By Vanessa Gordon
No matter which season you decide to visit, the Hamptons is always filled with plenty of exciting activities for everyone of all ages. Learn where to stay and play, including top destinations you must pinpoint as you navigate some of the best things to do in the Hamptons.
Where to Stay~
Southampton Inn, located within the village of Southampton and within easy walking distance to the shops, parks and restaurants, is particularly convenient for those traveling with children and or pets. Their onsite restaurant, Claude’s, offers spacious outdoor and indoor dining with an adjacent playroom for kids to unwind. During the warmer months, there are outdoor lawn games, a pool, and tennis court.
Also dog and family friendly is Baron’s Cove, an all-American styled resort located in the village of Sag Harbor opposite the marina. Baron’s Cove has a seafood-centric restaurant onsite that offers breathtaking views of the harbor. Spend the mornings taking a yoga class, followed by a ride to the beach on one of their complimentary bicycles. Finish the day with a cocktail paired with live music in the lounge.
Mill House Inn is both a luxurious and charming boutique hotel to stay at in the heart of the village of East Hampton. Known for their unbeatable signature breakfast spread, start the day with an irresistible selection from a fruit and yogurt platter with whole-wheat bacon cheddar scones and a cold-pressed juice, to an omelet with aged cheddar cheese and applewood smoked bacon. Their breakfasts are currently served picnic style to enjoy in their outdoor garden or to take to the beach.
The Roundtree in Amagansett is conveniently located on Main Street. The Roundtree is easily accessible from the Hampton Jitney stop and less than a mile from the Long Island Railroad. This seaside boutique hotel is a short walk from the ocean, restaurants, boutique shops, and historic landmarks. Relax among two acres landscaped luscious gardens perfect for daytime picnics or BBQ dinners, luxurious amenities, and more. Looking to bring some local treats home? Stop in to Amber Waves Farm and Market just a few minutes’ walk away.
What to See~
In between activities, get to know the region by exploring the notable historic and picturesque sights of the Hamptons. From the gorgeous windmills to the beaches, there will be plenty of photo ops to capture while in town. Though the most easily accessible windmill is at the entrance to the Long Wharf in Sag Harbor village, one that is a perfect backdrop for a family picnic outing is off of Hildreth Ave. Look closely and you will see a time capsule plaque!
Spending a day at the beach is an essential to-do while in the Hamptons. Discover the famous Cooper’s Beach in Southampton and Main Beach in East Hampton to bay beaches from Long Beach in Sag Harbor to Maidstone Bay Beach in Hampton. Spend the day at one beach, and then have a BBQ dinner that evening at a different beach. Note that parking fees and limitations, so it may be best to visit during afterhours or choose to bike to your favorite beach.
One of the most exciting re-openings in the Hamptons is the unveiling of the Sag Harbor Cinema that unfortunately caught fire in December of 2016. Films, including the newest blockbusters and restored Hollywood Classics, are now screening at the cinema. Before the show, snag some sunset photo ops at the long wharf with the array of yachts as a partial backdrop. Another excellent photo opportunity is right in front of the iconic red ‘Sag Harbor’ sign at the cinema.
Where to Explore~
If you love a good nature walk, you may choose to start your day at the Elizabeth A. Morton National Wildlife Refuge in Sag Harbor. Explore acres and acres of scenic tranquility while discovering the diverse habitat of the peninsula. Spot wildlife including songbirds, painted turtles, chipmunks, white-tailed deer, turkeys and black ducks, just to name a few! Bring your binoculars for an incredible wildlife viewing experience.
Next, head to the vineyards across the South Fork including Duck Walk Vineyard, Channing Daughters, and Wölffer Estate. Enjoy a wine tasting flight after strolling through the vineyards and taking in the gorgeous scenery. Select wineries offer live music and other events throughout the year, so be sure to check their calendars or call before your visit. Bring home some of your favorite bottle of wine for loved ones back at home.
