Retire in Charleston

Best Retirement City - Charleston

See why many believe that Charleston is the best city to retire

Founded in 1670, not only is Charleston steeped in rich history and culture, but it is also one of the most pleasant to live in. The city won Travel + Leisure's "America's Most Friendly City" award in both 2011 and 2013, and "The Most Polite and Hospitable City in America" by Southern Living magazine. Fans of "The Notebook" movie may recognize sights such as Boone Hall Plantation, with its grand oaks and beautiful landscaping, or King Street, where a variety of scenes were filmed. For those interested in a bit of the city's history, The Historic Charleston Foundation opens up gardens and private dwellings to the public throughout the year for unique, popular tours. Charleston is becoming increasingly popular with retirees who are attracted to the warm weather, abundance of food and culture, and Southern charm. The Charleston area has a variety of community areas which can vary greatly. Downtown Charleston is easily walkable and bikeable, and has a high concentration of the city's unique history and culture. Traveling over the Ravenel Bridge from Charleston brings to you Mt. Pleasant, both convenient to downtown, and also close to excellent beaches. Mt. Pleasant boasts a combination of new developments, as well as older established suburban neighborhoods. To the west of Charleston lies West Ashley, a suburban neighborhood with access to the Intracoastal Waterway. Although popular with younger families, this area has seen an increase in retirees due to its access to waterways and variety of price points. Regardless of which neighborhood you choose, Charleston has a ton to offer! Click on the tabs to learn more about what it's like to retire in Charleston.

City Highlights

  1. Friendly, inviting community
  2. Historically and culturally rich
  3. Access to beach and waterfront activities
  4. Tax friendly
  5. Multiple hospitals within 25 miles

Potential Drawbacks

  1. High hurricane/earthquake risk
  2. Humid summers

At a glance



Median age:


Median Household Income:

$ 51,737

Nearest City with Population of 200k+:

Charlotte, NC

Population Growth Last 3 Years




Age Breakdown (%)

  • 55 and under
  • 55 to 64 years
  • 65 to 74 years
  • Over 75

Gender breakdown over 65 years (%)

  • Men
  • Women


Closest Airport:

Charleston International Airport

Distance to Closest Airport:


Closest Major Airport:

Charleston International Airport

Distance to Closest Major Airport:


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