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Charlotte is the largest city in North Carolina brimming with urban attractions and Southern charm.

Many active adults dream of retiring to the Carolinas. Set along the East Coast, both North Carolina and South Carolina feature miles of beaches and barrier islands. Yet, these southern states also have plenty to offer when you move further inland, particularly when settling in the Fort Mill-Charlotte area.

Fort Mill, South Carolina, and Charlotte, North Carolina, may be located in different states, but they are also less than 20 miles apart. Both cities have warm climates which include four distinct seasons, as well as hot, humid summers and cold, but mild winters. Snowfall is rare and accumulation doesn't last long.

While Fort Mill and Charlotte are not set along the coast, popular destinations like Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, are only about three-and-a-half hours away by car. This makes it easy to plan a beach getaway without traveling too far from home. However, there are also plenty of attractions closer to home.

As the largest city in North Carolina, Charlotte offers a wide variety of urban attractions. Diverse museums include the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art, the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African American Arts and Culture, and the Charlotte Nature Museum. Concert halls and performing arts centers feature live entertainment including world-famous singers, bands, comedians and more. Highlights of the city's cultural scene include the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra, the Carolina Actors Studio Theatre and the North Carolina Dance Theater.

Sports fans can support home teams, like the Carolina Panthers (NFL) and the Charlotte Hornets (NBA), or take a tour of the NASCAR Hall of Fame. The city offers diverse shopping districts and restaurants, and is also home to the annual Carolina Renaissance Festival, which is one of the largest in the country.

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Sun City Carolina Lakes is a popular Del Webb 55+ community in picturesque Fort Mill, South Carolina.

While Fort Mill is much smaller than the bustling City of Charlotte, it offers its own unique attractions. Carowinds amusement park features roller coasters, thrill rides and the Boomerang Bay water park. In Downtown Fort Mill, visitors and locals will find charming local shops and restaurants featuring local fare.

Fort Mill is also a great place to enjoy the beauty of nature. The Anne Springs Close Greenway is a protected area where lakes, forests and pastures provide a lovely backdrop for activities like hiking or horseback riding. You can even buy fresh produce from local farms and orchards like Springs Farm or Miller Farms.

Active adults who choose to settle in this area can find fabulous communities closer to Charlotte's urban attractions or in a more tranquil setting near Fort Mill. These include resort-style developments, charming age-restricted neighborhoods and everything in between.

Whether you prefer the quaint charm of Fort Mill or the urban excitement of Charlotte, this area is a great place for a southern vacation or an active retirement.