For an extensive selection of local bounty, visit the farms stands across the Hamptons. Some are located on Montauk Highway like The Milk Pail that is famous for their extensive apple selection and cider doughnuts. Others are tucked away on the back roads like Balsam Farms, well known for their top-notch fruit and vegetable selection, and Mecox Bay Dairy where everything sold there is made there.
A one-stop shop option is the farmers markets across the Hamptons. These include the East Hampton Farmers Market on Friday mornings, Sag Harbor Farmers Market on Saturdays, and Southampton Farmers Market on Sundays.
Where to Relax~
During a visit to the Hamptons, dedicate some time to rest and renew. The Hamptons has a wide variety of wellness centers and spas with dozens of different treatments. Organic Edge in Water Mill is offering a summer-reset package to kick off the season. The package includes two cryo slimming treatments, 2 colonics, and four infrared sauna pod sessions for $1000.
Also in Water Mill is Shou Sugi Ban House, a luxury wellness resort that transports you to a meditative Japanese spa. Shou Sugi Ban House has everything from an onsite restaurant serving breakfast, lunch and dinner to a wide selection of wellness offerings and workshops. Private local excursions are also available exclusively for resort guests.
Where to Dine~
The Hamptons has some of the best restaurants all in one location. For breakfast, Estia’s in Sag Harbor has expansive outdoor seating and is renowned for their farm to table dishes. Loved by both locals and visitors alike, Estia’s serves up hearty American cuisine with a southwestern influence.
Settle in at Armin and Judy for the freshest French pastries, lunch, or dinner. Enjoy fresh air and your meal on their outdoor terrace or roadside tables. Their retail bakery offers French classics like baguettes, pain au chocolat, and their popular brie and house-made jam sandwich.
The Beacon, located above the Sag Harbor Cove Yacht Club, is a popular Hamptons’ mainstay. Dinner at The Beacon is paired with beautiful views from their deck. Enjoy the upscale-casual atmosphere with notable dishes like the Lobster Rigatoni and Halibut Baked in Parchment.
For those searching for an unbeatable lobster roll, The Dock House in Sag Harbor on Long Wharf has one of the best lobster rolls around. Grab one to enjoy on the beach or while admiring the yachts and sailboats docked at the marina.
Another great choice for lunch or dinner is Tutto Il Giorno. This coastal Italian restaurant has locations in Southampton, and in Sag Harbor in the same space as Urban Zen. Tutto serves plates of delicious pastas, seafood, and more paired with refreshing cocktails and an outstanding wine list.
Where to Shop~
The Hamptons is a renowned shopping destination, mixing family-owned boutiques with internationally recognized luxury brands. The villages of Southampton and East Hampton have a more upscale vibe when it comes to shopping, whereas Amagansett and Sag Harbor have more of a selection of boutiques shops with gifts you would only find in the Hamptons. You will also see a number of art galleries that feature a mix of local and international artists’ works for sale. There are also a variety of street fairs, festivals, and exhibitions year-round.
Notable high-end brands on the Hamptons’ stage include: Akris, Gucci, Louboutin, Ralph Lauren, Zimmermann, and many more. Boutiques to visit are: Goldie, Satori, Relax Sag Harbor, and Fishers Home Furnishings in Sag Harbor; and Botanica Bazaar, Ganeaux, and Lazypoint in Amagansett.
Where to Play~
The Hamptons has an impressive range of indoor and outdoor sports as well as recreational locations. The Clubhouse in East Hampton could be considered the heart and soul when it comes to the diverse range of sports available to play. Choose from tennis, mini golf, bowling, a full arcade, and more all with an onsite restaurant, and outdoor and indoor bar, and lounge.
Tee off at Poxabogue Golf Course in Wainscott, Sag Harbor Golf Course, or Shinnecock Hills Golf Club, to name a few. If you want to spend most of your time at the beach, consider sailing, surfing, paddleboarding, or even kitesurfing lessons offered at many beaches across the Hamptons. This may be the destination where you try something brand new and are instantly hooked from that first lesson.
Share your favorite destinations across the Hamptons on social media with #EndUpHere and tag @EastEndGetaway. Where will you end up next?