-of-a-kind Cape Cod sailing experience. While on the boat, Captain Chris treats the passengers to stories about the birth of the Liberté and the history of Martha’s Vineyard and the surrounding waters.

IMG_0716

 

 

There were about 35 other passengers with us that evening, but the boat never felt crowded. It seemed that each separate party was able to have their own intimate moments while still harmoniously coexisting with the rest of the group on board. There was plenty of room to move around, and I made sure to get photos from each part of the top deck.

IMG_0743 IMG_0730

 

 

The Liberté sails three times a day, seven days a week throughout the summer and can be booked for private charters or parties. If you’re looking for a memorable Cape Cod sailing experience, you don’t want to miss out on a chance to ride aboard the magnificent schooner, Liberté. Check out www.theliberte.com for more information about the Liberte and how you can plan your sailing trip.

— from guest blogger Sam Frawley

Day Trip to Martha’s Vineyard, exploring Aquinnah and Gayhead Cliffs

July 26th, 2015 by Beth Colt

As a photographer I don’t like to admit this, but I can honestly say that there are some things that just have to be seen in person. These places that defy my desire to capture in a photograph are so magnificent and breathtaking that a picture just can’t do them justice. My day trip to Martha’s Vineyard to visit the Gayhead Cliffs in Aquinnah proved to be one of these places. Last week, my sister Olivia was on the Cape with one of her best friends from school and I wanted to treat them to a day of adventure. My sister and I have made many day trips to the towns on Martha’s Vineyard but had never visited Aquinnah, so we were very excited to get off the beaten path.

We took an early afternoon ferry from Woods Hole and found a great spot up on the top deck to hang out as we crossed the Vineyard Sound aboard the Steamship Authority’s Island Home ($17 passenger ticket RT). The ferry ride itself is gorgeous and it is easy to enjoy the views of the surrounding coast line, Nobska Lighthouse, and Martha’s Vineyard.

IMG_0598

Once we landed in Vineyard Haven we made a quick stop at the Black Dog for lunch. The first year round restaurant on the island started in 1971, this iconic spot on the harbor in Vineyard Haven is worth the trip alone.  The fish and chips were excellent and we were now fueled up for our journey to the cliffs.

I was pleasantly surprised by the ease of use and organization of the public transportation system on the island. The VTA (Vineyard Transit Authority) has published a detailed and intuitive map with bus schedules and extensive routes that take people all over the island. For just $8.00, you can purchase a day pass to hop on and off all day long. We got on the bus in Vineyard Haven, made a switch in Chilmark and arrived in Aquinnah in about 50 minutes.  This day trip to Martha’s Vineyard is inexpensive and convenient as a guest of the Woods Hole Inn, where the Woods Hole ferry terminal is located across the street.

IMG_0605

The Aquinnah bus drops passengers off at the top of the Gayhead cliffs where there is a gorgeous observation deck to view the vibrant multicolored cliffs cascading into the surrounding seas. You can also see the iconic Gayhead Lighthouse which was just recently relocated. Almost $3.5 million dollars were raised to move the lighthouse from the rapidly eroding cliffs, and the elaborate job moving this antique brick structure was completed this spring saving the famous lighthouse from certain ruin within a few years.

IMG_0606

From the observation deck, we made our way down to the beach below where we were able to get a closer look at the clay cliffs. They were saturated with jeweled tones of rust, powdery whites, mustard yellow, and honeydew green. So amazing to have an incredible natural landmark located just a short ride day trip from Woods Hole.  No wonder the Wampanoag’s (native Americans from the Cape and Islands) consider this a sacred spot.

IMG_0631 IMG_0666
Although I got some great shots of the cliffs, I know there will always be more ways to capture their natural beauty. I have already started to make plans for my next day trip to Martha’s Vineyard where I will once again challenge myself to fit the feeling of seeing them first hand into a photograph. But in all honesty, you really just have to go see them for yourself.  -Sam Frawley, guest blogger

IMG_0677

Fun at the Falmouth Farmers Market

July 12th, 2015 by Beth Colt

If you’re looking for local flavor, there’s nothing quite like wandering around the local farmers market. The Falmouth Farmers Market (just up the road from the Woods Hole Inn in Woods Hole, MA on Cape Cod) has a long standing tradition of attracting farmers and artisans from all over eastern Massachusetts to sell local produce and share rich, unique stories. Boasting a new waterfront location this season (at Marine Park adjacent to the harbor), the Falmouth Farmers Market now has abundant free parking, cool sea breezes and great water views.

Woods Hole Inn fun things to doFalmouth Farmers Market on Cape Cod

 

 

 

 

 

 

The farm to table movement has blossomed on Cape Cod in recent years, with the Falmouth Farmer’s Market leading the charge.  Many local restaurants and chefs avail themselves of this wonderful weekly tradition, starting at noon on Thursdays in summertime.  How lucky are we to have access to berries picked earlier that morning, fine artisan breads baked right on the Cape, sweet corn ripened at the peak of summer, farm fresh eggs still warm from the nest?

romantic summer getaway Woods Hole Inn Farmers Market Cape Cod

 

 

 

 

 

 

On a recent visit, I was inspired by the passion and generosity that exists within this community of people. As my brother and I strolled from booth to booth, we were greeted with smiles, free samples and an education about the energy and love that goes into creating this delightful array of goods. I never thought I could be so entertained learning about artisan Balsamic Vinegar. No joke! You have to stop by Tony Melli’s tables and hear about his craft firsthand.

Flavored olive oils at Farmers Market Cape Cod home made goods at Farmers Market Falmouth Cape Cod

 

 

 

 

 

 

Each booth overflowed with hand made, organically grown, and fresh baked goods, on which I easily could have blown all of last week’s paycheck.  I’ll be back for the all natural herbal bath and beauty products from Thyme After Thyme, hand made soaps from Woods Hole Soapworks, homemade salad dressings from DD’s Dressing, artisan olive oil and balsamic vinegar from Olio di Melli, craft wines from Westport Rivers Winery, and loads of gorgeous, fresh produce from Allen, Silverbrook, Pariah Dog Farms just to name a few.

IMG_0195 IMG_0228 IMG_0199

 

 

 

 

 

The Falmouth Farmer’s Market convenes every Thursday from noon until 6 p.m from spring though fall. It’s a 10 minute drive to Falmouth Harbor from Woods Hole (which is a village of the town of Falmouth).  This farmers market is a must see for any one interested in communing with the locals and tasting the unique flavors of Cape Cod.  You will find us there procuring herbs and inspiration for the weekend’s breakfasts at the Woods Hole Inn.

— from guest blogger Sam Frawley

Cape Cod Cocktails, the best of Woods Hole summertime concoctions

June 24th, 2015 by Beth Colt

There’s certainly no shortage of places to sit down and enjoy Cape Cod cocktails in Woods Hole.  However, given so many good options it can be a daunting task to choose the right beverage for you. Don’t fear! This past week, a couple friends joined me for a Cape Cod cocktail tour and we did the “work” for you. Below you will find our favorite drinks at each of the seven waterfront restaurants we visited – all of which are walking distance from each other. Hope you enjoy and remember to read responsibly.

LANDFALL

Drink of choice: Bloody Mary

Secret house recipe served with Spanish olives and celery.

Notes: If you’re waiting for the afternoon ferry and you need something to tide you over before dinner the Landfall is the place to go. Their Bloody Mary is the best around and its zesty, savory, and spicy flavors will keep your mouth entertained until the very last drop. It’s always 5 o’clock somewhere!

Landfall

 

CAPTAIN KIDD

Drink of Choice: The Tarpaulin Brothel

House-made Privateer Spiced Rum, Angostura Bitters, Rinse of Absinthe, twist of orange

Notes: This drink is an adventure in a glass. If you’re feeling the winds of good fortune at your back and the call of the open seas then you’ve got to dive in. This bold drink from a watering hole that’s a self described “pirate bar” features Captain Kidd’s special house-made spiced rum and a dash of absinthe. Before long, it will have you wanting to chase buried treasure and hoist the main sail. If you’re looking for a drink to get you in touch with your inner Jack Sparrow then this drink is the “X” that marks the spot on Captain Kidd’s menu.

