The gorgeous and rustic mountains in Utah, along with the state's access to the Great Salt Lake and other western state beaches, spurs many seniors to move to one of the Beehive State's many impressive cities. Utah boasts many fantastic healthcare facilities, and most cities have a mix of outdoor activities and indoor attractions to please just about every personality.
Read on for our top 10 best places to retire in Utah.
1. Park City
Just east of Salt Lake City, Park City is gaining interest with the senior population for its many terrific healthcare options, lots of fun and varying recreation centers, a thriving arts and cultural community and many scenic outdoor areas to explore like Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest and Wasatch Mountain State Park among others.
The Sundance Film Festival is held here in Park City, and this is a leading ski region. Once a humble mining town, there is one main route with a convenient bus and shuttle service that allows residents to get anywhere in town, to the ski slopes and even into Salt Lake City without needing to own a car.
That said, the housing costs and tax rates are higher here, but there are some affordable condos and other retirement housing options.
- Deer Valley Resort – ski resort
- Stroll historic homes and businesses along the Park City Main Street Historic District
- Utah Olympic Park – some 2002 Winter Olympic events were held here
- Ride the thrilling Alpine Coaster
- Tour the Park City Museum – learn about The Great Fire of 1898 and more
- Swaner Preserve and EcoCenter
- The Egyptian Theatre – historic theater built between 1922 and 1926
- Park Silly Sunday Market – open-air market and street festival
- Woodward Park City – action sports center
Home to Hill Air Force Base, Ogden attracts many military personnel and retirees who are looking for something a bit off the beaten path as a retirement home.
Once a thriving railroad town, Ogden is getting new life and a different reputation with the influx of young lovers and those that enjoy Indie and modern art along with fun community festivals. A visit to the Nine Rails Creative District is a must-do to view local art galleries and exhibits.
- George S. Eccles Dinosaur Park – children's amusement park
- Tour the Utah State Railroad Museum
- View 100 plus aircraft at The Hill Aerospace Museum
- Take a stroll down Historic 25th Street – shops, art, dining and interesting landmarks
- Waterfall Canyon Trail – hiking amidst splendid scenery
- See the Union Station – landmark for over 50 years
- John M. Browning Firearms Museum
- Beus Pond Park – walking trail and ducks
- View the beautiful Ogden Botanical Gardens
- Visit the Cold Springs Trout Farm and Head to Ogden Nature Center
- Fort Buenaventura – original Native American and western tanning and fur trading center
- Eccles Community Arts Centre
Located in Cache County, Utah, Logan still manages to feel more like a friendly suburban town even though the population is over 50,000 souls. This is because the city area is more spread out than similar population sized cities within the state. Residents here enjoy the music festival put on by Beaver Mountain, and the area is also home to a popular art festival as well.
There are many outdoor adventures to try in the nearby mountains that offer skiing, hiking and rock climbing. Perfectly hidden between two majestic and stunning mountains, Logan is renowned for its art community and other cultural events and venues that include museums, live theater performances, fine restaurants and fantastic shopping areas.
Bear Lake offers nearby boating, fishing and other water adventures. This city is a divine retirement destination with many recreational centers, top healthcare facilities and a variety of retirement communities.
- Logan River Trail – nature trails for biking and hiking
- Logan Aquatic Center – water park
- Home to Utah State University
- Visit the Museum of Anthropology
- Nora Eccles Harrison Museum of Art
- Beaver Mountain Ski Area
- See animals at Zootah at Willow Park
- Casper's Malt Shoppe
- Cinefour Theaters
- Lyric Repertory Theatre
Farmington is another pretty suburb of Salt Lake City, and many seniors make this their idyllic retirement home. Affordable housing often includes stunning window views over the Bay of the Great Salt Lake with the majestic Thurston Peak overseeing this enchanting Utah city.
Residents of Farmington also have spectacular views of the Wasatch Mountains that also offer outdoor recreation year-round. There are lots of charming shops and delectable dining venues along with a thriving artist community. A potential downside is the higher cost of living and taxes here, but most residents feel the amenities are worth it.
- Shop or dine at Station Park
- Take an art class and paint your own ceramic artwork at Hands On Art 4 Everyone
- Lagoon Amusement Park – popular amusement park with rides and more
- Legacy Parkway Trail
- Farmington Bay Waterfowl Management Area – see local water birds
- S & S Shortline Railroad Park & Museum
- Plan a day at Farmington Lake – picnic, hiking trails and nature scenery
The desert town of Hurricane is considered a suburb of St. George with its warm desert climate and stunning terrain. The city is near to Zion National Park on Interstate 15 and boasts an active senior population, a slow, laid-back pace of life and affordable housing.
This is home to Quail Creek State Park and the Red Cliffs Recreational Area with outdoor adventures galore.
The sunny weather and surrounding beauty of many nature parks gives residents plenty of outdoor recreation to pursue, and the lovely town itself features many amenities like shopping and dining venues, theater and several museums. The lowered tax rate and cost of living expenses draws many retirees, and St. George is just a short distance away.
- Catch a live show at Rattlin' D Playhouse
- Browse local historic items at Pioneer Corner Museum
- Visit Quail Creek State Park for outdoor activities
- See the Pah Tempe Hot Springs – once used by Native Americans
- View stunning artwork from 1907 at the Hurricane Valley Pioneer Heritage Park
- Go hiking, kayaking, swimming or canoeing at Sand Hollow State Park
- Shop for vintage treasures at Mercantile Antiques and Consignment
- Glimpse spectacular views of the red limestone cliffs at the Hurricane Cliffs Trail System
The charming rural-like suburb of Providence, Utah is situated in the north end of the state just under 30 minutes from the Idaho border. As an added convenience, Providence is close to Logan and all its urban amenities. The town has a sizeable population of retirees who tend to enjoy a more active lifestyle but prefer a slower home life than larger cities offer.
