6.9 out of 10


42.9718936736829 -70.9457312635327
Great for
  • Schools
  • Neighborly Spirit
  • Childcare
  • Medical Facilities
  • Clean & Green
Not great for
  • No ratings yet
Who lives here?
  • Families with kids
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Tourists


4/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 5/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 4/5
  • Pest Free 2/5
  • Peace & Quiet 4/5
  • Eating Out 4/5
  • Nightlife 4/5
  • Parks & Recreation 4/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Gym & Fitness 4/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Parking 4/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 2/5
  • Medical Facilities 5/5
  • Schools 5/5
  • Childcare 5/5

"Charming New England town"

Most famous as the home of centuries-old preparatory boarding school Phillips Exeter Academy (also one of the town's major employers), Exeter is a town of extraordinary contrasts. The town center - quite near the school's vast and leafy campus - is a tourist's dream, with plenty of charming shops, restaurants, and gift stores. Yet a few miles away, beyond the sight of many tourists (often proud Academy parents) trailer parks proliferate, and at times the tensions between town and gown can be palpable. That said, Exeter is a gorgeous place to visit or live, although long-term residents may feel frustrated at the lack of significant nightlife and the early closure (8 pm) of most cafes in the area. The town's best restaurants include The Exeter Inn (a pricey but charming choice - somewhat less Old New England since the renovation), Inn by the Water, and the cheaper Penang Tokyo, beloved of Academy Students. Walk along the town's less scenic Portsmouth Avenue to shop at lower prices (and hit up the town's only Starbucks, hidden at the Stop and Shop at the end of the avenue). Public transport isn't the best, here - the Downeaster train to nearby Durham (and its vast network of buses) is the only way to get around the region if you miss the scare weekdays-only buses (the Downeaster train also gets you to Portland, ME, and Boston, MA); most residents will need a car, although the town itself is quite walkable.
  • Charming
  • Historical legacy
  • Phillips Exeter Academy
  • Small
  • Town-gown divide
  • A bit remote

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