It might be a long way away or months away: retirement. When you reach this point in your life, you can look forward to putting your job priorities aside and focusing on other passions, like your family, the garden in your backyard or even moving to a new city. Perhaps you’ve spent years living far from your grandkids and now want to spend as much time with them as possible or want to live up your senior years with your significant other. Whatever your priorities may be, there are a number of destinations across the globe that make for fantastic retirement spots. Affordability, adventure opportunities, climate and landscape are all factors to consider, and these are some of the top places that make the cut each year for retirement home seekers.
Albuquerque, New Mexico
With Arizona, Mexico, Colorado and Texas sandwiching the state of New Mexico, living in Albuquerque is certainly a great choice for outdoor adventurers. The city proudly hosts the world’s largest hot-air balloon event annually, and that’s no surprise, with its spectacular weather and clean air quality. Called the International Balloon Fiesta, the event sprawls across an entire week in October. Whether you’d like to hop in for your very own balloon ride in the sky, watch gas balloon races on the ground or take part in a flying competition, the festival is a favourite among Albuquerque residents and visitors. The cost of living here is fairly low, with the average home price at $163,000, according to Forbes, so after booking travel insurance and taking a visit here, you might find yourself looking for some prime real estate.
When you’re ready to enjoy every minute of your free time, Panama City is another great place to do so. With the best retiree benefits, according to research by International Living, and a special program called the “pensionado,” Panama caters to individuals looking to relax and spend modestly in a beautiful place. The setup includes discounts on movies, sporting events, hospital and private clinic visits, dining and even domestic flights.
With a similar climate as Albuquerque but a bit more of a cultural boom, Austin, Texas, is a bustling metropolis that is an ideal living location for residents of any age. Considered the live music capital of the world, Austin is the home of the world-famous South by Southwest festival, which features not only the next big performers in all musical genres, but also education leaders, tech innovators and other influential figures shaping culture. Residents stay active - you’ll always see people running, biking, rollerblading or skateboarding when you take a step outside, no matter where you are in the city.
Situated in the southwestern region of Ontario, this quiet city has more parkland than any other city in Canada, according to the city’s official website. If you’ve grown up loving the classic comedies and tragedies of William Shakespeare, this could be the spot for you. The world-famous Stratford Shakespeare Festival takes over the city from April to November with park performances, theatre premieres and more. Those who retire here can enjoy both sides of the spectrum - the quiet and the festive - if they choose this locale to settle.
Halifax, Nova Scotia
Some areas of Canada have pretty severe climates, which might make retirees opt for living destinations that are more similar to honeymoon travel destinations than those with frigid temperatures. However, Nova Scotia’s Halifax is a bit milder, with higher winter temperatures than other Canadian cities, according to Environment Canada. Plus, the city is situated right along the Atlantic Ocean, so in the summer, they have the luxury of enjoying the gorgeous beaches.