Martha's Vineyard, MA

Running Martha’s Vineyard Beaches

The beach is one of the reasons visitors flock to the Vineyard. For those who love running on the beach, there are possibilities on the Vineyard, but each beach is dependent on tidal conditions, sand type, and other factors. It is of course possible to run on any MV beach, but we’re looking for at least 1 continuous mile, and the chance of firm, packed sand. With that, here’s a quick guide:

Tide Chart
  • South Beach. The most popular beach for running, with 3+ miles possible. Very sandy and free of rocks. At least 1 mile in South Beach State Park, but possible to continue east, to Norton Point, and even further, for another 1-2 miles, depending on tide conditions. At times, the sand here can be great for running — at other times, the beach can be sloped and the sand soft.
  • Joseph Sylvia State Beach. Paralleling Beach Rd. between Oak Bluff and Edgardown, there are miles of beachfront. Joseph Sylvia State Beach is 1.2 miles to Jaws Bridge, but continues on either side for 1 mile or so. The beach is narrower and sand tends to be grainier and soft, but can be good for running at low tide. A bike path runs along the entirety of Beach Road, which might make for better running than the soft sand of State Beach.
  • Aquinnah. A long beach stretches from the tip of Aquinnah, below the cliffs, on the southwestern part of the island. This includes Moshup Beach and Aquinnah Beach, both public beaches. Like South Beach, these are rugged beaches with surf and variable conditions for running. It is 2.2 miles from the trailhead of Moshup Beach to Lily Pond. From Moshup Beach to the Cliffs, it is 0.6 miles around to Gay Head. Note: sections of Moshup Beach in Aquinnah are very rocky.
  • Chappaquiddick. East Beach goes for several miles, and can be good for running depending on conditions. Cape Pogue is a little further out there, but beautiful and a little more protected from erosion and the elements. Lighthouse is a bonus. Variable running conditions.

 

 

 

 

Essentials
  • Depends on which beach
  • All served by bus. Parking situation varies by beach