Downtown street in Newark, Delaware. Image credit pasa47, CC BY 2.0 <>, via Wikimedia Commons

8 Top-Ranked Towns in Delaware for Retirees

Despite being one of the smallest states in America, Delaware boasts a wealth of character and opportunities, especially for retirees seeking a laidback destination to sail into their sunset years. From its picturesque locations on the East Coast and scenic natural landscapes to tax friendly policies and culture-rich communities, there is a lot pensioners will find appealing about the First State. Add to this mild weather without extreme temperatures, and you have the perfect retirement destination.

Whether looking to settle along the coast or further inland, Delaware houses an array of charming communities to accommodate fresh retirees. Boasting a slowed-down lifestyle, low cost of living, strong community ties, and plenty of outdoor opportunities, they promise a high quality of life. So, if you recently called time on your career, these are the top-ranked towns in Delaware for retirement.


The Circle, in Georgetown, Delaware houses the Town Hall, the Sussex County Courthouse, and other historic buildings.
The Circle, in Georgetown, Delaware houses the Town Hall, and the Sussex County Courthouse. Image credit duckeesue via Shutterstock

This tiny community in Sussex County features a modest population of about 7,500. Besides its idyllic small-town vibe, Georgetown balances indoor and outdoor pursuits to ensure retirees remain stimulated, physically and mentally. Several interesting museums help to share the town’s heritage and keep residents busy during their time indoors, with the Delaware Aviation Museum being among the most prominent. If you are not admiring antique aircraft, you can explore restored buildings and old carriages at the Marvel Carriage Museum.

Georgetown offers easy access to the beach and other nature spaces where pensioners can stretch out and breathe fresh air. There are over 12,000 acres of wilderness inside Redden State Forest, allowing you to get lost in the vast outdoors by hiking, climbing, biking, or horseback riding. The town’s median housing price is $475,000, but seniors can also take advantage of options at the Harrison House of Georgetown, which also offers vital assisted living support.


The Robinson House is the original settlement on Naaman's Creek.
The Robinson House is the original settlement on Naaman's Creek in Claymont, Delaware. Image credit Rosemarie Mosteller via Shutterstock

Claymont’s tiny population gives it the small-town feel many retirees look for, but its proximity to big cities like Baltimore, Pennsylvania, and Wilmington guarantees that you are not too far from all the urban comforts. Outdoorsy residents can commune with nature at Woods Haven Kruse Park, which houses a relatively easy 0.6-mile trail, ideal for stretching out. Pensioners who embrace body and mind wellness can pass by Dhamma Pubbananda Vipassana Meditation Center to try ancient meditation techniques from India.

Those looking for social opportunities are welcome at the Lions Club of Claymont to partake in various community programs. Homes are also relatively affordable in Claymont, with a median home listing price of $328,500. The town also houses several reliable medical centers to address any health issues promptly, including Henrietta Johnson.


La Grange House, Glasgow, Delaware
La Grange House, Glasgow, Delaware. Acroterion, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Glasgow is home to about 15,000 residents, resulting in harmonious living. Stepping outside, opportunities to stay active abound at the Glasgow Regional Park, home to paved and unpaved trails amidst wooded surroundings. Every Friday, the site hosts the local farmers market, presenting the chance to interact and mingle with community members. Bikers, skaters, and walkers will gravitate towards the 2.6-mile Glasgow Park Trail for an easy exercise session.

Downtown Glasgow is ideal for exploration when the grandkids visit, thanks to multiple kid-friendly venues like Regal People Plaza, a great place to catch the latest movies. The proximity to bigger towns like Newark allows access to quality facilities. Meanwhile, the home median housing cost is $434,000.


Delaware Park and race track, Newark, Delaware.
Delaware Park and race track, Newark, Delaware. Image credit Felix Mizioznikov via Shutterstock

For a small community with less than 40,000 residents, Newark punches above its weight class with an exciting mix of facilities favoring senior citizens. The town hosts the University of Delaware, ensuring that retirees who dream of returning to school can access quality college education locally. There is no shortage of outdoor recreation, with White Clay Creek State Park popular for hikers, campers, bikers, anglers, and nature viewers. More outdoor fun is available at the Newark Reservoir, where residents head to revel in the serene atmosphere and wait for the stunning sunsets over the lake’s horizon.