Captain Kidd

 

QUICKS HOLE TAVERN

Drink of Choice: Little Harbor Lavender

Muddled Raspberry, lavender infused Grey Goose, St Germain, and fresh lemon

Notes: Fresh, sweet, and modern like the new restaurant that serves it, this drink has a pleasing and relaxed flavor. Quicks Hole Tavern opened it’s doors last year and has quickly become a favorite with an innovative and imaginative menu. Looking to view the harbor as if from the prow of a ship?  Sip your Little Harbor Lavender and watch your ship come in with the best view of the Martha’s Vineyard ferry in Woods Hole.

Tavern

 

QUICKS HOLE TAQUERIA

Drink of Choice: House-made Sangria

Secret blend of red and white wines, fresh squeezed lemon and orange juice

Notes: One of my very favorite things to do in Woods Hole is to grab some friends and post up at the Quicks Hole Taqueria for some chips and salsa and their fantastic house-made sangria. They sell it by the pitcher and it’s the perfect complement to kicking back on a sunny afternoon and people-watching in the heart of Woods Hole. If you swing by on a Friday or Sunday evening, you can even catch one of the fantastic local bands that perform for free in the parking lot next to the restaurant.

PHUSION

Drink of Choice: Ruby Red Crush

Absolut Ruby Red Vodka, fresh mint, Combier Pamplemousse Grapefruit Liqueur, fresh lemon.

Notes: As this restaurant’s name would lead to you to believe, Phusion’s menu consistently presents interesting blends of different international flavors and styles. This French-influenced beverage features imported grapefruit liqueur and fresh mint that was picked from the restaurant’s in-house herb garden moments before it was added to our drink. The Ruby Red Crush is a light and refreshing drink that will have you crushing on summer and saying “au revior” to all your troubles.

Phusion

 

FISHMONGER

Drink of Choice: Mongerita

Tequila, Cranberry Juice, Triple Sec, Fresh Lime juice, Agave Nectar

Notes: This drink is the Fishmonger’s Cape Cod twist on a classic margarita. The addition of cranberry juice fills this cocktail with the tart refreshment you need on a warm summer day. Also, if you happen to be in Woods Hole on a Thursday evening, Fishmonger is a must – thanks to their Thirsty Thursday free appetizer special and great selection of draft beers.

fishmonger

SHUCKERS:

Drink of Choice: Shucker’s Smash

Vodka, Dark Rum, fresh squeezed orange juice, pineapple juice, lemon, and Grenadine.

Notes: In addition to recently being featured on Guy Fieri’s Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives, Shuckers boasts a world famous raw bar, sushi and a great waterfront location. We asked for something summery and I think they found a way to fit summer into a mason jar. This drink was just the right amount sweet with a fresh squeezed citrus twist to keep you feeling like you’re sippin’ on sunshine, Cape Cod cocktail style.

Barnstable Harbor Cape Cod Ecotour

June 16th, 2015 by Beth Colt

Cape Cod has so many great places to explore, but my friend Bonny and I were looking for something that could be described as a Cape Cod ecotour — you know, a fun day in the sun with a little learning and an eco twist.

Enter Captain Joe, who along with his staff at Barnstable Harbor Eco-Tours, offers a leisurely cruise around the harbor aboard a charming pontoon boat called The Horseshoe Crab.  Packed with a wealth of interesting information about the history of the harbor and natural life, the tour was guided by expert naturalist Phil Kyle. Bonny and I really enjoyed Phil’s enthusiasm for history, especially his tales about the Prohibition-era rum running from this storied harbor.

Sam and Bonny ready for the tour aboard the Horseshoe Crab

Barnstable Harbor itself is gorgeous, well worth the trip. On one side it is bordered by the white gold dunes of Sandy Neck Beach, a six mile long barrier beach, and on another there is a large field of marshland which draws myriad species of shorebirds which we learned about from Phil.  Sandy Neck Light

Might not sound much like a Cape Cod ecotour, but the best of the day was views of the Cottage Colony at the very end of Sandy Neck Beach. The Cottage Colony is home to a collection of beautiful beach cottages as well as Sandy Neck Light – a picturesque lighthouse marking the end of the peninsula. The cottages are in the historic district of the peninsula and most are more than 100 years old. As the boat neared the Colony it appeared we were visiting an idyllic little seaside kingdom, best captured from a boat.

Sandy Neck Point

There were many opportunities to take photos of the harbor and I couldn’t help snapping a couple gorgeous shots for my Instagram, and I thought about coming back another day and exploring Sandy Neck on foot to see more of this stunning harbor and unique ecosystem system from the land.  Well, there is always next year.

 

Buoy returning to Barnstable Harbor

Barnstable Harbor is approximately a 50 minute drive from the Woods Hole Inn. Tours last about 2 hours and are $25 for adults and $15 for children 12 and under. Woods Hole Inn concierge staff would be happy to assist guests in scheduling a day like this one on Barnstable Harbor.  Or call Captain Joe @ 508.221.6162 for more information or to schedule your Cape Cod ecotour – what a great way to spend the day exploring Cape Cod!  — from guest blogger Sam Frawley

Captain Joe, Phil Kyle, and the Horseshoe Crab

Ten Signs of Spring in Woods Hole

June 10th, 2015 by Beth Colt

Graffiti on a boat house in Woods Hole MA on Cape Cod

As winter comes to an end, there are relentless signs of spring here in Woods Hole, in fact Woods Hole spring is made famous by the writings of environmentalist Rachel Carson whose research for her world-changing treatise “Silent Spring” started right here. For me, the signs of spring Woods Hole are everywhere, so I will list my top ten (Letterman style) saving the best signs of spring on Cape Cod for last.

10. Fog

The water remains cooler than the air for some time, and this causes these intense clouds of fog to roll past even on a bright sunny day.  It’s really fun to sit on the beach and just watch, but remember a sweatshirt because when you are enveloped by a cloud it gets chilly quickly.

red boat overturned on harbor Cape Cod Woods Hole

9. Roofers

Spring is the time for house repairs and the village rings with the sound of hammers, scrapers and the comforting blast of commercial radio loud enough for everyone on the crew (and the neighborhood) to enjoy “Paint it Black” and other classics.

Green tarp covers Woods Hole House for roofing in the spring.

8. Osprey

I have heard that these huge hawks gave Buzzards Bay it’s name back when Gosnold passed through, and they return each spring to make their sprawling nests.  If you want to watch them up as they spawn, I recommend the WHOI OspreyCam for a Cape Cod dose of wildlife viewing.  And thanks to Woods Hole’s own Rachel Carson- without her work which raised the alarm about the over-use of DDT in our environment back in the 1960’s, we might not have osprey around anymore.

WHOI osprey cam

7. Bright Colored Rowboats

As the snow recedes, the bright colored bottoms of the stored row boats and kayaks pop with color off the newly green grass.  In April, the Woods Hole historical museum hosts a model boat show — you can see one of the model boats racing across Eel Pond in the background here.

romantic getaway Cape Cod

6. Rolling Bags

More than a million people take the ferry from here to Martha’s Vineyard each summer, and about this time the streets start to become full of people walking with their rolling bags, their distinctive lopsided gate followed by a gravelly roar of rubber.

Woods Hole hotel

5. Coffee Roasting

At Pie in the Sky Bakery, our neighbor here in Woods Hole, the busy coffee season is marked with extra roasting.  A lovely smell of fresh coffee drifts over the village when the wind blows the right way, and with a deep sniff you feel energized and alive.

coffee roasting

4. Clear Water

The colder water of spring is especially clear, so photos from the beach make the waters look downright Caribe-like, and debris from the winter becomes uncovered (thank goodness for “Clean Up Eel Pond Day” as this rubber tire is long gone).

romantic vistas Cape Cod

3. Daffodils

The daffodils burst improbably out of the brown leaf litter lining the road sides like toy soldiers.  Each year as I drive around admiring them, I think about the person that dug them into these woodsy locations and how they disappear for most of the year, only to emerge in spring with their sunny surprise.

