One of the best-kept secrets on the island can be found six and a half miles from downtown Nantucket. The destination: Madaket Beach. Known for its strong currents, everchanging waves, and the perfect sunset, Madaket is a must-see beach for all who come to the island.
This large beach has enough room for the whole family. Located just off the Madaket Road bike path, this beach is also accessible via Nantucket’s Transit Authority Wave Bus.
Although it is located at the furthest western side of the island, there are still plenty of ways to make your beach day in Madaket an all-day excursion. Just a few feet away from the beach’s access point you will find one of Nantucket’s favorite restaurants, Millie’s. With a “Baja-style” menu featuring great fish tacos and lobster rolls, you can grab lunch overlooking the beach or visit their take-out window and bring the seafood inspired cuisine back to the beach.
The restaurant itself has a great history. Named after “Madaket” Millie Jewett, there was nothing that Millie wasn’t involved with. She cared for the animals she raised including ducks, dogs, and any strays that came across her path. She sold ice cream to visitors who came to explore the beaches and was always ready to share her island knowledge. What made this woman a true legend was her passion for helping people, as she was recognized by the Coast Guard for her assistance on the front lines with ships that wrecked off the coast of Madaket Beach.
If a full take-out meal isn’t on your agenda, there is also a small market place. Complete with beach toys, sunscreen, light bites, ice cream and beverages (both alcoholic and non-alcoholic), this is your one-stop shop to plan an impromptu beach visit, or to stock up on the essentials that may be back at the house.
On the sands of Madaket Beach, you can always find a spot to lay your towel. The waves here can be large, making surfing and offshore paddle boarding a popular activity. If you are not one for large waves, keep your binoculars close and watch for seals as they pop up between the waves.
Madaket beach has been rated the number one spot on the island to watch the sunset. Bring a chair or a towel and get ready to see some of the most beautiful colors splash across the sky as the sun sets on another Nantucket day.
One of the best ways to get to Madaket beach is to take the scenic bike path. The route from downtown to the beach is six and a half miles of nature, as most of the path runs along untouched lands that are protected by the Nantucket Conservation Foundation. This bike path will show you everything that Nantucket’s natural beauty has to offer, from trees and native shrubbery to pond views, this bike path will be a reset from the real world as you head out to the sea.
Not one for biking? No problem! Nantucket’s favorite bus, “The Wave,” can take you right from town to the beach. Air conditioned and equipped with plenty of seating, the whole family can easily get to the beach.
Madaket Beach can be the perfect spot for a catered clambake, family picnic, or a romantic moment for two. The stretch of beach mixed with the smells and sound of the surf is the true essence of Nantucket. As a family friendly beach, it is the perfect place to bring the whole family. As long as you have a towel in tow, you are all set to enjoy one of the islands most iconic beaches.