The Algarve in Portugal has been awarded once again as the best place to retire. For 4 years in a row it has been chosen thanks to its location, expat community, safety and health care options.
“You couldn’t find a more friendly, affordable and physically beautiful location than Portugal’s Algarve region,” said Kathleen Peddicord, founder of Live and Invest Overseas.
The researchers of Live & Invest Overseas say the Algarve has “got everything the would-be retiree could want – great weather and lots of sunshine year-round; an established and welcoming expat community; top-notch medical facilities and health care; an affordable cost of living, especially when you consider the quality of life on offer; undervalued and bargain-priced property buys, including right on the ocean; endless opportunities for fun, adventure, and enjoying rich, full, varied days out-of-doors; a great deal of English spoken thanks to the longstanding British presence; First World infrastructure; a new retiree residency program that rolls out the welcome mat for foreign pensioners; and easy access both from the United States and to and from all of Europe”.
And for overseas investors, the strength of the Euro is an added advantage.
“Portugal’s property market remains nicely undervalued, and, again, if you’re shopping with dollars, you’ve got super-charged buying power right now”, the study stresses.
“From cost of treatment to ease of access, health care is an ever-growing concern for retirees. In this category, the Algarve, Portugal shines.”
The research report stated that public health care is available for registered foreign residents. Health care in the Algarve region is good, despite the ongoing challenges to find staff. Portugal’s health care ranks 12th in the world. Public hospitals are well equipped for emergencies. Two large private hospital providers own and operate hospitals across the region, with the closest being the Hospital Particular in Alvor. Faro Hospital, its cardiology unit in particular, has earned a reputation for excellence.
The Algarve region is also home to some of the best golf courses in Europe. “You’ll find more than three-dozen 9-hole or 18-hole layouts at 35 clubs around the region. 85 of the region’s breathtaking beaches were awarded Blue Flags this year. Among the golfing, the beaches, and the excellent mountain-bike trails, you’ll be pulling more than a 40-hour week in the sunshine (and the Algarve boasts more than 300 days of it per year),” researchers said.
In the category of crime and safety, the Algarve is also once again at the top of the list. Portugal is known as the fifth most peaceful country in the world and statistics show that crime in the already-safe Algarve is falling steadily.
Live & Invest Overseas’ rankings take 13 factors into account. They are cost of living, safety, whether English is spoken, the availability of entertainment, environmental conditions, the nature of the expatriate community, health care, infrastructure, recreation, residency options, and taxes. It also looks at real estate affordability and restrictions.