The regions along the Southcoast are home to some of the most magnificent communities anywhere in New England. The sea is in the hearts and souls of us all and we are all drawn to its shores.
The Southcoast is home to some of the most magnificent communities that offer a quality of life that is truly spectacular by all measures in today’s market. Ocean access, pristine beaches, wonderful parks and recreation are just the beginning.
If you’re looking for small-town character with water access, seaside living in the Southcoast and the Farm Coast are the perfect places to begin your search.
The region has been referred to as the Bay State’s hidden gem. These small cities and towns along Buzzards Bay to the Rhode Island border offer a unique quality of life that is by many standards the best in New England.
The rural communities are far less crowded than the metro Boston region with very little congestion and traffic. The Southcoast has abundant resources, open space, and high-quality housing options at every price point.
Proximity-wise it is perfect for commuting to Providence and Boston and offers easy access to one of New England’s finest and most user-friendly airports, Rhode Island T.F. Green International Airport.
For Southcoast living, there are literally endless options for small city living, rural country living, and coastal communities with seaside homes that offer spectacular waterfront opportunities along Buzzards Bay and the Atlantic Ocean.
The Farm Coast region from Dartmouth, Massachusetts east to Little Compton & Tiverton, Rhode Island has some of the most pristine regions along the coastlines of New England with views of coastal bays and the Elizabeth Islands, and Martha’s Vineyard.
You will find it all on the Southcoast from historic homes and estates to newly constructed seaside modern residences with spectacular water views in every direction.
The Southcoast and Farm Coast regions comprise nearly 1000 square miles of coastal lands with just 300,000 residents, there are lots of open and protected spaces to enjoy.
Southcoast Regions – Looking East
Wareham- Marion – Mattapoisett
The most easterly community in the Southcoast is Wareham, just minutes off Cape Cod on the mainland. Wareham is full of activities for its 22,000 residents, particularly in the summer, as it provides all of the benefits of living in a beach community while avoiding the traffic bottlenecks encountered when entering and leaving the Cape.
Although Wareham is known as “The Gateway to the Cape,” it has its own identity, as its beaches, marinas, restaurants, shopping, and forests make it a worthwhile destination, and one of the top places to buy a home on the east coast. Buying a home in Wareham gives you access to both liveliness and serenity, depending on what you want to do that day, which is one of the attributes that makes it such an attractive community.
Homes in Wareham range from lakeside cottages to elaborate waterfront estates as well as, rural farms.
Marion, like neighboring Mattapoisett, is a small town with a little over 5000 residents. Cape Cod-style architecture is prevalent throughout the new and historic homes in the town. Marion has easy access to Interstate 195 east/west, Route 140, and Route 3 to Boston and points north.
Marion shares a regional school system with Rochester. The highly ranked private prep school Taber Academy, “The School by The Sea,” founded in 1876 is known for its marine science programs.
Marion has been home to some of the world’s top sailmakers for recreation and sailboat racing worldwide. If small-town coastal living is what you are looking for, Marion is a perfect place to start your search. The very sought-after, exclusive Piney Point community has some of the Southcoast’s most spectacular residences and listings are lean here.
The town of Mattapoisett has historic roots dating back to 1750. Known as one of the finest shipbuilding communities in New England, over 400 ships were built in the town’s shipyards including the Acushnet, the ship that Moby Dick author Herman Melville sailed on and later deserted.
This seaside community has just over 6500 residents. It is situated along the coast of Buzzards Bay overlooking the Elizabeth Islands which run between Martha’s Vineyard and the Southcoast. Harbor Beach, a popular neighborhood, is within walking distance of Mattapoisett Harbor, beaches, and many historic homes.
Just minutes away is The Bay Club Mattapoisett an exquisite private golf course and gated community offering the very best in country club living and life. The Brad Faxon design is one of the only Audubon Silver Signature Sanctuary golf courses in New England for its management of sustainability of the natural environment within the facility.
Fairhaven – New Bedford – Dartmouth
Fairhaven borders Mattapoisett to the east and New Bedford to the west with a shared harbor that houses the largest North Atlantic fishing fleet in the U.S.
Located on Buzzards Bay and bordered to the east by the Acushnet River, Fairhaven has several commercial wharves along its waterfront and marinas for recreational craft. Supplying much of the world with scrod, scallops and other seafood, it is home to one of the last remaining fish auctions in the country.
