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Old 05-26-2012, 12:37 PM
Location: Mount Pleasant
2,217 posts, read 2,909,339 times
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Been looking at the Cape for possible retirement.

We've been a few times - live in Newburyport, have a timeshare on Nantucket.

Like Brewster, Sandwich, Orleans, Barnstable and Chatham. Chatham is our favorite. But we can't afford it. Not even sure that we can afford any of the Cape! We'd like to say closer to the bridge rather than head toward the outer cape. Don't want to feel too isolated. We're well aware of the "desolation" in the winter. We're the types that could easily live on Nantucket year round. Just love the ocean.

Getting confused by the North, South East and West of all of these towns.

We've heard that "not as nice" parts of the Cape towns are East Falmouth, Forestdale and Wareham (although I don't consider that part of the Cape).

Getting confused by all the North, South East and West of things. North Falmouth, East Harwich, South Harwich, Dennis Port, East Dennis, West Dennis....

Can anyone list either the better areas or the areas that are not so great? We know 6A is the nicer part, but does that mean anything without "South" before it is not in a great part?
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Old 05-26-2012, 07:00 PM
Location: Needham, MA
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I rented a house in E. Falmouth last summer and it seemed pretty nice. I can't imagine anyone would say it's not nice. My one complaint about E. Falmouth was that it's not really too close to a major route. So, it takes a while to get anywhere from there.
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Old 05-27-2012, 04:09 PM
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What do you like to do? Do you like nice restaurants? Shopping? Then the outer cape is not for you? Do you travel often to Boston for culture or to visit family, then perhaps you'd be happier closer to either of the bridges. Do you like nature walks? Trendy shopping? Ask yourself these questions then decide what's the best location for you. I live in Mashpee. We have Mashpee Commons, close proximity to both bridges, and we've got our share of nature trails, etc. You need to do some soul searching.
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Old 05-29-2012, 09:53 AM
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It is confusing. East Sandwich is supposedly the best part of Sandwich - mainly because of the great beaches but if you like a downtown, the village is best, if you like woods and lakes, south Sandwich is the winner so you can take those "best" comments with a grain of salt. It's more about what is "best" for the individual.

Isolation/Desolation. Perhaps if you are living in a cottage, nestled in the dunes of Wellfleet you might feel isolated in winter. Otherwise, not so much. But again, there are those folks who would find that to be paradise. It's all in what you are looking for. Case in point: I have kids, we live on Cape and I can honestly say, I have never heard them say "I'm bored" and they are teenagers. It might be that like many, you learn to enjoy the simple pleasures of living on Cape or it just might be that I, their mother will promptly assign a mundane task like washing baseboards or windows to cure the boredom. :-) If a teenager can find something to do, a retired adult can definitely find something too. Isolation/desolation is in the mind of the person feeling it.

Judging by your preference for Chatham, love of Nantucket and your comment wanting to be close to bridges, I would say you are looking for quintessential Cape Cod with room for escape. It definitely sounds like 6A is right for you. It has all the charm and character that you are looking for. The following are only a few suggestions but might be worth checking out. All have village centers that are within easy walking or biking distance. Here are a few suggestions you might want to look into.

Sandwich (East, Town Neck or the Village- the drawback is high taxes-the downtown is a very scenic spot for browsing, shopping, and dining. The library is a hub.)
West Barnstable (cute village center- not as much as Osterville and Sandwich but still charming- a great little market, coffee shop, restaurants and a couple of shops)

Not 6A but very worthy of consideration:
Osterville (part of Barnstable- lower taxes-I think of it a mini-Chatham- great little market- Fancy's, Wimpy's for fresh seafood, restaurants and cute shops, and a library)

I hope that helps and gives you a jumping off point. I think commentary on some of these places is relative. East Falmouth does have a reputation for being sketchy as does Wareham. Forestdale used to be Otis base housing and I think it has carried a reputation because of that. It also has been identified as having higher levels of cancer so that is of concern.
Good luck with your search!
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Old 05-30-2012, 04:23 AM
Location: Mount Pleasant
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Thank you Beachcomber4! Just what we were looking for.
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