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Is a month in Salem too long of a stay? Enough to do?

Travelgirl100477
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Is a month in Salem too long of a stay? Enough to do?

I'm trying to find a place in the Northeast to stay with my two girls (7&10) next July for the month. My husband will be flying back and forth. I've been to Salem before and absolutely loved it. I've always wanted to come back and stay for a longer period, but just not sure there would be enough to do in Salem. I want to relax, but also keep the kids busy. Are there towns close enough to visit via car? I know I can take the train places, just not sure how comfortable I would be by myself with the girls heading into a bigger town. Any suggestions would be great! Or if anyone could recommend any other areas in Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Mass., etc. to stay for a month.

Thanks!

Boston, MA
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1. Re: Is a month in Salem too long of a stay? Enough to do?

There's plenty to do if you have a car. The North Shore of Massachusetts has some beautiful beaches like Cranes in Ipswich, Good Harbor & Wingaersheek in Gloucester; Newburyport, Plum Island, Essex are all very close by. Massachusetts is a very small state with a lot of different options for day trips - history, arts, sports, shopping, water parks, amusement parks, kayaking, whale watches, concerts. Here is a good link for seeing all the state has to offer:

http://www.massvacation.com/

Edited: 10 October 2011, 04:25
North Shore, MA
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2. Re: Is a month in Salem too long of a stay? Enough to do?

I think you could keep busy for a month if based in Salem. There's plenty to do in Salem and nearby Marblehead (though probably not a month's worth ;-). With a car, there are many, many day trips you could take. Cape Ann, Newburyport, Concord/Lexington. and Lowell (National Historic Park) are all within an hour's drive. Portsmouth, NH and the short New Hampshire coast are just over an hour away, and there are many other possibilities by driving a little farther. Of course, there's also plenty to do in Boston. You could get there via the Salem Ferry or the commuter rail. If you wanted to relax and go to the beach say, every other day, you could hit a different one each day without driving far!

You might want to consider staying in Gloucester or Rockport on Cape Ann which would offer a larger number of seasonal rentals than Salem. Based in Gloucester, Salem would be about a half hour away by car or the commuter rail, and you would still be in a good location for taking other day trips.

Boston
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3. Re: Is a month in Salem too long of a stay? Enough to do?

A lot of folks head to Salisbury, MA; Seabrook or Hampton, NH, Ogunquit, ME during the summer months to be by the beach 24/7 but I get the sense you'll want more activities for the kids. I don't know what Salem has to offer for a long term rental...

MA
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4. Re: Is a month in Salem too long of a stay? Enough to do?

As long as you have a car, Salem would be a fine place to stay for a month in the summer. Salem is one of the bigger towns on the North Shore, so if you are comfortable being there on your own with the kids, you should have no problem going to other towns on day trips, like Gloucester, Rockport, Newburyport, etc. Wingaersheek is a great nearby beach for kids; at low tide you can walk a long way out and see all kinds of sea creatures like sand dollars, etc.

nys
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5. Re: Is a month in Salem too long of a stay? Enough to do?

How about Cape Cod? We spent two weeks there last year, and there are lots ot things to keep kids busy.

Canada
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6. Re: Is a month in Salem too long of a stay? Enough to do?

My sentiments entirely!! A month on the Cape would be perfect. I can't imagine that the children would want to be sitting in a car every day going from place to place. Rent a house in walking distance to a Bay beach. Skaket in Orleans would be perfect and there's lots to do in easy driving distance when you want a change from the beach. Orleans has shopping, restaurants etc. live theatre. See www.weneedavacation.com or www.wilkinsonre.com for rentals. Plenty of other realtors to choose from all over the Cape. The Mid Cape area around Dennisport is also good for small children.

Boston, MA
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7. Re: Is a month in Salem too long of a stay? Enough to do?

 When I read your title is a month too long to stay in Salem, I initially thought yes, a month might be too long. But then, when I read that you  already fell in love with Salem in the past and you are going to visit other places outside of Salem then thought that a month would be fine and ideal for you. 

 This past summer alone, I took numerous trips to Salem with my 7and 9 year old.

We spent many days enjoying Forest River Park. My kids had fun on the old  concrete slide that I used as a kid, adjacent to the more modern playground. There is a pool at the park and it is a nice park to have have a picnic. Pioneer Village is adjacent to Forest River Park. My whole family enjoyed our visit to Pioneer Village. There are a lot of hidden gems in Salem that the typical tourist does not see or does not have time to see. 

I don't live in Salem but in my town, we have a very active library with lots of fun activities for the kids, check into seeing if Salem offers the same opportunity.  There are so many places to visit in Salem with kids  including Salem Willows, Peabody Essex Museum, National Parks Junior Ranger program, touring the tall ship Friendship, taking a day cruise out in Salem Harbor .......etc.

Plus, the benefit of Salem is that you have access to public transportation to Boston, either by the Salem Ferry, the MBTA's commuter rail or by bus. You should have no problems going on the train with just you and your kids.  It may feel intimidating at first, but you will be a pro after your first ride, so do not be nervous about taking public transportation. A great thing is that on the MBTA, kids under 11 are free with a paying adult. There are so many things to do with your kids in Boston, too. The Rose Kennedy Greenway or Frog Pond at the Boston Common  are great places for a picnic.    Popular places to visit with children in Boston include the Boston Children's Museum, the Museum of Science, the New England Aquarium, the USS Constitution , the USS Constitution Museum, and The Bunker Hill Monument and many other attractions. 

Outside of Salem and Boston, there are many, many more places to visit. Great beaches on the North Shore include Ipswich's Crane Beach, Manchester-By-The-Sea's Singing Beach, Gloucester's Wingaersheek Beach and Good Harbor Beach,  Nahant Beach, etc.

 Other great day trips, close to Salem, include Rockport and Newburyport and they are accessible by the commuter rail, too. 

If you are still looking for places to visit there are even more places to see a little further out in Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Maine, that are close enough to Salem for a day trip. 

Enjoy!

Salem, Massachusetts
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8. Re: Is a month in Salem too long of a stay? Enough to do?

You will have your choice of car, ferry and train to visit Boston and other towns in the area. You can easily take the train to Singing Beach in Manchester (parking is an issue there). I think it hinges on how much beach time your family enjoys. You could also enroll the girls in a theatre camp. I am just trying to think of a way that the girls can meet local kids. That is what will make or break the visit for them.

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9. Re: Is a month in Salem too long of a stay? Enough to do?

I think she means Portland Oregon and Salem Oregon~ at least she posted in the Oregon forum.

Aww, maybe she's going to the NW and NE..LOL

Mrs O

OOPS I see now that this is a year old. Sorry

Edited: 21 August 2012, 16:59
Salem, Massachusetts
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10. Re: Is a month in Salem too long of a stay? Enough to do?

Not sure they could use the pool at Forest Park. I believe it is for residents only. Anyone? The Rebel Shakespeare company operates out of Winter Island and would be a great way to meet kids. Also the Y has a big pool and day camp out on Children's Island. That might be worth finding out about. What are their interests?