Woods Hole is a census-designated place (CDP) in the town of Falmouth in Barnstable County, Massachusetts, United States. It lies at the extreme southwest corner of Cape Cod, near Martha's Vineyard and the Elizabeth Islands. The population was 925 at the 2000 census. It is the site of several famous marine science institutions, including Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, the Marine Biological Laboratory, the Woods Hole Research Center, NOAA's Northeast Fisheries Science Center (which started the Woods Hole scientific community in 1871), a USGS coastal and marine geology center, and the home campus of the Sea Education Association. It is also the site of United States Coast Guard Sector Southeastern New England (formerly USCG Group Woods Hole), the Nobska Light lighthouse, and the terminus of the Steamship Authority ferry route between Cape Cod and the island of Martha's Vineyard.