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10 best U.S. cities for outdoor enthusiasts to retire

By Jake Beardslee · February 2, 2024

Denver, Colorado

Denver, Colorado has over 200 parks, 85 miles of trails and is near plenty of ski resorts for winter sports. The views of the Rocky Mountains are hard to beat.  jsjgeology/Flickr

San Diego, California

San Diego, California offers year-round nice weather to enjoy water sports and activities like surfing, sailing and beach yoga. There are lots of cycling routes and hiking trails to explore.  Andrewthebobo/Wikimedia

Portland, Oregon

Portland, Oregon is surrounded by natural beauty, from the Columbia River Gorge to Mount Hood. Retirees will stay active with kayaking, mountain biking and forest trails just minutes from downtown.  Truflip99/Wikimedia

Asheville, North Carolina

Asheville, North Carolina is nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains, providing hiking, fishing, and gorgeous fall scenery. The city has an artsy, laid-back vibe.  Michael Tracey/Wikimedia

Madison, Wisconsin

Madison, Wisconsin is set on an isthmus between two large lakes. Outdoor enthusiasts can boat, swim, run, bike and cross country ski with ease.  Lectrician2/Wikimedia

Missoula, Montana

Missoula, Montana has stunning landscapes perfect for fly fishing, rafting, camping and more. Nearby Glacier National Park offers stunning views and outdoor adventure.  Prizrak 2084 from Missoula, Montana, USA/Wikimedia

Tucson, Arizona

Tucson, Arizona enjoys over 300 sunny days a year to pursue activities like golf, tennis, cycling and rock climbing with no shortage of scenic trails to follow.  John Diebolt/Wikimedia

Ann Arbor, Michigan

Ann Arbor, Michigan has parks designed by Frederick Law Olmsted. Nearby rivers, lakes, and woodlands offer plenty of routes to walk, run or bike through pure nature.  David Harris/Wikimedia

Burlington, Vermont

Burlington, Vermont is set on the shores of Lake Champlain, surrounded by the Green Mountains. Explore via kayak, skis, snowshoe or just taking in autumn leaves.  Kenneth C. Zirkel/Wikimedia

Greenville, South Carolina

Greenville, South Carolina has a popular downtown surrounded by falls, rivers, lakes and more. Hike to waterfalls or traverse one of the many recreational trails just minutes from the city.  Anthromesimages/Wikimedia