Looking to retire without the hassle of owning a car?

Best USA Cities For Retirement Without Owning a Car

Say goodbye to the stress of traffic and parking, and say hello to a relaxing and fulfilling retirement in these car-free havens. Discover the top US cities where you can enjoy your golden years without the need for a car.

Do you need a car for retirement?

Do you really need a car for retirement? It’s a common question many retirees ask themselves. While owning a car offers convenience and flexibility, it’s not always a necessity.

With the availability of public transportation, walkable neighborhoods, and various transportation alternatives, retiring without a car is entirely feasible.

Also Read: Can You Live In Miami Without A Car?

Best 10 USA Cities For Retirement Without Owning a Car

Retirement is a time to relax and enjoy life, and for many retirees, that means leaving the hassle of car ownership behind. Fortunately, there are several cities across the United States that offer a retirement-friendly environment without the need for a car.

These cities prioritize public transportation, walkability, and senior-friendly amenities, making them ideal for retirees seeking a car-free lifestyle. Let’s explore the best 10 US cities for retirement without owning a car.

1. Portland, Oregon

Known for its excellent public transportation system, Portland offers retirees easy access to buses, light rail, and streetcars. The city’s walkable neighborhoods, beautiful parks, and vibrant cultural scene make it a retiree’s paradise.

How to Spend:

  • Explore the famous Powell’s City of Books.
  • Take a leisurely stroll through Washington Park and its stunning Japanese Garden.
  • Enjoy the local farmer’s markets and eclectic food scene.

How to Access Public Transport:

  • TriMet operates an extensive bus network and light rail lines throughout the city.
  • The Portland Streetcar connects key neighborhoods and attractions.

2. San Francisco, California

San Francisco is renowned for its iconic cable cars and efficient public transportation system. Retirees can easily navigate the city using buses, streetcars, and BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit), allowing them to explore the city’s rich cultural heritage and scenic beauty.

How to Spend:

  • Take a trip to Alcatraz Island and learn about its intriguing history.
  • Enjoy a leisurely walk along the Golden Gate Bridge.
  • Explore the vibrant neighborhoods of Chinatown and the Mission District.

How to Access Public Transport:

  • Muni buses and streetcars cover the city’s various neighborhoods.
  • BART connects San Francisco to the surrounding Bay Area.

3. Seattle, Washington

Seattle offers retirees a mix of natural beauty, cultural attractions, and an efficient public transportation system. The city’s buses, light rail, and ferries provide convenient access to explore its scenic landscapes, thriving arts scene, and diverse neighborhoods.

How to Spend:

  • Visit the iconic Space Needle and enjoy panoramic views of the city.
  • Explore the vibrant Pike Place Market and indulge in local culinary delights.
  • Take a ferry ride to the picturesque Bainbridge Island.

How to Access Public Transport:

  • King County Metro operates an extensive bus network throughout Seattle.
  • Sound Transit’s Link light rail connects the city to nearby areas.

4. New York City, New York

The Big Apple offers retirees a vibrant and bustling city life with an unparalleled public transportation system. The extensive subway network, buses, and iconic yellow taxis make it easy for retirees to navigate the city’s boroughs and explore its world-class attractions.

How to Spend:

  • Take in a Broadway show in the Theater District.
  • Visit renowned museums like the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Museum of Modern Art.
  • Enjoy a relaxing walk through Central Park.

How to Access Public Transport:

  • The New York City Subway is one of the most comprehensive public transit systems globally.
  • Buses cover routes throughout the city, providing additional transport options.

5. Chicago, Illinois

Chicago’s efficient public transportation system and pedestrian-friendly layout make it an attractive city for retirees. The city’s buses, “L” trains, and scenic waterfront provide easy access to cultural institutions, architectural marvels, and diverse neighborhoods.

How to Spend:

  • Explore the iconic Millennium Park and take a selfie at “The Bean.”
  • Enjoy a river cruise and marvel at the city’s impressive skyline.
  • Visit the Art Institute of Chicago and immerse yourself in world-class art.

