You can find it all in North
With a population of over 7 million, North Carolina
could probably be about two states: one for the mountain
region and one for the coastal region. Fortunately, you
can find it all in the Old North State.
The reasons to retire to North Carolina are
plentiful. The state is virtually the birthplace of golf
(Pinehurst area) and stock car racing (Charlotte); the
coastal seaport towns have incredible amenities, the
mountain towns are quaint and affordable and the history
of the state encompasses both Revolutionary and Civil
War history. Moreover, the fresh and salt water fishing
is incredible, the Tobacco Road basketball tradition is
a national leader and some of the best colleges and
universities call North Carolina home.
Yes, you guessed it, the author now lives in North
Carolina. But, having lived in Texas, Arkansas,
Mississippi, and South Carolina and having spent
considerable time in Georgia, Florida and Louisiana, I
do appreciate the culture, sports, economic vitality,
friendly people and fantastic medical care you can get
in North Carolina. Each state in the South is unique,
but North Carolina perhaps has more pockets of different
lifestyles than any Southern State.
Want to live in the Mountains or near the Blue Ridge
Parkway? Don’t forget to visit Asheville (pop. 68,294)
or Hendersonville (pop. 9,531). Of course, many other
mountain towns, including Brevard, Boone, Banner Elk,
Highlands and Cashiers and Blowing Rock - all small
towns that well during the “season”...the summer months.
There is currently a rush to buy property in all of
these mountain locales for retirement.
Don’t forget Pinehurst and Southern Pines, the
genteel equistrian and golf center, that recently hosted
the U.S. Open Golf Tournament. Retirees love the
quaintness, sense of community and the incredible
golfing found in this region.
However, some of the fastest growth in the state is
found on the Atlantic Coast of North Carolina. The
center of this area is Wilmington, an old seaport town
that has transferred itself into a wonderful retirement
hub. As many as 20 retirement-oriented “plantations” or
gated communities are now within a short driving
distance of Wilmington, offering great golf and a quiet
lifestyle. But, they offer easy access to Wilmington and
(in South Carolina) Myrtle Beach for culture,
outstanding restaurants, entertainment venues and
medical care. Wilmington has done a tremendous job in
its downtown resurgence in recent years and Myrtle Beach
has exploded with visitors and retirees alike. Call the
span between the two, “Retirement Alley,” because this
is where droves of retirees are headed.
Other notable areas of the state that are popular
with retirees are the Northeast section of the state and
the seaport towns of New Bern and Edentown, the Outer
Banks and the metro areas around Raleigh, Durham and
Chapel Hill (Triangle) and Charlotte. The Triad area of
Greensboro/Winston-Salem/High Point is a retirement
destination, but to a lesser extent.