Hy-Line Cruises is a family owned and operated ferry company on Cape Cod that has been around long enough to know what you want when you’re on vacation. How do travelers describe the Hy-Line experience? Convenient, reliable, enjoyable, effortless, and stress-free. Hy-Line takes pride in the service they offer to the hundreds of thousands of travelers they carry each year on their ferries, sightseeing cruises, and fishing trips. Whether you want to get away and spend some time on the islands, or you are looking for a fun way to spend a few hours on the water while you’re on the Cape, Hy-Line Cruises has everyone covered.
Nantucket: The Little Grey Lady of the Sea
Nantucket holds a special place in the hearts of the Hy-Line crew – they’ve been providing seasonal ferry service since 1973 and year-round service since December 1995. Nicknamed “The Little Grey Lady of the Sea,” the quaint island of Nantucket is located 30 miles south of Cape Cod and is just a quick 1-hour trip aboard their high-speed ferries.
With its unspoiled charm and natural beauty, it is easy to see why so many travelers flock there summer after summer. Nantucket is easy to navigate by foot, bike, or car, as it is only fourteen miles long and three and a half miles wide, making it perfect for a day trip or a longer stay.
No matter where you are on the island there are so many things to see and do! With its gorgeous beaches, delicious restaurants and ice cream shops, numerous historical locations, museums, and the fun and interesting stores that line Main Street, Nantucket has a little bit for everyone.
When cruising into Nantucket Harbor you will pass Brant Point Lighthouse, completed in 1759. Many visitors love to take photos of the lighthouse from the boat, or you might choose to walk to this lighthouse which is a very short distance from Hy-Line’s ferry terminal. They say when you leave Nantucket and round Brant Point, throw a penny in the water and it will guarantee your return!
Martha’s Vineyard: Artsy Culture with New England Charm
Only an hour away on Hy-Line’s high-speed ferry, Martha’s Vineyard is twice the size of her sister island, Nantucket, at almost 100 square miles. Where Nantucket is mostly flat and sandy, Martha’s Vineyard has woods, fields, hillsides, and the breathtaking Aquinnah Cliffs. Along with its natural beauty, the island also boasts delicious, fresh seafood, hundreds of great retail shops, farmers markets, breathtaking beaches, and a friendly island culture.
Martha’s Vineyard is a beautiful island, consisting of six towns with magnificent coastline. The six towns of the island retain their own character and style. The “down island” towns of Vineyard Haven, Oak Bluffs, and Edgartown are shopping havens with attractions and restaurants to suit every taste. The “up island” towns of Menemsha, Chilmark, and Aquinnah are quaint, quiet places reminiscent of the island’s maritime past.
To get a good sense of the island, you can either take a bus tour of each town from one of the many operators in Oak Bluffs or rent a car or bike for a little more flexibility. If this isn’t your speed, don’t worry; there is plenty to do within a short walking distance from the boat. Oak Bluffs offers colorful gingerbread cottages, the tabernacle of Camp Meeting Association, the serenity of Ocean Park with views of the Atlantic Ocean, and a busy main street full of restaurants, ice cream and candy stores, and shops full of anything you could possibly want or need. The town is also home to the Flying Horses Carousel, the oldest working platform carousel in the country, which is a must-see. Try your luck at grabbing the brass ring for a free ride!
Martha’s Vineyard is a bustling island with so much to offer—you’re sure to love your time there.
Hyannis: Centrally Located Near the Cape’s Best Things to Do
Hyannis has been Hy-Line’s home since 1962 when they first started as a sightseeing boat operating Hyannis Harbor Tours, out past the Kennedy Compound in Hyannisport. These sightseeing trips still operate today, highlighting the history of local area landmarks with live commentary. There’s a little more fun in the summer with specialty trips such as sunset cocktail cruises, ice cream floats, and musical bingo.
Also at the Ocean Street Dock are Cape Cod Fishing Trips on Nantucket Sound. Whether you’re a novice or a hearty fisherman, Hy-Line has trips for everyone. Manned by their helpful and attentive crew, both fishing vessels are Coast Guard inspected and certified for your safety.
With its picture-perfect Main Street, beautiful harbor, and attractions to please every age, Hyannis is considered the hub of Cape Cod for good reason. Hyannis proves to be a great home-base while visiting Cape Cod, for all these reasons and so much more.
Cape Cod Canal: A National Civil Engineering Landmark
This man-made canal is the widest sea-level canal (without locks) in the world. It was built to create more efficient nautical trade routes, opening in July 1914. Passage through the canal is safer than having to maneuver around the dangerous shoals and unpredictable currents surrounding the Outer Cape, saving ships more than 160 miles of travel. From Onset, a village of Wareham, hop aboard Cape Cod Canal Cruises, the Canal’s only sightseeing cruise. Climb aboard the Viking for a two or three-hour sightseeing cruise featuring live commentary about the fascinating history and points of interest along the Canal, or in the summer choose from more options like a family cruise where kids ride free, or a live music cruise.
For more information, visit hylinecruises.com.