Close up of bright yellow daffodils with the words "Woods Hole Colors"

2. Landfall Cocktails

The Landfall re-opens in mid-April, and this is the time to get in for that perfect fresh-squeezed cocktail on the dock looking out over the Woods Hole passage with the ferries coming and going.

Landfall restaurant in Woods Hole

1. Lobster Tacos at Quicks Hole

The ultimate sign that spring is in full swing is when Quicks Hole re-opens their famous Taqueria and I enjoy my first lobster taco of the season.  So glad winter is over, so happy summer is almost here.

Lobster Tacos in Woods Hole

Saying Goodbye to an Old Friend on Earth Day

April 24th, 2015 by Beth Colt

Women gather around copper beech and hug it before it gets cut down April 2015 Woods HoleEarth Day is always special in Woods Hole, as the village is packed with scientists and others who study, examine, support and cherish mother earth and her oceans.

But this Earth Day was unique, as locals gathered on Challenger Drive to say goodbye to an enormous copper beech tree that has offered shade and comfort for 150 years.  Aborists have determined the tree is beyond saving, and this massive old friend will be cut down soon for safety.

About 40 people gathered as Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution leader Susan Avery said a few words about how hard it is to say goodbye to a tree of this stature.  Local theologian Deborah Warner spoke about nature, then read a moving Mary Oliver poem that began, “When I am among the trees, especially the willows and the honey locust, equally the beech, the oaks and the pines, they give off such hints of gladness, I would almost say they save me, and daily.” (From “Thirst, poems by Mary Oliver,” Beacon Press, 2006)

Susan Witzell, a local historian, shared anecdotes about Joseph Story Fay who once owned this property and planted these seedlings back when Woods Hole had been cleared for timber and was mostly meadow used for sheep.  Fay was devoted to planting trees, and along with his gardener Michael Walsh, is responsible for much of the forest that now dominates this end of Falmouth.

In closing, a group gathered around the base for an actual tree hug.  It was such a warm spring day, with long shadows drifting across the impossibly green spring grass.  Susan Avery spoke of planting a new copper beech in the same spot and emotions ran high thinking about this symbolic new era in Woods Hole, a time for saplings, spring and new beginnings.

WCAI also reported on this special day, and you can hear their radio version of the story here.

Woods Hole Cape Cod Trees with blue flowersWoods Hole copper beechgreen spring grass in Woods Hole photo 4(1)Deb Warner and Susan Avery on Earth Day April 2015Cape Cod blue flowers in Woods Hole

Snow Photos 2015 from Woods Hole, Cape Cod

February 28th, 2015 by Beth Colt

view of Stoney Beach winter 2015 with open water and hashtag snowThis winter brought more snow than usual with the month of February racking up over 100 inches in Boston, breaking snowfall records all over the region.  Our snow photos always intrigue summer visitors who only see Cape Cod at 80 degrees.  It’s hard to imagine Coast Guard ice cutters crisscrossing the Hole, intrepid explorers out seventy five feet on Buzzards Bay, MBL scientists enjoying pick-up hockey on Eel Pond, ferries dodging ice cakes clogging the Passage, massive navigational buoys drifting like toy boats.

My quest for snow photos typically involves rushing out the minute it starts, as the snow always seems to melt within a few minutes.  Not so much for snow photos 2015.  We have been covered in a decent blanket since the first blizzard hit in late January.  Since then, I have lost count of how many more days it snowed, although I remember Valentine’s Day — soft quiet accumulation all night with a dramatic blizzard slamming like a hangover in the morning.  These winter storms had romantic names like Neptune and Juno, Greek reminders of god-like forces greater than us.

In addition to the relentless snow fall, cold air blasted us for most of the month.  We now have significant sea ice formed all along our shores rendering the landscape at water’s edge into something otherworldly, arctic.  If you have not seen satellite photos of this phenomena, check this out, as it appears to be frozen at least half way across Buzzards Bay.

To keep the harbor open, the US Coast Guard sent ice cutters to maintain the ferry system connecting us to Martha’s Vineyard.  Out on Nantucket, a local photographer captured slushy waves that made the New York Times, while here in Woods Hole we watched, mesmerized, as the ice floes and some of the buoys moved through the currents of the Woods Hole passage.

When the Eel Pond froze over earlier this week, the first intrepid explorers were scientists from our local labs in special suits designed to prevent drowning.  But once it was proven solid, lots of Woods Hole lemmings (including me) rushed out to experience the feeling of walking and skating in the middle of the village.

I particularly love this birds-eye-view film shot by my neighbor Brian Switzer (a wonderful director and inspired teacher in our local public schools) of Woods Hole in these extraordinary conditions.  I think you will enjoy it, and perhaps the snow photos 2015 in my photo essay that follows.  For daily photos, check out my Facebook page #WoodsHoleColors.

MBL Street engulfed in snow during blizzard Woods Hole 2015snow in Woods Hole on Cape Cod winter 2015thermometer outside in Woods Hole porch showing zero degreesEntrance to Eel Pondin Woods Hole filled with icesnow photos Cape Cod 2015Cape Cod snow photos 2015snow photos 2015 hungry ducks in Woods Hole on Cape Codsnow photos 2015 Cape Codsnow photos 2015

Steve Jobs Mega Yacht Venus

January 5th, 2015 by Beth Colt

inside maga yacht venus Steve JobsIs is fitting that I captured images of the late Steve Jobs yacht Venus with my iPhone?  Yes.  Would he have been amused that posting them to Instagram later that day would cause an international stir?  I am thinking not.

I took a vacation last week, sailing around the British Virgin Islands with my family and a few friends on a small rental sailboat from a great outfit called the Moorings in Tortola.  On our last night out at sea, we anchored in the Norman Island Bight, famous as an ancient hideaway for pirates and rum runners.  Captain Kidd hung out there, or so they say at the pub onshore.

In any case, I was snorkeling and enjoying the trade winds on our last day out when this extraordinary mega yacht anchored at the mouth of the harbor.  It looked like something suitable for a villain in a Bond movie.  Not really even like a ship — boxy, clear, highly structured.  From a distance it appeared that the bow was square, like the whole thing was a floating Bauhaus inspired cube.   More like something you would see in the Malibu hills than on the ocean.  More like an Apple store.

When we got closer, we saw the huge bow deck littered with teak furniture and red cushions.  The illusion of a box from afar was created by a polished chrome bowline that reflected the water.  The whole boat was like a mirror, mirroring images that passed (like our tiny sailboat that looked positively trailer trash in comparison).  The stern was open like a tin can, with a ziggurat of steps cascading down to the water.  We circled peeking into what was clearly an exercise room with a huge shiny X that reminded me of the Mondrian Hotel in LA.  Several crew members were in there, polishing the chrome, scrubbing the deck  and rearranging the bicycle collection.  There were paddle boards, a small umbrella, room for the launch which appeared to be elsewhere.

I posted these photos to Instagram right after I saw the ship.  I could not resist, even though I try to keep my photo stream focused on fun things to do here in Woods Hole.  Little did I imagine that these images would go viral the next day. First on Gizmodo, then Business Insider, Time MagazineCult of Mac, you name it.

So what does Steve Jobs’ mega yacht have to do with the Woods Hole Inn?  Challenging question.  I am a big fan of the iPhone, especially for photos, and I teach a seminar called “ten tips for great photos with your smart phone” with a session coming up next week.  Not nothing, but not likely to get me the TED talk that might earn me an invite on this ship. Of course, there is always Captain Kidd.  He hid out around here too, in amazing harbors like Tarpaulin Cove and Quicks Hole — equally beautiful places in summertime.  (There is even a Captain Kidd restaurant right here in Woods Hole!)  And we share the beautiful Atlantic waters as Cape Cod is the last stop on the East Coast for the Gulf Stream.

OK, maybe you are right — the connections between the Woods Hole Inn and Steve Jobs’ mega yacht Venus are tenuous at best.  I doubt publishing these photos will help get me my dream invite on board, but I’ll keep you posted.  I can only imagine the stir true inside shots might make.  All rights reserved.

