Picking a foreign destination for retirement involves a bunch of trade-offs that are very personal. Other than the biggie — health care and costs — you also want to consider ease of everyday living, travel restrictions, scenery, food, culture, amenities, the weather and the law. Then there’s also this one: will you like your new environment full time? Here are 10 great cities to retire to in Africa.
1. Ibadan, Nigeria
Ibadan isn’t far from Lagos, so if you want the conveniences of a big city, you can get their secure units throughout the city and the city’s reputation has expanded from a place with ancient roots to one with gorgeous hotels and upscale restaurants. Cost of living is quite affordable, too.
2. Grahamstown, South Africa
If you plan on finally devoting your attention to the arts and literature during retirement, Grahamstown is perfect. The city is the home of the famous Rhodes University and hosts the National Arts Festival each year, so it is a hub for cultural activity and famous art and literature speakers. You can enjoy a meal at a nice restaurant for around $25 and rent a three-bedroom apartment in the city center for less than $700 per month.
3. Tunis, Tunisia
One of the most important facts about Tunis for retirees is the life expectancy: 74.6 years. If you’ve been blessed with Western medicine and a healthy lifestyle, your life expectancy could be even higher. Nation.co.ke ranked Tunis on the Happy Index as the second happiest place to live in Africa. The city also has a very manageable railway system.
4. Kumasi, Ghana
Kumasi is in the middle of lovely green hills, so it has a feel of country living while still being a bustling place. Kumasi has fun educational offerings such as dancing and drumming classes, and fascinating historical sites such as the National Cultural Center, which has inside an enormous library. Kumasi is drivable to airports in Accra and Tamale, so retirees can easily receive visitors. A quick peek at a real estate site will show you that you can buy a multi-bedroom house for between $300,000 and $700,000 in the city.
5. Algiers, Algeria
The port city is easily accessed from Europe or the Middle East, so retirees here can welcome guests easily. France colonized Algiers for a while in the 1800s and the French influence is still felt in the shopping, wide boulevards and food, earning the city the name “The Paris of Africa.” Algiers is, however, a Mediterranean city so there is a breezy feeling to the cafes and beaches.
6. Libreville, Gabon
Libreville is a modern city near the Atlantic Ocean so it’s great for those looking for beach living. Libreville is one of the largest cities in Gabon, so you can find modern conveniences. The downtown area has luxury apartments with satellite TV and air conditioning. Libreville is home to one of Gabon’s major universities, so it is a hub for cultural and educational events.