Downtown Nantucket is the hub of activity for the island. Restaurants, shops, museums, and tidy, old homes line the streets. It's always nice to get away to one of the beaches or smaller villages, like 'Sconset, while on the island, but downtown offers a true taste of this once bustling whaling town. There's always something to do or indulge in there.
Like most of the island, flowers feature prominently on the streets of downtown. They drape over fences and arbors and fill window boxes with bright color. Their vibrancy boosts the already energetic flow to the summer streets.
The shingle homes, so iconic to the island, and 19th century clapboards of downtown Nantucket ornament each street in perfectly lined, meticulous architecture.
And no visit to downtown Nantucket would be complete without admiring the famous cobblestone streets. The main street was first paved with cobblestones in 1837, and there is some debate as to their origin. The main theory spouted is that they were brought over as ballast on ships coming home from Europe. It is also said they were purchased from Gloucester, Massachusetts. Whatever their provenance, they add to the unique, historic character of downtown.
Murray's is a must-stop while shopping along the cobblestones
As a descendent of the Coffin and Starbuck families, the founders and whalers of Nantucket, walking through the streets of downtown brings into focus the legacy of the whaling days. Their echo is felt in the cobblestones and commerce, in the taste of oysters and rum, and in all of activity that is downtown Nantucket.