Best places to retire to in the UK

Published Feb 14, 2020 – 4 mins read

Whilst it will ultimately depend on the retiree’s lifestyle and preferences there are certain areas of the UK that are better suited for those retiring than others. It doesn’t mean that these areas are filled to the brim with over-65’s, although for some this might be preferable, it’s simply that the amenities and surrounds are typically a better fit.

Retiring doesn’t necessarily mean a move away from the buzz of a town or city, in fact, it’s usually easier if the amenities are nearby. Access to golf courses, sports clubs, a local doctor’s surgery, community events and good pubs are all often on the list provided to us by clients moving for retirement. Downsizing or not, house prices are always an important factor, especially once you are of retirement age as financing is not as easy to come by.

Here’s a collection of the locations which might be considered to be the best places to retire to in the UK. 

West Sussex, South

In the south of England, West Sussex is reported to offer retirees the highest quality of life. Towns such as Worthing, which is a seaside town, are particularly popular places to live. Public transport in the area is excellent with Worthing being easily connected to other popular destinations such as Brighton and Chichester. The Southern Coastal service and the 700 bus route also allows for easy access to pretty nearby coastal towns such as Littlehampton, which is another place we’d suggest considering for retirement in West Sussex.

For inland adventures, the South Downs and the wider South Downs National Park which includes parts of the Weald are nearby and can be readily enjoyed. Within the West Sussex part of the South Downs National Park is the Cissbury Ring, the most historic hill on the South Downs. The area is ideal for those who wish to enjoy the many walking trails on offer or one of the many country pubs in the area. Located between the sea and the South Downs, the cathedral city of Chichester is another location on our list of the best places to retire in the UK. Chichester has a good hospital and a reputable theatre and isn’t too far from Goodwood spa and golf course.

Devon, South West

If you dream of retiring by the sea it is likely that Devon has a home that will match your requirements. The area is incredibly well suited for retirement with towns such as Torquay being one of the UK’s official Age-friendly Communities

Devon offers better weather than much of the UK and allows for a busy social life with golf, sailing and many other sporting clubs throughout the county. Devon might have miles of coastline but it also has much to offer inland with the moorlands of Exmoor and Dartmoor ready to explore. If you’d prefer to live in a city in Devon both the historic cities of Exeter and Plymouth have much to offer.

Yorkshire, North East

In Yorkshire you have the option of living inland, surrounded by beautiful countryside and backdrops such as the Yorkshire Dales National Park or the Nidderdale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. You can also choose to live near the coast, and within or near to the North York Moors National Park. One thing is certain, Yorkshire is a very attractive place to live and has many idyllic places to retire. 

The city of York has long been a popular place for retirees to live, and with so much to see and do both in York and within the surrounding area, it has previously been voted the top place to stay active in retirement. Harrogate is another popular choice, followed closely by Skipton and Wetherby. On the coast, Scarborough, Staithes and Runswick Bay are all desirable locations for retirement.

Fife, Scotland

Fife is a peaceful and scenic part of Scotland that benefits from ready access to the cities of Edinburgh, Glasgow and Perth allowing residents to find a balance with being removed from the busyness without being too out of touch. And for those who like to travel abroad frequently, the road and train network also provide easy connections to Edinburgh Airport.

Without question, Fife is the home of golf with over 50 courses in the area including the Old Course, Kingsbarns and St Andrews Castle. Fife also has an abundance of other activities on offer such as sailing and walking along one of the many routes.

Norfolk, East

Norfolk is a vast county that allows residents to enjoy a feeling of being entirely removed from the rat race. From the stunning sandy beaches to nature-filled Norfolk Broads there is a location in Norfolk to suit those seeking a slower pace of life.

The North Norfolk Coast is particularly popular with locations such as  Wells-Next-the-Sea and towns such as Aylsham which are a little further inland offering an excellent quality of life. 

Lincolnshire, East Midlands

Lincolnshire is England’s second-largest county meaning its generally not overpopulated. The landscapes are impressive, with rolling hills that stretch for many miles and plenty of scenic walking routes to enjoy. The county is particularly flat meaning it isn’t too arduous for those who prefer a more leisurely walk, the flatness of the county also makes it very popular with cyclists.

At the very southern tip of Lincolnshire, the historic town of Stamford is a resounding favourite with retirees and generally with all demographics as a place to live. Lincolnshire also occupies a large stretch of coastline with Skegness being particularly popular with retirees.

Dorset, South West

Dorset is an incredibly popular place to retire in the UK; from the stunning Jurassic Coast, the sailing clubs and events throughout the year, to the inland beauty spots and pretty historic towns and villages, this county in the southwest has much to offer those retiring.

Prime locations such as Sandbanks are highly desirable as are homes within the city of Bournemouth and the nearby town of Weymouth is seeing its popularity increase.

There are a great many locations dotted across the UK that offers many benefits to those retiring. Retirees in Rutland are reported to be amongst the healthiest and happiest, Essex offers excellent weather and Bedfordshire is one of the most favoured of the home counties.

Finding a home for retirement

If you’re currently actively seeking a place to retire or are simply planning for the future and wish to purchase a home now in anticipation of retirement our team of property experts could be a great help. Offering advice and guidance on locations and property to ensure you make a well-informed purchasing decision; contact us to discuss your plans and how our services might be suited to your search.