In the scope of the ecology-of-aging paradigm, we studied two different groups of independent elderly living in rural versus urban Portuguese settings. The main objectives were: (1) to develop knowledge on aging in different contexts; (2) to analyze the differences in autonomous behavior, social relationships, psychological satisfaction (e.g., morale), and self-perception of general health and quality of life between rural and urban residents; (3) to contribute to the design of policies for the elderly. We did 1.5 h home interviews of 234 elderly (117 rural and 117 urban) to collect socio-demographic data, and access the capacity to perform instrumental activities of daily living (IADL Scale) and life satisfaction (Philadelphia Morale Scale). Although all the subjects were to some extent deprived, results show that the two communities are different in some socio-demographic characteristics such as education level and financial situation (favoring urban elderly), and in their level of autonomy (higher in rural elderly); they also differ in their social network (larger for rural elderly), feeling of anxiety (lower in rural elderly), and attitudes toward their own aging (more positive in rural elderly). Both communities have a similar feeling of loneliness and a somewhat negative perception of health and quality of life. All the elderly consider aging-in-place as very important and require more community-based services.