How to Access Public Transport:

  • The “L” train system covers the city, connecting major neighborhoods and attractions.
  • The Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) operates an extensive bus network.

6. Boston, Massachusetts

Boston, with its rich history and compact layout, offers retirees a charming city experience with excellent public transportation. The city’s subway system, buses, and commuter rail make it easy to explore historical landmarks, cultural institutions, and vibrant neighborhoods.

How to Spend:

  • Walk the Freedom Trail and learn about the city’s revolutionary past.
  • Visit the prestigious Harvard University and explore its renowned museums.
  • Enjoy a scenic stroll along the Boston Harborwalk.

How to Access Public Transport:

  • The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) operates subway lines, buses, and commuter rail services.
  • The subway, known as the “T,” provides extensive coverage within Boston.

7. Denver, Colorado

With its stunning natural beauty and an expanding public transportation system, Denver offers retirees a perfect balance between urban living and outdoor adventures. Buses, light rail, and the A Line train provide access to the city’s cultural attractions, parks, and mountain getaways.

How to Spend:

  • Explore the Denver Art Museum and its impressive collection.
  • Enjoy a leisurely walk in the scenic Denver Botanic Gardens.
  • Take a day trip to the beautiful Rocky Mountain National Park.

How to Access Public Transport:

  • RTD (Regional Transportation District) operates an extensive bus network and light rail lines.
  • The A Line train connects downtown Denver to Denver International Airport.

8. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, steeped in history and culture, offers retirees a walkable city center and efficient public transportation. Buses, trolleys, and the subway system make it easy to explore the city’s historical landmarks, world-class museums, and diverse neighborhoods.

How to Spend:

  • Visit Independence Hall and see the Liberty Bell.
  • Explore the renowned Philadelphia Museum of Art.
  • Enjoy a leisurely stroll along Boathouse Row on the Schuylkill River.

How to Access Public Transport:

  • SEPTA (Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority) operates buses, trolleys, and subway lines throughout the city.
  • The Market-Frankford Line and Broad Street Line provide convenient subway access.

9. Portland, Maine

Portland, Maine offers retirees a charming coastal city experience with a walkable downtown and reliable public transportation options. Buses and ferries connect retirees to the city’s waterfront, picturesque lighthouses, and renowned seafood restaurants.

How to Spend:

  • Explore the historic Old Port district with its charming shops and eateries.
  • Take a scenic ferry ride to the Casco Bay Islands.
  • Visit the Portland Museum of Art and discover its impressive collection.

How to Access Public Transport:

  • Greater Portland Metro operates bus services within the city.
  • Casco Bay Lines provide ferry services to the surrounding islands.

10. Honolulu, Hawaii

Honolulu, the capital of Hawaii, offers retirees a tropical paradise with an efficient public transportation system. The city’s buses and trolleys provide access to stunning beaches, scenic hikes, and vibrant cultural sites.

How to Spend:

  • Relax on the world-famous Waikiki Beach and catch a stunning sunset.
  • Visit the USS Arizona Memorial at Pearl Harbor.
  • Explore the lush landscapes of Diamond Head State Monument.

How to Access Public Transport:

  • The Bus operates an extensive network of buses throughout Honolulu and the island of Oahu.
  • Waikiki Trolley provides a convenient hop-on-hop-off service for exploring key tourist areas.

My Final Thought

These 10 US cities offer retirees a car-free lifestyle with excellent public transportation, walkability, and a wealth of attractions to explore. So, pack your bags, hop on a bus or train, and embark on a retirement adventure in one of these fantastic cities where cars are optional, and the possibilities

Hey there, fellow wanderers and welcome to my website! I’m Paul, but my friends affectionately call me Pablo.

My adventures are all about exploring the world without wheels and leaving a positive impact on the places I visit or write about.

Hailing from a small town in the UK with big dreams, my heart beats for the thrill of discovering new horizons and immersing myself in diverse cultures. While others might be zooming by in cars, I’ve found my joy in exploring places on foot, breathing in the soul of each city, and capturing moments that transport you through time.

Allow me to give you a glimpse into some of the footprints I’ve left across the globe.