Finding the Best Places to Retire Since 2006!
Nestled in North Central Florida, Mellow, Semi-Rural Tavares Bills Itself as "America's Seaplane City" and Borders Four Large Lakes
In north central Florida, about 30 miles northwest of Orlando, mellow, semi-rural Tavares bills itself as "America's Seaplane City." It borders four large lakes and has several smaller ones within town limits.
Water events and activities abound and include cypress swamp eco-cruises, a bass tournament, a race boat regatta, an antique boat show, a dragon boat show, Jet Ski races and many others. Seaplane fly-ins attract pilots from around the region and feature contests for "shortest take off," "best spot landing" and more. The 40-slip Seaplane Base and Marina is in the simple but renovated downtown and is owned by the city. Wooten Park, along Lake Dora, has a boat dock, a popular water park and huge live oaks with dripping moss. Wooten is also the site of the Friday morning farmers' market. Residents enjoy sushi restaurants, pizzerias, a Cajun place and a bar or two.
Most neighborhoods are modest with older, concrete block ranch ramblers, but there are also new subdivisions with modern home designs. Many residences, new and old, are located on a lake or in a lakeside community with water access. Royal Harbor is a 55+ waterfront community with single family homes.
About 18,000 people live in Tavares, reflecting a 20% increase during the last decade. Of the population, 60% are age 45 or better, giving the town a calm quality. Thirty percent of locals have a four year college degree.
Tavares is a safe town, with the crime rate below the national average.
This is a conservative place, with politics leaning to the right.
The median home price is $320,000. This is a 3% increase from last year.
Overall, the cost of living is 15% below the national average.
As is the case in most of Florida, the climate is mild with 48 inches of rain each year. Summers temperatures are in the 80s and 90s, and winters are mild with temperatures in the 50s, 60s and 70s.
Formerly Florida Hospital Waterman, AdventHealth Waterman is the local hospital. It is accredited by the Joint Commission and accepts Medicare patients.
LakeXpress provides fixed route public transportation, and Lake County Connection is a paratransit service.
The Tavares Public Library has a main branch and operates several Little Free Libraries. Although small, the library receives excellent reviews.
Florida is considered a tax-friendly place to retire. This is because there is no income tax so there is no state tax on Social Security benefits, 401Ks, etc.
Recommended as a Retirement Spot? Yes
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