Where to go when retirement is an option

The concept of retirement has changed. It doesn’t mean a spell in God’s waiting room.

As we decide what we want to do with our retirement time, one of the first things that we look at is where we want to live.

Maintaining the family home once the kids have flown the nest is not always appealing. Whilst the fond memories and local friends and family are a strong anchor, a desire to start afresh or fulfil a lifelong ambition rises within.

For many people, the allure of a sun-drenched retreat to the continent was the first choice. But with increasing uncertainty over where Britain stands, security concerns, and the economic turmoil of recent years, the choices available to us within these familiar shores are worthy of a second look.

Chasing the dream

Personal dreams and ambition are often at the fore when considering retirement relocation. With rampant house price growth over the last decades, many people find themselves with equity available in a family house. Selling up and cashing in is a serious contender.

For urbanites that dream of a country cottage, open fields and friendly village life is just the ticket.

With thousands of small communities around the UK, choosing an area to live in is a bit of a minefield. If you’re planning on venturing far from your current home, it’s well worth taking the time to stay in a local hotel or find a room at a country pub to soak up the atmosphere and get a feel for the place.

Don’t forget to think about the practicalities too. With shops, services and pubs rapidly disappearing from some small villages, you don’t want to get caught out.

If quiet seclusion isn’t quite your cup of tea, then how about heading into town?

Whilst central London is out of the reach of many, many of the UK’s smaller cities and towns still offer great choices. Cities like Bristol, York, Winchester or Ipswich all have the vibrant restaurants, theatres and city centre culture that will keep your social diary full.

Seaside escape

For many the fantasy of living by the sea can now be realised. Whilst you’re never that far from the coast in the UK, having all that the British coast can offer right on your doorstep is just too tempting.

If you’re thinking about how to fill your time then the coast is certainly a place that will occupy it. No matter what the weather, a coastal walk or seafront stroll is a thing of beauty. For the thrill seeker, a spot of sailing, canoeing, or even kite surfing. And if it’s a more sedate pace you fancy then you can’t beat people watching in a sea front eatery. With fish and chips.

Now we’ve scratched the surface, take this quick quiz to find your ideal retirement destination.

Quiz courtesy of SunLife.