Your Guide to a Stress-Free Hamptons Summer

Summer in the Hamptons is a blast, but it comes with a price tag and a whole lot of crowds. Leave your hassles at home and even avoid traffic like a boss using this insider’s guide to a stress-free weekend out East.

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Plan Ahead

Before heading to your Hamptons hotspot, have a day-to-day plan. Learn about the restaurants open for lunch, the theater schedules, current art exhibitions, the anticipated weather forecast and happening events.

Overnight Stay

The Mill House Inn

The Mill House Inn

Book during the week for better bargains and flexibility. Check into The Mill House Inn, which offers the most sumptuous breakfast, a curated cheese and charcuterie plate and unlimited 24-hour snacks and beverages. Just down the street, The Hedges Inn in East Hampton boasts a new hospitality team and hosts Yoga on the Lawn for guests every Saturday at 11am.

Navigate the Streets (like a Hamptons Native)

Circumventing the gridlock is key to making the most of your time this weekend–no one wants to spend a sunny day in the car. Thursday has become the new Friday, so consider heading out early and leaving late on Sundays or Mondays.

If your destination is Sag Harbor, East Hampton or further east, take County Road 48 on the North Fork to the North and South Ferries via Shelter Island. Travelers can also avoid Montauk Highway by taking Noyack Road and cutting through Sag Harbor to Route 114.

Unwind and Rejuvenate

Treat yourself to the ultimate Hamptons relaxation experience. Blow Beauty Bars recently opened a new location in Bridgehampton and launched their new Bare Wax Bar, which offers organic waxing treatments. The spot also offers fresh cuts, color, hair and eyelash extensions, manicures, spray tans and makeup appointments just in time for your weekend soirée.

Dining Out

Indian Wells Tavern image: vanessa gordon

Indian Wells Tavern image: vanessa gordon

Set up dinner reservations at least two days in advance and at least a day before for lunch and brunch. The Surf Lodge in Montauk allows you to book your dining reservations up to 30 days in advance.

Beach Day

If you’d like to skip purchasing a beach sticker for the season, The Free Ride offers complimentary shuttle transportation to and from the beach, overnight parking lots in the Villages and the main streets. Hotels including The Maidstone and The Hedges Inn offer free bicycles to take you to and from your favorite sandy spot. Leave your beach towels and chairs at home. Most overnight spots have these on hand for guests.

Retail Therapy

Complete your shopping experience and discover new name brands, including the new JUJA Active in East Hampton, Tory Sport in East Hampton and Ethel + Row in Bridgehampton. Avoid the lines and crowds and shop on the weekends before 1pm or during the weekdays.

Sweat it Out

Tracy Anderson Hamptons Photoshoot Photographer- ADRIEL REBOH

Tracy Anderson image: courtesy of tracy anderson

Just because you’re on vacation doesn’t mean you should give up your gym-time. Tracy Anderson‘s studios in Water Mill and East Hampton or Pure Barre in Southampton are two favorite places to break a sweat.

Take a midday break from the beach and just before dinner and head to SLT in East Hampton (and their second Hamptons location in Southampton to open the first week of July) for classes at 3:30 and 4:30pm. Most studios have a four-week window for booking ahead of time.

Tell us: do you have any tips and tricks to navigating the Hamptons? 

vanessa gordon

Vanessa is a writer, tutor and fitness instructor based in the Hamptons. She loves paddle boarding, antiquarian cookbooks, and tea rooms. Check out more of her work at