Finding the Best Places to Retire Since 2006!
Highland Beach, Florida
Tucked Along the Southeastern Florida Coast, Summery Highland Beach Boasts Luxurious Homes and a Soft, White Oceanfront Beach
Highland Beach is a balmy, summery beach community along tree-lined State Road A1A in southeastern Florida and is framed by lush vegetation, the Intracoastal Waterway and the Atlantic Ocean. Its name comes from the fact that is 13 feet above sea level.
A popular "snowbird" destination, Highland Beach sees its usual population of 4,500 increase to about 8,500 during the winter months, when many homes become vacation rentals. The year-round population is also mature, with a median age of 68, well above the national median.
The median home price is $925,000, reflecting an increase of 1% since last year. Tall, white condominiums and luxurious single family homes are the norm and sit along roads paralleled by palm trees. Nearly all properties overlook the Intracoastal Waterway or the Atlantic Ocean, where the soft, white beach is only open to homeowners and their guests. As a result, it is rarely crowded.
The cost of living is 98% above the national average. The crime rate is well below the national average, and politics are split down the middle. Highland Beach has grown by 10% during the last decade. Sixty percent of residents hold at least a four year college degree.
Barely two miles long, Highland Beach is almost entirely residential and walkable from end to end. It does not even have a single traffic light. Spanish River Park allows camping, picnicking, and swimming. Highland Beach's eastern shore is an important sea turtle nesting ground.
The library is a cultural hub and receives rave reviews. Cozy and quiet, it sits along the Intracoastal Highway and has exhibitions, concerts, book groups, movies and more. Membership is free for town residents.
Highland Beach does not have a hospital of its own, but Boca Raton Regional Hospital is within five miles. It accepts Medicare patients and is accredited by the Joint Commission.
There also is no local transportation, but the county offers a program to transport the disabled to a shelter in the event of a hurricane.
Delray Beach and Boca Raton rest on the town's southern and northern borders, and amenities in these larger communities include restaurants, shopping venues, the Gumbo Limbo Nature Center and the Delray Beach Center for the Arts.
The Everglades and the Loxahatchee National Wildlife Reserve are within easy reach and permit boating, hiking and fishing. The nearby Yamato Scrub Natural Area has trails that wander through five ecosystems.
This area has a tropical monsoon climate. Summers and early fall are hot and humid with temperatures in the 80s and 90s. Late fall and winter are less humid and cooler with temperatures in the 50s, 60s and 70s. The area receives 58 inches of rain per year, on average. Hurricanes are always a possibility, and Hurricane Dorian brought some flooding in 2019. Highway A1A occasionally floods during rain storms.
Recommended as a Retirement Spot? Yes
Named Pascua Florida by Juan Ponce De Leon, the Sunshine State did not enter the Union until March 3, 1845. Balmy mild winters began attracting snowbirds to the state in the late 19th century. Retirees continue to flock to the state. It's not hard to see why tourism has become the leading industry.
International trade and citrus are also major contributors to the state's economy. Eighty percent of the nation's oranges and grapefruits are grown here, and 40 percent of all U.S. exports to Latin America flow through Florida.
Florida's landscape includes uplands and coastal plains. It contains more than 11,000 miles of waterways and about 4,500 islands spread across 10 acres.
The state has 1,250 golf courses, more than any other state in the Union. The 47 mile Pinellas Trail is the longest urban trail on the east coast. Orlando theme parks attract more visitors than any other theme parks in the U.S. The only place in the world where alligators and crocodiles co-exist is in National Everglades Park.
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