Top 5 retirement destinations in Canada

5. Winnipeg, Manitoba
Admittedly, the first thing that comes to mind when you think of Winnipeg is its cold winters, but Gord Klassen-Marchildon hails from this city and assures us that the winters are cold but filled with sunny skies.

“You are an eight-hour drive from Minneapolis, Thunder Bar, Thompson, or Regina. The diverse, tough-as-nails people are what keep me coming back.”
Klassen-Marchildon thinks people often retire to Winnipeg to be close to family connections, as there are strong Mennonite, Ukrainian, Polish, and Aboriginal roots in Winnipeg. If it is not heritage you are looking for in retirement, Winnipeg’s low property taxes might help sway your decision. In 2012, the average price for a detached bungalow was $302,896, the average for a condominium was $194,269, and the average for a standard two-storey home was $319,409.

4. Halifax, Nova Scotia
Also a bit on the cold side, Halifax makes the list due to its low taxes and array of community centres. Halifax is one of Canada’s oldest cities and it appeals to young and old because it is easy to walk around. If you are looking to explore new opportunities in retirement, Halifax offers different organizations for seniors to find events or activities they love. Halifax also serves as a great place to garden, fish, or simply join nature walks. In 2012, the average price for a Halifax home was $209,018.

3. Joliette, Quebec
For French-speaking retirees, Joliette is a small town in Quebec, northwest of Montreal. It is easy to walk around and has one of the lowest crime rates in Canada and relatively low property taxes. Similar to other cities in Quebec, Joliette has some quaint aspects to it that make it lovely for strolling around and relaxing in, but it is still within driving distance of Montreal. Joliette is a small town with a population of just over 19,000 people, which gives the municipality an obvious community feeling. Although Joliette would be beautiful to visit, it would not be an ideal retirement destination for those who do not speak French.

2. Victoria, British Columbia
Victoria also has low property taxes and has great access to doctors. Having spent much of her teen years in Victoria, Aly Kelly has great things to say to those contemplating retirement,
“Victoria is perfect for retirement in many ways. It’s a slow pace life of ideal temperatures, encourages an active lifestyle, has a welcoming community, and all in a beautiful setting.”
In 2013, the average price of a standard detached home was $452,115, while bungalows sold for an average of $452,140 and condos averaged $267,000. There are different neighbourhoods surrounding downtown Victoria, all of which offer unique amenities to their inhabitants including North and South Jubilee and Fairfield.

1. Kingston, Ontario
Ranking number one on the list is Kingston, Ontario. Carol Minifie currently lives in Burlington, but she and her husband bought a cottage in Kingston in 2011 and plan on retiring there. She explains, “Kingston itself has a great healthcare system, culture, waterways, and lower cost of living, and it doesn't have the city congestion we have here in Burlington.” She adds that she and her husband wanted the option of being close to a major city like Ottawa, which is only an hour and a half's drive from their cottage.
The average price of all homes in 2013 was $279,339.


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