Steve Jobs Venus yachtmega yacht Venusinside Steve Jobs mega yacht Venus

 

Photo of the Year, Pick Your Favorite from the 2014 Season

December 20th, 2014 by Beth Colt

Call me shutterbug.  All year long, I wander around Woods Hole and snap photos with my iPhone.  I post these photos daily on the Woods Hole Inn’s Facebook page under the moniker “Woods Hole Colors.”  Maybe some of you already follow me there.

As we hurtle towards the New Year, I decided to review 365 days of my photo library and share my favorites.  There are so many breathtaking vistas in and around Woods Hole, but I am always hunting for new light, a new angle, a new take.  Somehow, the scenery manages to change and familiar spots continue to look new to me.

My photo of the year essay starts in the winter, perhaps my favorite season because it is new to me.  As a wash-ashore aka former summer person (the lowliest form of life to a real Cape Codder:), the landscape I know so well never ceases to amaze me when bathed in snow.

snow on Eel Pond Channel in Woods Hole winter 2014

A close second to snow scenes are winter sunsets.  I am not sure if they are more beautiful because we need them to be to keep our spirits up in the cold, or perhaps we are more likely to appreciate them because they come so much earlier in the day.  In any case, the light across the water with storm clouds hovering also captures my imagination.

sunset and research vessel in Woods Hole, MA on Cape Cod

When spring comes, I wait for these three cherry  trees to blossom.  You can see them from Woods Hole Road as you drive into town, and their high bloom only lasts a day or so, less if the wind blows hard.  Perched as they are atop a hill in the golf course, these three sisters epitomize late spring for me.

cherry trees on Woods Hole golf club in full pink blossom in springCome summer, I like to visit Menemsha on Martha’s Vineyard.  You can get there via the ferry to Vineyard Haven, then hire a taxi or hop the public bus system.  This spring, I held an iPhoneography workshop at the Inn and on Sunday we visited this tiny fishing village.  Don’t get me wrong, it’s a commitment to get all the way out to Menemsha.  Off the grid.  Rustic.  Old school.

Menemsha Fish Market closed for the seasonIn late June, the Corwith Cramer comes back to her home port.  This metal hulled clipper ship sails the seven seas with college kids aboard as part of the “Sea Education Association” (aka S.E.A.).  Her slip in Woods Hole is right across the street from the Woods Hole Inn.  All of a sudden, Woods Hole feels a bit more like the whaling village it once was.

Corwith Cramer from the stern at port in Woods HoleHigh summer, the days are so long it does not get totally dark until after 9 pm.  The view from the Eel Pond drawbridge is beautiful every day, but some days, with the stillness of evening settling the water to glass, a ferry perched on the horizon and the sky tingling with hues of pink and baby blue?  Thank goodness for that iPhone in my pocket!  Poems should be written about this channel, children named after it, world leaders brought here to fill their hearts with tranquility before global negotiations.  I share the immeasurable healing power of a single vista.

Martha's Vineyard ferry in the distance from Woods Hole draw bridge

Summer is a blur of guests from far and near with the streets of Woods Hole packed like Manhattan, the buzz of late night revelers walking in the warm air, buskers, beach days, sailing trips, outdoor showers, sand on the floor, piles of salty towels on the porch, little sleep and lots of fun.

green bike with red wagon on Falmouth MA beach photo by Beth ColtFriends visit: we enjoy restaurant meals, ferry rides, books on the beach and long walks home under the bright stars.

friends gather at Quicks Hole Tavern including Timothy OliphantThe kids love these long days filled with cousins, trips to Cuttyhunk for ice cream, climbing the copper beach in front of Pie in the Sky, trying every item at the penny candy store.

Cuttyhunk ice cream store summer Cape CodSummer is all about parties and invitations.  This was a memorial gathering in the forest outside the house of my friend Jill (a wicked talented architect) who lost her daughter earlier this year.  It was an understandably muted festivity in honor of Lizzie, but there was plenty of square dancing after the pot luck meal.

hay bales for chairs and wooden board tables at pot luck gathering summer of 2014 in Falmouth MA

 

Of course there are also spectacular summer sunsets, and many people have roof decks.  Sweet huh.

sunset on roof deck overlooking Buzzards Bay on Cape Cod

Not every day is perfect.  Sometimes the fog rolls in and you can hear the ferries talking to each other with their horns as they pass in pea soup of Vineyard Sound.  A hush seems to fall over the village, even the street conversations are quieter.  OK, you’re right – it’s perfect in a different way.

Eel Pond Channel in fod with red light in foreground and mysterious large ship in the distanceThen with a headlong rush comes fall.  It’s later here because the Gulf Stream keeps temps high until the end of October.  As my kids carved pumpkins on the front porch at Halloween this year, a gaggle of eighth graders came by in towels from a swim at the beach. (I think they were showing off, but whatever.)

Road winding away with yellow leaves and old fashioned fence in Woods Hole MAFor the final best photos of the year, I will take you home to a recent autumn picture of the Woods Hole Inn, where a warm welcome awaits you should you decide to come experience the Cape Cod seasons for yourself.  If you have a favorite from my collection, let me know in the comments below.

Or follow me on Facebook, where I post seasonal images every day, all year long. #WoodsHoleColors

Woods Hole Inn instagram filter with autumn leaves in forground

 

 

Knit Cape Cod Weekend

December 9th, 2014 by Beth Colt

Knit Cape CodKnit your way across Cape Cod with this great weekend value at the Woods Hole Inn.  Knitting on Cape Cod was never so easy.

Join us January 23 – 25, 2015 in Woods Hole for a knitting weekend in conjunction with our friends at Sage Yarns Falmouth.

Our Knit Cape Cod gathering kicks off on Friday night with a free wine and cheese welcome mixer at the Woods Hole Inn.  On Saturday, Knit Cape Cod continues with two workshops plus lunch overlooking the waterfront at the new year round restaurant Quicks Hole Tavern (next door to the Woods Hole Inn).

Sunday is reserved for a knitalong on the Martha’s Vineyard ferry with plenty of time to explore the Vineyard Haven shops, visit the Alpaca Farm, enjoy lunch at the Black Dog Tavern or whatever your heart desires on the island.  Extended parking in Woods Hole is offered as part of the package, to make this Sunday visit seamless for you.  Who knew knitting across Vineyard Sound on the ferry could be so much fun?

You can read the entire itinerary for Knit Cape Cod with all the details right here.  Rooms at the Woods Hole Inn (including TONS of extras) start at $369 for three days, two nights on the waterfront in stunning Woods Hole.

Locals are also welcome to join the Knit Cape Cod fun!  Check out the packages page for all the details about booking for the Saturday Knit Cape Cod seminars and lunch.

Book this unique “Knit Cape Cod” weekend today by calling the Woods Hole Inn (508) 495-0248.

Propose at Nobska Beach, or the perfect Cape Cod Proposal

December 2nd, 2014 by Beth Colt

Cape Cod Proposal

Looking for the perfect spot to propose on Cape Cod?  Meet Jeanette and Andres, a couple whose Cape Cod proposal story will warm your heart as much as this incredible photo of them with the sun setting behind them, shot in the very moment that Andres proposed!

In their own words:

“Dear Woods Hole Inn:

We are so grateful for the beautiful moments we have shared with the Inn. Since our first stay in 2013, we haven’t stopped talking about our time in Woods Hole.

Our most recent stay was thanks to our participation in the 2013 photo contest. After learning that we won, we immediately celebrated and planned our return visit to what is now one of the most memorable places in our lives.

Andres and I have been together for 10 wonderful years.  On our last night, Andres proposed to me by the Nobska Lighthouse, which was a recommendation by the staff.  After I said YES, the staff had champagne and a big hug waiting for us at the Inn.

We have traveled all around the world, though it was no surprise that one of the most special nights of my life was shared at Woods Hole Inn. We hope to continue to visit your Inn for many years to come. We wanted to give a special thanks to Joe for all his help and kindness.

Thank you from the bottom of our hearts,

Jeanette and Andres

We are so honored to have this happen right at the Woods Hole Inn, and even better from a winner of our T-shirt contest!  Check Jeanette’s winning photo from last year’s contest here, and see you soon in Woods Hole.

