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Tampa Bay is one of the top 10 places to retire, U.S. News report says

The metropolitan area is among the top spots in the nation for retirement.
Aerial photo of downtown St. Petersburg with downtown Tampa in the background pictured on Tuesday, Oct. 12, 2021 in St. Petersburg.
Aerial photo of downtown St. Petersburg with downtown Tampa in the background pictured on Tuesday, Oct. 12, 2021 in St. Petersburg. [ LUIS SANTANA | Times ]
Published Oct. 19
Updated Oct. 20

The Tampa Bay metropolitan area is one of the best places to celebrate life after retirement, according to new U.S. News and World Report rankings.

Tampa Bay ranks among the top 10 places to retire in this year’s ratings, landing as the sixth overall best place to retire in the nation. Sarasota landed at No. 1.

Though the city of Tampa tweeted about the report, which merely lists “Tampa, FL” as a favored retirement destination, the U.S. News ranking appears to include the rest of the area as well.

It mentions attractions in St. Petersburg like the Salvador Dalí Museum, and praises Clearwater’s pristine beaches and its most famous dolphin. Tampa itself is celebrated for its social scene and strong Hispanic community.

“Living in the Tampa Bay area is like being on vacation all year,” author Ginger Warder writes.

To assess how well a metropolitan area will meet United States residents’ retirement needs, U.S. News uses criteria such as housing affordability, happiness of locals, tax rates and health care quality.

The Tampa Bay area offers a “laid-back beach lifestyle,” it found, while still offering the amenities that can be found within a diverse metropolitan area. The array of professional — and competitive — sports teams doesn’t hurt either.

The cost of living in Tampa Bay ranks slightly less than the national average, a U.S. News data analysis found.

Tampa Bay is in good company — eight of the top 10 metro areas for retirement are within Florida.