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Where to retire?

Discussion in 'Grumpy Old Divers' started by JohnN, Jan 11, 2016.

  1. PatW

    PatW Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Central Florida
    1,083
    287
    83
    Roatan or Utila are possibilities. The crime is low there unlike the rest of the country. You don't see many fish because of the over fishing, but the corals are great especially on Utila. Utila is very much an "out island". Roatan has much more of an infrastructure. The costs are pretty reasonable too. And you are just on the fringes of the hurricane zone.

    The Caymans are good. Grand Cayman is expensive but has pretty much everything one would need. Little Cayman is very much an out island. There is almost nothing there. Cayman Brac has very good diving. It has shore diving. The infrastructure is not great. It was a big deal when they got a pizza joint on the island. But they have far more than Little Cayman.

    You could also look at the Turks and Caicos. I would think Grand Turk or Provo. I don't think either one has shore diving though.

    You could also live on Cozumel. Condos can be had there and the diving is well known in quality and it has a decent infrastructure.
     
  2. oldschoolto

    oldschoolto Regular of the Pub

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: maine
    2,493
    1,795
    113
    I think for me, Shore diving is a must... First off the cost of diving goes up when you add the boat and your diving on some else schedule...

    Jim...
     
  3. drrich2

    drrich2 Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Southwestern Kentucky
    7,728
    4,805
    113
    More Cowbells just posted a trip report on Overall Impressions First Trip to St. Croix.

    If shore diving is a big deal, and you're thinking Caribbean region, you've got a short list. Here're some options to consider:

    1.) Make a list - such as island size (area), winter water temp.s (fine for Curacao & Bonaire; more an issue with northern islands, if you don't like wearing a wetsuit), and check round trip airfare from to/from wherever in the U.S. you'll usually fly. That's going to impact others' willingness to visit often; are there 'grand kid issues' to think about?

    2.) Take an extended vacation, aiming for a 'back to back' few days on some islands. For example, St. Croix's topography and vegetation are much different from Bonaire. The swim out is longer. The sandy beaches of Curacao offer a much different shore view from much of Bonaire.

    3.) Pick a small home, inland so it's cheaper, with a modest yard, and price it on each. Get a sense of cost to build.

    4.) How important is it that there be fine medical care on the island? If you're hitting retirement age, that's going to become progressively more important over time.

    5.) Make a list of what you like to do, not just everyday, but once in awhile. Do you 'need' brand name department stores (e.g.: Sears), a shopping mall, etc...? Have you come to grips with being unable to get Amazon Prime merchandise shipped to you in 2 business days?

    6.) Do you have a climate preference? Bonaire is arid, brightly sunny with some clouds, pretty steady trade winds, not much rain most of the year. Sounds nice, but all the time? Does summer all year appeal to you? I don't anticipate snowball fights anywhere in the Caribbean, but would you like it to cool off?

    Richard.
     
    scuba5150 likes this.
  4. Murky Waters

    Murky Waters Manta Ray

    905
    517
    93
    Grand Cayman
     
  5. JamesBon92007

    JamesBon92007 Loggerhead Turtle

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: Southern California...too far from the ocean
    2,987
    1,168
    113
    Another thing that just occurred to me tonight is cuisine. While making tostadas tonight I realized that I have to live someplace that has Mexican food :D I'm going to Hawai'i next month so I'll have to check out what's available on the Big Island. I wasn't thinking about it when I went to Maui. In any case they have lots of avocados so I should be good. :)
     
    Lorenzoid likes this.
  6. StefinSB

    StefinSB Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Santa Barbara, CA
    661
    398
    63
    I assume when you say SoCal you refer to LA/OC. I live in Santa Barbara and have several beach diving spots within 5-20min drive that are free. CA is big and differs quite a bit regionally.
     
  7. TMHeimer

    TMHeimer Divemaster

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Dartmouth,NS,Canada(Eastern Passage-Atlantic)
    11,961
    2,518
    113
    I'm going to reply ideally. Assuming good health, retire in the Canadian High Arctic. Experience clean air, ice flows, great fishing and being in a unique place 99% of the world can only dream of visiting. BUT, own a house/condo in a tropical place, preferably Oceania, the birthplace of molluscs. With free reign on scuba--collecting of any shells you wanted for your home collection in say, Grise Fiord (google it), NU -- anyone know what NU stands for?
     
  8. scubadada

    scubadada Diver Staff Member ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Philadelphia and Boynton Beach
    10,378
    5,759
    113
    This is an interesting thread. As a 62 year old, nearly ready to return to the US from Switzerland for retirement, I've looked into many of the possibilities mentioned above over the last 15 years or so. We visited Grand Cayman, Little Cayman, Bonaire, Curacao, Providenciales T&C, Puerto Rico, Cozumel, Costa Rica, Panama, Maui, Kauai, and Oahu. At least casually, we looked into the possibility of investing and perhaps even retiring in each of these locations. We even bought an inexpensive time share on Grand Cayman in 1997, nice place called Indies Suites. Cayman turned out to be not quite as civilized as we thought and we lost the time share after Ivan in 2004, underinsured, government supported the owner over those who had invested. We got more than our money's worth, others did not fare as well. We've been back to Grand Cayman, fond of the East End.

    During that same period, we explored SE Florida and the northern Keys. To make a long story short, we ended up buying a nice townhouse just north of Boynton Beach a little over 4 years ago, at the nadir of the housing market. So, I'm 3 miles from Boynton Harbor Marina, 15 miles from the Blue Heron Bridge and West Palm, 30 miles from Jupiter, and within striking distance of Key Largo when I really want to dive the Spiegel Grove, the Duane, and the Bibb. Future medical care and all the conveniences of being in the US certainly played a role in the decision. And....I can still go on vacation for more variety, next up, 2 weeks of liveaboard on the Red Sea
     
    scuba5150 likes this.
  9. JamesBon92007

    JamesBon92007 Loggerhead Turtle

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: Southern California...too far from the ocean
    2,987
    1,168
    113
    And it keeps getting more interesting :)

    Would you be so kind as to tell us some of the things that influenced your decision to not move to any of the fabulous-sounding places that you investigated?
     
  10. scubadada

    scubadada Diver Staff Member ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Philadelphia and Boynton Beach
    10,378
    5,759
    113
    Thanks, interesting place, northern most community in Canada, Grise Fiord, Nunavut (previously Northwest Territories). 24 hours of sun and gets up all the way to 5 degrees C April to August. Does have quite a Winter with temps to -50 degrees C and frozen seas 10 months the year. Looks absolutely gorgeous for a summer visit
     

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