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Top 5 best places to retire in 2021



Retiring to a foreign country allows you to experience more of the world while also spending less money in most cases.

To determine which countries are the best for retirees, International Living uses a scoring system that measures a variety of factors, including housing, benefits & discounts, visas & residence, fitting in/entertainment, development, climate, healthcare, governance, opportunity, and cost of living.

Here are the top 5 best places to retire in 2021:

  • Portugal



Portugal is located in southwestern Europe. Portugal is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean, and Spain to the north and east. It is relatively easy to retire in Portugal. The easiest way to retire in Portugal is to apply for residence status in the country.

Although the official language is Portuguese, most people can speak English language as it is taught in schools. However, it helps to learn Portuguese as it will certainly increase your convenience and help you understand the culture.

The Algarve region in the south of the country is especially popular with retirees.

For healthcare, the Portugal National Health Service, referred to as Servico Nacional de Saude (SNS), provides healthcare to all Portuguese citizens and residents residing in Portugal. Although this service is generally free, in certain cases some fees may be applied.

Portuguese cuisine is known for its fresh seafood. Most restaurants will have plenty of dishes surrounding shrimps, tuna, and cod.

Portugal is one of the world’s best golf destinations.

  • Colombia



Colombia is located in northwestern South America. Colombia is bordered by the Caribbean Sea to the north, Venezuela and Brazil to the east, Peru and Ecuador to the south, and the Pacific Ocean and Panama to the west.

Colombia offers so many living and lifestyle options, you will be able to find an area to live that fits within any budget.

If you crave sand and waves, you can choose to live in the warm, tropical Caribbean coastal cities of Cartagena, Santa Marta, or Barranquilla.

If you prefer a more temperate climate, then head for Medellín, Colombia’s second-largest city. It sits in a valley and extends up the mountains to the east and the west of the low points.

One constant throughout Colombia is the abundance of fresh, inexpensive produce and local meats and poultry.

  • Mexico



Mexico is located in North America. Mexico is bordered by the Pacific Ocean, the Caribbean Sea, and the Gulf of Mexico; the United States is to the north, and Belize and Guatemala are to the south.

Retirees in Mexico enjoy a great climate, great food, a rich culture, and friendly people.

The food is wonderful. Fresh fruit and vegetables, meats and fish are available at the local markets, and you’ll get great value for your money.

Good healthcare is widely available. Mexico has excellent doctors, dentists, hospitals and other medical specialists. There are a range of insurance services available for you to buy to safeguard you and your dependents from the cost of private medical bills, including medical evacuation services.

  • Panama



Panama is located in Central America, bordering both the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Ocean, between Colombia and Costa Rica.

Many retirees who move to Panama prefer the calm breezes of the countryside over the hustle and bustle of a big metropolitan.

Healthcare in Panama is perhaps the most pleasant surprise for most newcomers. The country’s major facilities are inexpensive and modern.

Some of the best places for retirees in Panama include:
Coronado – A beach resort community town an hour south of the capital. One of the original ex-pat communities in Panama.
Valle de Anton – Just 120 kilometers from the capital, this highland interior area has cool evenings, hot springs for soaking, and relaxed living. A safe and upscale option.
David – The second-largest city, but a bit higher in altitude and not as congested as the capital.

  • Costa Rica

Costa Rica

Costa Rica

Costa Rica is located in Central America. Costa Rica is bordered by the Pacific Ocean, the Caribbean Sea, Nicaragua to the north, and Panama to the south.

Costa Rica is known for its long-standing and stable democracy, and for its highly educated workforce, most of whom speak English.

The country is a dream holiday destination for many and offers gorgeous ocean views, incredible biodiversity, plus year-round warm and temperate weather.

The small country offers universal healthcare to citizens and permanent residents, and the quality of care matches much larger countries. Costa Rica’s public system — known to the locals as Caja — offers free emergency care, preventative services, and medical procedures for a small monthly fee.

Most cities and towns host weekly ferias — or farmer’s markets — where exotic fruits, vegetables, herbs, and fish can be found and purchased at bargain prices. Beans, rice, and plantains are also diet staples here and go equally easy on the budget.


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