I have always been fond of Long Island. It’s where I went for college and was my first home away from home once I left Hawaii. I finally had the opportunity to visit friends who live out in the Hamptons this summer, which has been on my list for quite some time, and it was truly nothing short of amazing. Here were my five favorite parts of this weekend getaway.
We took the Hampton Jitney from Manhattan early in the morning, so I fell asleep. When I woke up, I just remember driving through a bunch of trees and looking at farms and a lake. I felt immensely better being among nature because the city can sometimes feel suffocating. I loved how most of the homes were hidden behind trees to maintain privacy and that there were trees everywhere.
The North Fork is known for their wineries and it is easy to visit one after the other. We spent an afternoon visiting one after the other, starting at Pindar Vineyards. It was $10 to taste five different wines that you can choose from a list, which was not bad at all. I really enjoyed their red wine called Pythagoras. We attempted to go to another winery after and it unfortunately did not work out, then proceeded to end our day at my new favorite spot: Wolffer Estate. I loved how everyone could enjoy sitting outdoors next to the vines or indoor in a chateau-like space. Not only did they have a great selection of wine, they had a great cheese and charcuterie menu and Wolffer is open year-round. I tried the table rosé, which is a must in the summer, and bought a bottle of a red blend called Fatalis Fatum, which I cannot wait to try this fall.
I had never seen so much wildlife in one weekend and I loved it. Between visiting wineries, we stopped at Goodale Farms in Riverhead to pet and feed farm animals. I mainly fed goats and also saw baby chicks and cows. The following day, we visited the East Hampton Duck Pond and watched kids feed ducks, geese, and swans, then circled the path and saw frogs. Not to mention, we saw cows, horses, and deer while driving. You definitely don’t get to see that every day in the city.
Growing up in Hawaii made me appreciate the ocean—just being by the water. My friends asked if we wanted to have an expensive dinner at a restaurant that required reservations or if we wanted to keep it low-key and order takeout and sit on the beach. I chose the latter with no questions asked. We spread out a blanket on Atlantic Avenue Beach and sat on the sand at sunset. It was a little chilly this particular evening, but I could not have asked for a better evening. We watched the sun disappear and just soaked in the fresh air.
The following day, we went on an impromptu hike at Montauk Point State Parks on large rocks that surround the lighthouse. I definitely did not wear proper footwear, but it was doable in sandals. The entire area reminded me of the Makapu’u Lighthouse on Oahu. I was in awe the entire time we were walking on the rocks because Montauk is the easternmost point of Long Island and it felt like we were standing on the edge of the world.
My friends were explaining how everything is very close in the Hamptons and I saw how everything was very community-like. For example, we were walking through Amagansett and my friend said, “Oh look, it’s Alec Baldwin in this juice shop,” and it was completely normal. My friends kept running into people the knew, too.
It also seems easy to eat and buy everything local with all of the farm stands and boutique shops. One of my favorite local shops that we visited was The Candied Anchor in Montauk, where I found imported snacks from around the world like Tayto chips, Dairy Milk buttons, and Japanese candies.