It's the biggest town on Cape Cod with lots of hotels, shops, restaurants, and people.
If you look on the Cape Cod forum, you'll see a Top Question (on the right side) is "where should I stay".
Tons of info already gathered for you there
You can stay at Hampton Inn or the Seaport Inn in Fairhaven. There is a Fairfield Inn on the waterfront in New Bedford. From that hotel, you can walk to the New England Fast Ferry and take a trip to Martha's Vineyard or Nantucket. The trip to MV from NB takes one hour and to Nantucket two hours. The thing with the Cape is the crowds and traffic and I'd avoid that if I could. New Bedford has a bustling downtown area with shops, restaurants, and the biggest Whaling Museum on the east coast. Between Fairhaven and New Bedford there are lots of waterfront dining choices and nice places to go enjoy the view by the ocean. New Bedford is only one hour south of Boston and again no traffic to deal with when you are ready to go back to Boston. Is New Bedford Cape Cod? No, it isn't but if your objective is to get to the Vineyard, there is no easier way.
Here is the ferry link.
Thank you so much for the information! This is very helpful!
Yes, that's true Hank. If they only want a place for a quick stopover to get to the islands, New Bedford is a great choice because as we all know, the Cape is overcrowded in the summer. Why spend time in traffic when you can be zipping along on a fast ferry to the Islands? Also, New Bedford is close to Newport, RI and Plymouth for day trip options. There is a new Marriott hotel in Wareham that is 20 minutes to the Cape bridges and 20 minutes to New Bedford for the ferry to the Islands. Very easy highway access from there to both destinations.