Originally known as Setucket, Harwich, Massachusetts was named after the English seaport and was called “Happy-go-lucky Harwich” by Queen Elizabeth during the late 16th century. That seems to ring true even today; Harwichport was once ranked the 2nd happiest seaside town in America by Coastal Living magazine.

Harwich comprises seven villages: Harwich, East Harwich, Harwich Port, North Harwich, Pleasant Lake and South and West Harwich.The villages lie along the waters of Nantucket Sound and reach all the way east to Pleasant Bay.

Harwichport is the town’s most charming spot; its picture-perfect Wychmere Harbor is a favorite for photographers. Harwich Center, which lies inland, is a quiet and almost isolated village. Only a few stores, including an old-fashioned hardware store and friendly coffee shop, are among the pristine structures of this historic district.

Though no longer host to a thriving fishing industry, Harwich is today one of the most productive cranberry areas on the Cape with many well-maintained bogs scattered throughout the town. The town’s annual Cranberry Festival in autumn celebrates the prosperity of that tart little berry.

Harwich includes almost 11 miles of shoreline and five harbors. Aside from town’s fine beaches, visitors can shop along its “major” thoroughfares, Routes 28 and 39, visit the town historical society museum or take in town band concerts in season.

Find more information on Harwich through the Harwich Chamber of Commerce.