The Top Counties in the Midwest for Retirement

The PolicyZip Data Team continued its search for the best places in America for the retirement, shifting towards the last remaining region: the Midwest. The counties out here may not boast the great weather that some on the West Coast, East Coast, and even South do, but there are plenty of other things to make up for it.

Between beautiful scenery, a variety of recreational activities, modest cost of living, and far more, there are quite a few counties for retirees to consider in the Midwest.

Check out the list below and see if your county made into the top retirement destinations in the Midwest for 2016.

Cook County, MN

Cook County is a relatively smaller county in the state of Minnesota, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t a great place to retire. Due to the milder weather and plethora of recreational activities, this county draws plenty of retirees each year.


flickr benstephenson

Cherokee County, OK

This county, housing nearly 50,000 residents also happens to be the capital of the Cherokee Nation. Established in 1907, Cherokee County has been attracting retirees for the history as well as the opportunity to stay active.


flickr clairity

Lake County, IL

Lake County, located in the northeastern corner of Illinois is home to plenty of residents (over 700,000). Lakefront communities like Lake Forest, Lake Bluff, and Highland Park might be a little pricier than other counties in the Midwest, but for those that can afford it, it’s a great place to retire.


flickr roadgeek

Perry County, MO

Perry County’s history dates back to 1820, when it was named after naval hero Oliver Hazard Perry. Great weather and efficient health care makes this a hot spot for seniors.


flickr agathman

Fall River County, SD

Fall River County may be home to just over 7,000 residents, but plenty of them are retirees, making this a more desirable small-town community. Beautiful scenery makes this a peaceful home for those looking to relax in their retirement.


flickr kishka_king

Benton County, MO

This county, located in the central part of Missouri, is a great destination for retirees. With weather that is much more tolerable than other parts of the Midwest, and great health outcomes, those looking to retire can call Benton County home.


flickr mobikefed

Monroe County, IL

Monroe county, adjacent to St. Louis county, is great if you want to have access to a larger city while maintaining your peace. It’s largest city, Waterloo, is home to nearly 10,000 residents, many of whom are themselves retirees.


flickr roadgeek

Wayne County, MO

This county, placed in the Ozark foothills of Missouri, is a great spot for prospective retirees. Plenty of recreational activities help residents stay active and entertained, and there is plenty to see such as Mark Twain National Forest and Mingo National Wildlife Refuge.


flickr usfwsmidwest

Putnam County, IL

Putnam County, totaling just 172 square miles, is the smallest county in Illinois by area. A relatively lower cost of living coupled with modest health care make this a great options for many looking to retire.


flickr davidwilson1949

Johnson County, IN

Johnson County is a desirable location for many reasons. It makes our list because of the activities it provides for its residents as well as the solid healthcare that retirees have access to.


flickr mcmullen_greg

Logan County, KS

This county may not be home to many residents (under 3,000 according to the 2010 census), but it provides a great home for those looking to retire. Cost of living is a little more manageable here than others on our list and eleven townships give residents options.


flickr cheezepix

Jefferson County, WI

Jefferson County, covering a total of 583 square miles, maintains more residents than many others on our list, totaling over 80,000. Events hosted at the fairgrounds can keep retirees entertained, and access to local airports will allow you to travel to see friends and family.


flickr wackybadger

Huntington County, IN

This county, housing only one city, remains a desired destination for those who retire. Those visiting and residents alike enjoy places like the Huntington County Historical Museum, the Merillat Centre for Arts, and the Sunken Gardens.


flickr laffy4k

Grand Traverse County, MI

This county, growing in population and popularity was clearly deserving of a spot on our list. Great health care options and outcomes on top of a variety of recreational activities make it a clear winner for plenty of retirees.


flickr brostad

Scott County, MN

Scott county is one of the most populous on our list. Home to over 125,000 residents, many of whom are seniors, it seems to be growing in popularity as a retirement destination.


flickr loimere

Stevens County, MN

Stevens county is a clear winner when it comes to healthcare. Ranking near the top of the state in both quality of care and health outcomes, it should be a great choice for those looking to live a long, healthy life.


flickr kjell

Clay County, MO

Clay county, the fifth most populous county in the state of Missouri, dates back to 1822 when it was named after U.S. Representative Henry Clay, later a member of the United States Secretary of State. Being such a large city, it gives residents solid access to healthcare which can be a big draw for some retirees.


flickr davidnzell

Pierce County, NE

Pierce county is a great place for many retirees to land. It’s clearly growing as a retirement destination as nearly 40% of the population is over the age of 45, and 20% older than 65.


flickr National Agroforestry Center

Dubois County, IN

This county, originally 3 separate counties (Orange, Pike, and Perry), was formed back in 1818, and has grown as a retirement destination since. A combination of recreational activities, great health care, and decent weather helped this county find a spot on our list.


flickr golf_pictures

Sarpy County, NE

Sarpy County is the third most populous in Nebraska, and was initially explored by Lewis and Clark. Encompassing 248 square miles, this county houses plenty of recreational activities for all residents, including retirees.


flickr midnightcomm

Cass County, ND

Cass county, famously home to Fargo, North Dakota, is quite a nice destination for those looking to retire. A more modest cost of living than many other counties coupled with good health outcomes makes this a great home for many.


flickr fargomoorheadcvb

Delaware, OH

This county, named after the Delaware Indian tribe is a great choice for retirees looking to maintain their health. Solid healthcare, as well as the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium make this a popular spot.


flickr tekkbabe

Washington County, MN

Washington County was actually one of the original nine counties that were created when Minnesota was officially organized. Since then, it has grown into a great spot for retirees in the Midwest.


flickr greggjerdingen

Charlevoix, MI

Charlevoix County has a rich history, making it a good find for those looking to learn about their new retirement destination. On top of that, good healthcare ensures that residents can enjoy a long life following their years of hard work.


flickr petercircophotography