The island of Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts, nearly 7 mi/11 km from the New England coast, is covered with windswept moors, dense forests, dramatic coastal cliffs and soft sandy beaches.
Though relatively small, Martha's Vineyard is made up of six distinctly different towns, each with its own unique personality and beauty. Such pockets of individualism have always been part of the Martha's Vineyard character, and that is a large portion of its appeal.
Oak Bluffs is colorful and somewhat frivolous (on Illumination Night in August residents hang Chinese lanterns out of every window of their homes); Edgartown is more sedate and stately, its wealthy whaling legacy giving it a regal air; Vineyard Haven (Tisbury) is the industrious and very busy sibling, serving as the island's year-round port. Farther out in Chilmark, West Tisbury and Aquinnah, commercialism gives way to rambling farms, stunning vistas and a much more peaceful way of life.
The island's visitors are just as varied. Martha's Vineyard has long been a place of escape—a healthful retreat with an independent, creative air. It's a favorite among celebrities, who find it a welcome respite from the demands of fame. Martha's Vineyard is also home to many artists and writers who gain inspiration from its rich history and the sheer natural beauty of the place.
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