The town also charms with a vibrant arts scene, with venues like Resident Ensemble Players treating the community to moving live performances. There is also an abundance of excellent retirement living communities, such as Somerford House and Place. For those looking to buy a home, the median home price is only $387,000.

Rehoboth Beach

People walking along the boardwalk in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware.
People walking along the boardwalk in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware.

If you plan to retire on the Atlantic Coast in a secluded community away from the city noise, Rehoboth Beach is among the most charming beach towns in Delaware you can choose. Dubbed “the Nation’s Summer Capital,” it stands out for its stunning coastal scenery, which is on full display along the Rehoboth Beach Boardwalk. The small community of about 1,000 maintains strong bonds with weekly gatherings at the Rehoboth Beach Farmers’ Market, which is also a great time for seniors to meet peers and strike a friendship. With so many tourists coming to town, the local dining scene has evolved to address all tastes by serving all types of flavors, including Italian at the trendy Lupo Italian Kitchen.

Medical emergencies in Rehoboth Beach are quickly attended to at renowned health centers like ChristianaCare Primary Care at Rehoboth, giving pensioners some peace of mind. With so many sought-after facilities available and the overall popularity of Rehoboth Beach, it is easy to see why homes cost around $900,000.


The beautiful autumn scenery at Valley Garden Park, Greenville, Delaware.
Valley Garden Park, Greenville, Delaware.

A median age of above 40 shows just how much of a haven this delightful Wilmington suburb is to retirees. Greenville offers a suburban feel with serene green surroundings ideal for laid-back living. At Valley Garden Park, pensioners take advantage of isolated trails through forested areas to unwind and meditate. The park turns into a mini wonderland during springtime, when wildflowers start to bloom, exploding with beautiful colors.

When not reveling in nature’s bountiful delightfulness, senior citizens can enjoy a retail therapy session at the popular Powder Mill Square, home to all types of merchandise. Alternatively, admire an impressive assortment of fine art sculptures and other exhibits at Somerville Manning Gallery, featuring artists from the 20th and 21st centuries. The only downside to Greenville is that pensioners need a huge investment to own a home here, as houses generally cost around $1.5M.


Mt. Cuba Center, Hockessin, Delaware.
Mt. Cuba Center, Hockessin, Delaware.

Hockessin is a laidback suburb on the outskirts of Wilmington, inhabited by a tiny community of about 14,000. Despite a small-town feel, it presents great access to big-city amenities, being part of the Philadelphia metropolitan area. It impresses with a couple of world-class attractions, noteworthy among them being the Ashland Nature Center of Delaware Nature Society. It spans 130 acres of beautiful woodlands, marshes, and meadows. Nature enthusiasts also love to hang out at Mt. Cuba Center, a sanctuary for local fauna, featuring different wildflowers from the mid-Atlantic region.

There are numerous opportunities for pensioners who believe in looking after their bodies and staying in top shape at venues like Anytime Fitness and Hockessin Indoor Tennis. With Wilmington Airport about 20 minutes from town, seniors have an easy time getting to major cities around, and the average home value is $599,000.

New Castle

Booth House Tavern, New Castle, Delaware
Booth House Tavern, New Castle, Delaware.

New Castle’s rich legacy dates back to the 1600s, when Dutch settlers decided to make it a home. The town also served as the colonial capitol and state capitol of Delaware at different points in time. This heritage comes to life through the string of historic structures dotting the downtown corridor, including the New Castle Court House Museum and the Read House & Gardens. History aside, New Castle has an impressive arts scene, allowing retirees to enjoy world-class art at the Mo’zArt Gallery.

For outdoor adventures, New Castle Battery Park is home to a quiet trail running along the scenic Delaware River, ideal for biking, hiking, and walking. Finally, the median home price is almost the same as Delaware’s average at $375,000.

Delaware offers senior citizens an excellent variety of welcoming towns with all the hallmarks of a retiree community. From coastal beach retreats with cozy, sunny weather to historic river communities in the midst of lush nature, each highlighted location delivers a relaxed pace of life alongside engaging amenities and vital services for seniors. Overall, the combination of affordable cost of living, recreational activities, cultural offerings, and thriving senior communities make them some of the best towns in Delaware for pensioners to establish a permanent home.

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