Finding Fame on “Wheel of Fortune”

November 28th, 2014 by Beth Colt

Wheel of Fortune features Woods Hole InnWOODS HOLE, MA , November 28, 2014 –

The Woods Hole Inn has been selected as a luxury bed and breakfast to be featured on the Wheel of Fortune during the show’s “Bed & Breakfast Week” in early December. It is among only five luxury bed and breakfasts prize packages, averaging $7,000 each, offered by BedandBreakfast.com, the most comprehensive global site for inspiring, planning and booking bed and breakfast properties.

“We are honored to be included among the prize packages for ‘Bed & Breakfast Week’ on the Wheel of Fortune, the most successful syndicated program ever,” says Beth Colt, owner of the Woods Hole Inn. “We hope the guests who have stayed with us as well as our friends in the community will watch the show to see if any contestants win this special luxury getaway at the Woods Hole Inn.”

During “Bed & Breakfast Week,” airing December 1-5, Wheel of Fortune contestants have the opportunity to win B&B vacations, with airfare and ground transportation provided by BedandBreakfast.com, to five locations around the world:

  • Agriturismo Marciano, Tuscany, Italy
  • Woods Hole Inn, Woods Hole, MA, USA (Diamond)
  • Marcels Creative Exchange, Amsterdam, Netherlands
  • Inn of the Patriots, Grover, NC
  • Abbeymoore Manor Bed and Breakfast Inn, Victoria, BC, Canada (Diamond)

They also have a chance to win a $1,000 BedandBreakfast.com Getaway Gift Card®, which never expires or declines in value and has no blackout dates.

“BedandBreakfast.com is delighted to, once again, provide luxury B&B vacations as special prizes on the Wheel of Fortune,” says Matt Laessig, general manager of BedandBreakfast.com. “The more than 9 million people who watch Wheel of Fortune per show will see the unquestionable beauty and luxury features of these amazing bed and breakfasts all over the world.”

Woods Hole Inn is one of two of the featured inns which are part of the BedandBreakfast.com Diamond Collection™, an exclusive group of professionally inspected and guest-reviewed luxury inns that offer 24-hour access to service or staff, free Internet, flexible check-in or guaranteed late arrival, and maintain a 4.0 or higher out of 5.0 consumer review rating on BedandBreakfast.com.

Boston and Cape Cod viewers should tune in to WBZ-TV Channel 4 on Wednesday Dec. 3rd at 7 pm to see the Woods Hole Inn featured on this famous show.  Others, please check your local listings.

Did you know that “Wheel of Fortune” is one of the most watched programs on television with an average of 11 million viewers per day?

Here is a clip from the show when it first aired December 3, 2014. Thank you “Wheel of Fortune”!

Stormy Cape Cod in November

November 9th, 2014 by Beth Colt

Fall comes slowly to Cape Cod, with the height of our foliage season happening now in early November.  As the nights begin to cool, winter storms start to head our way.  We had our first nor’easter of the season last weekend, felt a little early for it especially when the snow began to flurry, but the old timers nodded like this was normal — Cape Cod can be wicked this tima yehr.

My Sunday started especially early as power was out.  Here is the pole I discovered down in front of our neighbors at the Sands of Time.

Woods Hole stormWith the generator humming early, Charlene put out breakfast and hot coffee as the winds howled outside at 50 MPH.  We were able to warm up quiches, cakes and bread puddings and we added a platter of Dunkin Donuts because stormy days require extra fortification (and God forbid that generator did not work — I’m always thinking about the contingency plan:)breakfast Woods Hole Inn Most of our weekend guests headed home as it was a Sunday, but the wind kept blowing all day long.  By nightfall, the Woods Hole Inn filled back up again with islanders stranded in Woods Hole as the ferries stopped running.  There was a really dramatic sunset, all purple and red with only the horizon glimmering with light.  This photo barely captures it’s extreme beauty, but you can see the gusts of wind still moving across the puddles.

storm Woods HoleThe next few days were the most stunning clear weather, and the north wind from the storm gave the trees a major wake up call — time to lose those leaves!  This magical period with bright colors before the leaves tumble are some of my favorite days on Cape Cod.

foliage 1Later in the week, I headed over to Martha’s Vineyard for a cocktail party, boarding the ferry at about 3.45 pm as the gloaming was setting in, and the weather looked extremely ominous once again.   Another storm…already?,  I thought.

storm Vineyard ferry Woods Hole storm storm on Vineyard ferryI must admit, I was happy to be on a vessel this size, and am always confident in the judgement of the Steamship Authority captains who would never head out in unsafe weather.  My thirteen foot Boston Whaler has been dry docked for the season, but I would not venture out with that mean looking cloud hanging over me in a smaller boat.  As it played out, it looked worse than it was, and we had an uneventful passage culminating in this extraordinary view as we entered Vineyard Haven:

Vineyard Haven lodgingThis bejeweled vision really gave me pause.  Like, take a deep breath and relax.  Count your blessings.  Revel in the splendor of nature.   Enjoy getting off the beaten path.  Visit the Vineyard more often.  Get your nose out of the camera phone and just look, take it in, appreciate the gift of this view.

Woods Hole bed and breakfastAdd this moment to the sunset that came two nights later, and I pinched myself for being lucky enough to live in as magical place as sometimes stormy Cape Cod.  The winter winds will come, the leaves will fall, but each sunrise and sunset is it’s own small miracle here on the sand spit we call home.

 

Our 500th TripAdvisor Cape Cod Review

October 9th, 2014 by Beth Colt

Woods Hole Inn near Martha's Vineyard ferry

As of today, we have received our 500th review on TripAdvisor Cape Cod.  Six years in business, 500 reviews, 96% of which are four or five stars.  Wow, I am grateful for all those guests who shared their experiences with the world.  Sometimes I feel like Sally Fields at the 1984 Academy Awards:  You like me, you really like me.   But the online review system is not just an echo chamber of positives for us.

We use TripAdvisor as a way to listen to our customers, and most of the time they tell us they are happy.  But every once in a while, well ergh, four times since we opened six years ago (but who is counting), they really let us have it.  A “terrible” review can leave me sleepless for more than a few nights, brainstorming about the details and trying to fix every single one of the highlighted issues.  I read a book once called “Every Complaint is A Gift” and the title really says it all (now you don’t have to read the book:)  By studying the meta message in each negative, I know we can consistently improve.

As the old saying goes, the customer is always right.  In this day and age of online transparency, the customer is more than that: our guests are a lifeline to growth and continued business.  So we listen very carefully.

Thank you to each and every customer who took the time to write us a review on TripAdvisor Cape Cod — good, mixed or bad.  We truly appreciate it.  We know that your vacation days are precious, your business travel important.  We care about the details of making your journey special.

One of the most gratifying thing about this zen-like focus on customer satisfaction is that we have a robust list of repeat guests, people who cherish us as much as we cherish them.  They come back, time and again, and bring their friends.   So we thank you all, and we hope to see you soon at the Woods Hole Inn, located in the small fishing village of Woods Hole, part of the town of Falmouth on Cape Cod.

 

Fall Colors 2014 in Woods Hole

October 6th, 2014 by Beth Colt

Woods Hole ferry to Marthas Vineyard

Fall into autumn with a visit to Cape Cod, the perfect time to explore Woods Hole.  There are so many exciting things to do in fall, looking at the fall colors is just one of them.  Here, my TOP TEN reasons to visit Woods Hole this autumn.

#10:  Ride the Shining Sea Bike Path

Riding bikes on Cape CodBefore moving here, I had no idea of the splendor of riding a dedicated bike path, past beaches, lagoons, bird sanctuaries.. all without a car in sight.  Falmouth’s Shining Sea Bike Path is a national treasure, especially as the fall colors bloom.  Add the cool air, and it is the perfect time to explore Falmouth by bike.  The bike path is 11 miles long, starting in Woods Hole and ending in North Falmouth.

#9: Sit a Spell

Woods Hole autumn colorsThe ferry horn blows in the distance.  The blue heron explores the shoreline, leaves tumble in the wind, a water bug sends ripples over the perfect reflection.  You slow down, listen, and true relaxation sets in.

