Hampton Bays

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Get to know Hampton Bays

For as confusing as the East End can get with some hamlets and villages sharing names with the town they are in, sometimes the monikers are incredibly self-explanatory. For example, Hampton Bays is a hamlet in the Hamptons situated on multiple bays. Three bays, to be exact, with the Great Peconic to the north and the Shinnecock and Tiana flanking the south. If it sounds like a lot of water, it is. We haven’t even mentioned the Shinnecock Inlet, the connective body between bay and ocean created by the New England Hurricane of 1938. It’s a popular fishing outlet, that inlet. Fishing is beyond a staple of the hamlet—behind only Montauk, Hampton Bays is the state’s second-biggest commercial port for the industry. Whether it’s the summer crowd or the sizeable year-round community, all kinds of people enjoy this vibrant home.

Nearby Neighborhoods:

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History & Culture

Relative to its neighbors, Hampton Bays has been playing a bit of catch-up. What is considered Hampton Bays today used to be an area called “Good Ground” in the 18th century, comprising 11 smaller hamlets. The Hampton Bays of that era occupied the section near where Montauk Highway presently lays. In 1922, however, the hamlets of Good Ground merged, adopting the Hampton Bays name—above others like Canoe Place and Rampasture—to benefit from the blossoming “Hamptons” culture in nearby communities. Now the region’s aura has beyond fully bloomed, growing to near-redwood size in esteem and elevating Hampton Bays along with it. As with many places in the Hamptons, geography dictates—or at least inspires—the lifestyle. Because so many protected bodies of water bless Hampton Bays, the hamlet is a haven for all aquatic-based activities, from paddleboarding to sailing to fishing.

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Dine & Shop

Hampton Bays’ most popular eateries dot the east-west thoroughfare of Montauk Highway. But, with all that waterfront, the stars of the show are the series of restaurants savvy enough to take advantage of their coastal surroundings—be they by the bay, the canal, or another bay. After all, there’s presumably no better place to open up your seafood joint than on the water in an area renowned for fishing. Even though seafood is far from a rarity in the Hamptons, it is a certain kind of indulgence to know your dish is as fresh as can be at any time of day—we’re talking seafood in the morning, seafood in the evening, seafood at suppertime. Don’t forget about enjoying some drinks by the aquatic body of your choice either, as seaside bars also make their presence known.