It’s no secret that Destin is a top vacation destination but now it’s also been selected as a top retirement destination, according to the newly released sixth edition of the book “America’s 100 Best Places to Retire.”
Over the course of 11 months, editors and staff researched more than 800 cities to find out which ones stood out from the others based on interviews with retirees, local knowledge and cost. Thirty-five states were selected, with 18 cities located in Florida. Destin was one of 10 “Best Small Towns” to retire to along with Amelia Island, Florida; Boynton Beach, Florida and Sierra Vista, Arizona.
"The main thing about Destin that keeps people coming back is the people," said Mary Pierce, the publicity director of the Destin Snowbirds Club. "It’s just a very, very warm and welcoming community."
In-depth interviews with 670 retirees, including those in Destin, allows you to get first-hand accounts of areas in the book so you get the facts, not just the stories.
"The stories also bring you past wistful dreams and into the realm of real research, including information on weather, taxes, downtown attractions and even the caveats of each city,” said Annette Fuller, the editor of Where to Retire magazine.
"It's not the weather (that brings them back) I can promise you that," Pierce said with a chuckle. "It's definitely the people."
The “comprehensive guidebook of the country’s most appealing retirement towns” was edited and published by Where to Retire magazine, which is focused on retirement relocation.
Each year, 700,000 Americans relocate to new towns to retire. Generally, relocating retirees are healthier, better educated and more affluent than those who choose to not relocate. They bring significant economic benefits to their new states and hometowns. Nationally, two dozen states and hundreds of towns seek to attract retirees as a source of economic development.
Launched in 1992, Where to Retire magazine is published six times a year, with the goal of helping its readers find the ideal place to retire.