There you sit in your favorite chair, feet propped up and eyes closed, imagining what your retirement will be like. Maybe it's just a year away. Or only a few months. But in any event, the question most on your mind is how can I have the best possible retirement.
When you think about retirement, do you think about swaying palm trees, a full, tropical moon, white sandy beaches and a relaxed lifestyle? Do you want a nice lifestyle but at a bargain-basement cost?
There are a number of tropical places to retire where you can live like a king for only a few thousand dollars a month or even less. In fact, there is one country where you can have a wonderful lifestyle on less than $18,000 a year.
Here are six countries that most travel experts have concluded are among the best tropical places to retire and still be reasonably close to friends and families in the US.
Every year, Costa Rica becomes a more popular tropical place for Americans to retire. It is a very diverse country with low unemployment and not much poverty. Costa Rica has a very diverse geography that stretches from beaches to rain forests. Outdoor activities available to retirees include fishing, kayaking, biking, swimming surfing, hiking, and many others. If you want to be near the water you can choose to live on the eastern side of Costa Rica by the Caribbean or on the western part on the Pacific Ocean. The most common retirement location for Costa Rica is San Jose, which is its nation's capital.
Mexico is another of the popular tropical places to retire. It has the added advantage of being a next-door neighbor to the US. As you may know, Mexico is a very large country and offers a number of different regions for retirement. If you want to be close to the ocean, you can retire to cities such as the Mayan Riviera, Mazatlan or Acapulco. If you're more interested in being part of an authentic Mexican community, there are places such as Cuernavaca, Oaxaca or Morelia. If your preference is to be close enough to the United States for easy trips back home, there are cities such as San Felipe.
Many people consider Panama to be the best possible tropical place to retire. It offers climate that varies from rain forests to the Pacific Ocean and Caribbean Sea. Panama is said to have the fastest growing economy in Central America and has become a center for international business. If you would like to live on a tropical island, Panama has Bocos del Toros, a small cluster of islands on the country's northeast coast. If you're more of a city person but still want a tropical lifestyle, there is Panama City, the nation's capital. What makes Panama particularly attractive as a retirement area is the fact that the Panama Canal generates so much revenue, every Panamanian citizen automatically receives a large sum every year as their share of the revenue-which has all but eliminated poverty in the country.
This country may be one of the most misunderstood in Latin America and yet is one of the safest and most beautiful. It now has a very stable and democratically elected government that welcomes retirees from the US. Nicaragua's capital, Managua, has become a first-class city with many fine restaurants, shops, and entertainment centers. Lake Nicaragua offers great opportunities for fishing and water sports, as well as a peaceful lakefront lifestyle. Many American retirees have chosen to take up residence in the town of San Juan del Sur, a lovely and picturesque port town.
Ecuador's economy is based on the US dollar, which gives the country great economic stability and makes transactions very simple for US retirees. It offers such a low cost of land and a very low cost of living. In fact, a person could retire there and live comfortably on $17,000 a year. The country offers a wide array of animals, landscapes and plants. It also features three world-class cities that welcome retirees-Quito, Guayaquil and Cuenca.
This country, which used to be called the British West Indies, offers the opportunity to live virtually tax-free under a special government program for foreigners. It has one of the lowest costs of living in the Caribbean and one of the lowest inflation rates in the world. As a retiree in Belize, you can get low-cost or even free medical and dental care, as well as free prescriptions. The country is a politically stable democracy that has never experienced war. Even the police hardly ever carry guns. Belize offers world-class fishing, diving and boating on the world's second largest coral reef. You can buy a piece of property in Belize for as little as $17.50 a year and can own property without having to give up your present citizenship. If you do want to become a permanent resident of Belize, the process is quick, easy and inexpensive.
Now you have some idea of the best tropical places to retire around the world. No one can tell where is the best place for you to retire. Use these as a guide and plan a mini vacation to a couple locations to meet the people and decide if you want to retire overseas.