When people ask me to describe Oak Bluffs, I tell them about the Flying Horses because, to me, the carousel illustrates the flavor of the town perfectly. It’s colorful, historic, loud, full of laughter & fun and unlike any other place in the world.
The Oak Bluffs carousel is the nation’s oldest operating platform carousel and a National Historic Landmark cared for by the Martha’s Vineyard Preservation Trust. Built by Charles W.F. Dare in 1876, the Flying Horses arrived on Martha’s Vineyard in 1884.
Featuring small and large horses, as well as carriages to ride on, the Flying Horses challenge you to catch the brass ring as your circle round. The lucky rider who captures the brass ring wins a free ride. Rides are $1.50 and you can buy a season pass if you know you’ll be climbing aboard again and again. Around the carousel is an arcade complete with games and snacks and open windows pulling the nearby ocean breeze inside to cool the riders.
The carousel is located at the bottom of Circuit Ave – the town’s main drag featuring great shopping, movies, ice cream, fudge and restaurants ranging from pizza to oysters on the half shell – an extension of the excitement and energy of the Flying Horses.
Cool fact: check out your horse’s eyes…you’ll find a surprise!