#8. Walk to the Light Houseautumn Nobska light Nobska Light is know as one of the most beautiful lighthouses in America,  and it’s a short walk from the center of Woods Hole.  Wander up here on a clear day and you can see Menemsha, Martha’s Vineyard, Falmouth Heights, even Tarpaulin Cove if you know where to look.  Ferry boats pass in the distance, white clouds race overhead.  Lie on the cool grass and imagine you’re in your own personal  “Christina’s World.”

#7. Go Antiquing

antiquing on Cape CodI live for antique shops filled with clutter — old wooden boats, glass balls, ships anchors, crooked oars and wicker chairs.  Here, treasures unknown await — a racy deck of playing cards, old letters, signs for businesses that no longer exist.  Upper Cape Cod has a nice collection of these hideaways, plus an excellent yard sale scene.  When you come to the Woods Hole Inn, I will share my secret sources with you, crafting an itinerary that includes a scenic drive and plenty of Cape Cod memorabilia.

#6. See the Sunrise over the HarborWoods Hole romantic walksSure, anyone can walk around our charming marina any old time of day, but if you really want to see it at it’s VERY best?  Sunrise!  Every day this amazing show goes on and most people are still in bed.  Not you!  I tipped you off, now just get up and see it:)  You can thank me later.

#5. Walk an Empty Beach

Dog on beach Falmouth MA

Fall colors bloom on the beach with the deep blue of the ocean setting off the autumn leaf peepers display.  Long walks searching for seaglass and shells are in your future.   I recommend Nobska Beach, Stoney Beach, Wood Neck Beach, Surf Drive or Chappaquoit but there are many others within an easy drive of here.  You will not run out of beaches to explore while staying in Falmouth — there are over 70 of them!

#4. Eat a Romantic Meal on the waterfront

Woods Hole waterfront diningIn the fall, the waterfront places fire up the wood stoves and these summer porches become the most delightful and romantic dining destinations.  Try the Landfall, the Captain Kidd, Fishmonger, Phusion or the new Quicks Hole Tavern.  There is a waterfront table with an incredible sunset view of the fall colors waiting for you in Woods Hole.  Yum!

#3. Paint a Picture

Dockside in Woods Hole paintingBundle up, grab your paints and find the perfect vista to paint. Oh that Cape Cod light!  Just sitting on the dock of the bay, watching the time roll away.  Add the fall colors?  Perfect.

#2. Enjoy a Hearty Breakfastcontinental style breakfast at the Woods Hole InnGuests of the Woods Hole Inn enjoy a great spread of all you can eat treats like mini quiches, bread puddings, croissants, fresh cut fruit, Greek yoghurt, home made granola and lots of piping hot coffee.  Who doesn’t want to start the day with a great breakfast?  You will need it with all the activities we have planned for you.

#1. Daytrip to Martha’s Vineyard

ferry to Marthas VIneyard parkingFrom the Woods Hole Inn, you just walk across the street to hop on the ferry to visit Martha’s Vineyard. As the ferry pulls away from the slip, look back over the village of Woods Hole for the view above.  The 45 minute ferry ride is part of the fun, with a great outdoor deck plus hot cocoa and beer inside.

Passenger tickets are $16 per person round trip.  You arrive in Vineyard Haven where there are shops, bookstores and great restaurants to explore.  Parking is tricky in Woods Hole, but as a guest of the inn we will take care of all that for you.   It makes day tripping to the Vineyard delightfully easy.

That’s it, my TOP TEN.  Hope to see you soon in Woods Hole!  The fall colors await.

My Bucket List, or Day Trip to Oak Bluffs on Marthas Vineyard

September 27th, 2014 by Beth Colt

Visit from Woods Hole InnI recently ran into a gaggle of women of a certain age from Ohio on the streets of Woods Hole.  They were wearing matching yellow t-shirts which were titled “My Bucket List” and included Las Vegas, New York City and you guessed it, Martha’s Vineyard.  I hear this a lot at the front desk of the inn: “We are headed over to Martha’s Vineyard — it’s on our bucket list!”  It might surprise you to know that Vineyarders never refer to their island home using the full name — they call it “the Island” or sometimes “the Rock.”

Summer keeps me pretty darn busy, but yesterday dawned clear and warm — one of the most beautiful days of September — and I hopped the ferry to get on the Rock.  The boat leaves about 50 yards from the front door of the Woods Hole Inn, and I walked on with other passengers up the ramp to the left of the terminal (round trip $16).  The 45 minute trip across Vineyard Sound was uneventful, just lovely views over Nobska Lighthouse, West Chop, Vineyard Haven with gulls circling above, tourists posing for pictures.

The Oak Bluffs ferry landing is offered in summer only, and this was one of the last days one can ride directly to “OB” as the locals call it.  By the time we pulled into the slip, the wind and waves made the landing challenging and I heard that later ferries were diverted into Vineyard Haven which is a much more protected harbor.

a daytrio from Woods Hole

 

 

In Oak Bluffs, I met an old friend from high school and we wandered down to the harbor looking for a great spot to eat.

 

 

 

 

Daytrip from Woods Hole Inn

We found it on the second floor deck of a gingerbread cottage turned restaurant called “Lobsterville,” where we sat in the sun overlooking the harbor and enjoyed a delightful meal.  Catching up with old friends in this kind of venue is unique — you want to talk about the last thirty years, but there are so many interesting things to look at and see that sometimes the conversation gets derailed, like Yes, then my father died oh look at that beautiful wooden sloop.  (Maybe those two thoughts are not so disconnected anyway.)

 

 

 

Woods Hole Inn close to Marthas Vineyard

At Lobsterville, I ordered the steak appetizer on the recommendation of the waiter.  It came on a puff pastry with tomatoes and melted mozzarella.  It was enough for a full meal with two pieces of steak, a drizzle of reduced balsamic and this delightful sprig of rosemary ($16).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

visit Marthas Vineyard

After lunch, we wandered the streets of Oak Bluffs past hamburger joints, moped rentals, t-shirt shops, fudge and candy stores and of course the famous 100+ year old “Flying Horses” Carousel.  We strolled into several wonderful Inns (the Dockside, a new place which looks super chic) and the Oak Bluffs Inn, a charmingly renovated authentic Victorian.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Daytrip from Woods Hole

Oak Bluffs Inn owner Eric showed us the tower atop his building with wonderful views of Circuit Avenue and the ocean in the distance.  He was really nice, taking time out of a busy day to give us a full tour.  Here is a webcam of the view from this tower!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We also strolled the Campgrounds, also known as the Gingerbread Cottages.  This unique community of 1880’s miniature Victorian houses circles around an open air wooden meeting hall which was used for Methodist Revival Retreats back in the day but now is a gathering place for summer concerts, lectures and other cool things like a summer taping of the “Moth Radio Hour.”  Last year when I walked through the Campgrounds, Wynton Marsalis was playing.   This is hallowed ground, a national landmark and one of the most charming neighborhoods you will ever visit.  It is a very short walk from the ferry.

 

day trip from the Woods Hole InnGingerbread Cottages breat day trip from Woods HoleVisit Marthas Vineyard from Woods Hole MA

 

 

 

 

 

 

On the way back to Woods Hole, I managed to get a photo of the new Quicks Hole Tavern (our new year round restaurant opposite the ferry) which was a new angle on the building, especially photogenic on this lovely blue sky day before the leaves start to turn.

IMG_5860 IMG_5873 IMG_5881

 

 

 

 

 

 

Back in Woods Hole that evening, a local band called “Brother’s Rye” was playing in front of Quicks Hole Taqueria and le tout Woods Hole was out on the streets to enjoy the last gasp of summer weather.

As the day ended, I thought about the nature of friendship and travel, that I can get away to this incredible island next door,  pick up a conversation with an old friend from the tenth grade, enjoy the crisp, clear fall weather on Cape Cod, and return home to my friendly village with music placing in the streets.

I don’t have a bucket list, but if I did, my day trip from Woods Hole to Oak Bluffs (aka The Rock) would most definitely be on it!

 

 

 

Saying Goodbye to Summer in Woods Hole

September 14th, 2014 by Beth Colt

Summer in Woods Hole, MAGirls just want to have fun or so my father likes to remind me. Although I am a serious college student during the rest of the year, I am an unabashed pleasure-seeker in the summer. And this summer at the Woods Hole Inn, my work and my play mingled most affably.