There are also several small beaches and parks in Fairhaven, the largest at Ft. Phoenix State Park. A bike path runs along the shore on an abandoned rail line connecting shoreline communities along Buzzards Bay.
The center area of town has charming historic New England-designed homes and shops along small one-way streets. There are beautiful waterfront properties throughout the town.
New Bedford, Massachusetts
Once known as the “City That Lit the World’’ because of its whaling industry, New Bedford is on the way to becoming the “City That Kept the Lights On” today with 10 solar energy projects and its recent designation as the onshore staging area for The Cape Wind project. With a bustling fishing industry and extensive marine industries, the city is one of the busiest harbors on the southcoast of New England.
The restored downtown has a busy, optimistic feel with a steady stream of visitors enjoying the look of historic buildings, cobblestone streets, museums, galleries, and well-placed green spots.
The city is chock full of historic residences, many of which can be acquired at bargain rates. The good news is with rising seas and storms, New Bedford is one of the few coastal cities with a fully functional hurricane barrier.
A great harbor, great restaurants, museums, parks, and in the North End of the city, beautiful old farms and state-protected lands.
Dartmouth was one of the first areas in southeastern Massachusetts, settled nearly 300 years ago. Dartmouth itself is part of the Farm Coast comprised of historic coastal villages, vineyards, and farmland. Still today there are several working farms and vineyards in town. The in-town vineyards are part of the region’s Coastal Wine Tour.
Two distinct regions of Dartmouth are separated by Route 6, North Dartmouth which is very rural and South Dartmouth along the sea with extraordinary coastal villages like Padanaram with exquisite seaside homes and a quaint village center along the harbor.
Dartmouth is home to the University of Massachusetts, the largest educational center in the Southcoast. It’s the third largest town in Massachusetts by land area but has a relatively small population of only 33,000 for its size.
Southcoast West & The Farm Coast
Westport – Tiverton RI – Little Compton RI
Westport was so named because it was the western most port in the original Massachusetts Bay Colonies settled in 1670. Westport is bordered by Dartmouth, Fall River, Tiverton and Little Compton, RI. There are several unofficial localities in Westport, the Head of Westport, Central Village, Westport Harbor, which is often called Acoaxet, and Westport Point.
Westport is also separated by Route 6, delineating the North Westport and South Westport regions. Just over 15,500 people reside in approximately 5400 households, most of whom live in South Westport. The Central Village and Head of Westport are the most historic regions of the town with homes dating back 200-300 years.
Westport is also home to a large number of summer residences in Westport Harbor and along Route 88, the access highway to Horseneck Beach State Reservation, the largest and most beautiful beach in the Southcoast region.
It’s one of the Southcoast region’s most attractive communities because of its central proximity, open space, parks, and beaches.
Tiverton, Rhode Island
The coastal communities of Tiverton and Little Compton are hidden and separated by the rest of the state along the shores of Narragansett Bay on the East Passage of the Sakonnet River. Originally part of the Plymouth Bay Colonies in Massachusetts these towns secured their own decree and were annexed to Newport County, Rhode Island in the 1700s along with Bristol, RI. A series of bridges connect Tiverton and Little Compton to both Aquidneck Island and Bristol.
Tiverton is home to large historic farms spread along the shores of the Sakonnet River. Most of Central Tiverton is located along a granite ridge rising to almost 200 feet from the bay.
The bustling small center village area is strewn with marinas, shops, and eateries along the riverfront. Tiverton is a quaint seaside community with gorgeous homes and plenty of open spaces as well. There are homes at every price point and easy access to beaches and waterfront recreation.
Little Compton, Rhode Island
This amazing seaside community has often been referred to as Rhode Island’s Best Kept Secret and even bears the name Rhode Island’s Secret Coast. Locals will tell you, “It is just out of the way and people who live here like that just fine.” It is one of the most quaint and beautiful places in New England.
This small central village of Little Compton is home to a few restaurants, the post office, a church, a school, and a few real estate offices. In the center of it all is the historic Commons. The town is truly an amazing place to own a home.
The Sakonnet Golf Club, designed by Donald Ross, is located here by the sea and is surrounded by ocean views and beautiful seaside cottage homes along the mouth of the Sakonnet River.
If you are looking for one of the finest regions on the Southcoast to buy your next home with all the amenities of country and coastal living, then Little Compton is a must-see.