Outdoors lovers, particularly birdwatchers, will fall feel right at home in tiny Smyrna, Delaware. The town lies along the “Atlantic Flyway,” a migrating route for birds, and is also in proximity to Redden, Blackbird and Taber State Forests, which offer even more chances for wildlife spotting. Just east of town lies the nearly 16,000-acre Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge. Here, retirees will find trails and observation towers overlooking tidal salt marshes, timbered swamps, and freshwater pools. Active retirees can explore Blackbird State Forest’s 40-mile network of trails popular for biking, hiking and cross-country skiing.
Nearly 500 buildings in Smyrna are registered on the National Register of Historic Places, and the historic downtown area is a charmer.
Con: Suburban sprawl may threaten small-town charm
Best For: Bird watchers and nature lovers
Cost of Living: 8.5% lower than national average
Median Home Cost: $150,300
Top State Income Tax: 6.75%
Crime Rate: 2% above national average
Retirees can explore the Smyrna Museum, or the Smyrna Opera House, which doubles as a theater and art gallery.
Though Delaware’s top state income tax is relatively high, the state remains one of the most tax friendly, with no sales tax — a plus for many retirees. Smyrna has been growing in recent years, and some residents complain that the resulting suburban sprawl is a negative.