One might think that having grown up in Woods Hole, I’d be tired of the tourist scene. But for me, the bustling street life, the teeming beaches, and even the long lines for my double iced soy latte are all part of summer, and, seeing it all from the perspective of a Woods Hole Inn guest and blogger, I totally understand why our guests keep coming back.

Thanks to the Woods Hole Inn, I explored (and savored!) the restaurants, historic tours, and local museums and events through the eyes of a visitor and couldn’t have been more delighted. Early morning donuts at the Black Dog in Vineyard Haven, an afternoon lesson on Walsh roses at the Woods Hole Historical Museum, and one of the best sunsets over Eel Pond “on assignment”; who wouldn’t want to be a tourist or a guest blogger!

As my summer comes to an end, I would like to thank the pleasant and helpful staff at the Woods Hole Inn for giving me the chance to simultaneously work hard, learn tons, and play local traveler. It was a fantastic summer in Woods Hole!

Guest Blogger, Gwen Martin

Things to do in Woods Hole

MV Chilifest on January 24, 2015

September 7th, 2014 by Beth Colt

MV Chilifest (also known as the Big Chili Contest) is right around the corner on January 24, 2015 this year!  Start getting excited for the fun of the ferry ride packed with happy people headed to the big tent with all you can eat chili donated from local restaurants, live music and plenty of cold beer.  Sponsored by mvyRadio, this day of wintery fun and games benefits the local Red Stocking Fund and raises over $30,000 for local charity.

The ferries leave Woods Hole starting early with eager restauranteurs carting hot chili for the MV Chilifest.  There are free buses on the Martha’s Vineyard side to the PA Club in Oak Bluffs where the crowd gathers under a huge tent with heaters.  About 3,000 people attend, and the party lasts most of the day, at least until all the soups are consumed and prizes handed out for winners.  Tickets to the  Martha’s Vineyard Big Chili Contest are hard to get, mostly sold at local bars and hangouts both on the island and in Falmouth.

This year, the Woods Hole Inn is offering a special MV Chilifest package with free Chilifest and ferry tickets included in your two night stay.  Conveniently located across the street from the Steamship Authority ferry to Martha’s Vineyard, our two night package is a great deal.  You can see all the details on our specials page.  Book now while supplies last.

Here are some snapshots of all the fun from prior years, or go ahead and dive into the blog archive for the full story.

Woods Hole Inn Chilifest Special

Having fun at the Marthas Vineyard Chilifest.

Woods Hole Inn Chilifest Package

Over 3,000 people attend the MV Chilifest in January on Martha’s Vineyard

Woods Hole Inn close to ferry to MV

Great fun with live music all day under a tent in January on Martha’s Vineyard near Woods Hole MA.

Woods Hole Inn package for Chilifest

Free chili and lots of beer at the Martha’s Vineyard Big Chili Contest on Cape Cod in winter.

Woods Hole Inn Chilifest package

Move aside Mardi Gras, we have FUN on Cape Cod in wintah.

Breakfast at the Woods Hole Inn, featuring Rachel Ray

August 31st, 2014 by Beth Colt

Rachel Ray Romantic Meal for Two

When Rachel Ray calls, you answer, right? Last week, we heard she was looking for special romantic breakfast recipes, and what’s more romantic than breakfast for two at the Woods Hole Inn?

Woods Hole Inn's breakfast

So, close your eyes and imagine a perfect parfait of fresh cut berries, layered with thick greek yogurt, and house-made granola, the fragrance of savory bread pudding wafting from miniature cast iron pans, and a warm muffin dusted lightly with powdered sugar.  How about the steam off a hot cup of coffee, served in a thick pottery mug that rests softly in the heart of your hand?  Plus the smell of salt air fresh off the harbor?  Hmm, now that sounds nice.

 

 

 

Romantic Meal for Two, Woods Hole Inn, Rachel Ray

Open your eyes and look out over Woods Hole Harbor with ferryboats bustling and cumulous clouds floating over distant islands. Spend a moment dreaming about your perfect Cape Cod vacation day — sleeping late in your comfortable bed, walk to the beach, take a long swim, stroll along the harbor, savor a lobster dinner, sip a nightcap with your feet in the Atlantic.   Cape Cod vacation perfected.

 

 

 

 

Rachel Ray Romantic Meal for two

But how should we relate all this back to Rachel Ray? Enter Charlene, our world class breakfast chef.  Her vegan “Tomato Soup” muffins are notorious up and down the East Coast, and we felt confident that Rachel Ray would be suitably impressed by her perfect breakfast spread.

 

Breakfast at the Woods Hole Inn – always a work of art.

Ride the Carousel of Light in Falmouth MA Cape Cod

August 20th, 2014 by Beth Colt

Romance Cape CodThree miles up the road from us in Falmouth, summer people and locals are flocking to a new attraction — the Carousel of Light.  The brain child of artist and sculptor Lance Shinkle, this extraordinary wooden carousel is fun for young and old.  Each horse was hand carved by Shinkle, and the exterior of the carousel is painted with scenes of summer fun right here in Falmouth MA Cape Cod.

Resurrected this summer from twenty years of storage in Shinkle’s garage, the Carousel of Light is once again open and running until late August.  The Carousel is located in the parking lot in front of the Mullen Hall School on Katherine Lee Bates Road, just a half block off charming Main Street Falmouth MA.

Looking for the perfect romantic fun on Cape Cod?  I suggest walking Main Street to check out the shops and restaurants.  Stop into any one of the great bakeries, coffee shops or ice cream parlors for a special treat (I am partial to lobster ice cream at Ben and Bill’s ice cream or a pain au chocolate from the authentic french bakery Maison Villatte), then stroll past the library to the carousel.

Three dollars a ride gets you up and circling the parking lot on your trusty steed.  You will be amazed by the detail of these carved, painted horses as they serenade a clever mermaid with flowing hair to the tinkling sound of old Cape Cod themed songs.  With the southwesterly breeze blowing and big white puffy clouds floating overhead, you might experience a sort of Cape Cod Nirvana — peace, tranquility and carousel happiness all melded into one.

Try it!  The Carousel of Light is located in Falmouth MA.  Woods Hole is a village of the town of Falmouth MA Cape Cod, located at its’ southwestern most tip.  The Woods Hole Inn is a great jumping off point for all of Falmouth, Martha’s Vineyard and Cape Cod.

Falmouth MA lodgingCape Cod lodgingFalmouth MA Cape CodRomance Cape CodCape Cod Falmouth MAFalmouth Lodging

Walking around Woods Hole

August 18th, 2014 by Beth Colt

Relax in Woods Hole MAFrom Guest Blogger Gwen Martin:

Looking for something to do in Woods Hole? When in doubt, take a walk. I personally love walking anywhere, but walking around Woods Hole is especially rewarding.

Walk Around Eel Pond:  The classic Woods Hole walk is “around the pond.”   Start off where ever you can see Eel Pond (an inlet harbor and marina).  I prefer heading down Water St. from the Woods Hole Inn to Ocean Park for a pause to check out the boats and ferries passing through “the Hole” (aka Woods Hole Passage).

Continue down MBL St. to the walkway in front of the modernist Swope Building checking out the array of summer boats filling Eel Pond.  Bear right up Millfield St. and stop by the garden at the Bell Tower in front of St. Joseph’s Church.  At the top of Millfield take a right on School St., back to the village center. The view of the Pond at the causeway makes a spectacular place to pause and take in the view. The circumnavigation is about a mile, a perfect way to start or end your day, especially when topped off with iced coffee or ice cream at one of several Woods Hole eateries.  You’ve earned it!

Discover Nobska Lighthouse:  The secret walk up the bike path to Church St. disproves the thought that Nobska Light House is only accessible by car. For those with a sense of adventure (and good walking shoes), start at the Steamship Authority Parking lot and make your way up the bike path past scenic Little Harbor on your right.  Immediately after you go under a large overpass, look for a steep dirt path going up the hill to your right.  Once on Church St, head left past gorgeous, older estates. Just around the corner, you’ll be greeted by Nobska Light and a great view of Vineyard Sound.  Perfect spot for a selfie and a swim on Nobska Beach.

