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I'm interested in moving to New England after retirement. Any recommendations on where to live?

The Sunapee, N.H. region -- It's beautiful with Mt. Sunapee and the gorgeous Sunapee Lake providing the splendor. Nearby New London is a wonderful little residential mountain/lake town with enough to do (shops, restaurants, recreational opportunities), but the chance to unwind with every c New England country sunrise and sunset.

Lexington-Concord, Mass. -- Expensive, but both towns have real character and lots of history. A walk to the center of each place, or to Walden Pond, Old North Bridge, Minuteman Park or down a tree-lined residential street would indeed be a great way of life. These two towns are also within a half hour of Boston and have lots of great services (that means higher taxes, however).

Holden, Rutland, Princeton, Mass. -- These towns are close to Worcester (not the greatest city), but offer great New England small town life and charm. All three towns feel safe and cozy. They are also centrally located, so it would be easy to travel to many great parts of New England.

Essex, Conn. -- One of the great small towns in New England (and perhaps the United States, according to some), with a quaint downtown, gorgeous views of the Connecticut River, and a truly relaxed feel. Some great neighborhoods here!

Woodstock ad Pomfret, Conn. -- Incredibly quiet, unspoiled and close enough to built-up towns and cities (Putnam, Worcester, Mass.) so you're not totally isolated. This is true New England with its rolling hills, village greens, country stores, etc.

Portland, Maine -- An interesting, revitalized city with old Victorian Homes, tree-lined streets and the great Old Port Exchange, an area with terrific restaurants and stores. Great views of the ocean can be found here, too. If you like living in the city, this is a worthy place to live. If not, surrounding communities like Cape Elizabeth, Yarmouth, Falmouth and South Portland have fine neighborhoods.

Boston, Mass. -- The "Hub of the Universe" offers a walkable city with lots of charm, history and plenty to do. Like Portland, it's a great place to live if you like living in the city. Beacon Hill, although incredibly expensive, is the place to live with it's fine brownstones and tree shaded streets. If you like the suburbs, I'd recommend looking at some of the small towns in nearby Norfolk County -- in between Boston and Providence, R.I., another worthy city that became world class seemingly in a few years (the Brown University area and Benefit Street are wonderfully charming and historic). Some towns in Norfolk County to consider are Norfolk, Walpole, Medfield, Millis, Medway, Sharon, Wrentham and Foxboro (home of the New England Patriots; people don't know that the town has a lovely village green and some superb neighborhoods). Living in this area gives you the best of both worlds, Boston,Providence and some peace and quiet in these relatively relaxing New England communities (although obnoxious, generic housing developments seem to be ruining the appeal of Walpole).

Keene, N.H. -- A sweet "college town" with an appealing and wide Main Street, an old-time movie theater, low crime, nice parks, a golf course, plenty of services (a big medical center) and really pleasant, tree-lined neighborhoods with a great mix of old and new homes. We considered moving here a while back. It's a very livable city (population 22,000) that really feels like a small town.

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Editor's note: responds to your questions, based on experience, combined with facts and opinions. This question and answer forum gives you general guidelines to plan your New england vacation. We cannot control variables like weather and the latest business openings and closings.  We encourage you to contact your chosen destination before embarking on your New England vacation.

Looking for more Northeast United States travel ideas?  Visit our family of travel Web Sites, including The Weekly New England Travel and Vacation Gazette blog, as well as, and -- both dedicated to helping travelers plan their Cooperstown, NY, vacation.


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