Australia is a wonderful place to retire. It has friendly people who speak English, amazing beaches and great healthcare. If you're looking for room to stretch out and not be bothered by neighbors, Australia is your place as it has only 1.8 people per square kilometer.
Australia is surrounded by water -- the Indian and Pacific Oceans and the Anafura and Timor Seas. This is why it is often referred to as the "island continent."
It is the world's flattest continent and its largest part is semi-arid land called the Outback. Australia is just a short distance from the largest coral reef in the world, the amazing, 1,240 mile long Great Barrier Reef - truly one of the most beautiful wonders of the world.
There are many areas that could be considered the best places to retire in Australia. But most people agree that these four would be at the top of almost anyone's list.
Port Macquarie, New South Wales
This town is a popular retirement destination even for Australians. It has beautiful beaches and the Billabong Koala Park, which plays home to a large population of koalas. It is on Australia's mid-North Coast of New South Wales and about 242 miles from Sydney. It sits at the mouth of the Hastings River and has a population of 39,129. Port Macquarie's beaches include North Shore, Oxley Beach, Shelly Beach, Minor Beach and Rocky Beach.
It is a great place for water sports - swimming, scuba diving, river trips, coastal cruises and fishing expeditions. The city boasts four golf courses and horse, and if you're game, camel riding. There are several wineries near Port Macquarie that offer tours and tastings and its nearby Ellenborough Falls is the highest falls of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere.
Port Macquarie's climate is temperate with high maximum temperatures in January in the mid 80s ° F. and in July of around 67 ° F. Of course, Australia is in the Southern Hemisphere so its seasons are the reverse of ours - July is winter and January is summer.
The cost of real estate in Port Macquarie is a bit above that of similar real estate in the US. For example, an "immaculate" in-town, 2 bedroom apartment was listed recently at $234,500 and a "walk to the beach, split level house at $399,000. And a "best value" 2-bedrorom villa near a private hospital was listed for $239,000.
Philip Island, Victoria
This island is located approximately 86 miles south-southwest from Melbourne. It is connected to the town of San Remo by a concrete bridge. In 2001, the population was 7071. However, it is such an outstanding tourist destination that in the summer its population swells to nearly 40,000.
Philip Island consists of 24,710 acres and is 17 miles long and 5 miles wide at its widest. One of its most popular and best-known attractions is the Phillip Island Penguin Parade.
The city has mild weather with a maximum temperature in February of just 76.5°F and in July 56.1°F.
Philip Island is known for Australian motor racing. In 1928, it was used for the first Australian Grand Prix. Today it is known for the Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix, the Superbike World championship and the Australian Drivers championship. In addition, it has parks and gardens, including the Phillip Island Nature Park and Koala Conservation Center where you can watch koalas in their native habitat.
Real estate on Phillip Island is a bit more than what you would expect to pay for the same-sized house in the US but certainly not a great deal more. One house recently listed on Phillip Island with 4 bedrooms, 2 baths and two living zones on two levels was at $399,000. A 2-bedroom apartment in the heart of Cowes was listed for $269,000. On the high side is listed 2.5 acres with gardens and gum trees and a recently refurbished house for $799,000.
Victor Harbor, South Australia
The city is located about 50 miles south of Adelaide, South Australia. It is on the coast of the Fleurieu Peninsula and is a very popular terrorist destination. From June to September, Southern Right Wales come to Victor Harbor's waters to mate and to calve. As you can imagine, whale watching is a very popular attraction.
Victor Harbor is connected to Granite Island by a tram service which is one of the very few horse-drawn routes still in service. It is home to a large colony of Fairy Penguins which shelter on the island during the night. The city's Greenhills Adventure Park offers many activities, including waterslides, rock wall climbing, archery, mini-golf and go carting. Victor Harbor is also a great place for surfing with surf beaches such as Parsons, Middleton and Goolwa. Its mean maximum temperature in January averages 76° F. and in July, about 60° F.
Real estate prices in Victor Harbor are more than comparable house in the US. A brick home in Victor Harbor with 2/3 bedrooms, two baths, two living areas and a great kitchen was recently on sale for $330,000. Also offered for $420,000 was a classic home built in 1960 with three double bedrooms, 2 baths, a formal dining room and a formal lounge. An apartment located almost on the beach with 2 bedrooms and an open plan living area was listed for $299.000.
St. Helens, Tasmania
St. Helens is a pretty seaside town and is the largest one on the Tasmanian East Coast. It has a great microclimate due to warm ocean currents and the fact that it is surrounded by hills. The weather is very temperate and it enjoys an average mean temperature of 71°F. in February, which, of course, is summer in Australia.
There is a great coastal reserve just south of St. Helens with sand dunes that are heavily timbered, and beautiful clean beaches. In fact, this beautiful white beach seems to be almost endless. It is a great place for long, leisurely walks along the beach or for swimming in its clear, aquamarine waters.
If you enjoy swimming and surfing, the town's George's Bay beaches are perfect. Those on its south side stretch for 31 miles. The town is famous for its scallops, flounder, abalone and crayfish. And just 6 miles northeast of St. Helens is Binalong Bay-a resort town that has great rock and surf fishing. The sands of Binalong Bay are a pristine white.
As examples of real estate prices in St. Helens, there was recently listed a beautiful, 3 bedroom home with an open plan kitchen and dining area, a large living area and a generous sized deck for $320,000. Also offered for sale was a 3-bedroom house with a large bath and a double garage for $259,999.
You've read about 4 of the best places to retire in Australia, now it is time to see for yourself. Plan a trip, check out airline ticket prices, check hotel rates, and see what Australia has to offer you the future retiree.