Explore Penzance Point:  Want to have major house-envy?  Stroll out to nearby Penzance Point — one of the most exclusive real estate spots in the world. Penzance Point is the final tip of the peninsula that is Woods Hole with water on both sides much of the entire walk.  From the Inn, head to the end of Water Street, turn right onto Albatross.  Take your first left onto Bar Neck Road.  There is a guard house at the beginning of the road but walkers are welcome during daylight hours.  Round trip from the Woods Hole Inn to the end of Penzance Point and back is about three miles.

Wherever you chose to take a stroll around Woods Hole, I guarantee that it will be great. What’s not refreshing about ocean views, lapping waves, magical garden vistas and fragrant sea air?

Relax Woods Hole, MARelax on Cape Cod WALKING6 WALKING7

Things to do in Woods Hole MA

Relax in Woods Hole MA

Woods Hole MA Things to Do

Things to do in Woods Hole MA

Relax in Woods Hole, MA

Relax in Edgartown, nearby Edgartown MA lodging

August 11th, 2014 by Beth Colt

 

Relax in Edgartown MA

Sea-washed shingles, neatly trimmed cottages, cheerful flowerbeds, and a scenic harbor full of yachts and sailboats make Edgartown one of my favorite spots to visit on Martha’s Vineyard. Edgartown seems to emanate summer and relaxation, beckoning me back every year.

Ferry boat to Martha's Vineyard from Woods HoleThe easiest (and most economical) way to get there is to take the Woods Hole Steamship Authority ferry to either Oak Bluffs or Vineyard Haven, which is the perfect solution for finding Edgartown MA lodging. From either of these Vineyard towns, catch Martha’s Vineyard bus #1 or #13; they leave every fifteen minutes and cost a few dollars.

 

 

 

Coffee in Edgartown MAOnce in Edgartown, I head immediately to Murdick’s Café for a perfectly brewed iced coffee and a taste of their homemade fudge. The chocolate peanut butter variety is decidedly indulgent, but who can argue with a recipe that dates back to 1887!

 

 

 

Things to do in Edgartown MALikewise, Edgartown is arguably one of the best places for boutique shopping: luxuriant cashmere sweaters donning nautical patterns at 20 Main, sailboat-embroidered shorts at Island Outfitters, and uniquely Vineyard necklaces and bracelets at numerous fine jewelry shops. There are also preppy name-brand stores like Jack Wills, Lilly Pulitzer, and Vineyard Vines. My favorite store is Backwater Trading, featuring outerwear, fishing paraphernalia, and casual beach attire – summer anyone?

 

 

Delicious food nearby Edgartown MA lodgingFor classic Vineyard fare, wander down Dock St. to the Seafood Shanty. Their calamari is fresh and local and delicious and the rooftop dining provides spectacular views of the harbor and the Chappy Ferry’s “back and forth” between the Vineyard and Chappaquiddick Island, a 527 foot passage!

 

 

 

Edgartown MA lodgingI discovered two new treasures this year in Edgartown: Edgartown Books and the Edgartown Lighthouse. The bookstore is located right downtown and was a welcomed oasis from the bustling town. Cozy seating areas tucked between aisles of this historic building brings browsing for the perfect beach read to a new level. And don’t miss the awesome stairs! After unwinding, I was ready for a trek to Edgartown Light, my first time to venture out to this totally picturesque lighthouse. Wandering past the historic Edgartown Public Library, stately seaside homes, and the gorgeous Harborview Hotel makes the trip even more worthwhile.

 

Woods Hole InnBefore catching the bus to Oak Bluffs for the ferry and to complete my summer escapade, I grabbed a freshly made frozen “Arnold Palmer” from MacPhail’s Corner Café – refreshing! So, whether you want to walk along the harbor or spend the day browsing boutiques, Edgartown will become your summer pleasure. –Guest Blogger, Gwen Martin

 

 

 

Cafes in Edgartown MA

Shopping in Edgartown

Woods Hole Inn Day Trip

Day trip from Woods Hole MA

Downtown Edgartown MA

Edgartown Public Library

Chappy Ferry

Shopping in Edgartown MA

Edgartown MA books

Homes in Edgartown MA

Shopping in Edgartown

Ferry boat to Vineyard Haven

The Woods Hole Film Festival

July 28th, 2014 by Beth Colt

Woods Hole Film FestivalIf variety is the spice of life, Woods Hole and its film festival are hot! The village is home to world-renowned scientific institutions and historic buildings and a plethora of delightful eating establishments, beaches, and cultural events like contra dancing, jazz and folk concert series, art shows, and the Woods Hole Film Festival. And the film festival is a delectable mix of feature length narrative films, documentaries, animation, and “shorts,” and the content and settings of these mostly independent films are wildly diverse.

A few unconventional and intriguing ones that I plan to catch this year include Wicker Kittens, Marmato, and Antarctica. Just the title, Wicker Kittens, is enough to awaken curiosity, but an annual jigsaw puzzle competition in Minnesota – that’s a must see phenomenon! More seriously, Marmato, set in a 500 year old mining town in Columbia, is a film described as “a canvas of magic realism and the confrontation with globalized mining.” Antarctica, on the other hand, captures the issues of data recording in the frozen tundra with limited time – should be a packed audience, so get your tickets early! There is lots of light-hearted fare as well, like on Kids’ Day. This year, this fun event features a movie inspired by the famous children’s series, “The Boxcar Children.”

Don’t miss what Movie Magazine calls “one of the 25 coolest film festivals in the world.” The Woods Hole Film Festival runs until Saturday, August 2nd, and, there is much more than films with music, parties, and filmmaker discussions to round out the week. Check out the full listing of movies and events at www.woodsholefilmfestival.org/. -from guest blogger Gwen Martin

Woods Hole Film FestivalWoods Hole Film Festival

Woods Hole Film Festival

Beaches of Woods Hole

July 27th, 2014 by Beth Colt

Romantic getawayWhere is the best beach in town? This is a question I hear regularly around town and especially at the Inn.  Since our village is peninsular, you can’t walk 5 minutes in any direction without seeing the ocean and waterfront property is not exactly hard to come by. And although much of the ocean front real estate is private, the public beaches in Woods Hole each have something different to offer to both visitors and locals.

Confusing because of its name, “Stoney Beach” or “Stoney” (by the locals) is actually the sandiest beach in Woods Hole. Sheltered from the prevailing southeast sea breeze, Stoney is the perfect place to spend a day at the beach without getting sand in your sandwich, and by the middle of summer, the water is warm and welcoming for even the most novice ocean swimmers. Nestled between weathered cottages, Stoney is setback from the road, and, because it is an official town beach, a Life Guard is on duty during the day.

Woods Hole BeachesVenture a little bit farther in the opposite direction, and find the most scenic beach around just below Nobska Lighthouse with gorgeous views of the Lighthouse, Martha’s Vineyard, and the entrance to Woods Hole Harbor. The consistent southwest breeze makes Nobska Beach the perfect balmy day hang out spot and if you need some extra cooling-off, take a dip in the crisp water. Make sure to take a quick walk up to the Lighthouse to snap some pictures of the ferryboats going by.

 

 

Things to do in Woods HoleWant to bring your dog to the beach? Or watch the sun set over the water from your car on a chilly evening? Then the “Town Landing” opposite Park Street is for you. It is somewhat hidden from the road, down a lengthy stone road, and, although the beach looks unappealingly rocky from first glance, swimming is actually a breeze because of its lack of sand bars and quick drop-off. You can venture out on the jetty too and slide into the cool, refreshing water.

 

 

Woods Hole Beach DayNo matter what you are looking for, the beaches of Woods Hole are sure to please. So grab a beach towel from the front desk and make your way to any one of these walkable beaches from the Woods Hole Inn. You can grab on iced coffee from Coffee Obsession (or an iced soy latte, my personal favorite) and the locally inspired “Bourne Farm” sandwich from Woods Hole Market on your way.  — from guest blogger Gwen Martin

 

 

 

Beaches in Woods Hole MA

»