First established in 1565 by the Spanish, today you can visit remnants of the town’s past such as the Castillo de San Marcos National Monument, a 17th-century fort. Or spend a while meandering through the town’s historic neighborhoods, admiring the Spanish Colonial Revival-style homes and buildings.
The town also lays claim to the nation’s oldest road, Aviles Street, as well as the St. Augustine Lighthouse and Museum. Shoppers can exercise their wallets at the many shops along adorable St. George Street — locals know to stay away from the touristy souvenir shops. Outside the confines of the town, retirees will find plenty of nearby golf courses. Additionally, St. Augustine’s prime waterfront location means there’s plenty of opportunity for boating, fishing, kayaking or simply relaxing along Florida’s sugar-white sands.
Con: Downtown traffic can be heavy, region can be affected by hurricanes
Best For: History buffs, water lovers
Cost of Living: 8% lower than national average
Median Home Cost: $180,000
Top State Income Tax: no state income tax
Crime Rate: 15.8% higher than national average
Like many towns in Florida, St. Augustine’s cost of living falls below the national average, and the median home price is $180,000. It’s important to note that home prices can vary dramatically in and around St. Augustine, particularly within the Old City and along the waterways, which house far more expensive properties than inland housing developments and condos.
One thing retirees should be aware of when relocating to St. Augustine is that the town is an extremely popular tourist destination. While this does mean there are ample attractions, restaurants and bars, it also means the town grows clogged with visitors during peak seasons. This increase in foot and auto traffic can be frustrating for some residents.