There are several terrific medical care centers within driving distance and outdoor recreation to take part in at the nearby Bear River Migratory Bird Rescue and the Millville Face Wildlife Management Area. There are several grocery stores, various small local shops and food venues. The neighborhoods here are often described as eclectic.
- Improve your game at Willows Golf Park
- Utah State University – located about 5 miles away
- Bear River Migratory Bird Rescue – see water birds in native habitat
- Millville Face Wildlife Management Area – spot and learn about local wildlife
The pretty city of Bountiful is located in Davis County, Utah, and the city is situated about 40 miles to the north of Salt Lake City.
The area has a sparse, suburban atmosphere, and there are lots of green parks, a large recreation center, with ice-skating and an impressive swimming pool, stunning views, a sizeable retirement population and a small-town neighborly vibe in the close-knit neighborhoods here.
Bountiful was the state's second settlement, and the name comes from The Book of Mormon. The Bountiful Utah Temple is striking, because it sits on a hilltop as you enter the city and features stunning architecture.
- Visit Bountiful Davis Art Center – browse art galleries and attend art events
- Hike or picnic at Creekside Park
- See spectacular sunsets along the Mueller Park Trailhead – nature trail for hiking
- South Davis Recreation Center – features large pool, ice-skating rink and sports areas
- Play a round of golf at the Bountiful Golf Club
- Find fresh local produce at Bountiful Farmers Market
- Hike the rugged trails at Holbrook Canyon
- View the Tolman Memorial Park
- Learn about local history at Bountiful History Museum
The small city of Magna is in Salt Lake County, Utah. This town allows its residents convenient access to the Great Salt Lake Marina and the wonders and water adventure opportunities of the lake itself. Magna is also close to the scenic Nevada Valley complete with nature trails for hiking and spotting regional wildlife.
Magna is close enough to Salt Lake City so that residents can get a taste of the urban amenities any time they want. Many seniors retire here, and most enjoy fishing and boating on The Great Salt Lake.
Cost of living expenses and housing costs are lower than in many other areas of Utah, and being so close to Salt Lake City means that phenomenal healthcare facilities are also nearby when needed.
- See a live music concert at Saltair
- Great Salt Lake State Park
- The Great Saltair – beautiful landmark
- Take stunning pictures at Great Salt Lake Beach at the Saltair Pavillion
- Loveland Living Planet Aquarium – aquarium in nearby Draper
- Take a frightful Grimm Ghost Tour – in Salt Lake City
9. Salt Lake City
Although most out-of-towners consider Salt Lake City, Utah's capital city, to be a primarily Mormon town, this second largest city of Utah is surprisingly welcoming to many different religions. This city is a true gem that still manages to be friendly and offers many outdoor related activities from just about any point within the city limits.
Salt Lake City boasts a growing retirement community, and the healthcare systems based here are among the best in the state and even the country. Cost of living expenses and affordable retirement housing draw many seniors here each year.
Of course, the big city amenities, like fine restaurants, theaters, a large art community, upscale shopping and other attractions, are just icing on the cake.
- View the Temple Square up close – stunning architecture
- Tour the Natural History Museum of Utah
- Hear the harmonious sounds of The Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square
- Enjoy the Great Salt Lake – iconic water spot for boating, fishing, swimming and more
- Take time to visit The Hogle Zoo
- Visit The Utah Museum of Fine Arts
- See the Utah State Capital
- Hike up to Ensign Peak – spectacular views from on high
- Stroll the Marmalade Hill Historic District
- Liberty Park – famed city park
- Pioneer Memorial Museum
Situated in the southwestern corner of Utah, near to the Arizona border, Ivins is a growing retirement destination of late. In fact, the retirement population here is one of the largest in the state. However, this city has the lowest number of healthcare facilities per similar population cities in the state.
Ivins also boasts a lowered tax rate and cost of living, but this is still higher than other states for comparison. This city is home to the Coyote Gulch Art Village, that contains art galleries and other art venues, and this makes Ivins popular with art lovers of all types.
- Relax and unwind at the Sagestone Spa at Red Mountain – spa and resort setting
- View the intriguing Ivins Petroglyphs
- See live shows at the Tuacahn Amphitheatre – outdoor amphitheater
- Tour the Jacob Hamblin Home – restored early Mormon Church historic site
- Ride horses at Snow Canyon Trail Rides in nearby St. George
- Tour the Brigham Young Winter Home Historical Site – in St. George
FAQs about retiring in Utah
1. What are the leading reasons to retire in Utah today?
The top reasons that people retire in Utah includes its fair cost of living rate, great healthcare access and options, scenic views, friendly cities and a thriving cultural community in almost every Utah town and city.
2. Are there any downsides to retirement in Utah to think about?
Utah is not the most tax-friendly state, often experiences extreme weather conditions and tends to favor more conservative views on politics and religion compared to some other states.
3. Why is Utah one of the fastest growing population states in recent years?
Utah is filled with people who believe family and community should be close and welcoming to others. Utah also has a stable and growing economy in most cities, and more retirees are moving away from traditional coastal retirement states in favor of those located inwards like Utah.