Retirement no longer means boring days and nights wondering what to do with all this new-found time.Boomer retirees are active and want to stay engaged in life.Often, retirees also decide to move whether for a warmer climate that allows for a more active lifestyle or to be in a part of the country theyve always loved. If youre thinking of doing that, these ten popular retirement destinations that might appeal to you.The Villages, Florida. Located midway between the Gulf and the Atlantic coast, its about an hour north of Orlando and close to the airport and tourist attractions. But if youd rather not spend a lot of time at Disney World, The Villages has yoga, swimming, tennis, golf, kayaking, softball fields and even polo. In fact, the Recreation Center offers over 1,000 activities.Sarasota, Florida. Located on the gulf coast south of Tampa. A Portfolio.com survey listed Sarasota/Bradenton as Americas favorite retirement destination in 2010. It has a mixture of older and younger people, is affordable and has a low crime rate. Its easy to learn new things with the various colleges and universities available. And the sunsets are breathtaking.Boise, Idaho. Boise State University, the hub of this western city, has plenty to do. The school offers life-long learning classes, field trips and recreational activities to residents over the age of 50. Boise has its own opera company, orchestra and ballet . They also have a good VA Hospital and just about anywhere you live in the city is only a short trip to any medical care.
Greenville, South Carolina. Youre near the Blue Ridge and Great Smoky Mountains with their magnificent vistas. Downtown Greenville is a tree-lined, walkable area with plenty of options for shopping, dining, and nightlife. Clemson University, about 45 minutes away, hosts a branch of the OLLI (Osher Lifelong Learning Institute) which focuses on the social, recreational and educational development of seniors.
Bloomington, Indiana. If the Midwest is more to your liking, Bloomington is a university town with galleries, theater and music. For the music lovers there is the prestigious Jacobs School of Music, which hosts more than 1,000 performances annually. Bloomington Hospital is an award-winning hospital receiving a 2007 outstanding achievement award for its cancer programs.
Prescott, Arizona. Situated 100 miles north of Phoenix, this is a popular destination for retirees. The weather here is hard to beat: plentiful sunny days, but also four distinct seasons, thanks to the town's elevation of 5,400 feet. There are 650 miles of trails in the adjacent 1.25-million-acre Prescott National Forest, in addition to half a dozen golf courses, art shows, film festivals, crafts fairs, and outdoor concerts.
Bend, Oregon. Called the outdoor recreation capital of Oregon. Recreational opportunities include hiking, rafting, golfing, fishing, camping and skiing. Central Oregon Community College is located in Bend and Oregon State University has a branch on the COCC campus. St. Charles Medical Center and other medical facilities in Bend provide state of the art health care.
Bellingham, Washington. Situated approximately halfway between Seattle, WA and Vancouver, Canada this beautiful town is consistently on best places to retire lists and with good reason; top-notch health care, abundant culture, lots of green space and low taxes. In May 2006 the American Lung Association named Bellingham among 11 other cities as having the cleanest air six years in a row.Fredericksburg, Texas. Within an hours drive of San Antonio and Austin, in what is called the Texas Hill Country. If youre the outdoorsy type this town could be just right for you. Celebrating its German roots, youll find German-themed bakeries and beer gardens, with Oktoberfest a major celebration. Theres a thriving art scene and an abundance of small galleries throughout town. Its warm weather and income tax-free living make this an appealing place for boomer retirees.Las Cruces, New Mexico. Called one of the best kept secrets of the American Southwest, and rated a Best Place to Retire by AARP and other organizations, Las Cruces has managed to retain its unique small-town charm. Youll find a vast selection of annual events and things to do, affordable living, amazing weather and an average of 350 days of sunshine per year. With low taxes, affordable housing, recreational opportunities and excellent health care, what more could you want? Well there is another perk; you can even attend New Mexico State University where classes are available to seniors at significant discounts.Sheryl Letzgus McGinnis is a member of the Parent Advisory Board of The Partnership at www.drugfree.org.