What is it Like to Live on Cape Cod Year-Round in 2022?

Cape Cod year-round

While many folks think of Cape Cod as a summer destination, living in Cape Cod year-round has so much to offer! When you are a local, beaches, five-star dining, amazing museums, great local shops, and so much more will be all around you! Staying on Cape Cod year-round has so much to offer, and is beautiful any time of the year.

sunset silhouette people walking seashore cape cod

As visitors and Cape Cod year-round residents know, summers on the Cape are busy and beach-worthy. Visitors flock to the beaches to enjoy the sun, sand, and surf. Bars and restaurants are bustling with life, serving up great local seafood, local beverages, and more!

As the fall arrives, the winds come in and many of the summer visitors and vacationers depart. Cape Cod year-round residents take advantage of the quieter beaches, emptier roads, and enjoy the calm after the storm of summer. Fall on the Cape is spectacular, things quiet down from the summer bustle, and the brisk breezes are refreshing.

We love it, but is living on Cape Cod year-round the thing for you?

We hope this article helps you figure out how life on Cape Cod year-round looks from a local’s eye, how lofty or light it can be on your pocket and the best places for Cape Cod year-round living.

What are winters like on Cape Cod?

far view white house cottages seashore white sand cape cod

Cape Cod in winter has an undeniable beauty. Beaches offer seaside solitude during the winter season, and when it snows, the historic homes look all pristine and white, showing a fairy-tale luster. For visitors who venture onto the Cape, hotels, restaurants, and resorts often offer an inexpensive rate during these months.

Thanks to the moderation of the Atlantic Ocean,  Cape Cod year-round sports a climate milder than other New England destinations. While we do get hit by the odd blizzard, generally most trails and outdoor activities are available for hiking and walking year-round. Some winters golf can be played  on Cape Cod year-round! Even when it’s snowy there’s lots to do, from sledding to cross-country skiing.

Night does fall quickly during the winter months in Cape Cod. This time of year is great for the year-round community to reconnect. The holiday season brings tons of community events. Consider taking a drive to spot all the Giants of Sandwich, or enjoy First Night Chatham.

The hook-shaped peninsula’s beauty is not lost in winters but is enjoyed by many who layer up and venture out to enjoy the solitude.  Many of the Cape’s businesses and restaurants may have shorter hours or some will shut down entirely during the off-season, but lines and waiting times become virtually non-existent. Lots of great establishments stay open on Cape Cod year-round as well!

Cape Cod is home to numerous outstanding beaches, dozens of great shops, and various extraordinary scenic sites. The area has maintained a fine line between the exclusive and the non-exclusive regions.

What is the best place to live on Cape Cod year-round?

ranch wooden fences bench houses cottages cape cod

If you are considering moving to Cape Cod, there’s lots to decide. One of the biggest choices is where to live on the Cape!

There are 15 different towns on Cape Cod, each with it’s own unique villages, neighborhoods, and cultures. Each area has its quirks and perks, from bayside to oceanside beaches, dunes to lighthouses, you can’t go wrong!

Considerations include distance from the bridge. If you plan to leave the Cape often, you may want to err on the side of the Upper Cape, settling down in towns like Bourne, Falmouth, Sandwich, or Mashpee.

The many villages of Barnstable offer unique neighborhoods in the heart of the Cape, other towns in the mid-Cape include Yarmouth and Dennis. As you head towards Chatham, the Lower Cape also includes Harwich, Brewster, and Orleans.

The Outer Cape is the furthest from the bridges, and truly feels like a world apart. The narrow spit of sandy land and high dunes are wild, as is seeing the ocean on either side of you! Towns on the Outer Cape include Eastham, Wellfleet, Truro, and eclectic P’town.

Advantages of living in Cape Cod Year-Round

There are lots of advantages of living on Cape Cod year-round, just  some of them are listed below:

1. Employment opportunities

Employment opportunities are endless in construction, trades, hospitality, Real Estate, and banking.

Cape Cod can be said as a driver of job growth in the locality due to the wide variety of resorts, beaches, restaurants, and hotels available.

2. Top-rated beaches in the world

white sand wooden fences beaches cape cod

Calling out beach lovers, beach days are undoubtedly the best way to relax and soak up the sun while enjoying the water and the gorgeous landscape..

The good thing is that in order to experience these beautiful stretches of sand with lapping waves, you won’t need to live far away as there are many places within close proximity to  the beach.

Cape Cod, Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard have some of the  top-rated beaches in the world. With three coasts to choose from, the travelers are never far from a spectacular beach on Cape Cod.

3. World-class whale watching

It is a great place to visit also because travelers can often spot whales while on tours. Part of the joy of living on Cape Cod is of course welcoming visitors of your own, and sharing all the special things about the Cape with them.

