Finding the Best Places to Retire Since 2006!
Captain Cook, Hawaii
Captain Cook is a Peaceful Place Next to Kealakekua Bay, a Calm, Shallow Body of Water Perfect for Snorkeling and Diving
Captain James Cook, the renowned English navigator and explorer, first arrived on the west shore of the Island of Hawaii in 1778 and was warmly greeted by Hawaiian villagers. On his second visit, Cook and his men were treated as gods until the death of a crewman revealed that the Englishmen were actually mere mortals. On his third trip in 1779, an angry Hawaiian mob killed Cook and most of his men.
The lush, peaceful town of Captain Cook is where this all took place, and the event is memorialized by a tall white marker at the edge of Kealakekua Bay. Kealakekua Bay's calm, shallow waters, a large coral reef and diverse underwater life make this a popular place with snorkelers and SCUBA divers (and Spinner Dolphins). General tourists are few, however, because the bay has been declared a Marine Life Conservation District and is only accessible via a steep foot path or by kayak or sailboat. The beach is small and cozy, thanks to 1992's Hurricane Iniki. The town's core is comprised of a few shops and eateries. Homes sit on overgrown lots and range from modest cabins to stunning residences overlooking the Pacific.
Population: 4,500 (city proper)
Age 45 or Better: 60%
Cost of Living: 68% above the national average
Median Home Price: $810,000
Climate: Captain Cook has a tropical climate with year round temperatures in the 70s and 80s. On average, the area receives 50 to 60 inches of rain each year.
At Least One Hospital Accepts Medicare Patients? No, but Kona Community Hospital is three miles away in Kealakekua and accepts Medicare patients.
At Least One Hospital Accredited by Joint Commission? No, but Kona Community Hospital is three miles away in Kealakekua and is accredited.
Public Transit: Yes, the county's Hele-On bus has a route that runs to towns to the north.
Crime Rate: Well below the national average
Public Library: No, but one is about five miles to the north in Kealakekua.
Political Leanings: Very liberal
College Educated: 28%
Is Hawaii Considered Tax Friendly for Retirement? Yes
Cons: The earthquake risk is 760% higher than the national average.
Notes: Kealakekua Bay is beautiful and has some of the best snorkeling in Hawaii. Spinner Dolphins use the bay as a nursery. Town services are limited. A Walmart is 10 miles north in Kona. The population has grown 25% during the last decade, and the median home price has increased 26% since a year ago.
Recommended as a Retirement Spot? Yes
The Aloha State is an isolated volcanic archipelago 2,397 miles east of San Francisco. Although it was annexed by the United States in 1900, Hawaii did not become a state until August 21, 1959. It is the only U.S. state made up entirely of islands, and it is the northernmost island group in Polynesia.
Hawaii's islands are known for their lush foliage, rugged geography, as well as their gold, red, black, and green sand beaches. Its Kilauea volcano is one of the world's most active. NASA astronauts trained for moon voyages by walking on Mauna Loa's hardened lava fields.
Of the six major islands, Oahu has the only major city - Honolulu. Climate and rainfall can vary depending on altitude and location. Thanks to trade winds, the north and east side receive higher amounts of moisture than the south and west. The islands experience some tropical storms, but the incidence of a true hurricane is rare. The rainiest city, Hilo, in the United States is in Hawaii.
Tourism and defense are a large part of the Hawaii's economy. The state is the only one in the union to grow coffee. It also produces most of the nation's pineapple and sugar cane. Nearly eight million tourists come to visit each year.
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