4. Fresh seafood

fresh seafoods green salad sliced cucumber served cape cod

Seafood lovers know the difference between seafood and the fresh-caught- bought-off-the-dock seafood, so to experience this level of freshness with a perfect view to relax and chill with your loved ones, Cape Cod has to be the best place. There are tons of great local oysters to sample, and be sure to buy fish fresh off the docks at the Chatham Fish Pier.

5. Beautiful sights

sunset view group people white sand seashore cape cod

The most important pro of traveling to Cape Cod is the ultimate benefit a person would get is scenic beauty from all angles at all times because of the ocean on both sides of the island.

Challenges of living in Cape Cod Year-Round

While the Cape is a great place to live, there are a few challenges to be aware of…

1. Traffic Issues

With all the folks flocking to enjoy the Cape in the summer months, there can be lots of traffic! Plan to leave extra time to reach your destinations in the summer months.

2. Cost of living can be expensive

photo list ballpen calculator cape cod

The cost of living at Cape Cod can be relatively high compared to other spots, so do you research before making the big move.

3. Winter can be quiet

While some enjoy the quiet winters on the Cape, others might want the bustle year round. Be prepared to take things a little slower in the winter months and you’ll do just fine.


Cape Cod is a beautiful spot, filled with a vibrant community of year-round residents. Living on Cape Cod year-round offers lots of outdoor activities to do both during the winter and the summer, a tranquil pace of life, and beautiful scenery. Moving to Cape Cod year-round might be just the thing for you!




Please feel free to share your favorite Cape Cod experience about this topic with our audience!

This Post Has 7 Comments

  1. J. Allard

    I was taken aback by the comment in those article saying “If you plan to leave the Cape often, you might want to err on the side of the upper cape”. Err?? Like that is some kind of mistake?! When my husband and I decided to buy our home in Mashpee we loved that we could get off Cape quickly, friends and family coming to visit would arrive within minutes of crossing the bridge, we don’t have the crazy traffic and crowding the mid and lower Cape experience, yet we still have beautiful Johns Pond a short walk from our door and can visit South Cape Beach should we want to walk a beachside trail or spend time sitting at a salt water beach. When we drive down Cape passing car dealerships, honky tonk shops, and overbuilt and overcrowded areas, I’m constantly reminded of the perfect choice we made.

    1. Heidi Kota

      No definitely err was not used as a mistake, more as “err on the side of caution”, when you are expecting to frequently travel over the bridge.
      We love the Upper Cape for that reason and the many more that you listed, definitely a great place to live!!

  2. Vince Dewitt

    Really? Cape Cod, like so many other meccas, is over-developed, has traffic congestion, even winter- time, and is prohibitively expensive to live in; young people raised on the Cape can’t afford to live on it.

    I call it the “Long Islandisation” of Cape Cod. I can’t bear the over-development of the Cape, and will be moving away soon, to less congestion.

    Vince DeWitt
    Cotuit (Cape Cod)

  3. Pete

    I am a year round home owner on Cape. Let’s also point out to people that alot of the restaurants on Cape are seasonal. The rest that are open, close earlier than in the city. There is no summer breeze at the beach most of the year, so it gets very chilly with the wind howling. There is not much of a night life here in the winter (if that’s your thing). Overall its great living here, but new arrivals should expect a completely different world than what they remembered on their vacation.

    1. Lydia Conca

      Our family has been here since 1952. I played in areas that are now filled with homes and shops. We are lucky to always have fresh seafood and summer is nice to see new people always coming in. Winter is beautiful and there is nothing like sitting in front of a fire looking at the water. Winter brings the year rounders closer together and everyone so nice and helpful to the seniors. When there is calm in a beautiful place, there is cam within. Sure, loneliness is hitting everywhere these day, but on Cape Cod one can always know there are people and places to help..

      1. Lisa B

        A fire by the water…. only the very wealthy can afford a home where one can sit and look out on the water. Please don’t be misleading. The replier above is correct. Within the time covid hit and all the new folks decided to move here out of the traffic heading down cape on a work day morning in DEC/JAN is reminiscent of Boston traffic (or more like traffic heading up route 24 on a work morning). The complete jam and stop and go will be next, probably in the next 5 years. Want to move here and change your doctors? Good luck! We have had such an explosion of and we’ve lost doctors too. You’re lucky if you can find a PCP on the cape, most likely you won’t and will drive to Plymouth. Trying to get an appointment is next to impossible. Everything price wise bumps up due to having to cross a bridge. Some repair or service businesses won’t cross bridge in summer so you have to wait til off season. Population age average is tipping into geriatrics. Less young families w/children as they can no longer afford to live here with the housing marking $$$.

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