If small-town living appeals to you more than life in big cities like Phoenix or Tucson, there are several small towns in Arizona with communities for 55+ active adults. However, nowhere is too far from one of Arizona's two main cities, if you want occasional access to their facilities.
Here are seven small towns in Arizona with at least one active adult community. The town of Green Valley in Southern Arizona actually has 38 communities, which is why it's been called the 55+ capital of Southern Arizona. The list covers towns with populations under 25,000 down to places with just a few thousand people. These towns are listed in order of size, with the smallest first.
Cornville is a small Northern Arizona town of just over 3,000 people. It has the amenities of a small town, with some historic buildings and several wineries in the area. It's a 10-minute drive from the small city of Cottonwood, and the popular tourist town and former mining town of Jerome is a 25-minute drive away.
High $200s - Low $400s
Cornville has one active adult development: Dorado at Verde Santa Fe, which is part of the Verde Santa Fe master-planned community. Dorado is a gated neighborhood with 96 single-family homes for the 55+ active adult. Despite its size, it has attractive amenities including a clubhouse, a fitness center, a restaurant, a library, a billiards room, and an outdoor pool. It's also where the master-planned community's 18-hole golf course, Agave Highlands, is located.
There are six home models available within this community. The smallest offer 1,302 square feet, two bedrooms, two bathrooms, and a two-car garage. The largest homes offer 2,125 square feet, two to three bedrooms, two bathrooms, and a two-car garage.
Dewey is a small town in Northern Arizona with just over 4,000 people. It's a former gold-mining town and still has historic buildings as well as modern amenities like restaurants and shops. For banks, larger stores and entertainment options, the city of Prescott is a 30-minute drive away. This is also a former mining town that's now a busy tourist destination with a population of about 45,000.
High $200s - Low $800s
Dewey has two active adult communities. The larger of the two is the Prescott Country Club, which is a 5-minute drive north of the center of Dewey and a 30-minute drive from Prescott. There are 1,217 attached and single-family homes, and this is not an age-restricted community.
Residents can join the Prescott Golf Club for access to its amenities, including the 18-hole, par-72 course. There's also a pro shop, a fitness center, a restaurant, an outdoor pool, and courts for tennis and pickleball.
The smallest models are attached homes of 1,015 square feet with two bedrooms, two bathrooms, and a two-car garage. Models range all the way up to 5,634 square feet with five bedrooms, four bathrooms, and a two-car garage.
Below $100k - High $100s
The Villages at Lynx Creek is the smaller of the two Dewey communities, with 454 manufactured homes for the 55+ active adult. It's located opposite Prescott Country Club on the other side of Highway 69.
Amenities include a fitness center, a social hall, an activity room, a woodshop, a card room, and a billiards room. Outside, there's a pool and spa, horseshoe pits, tennis and pickleball courts, and RV parking. These manufactured homes range from 396 to 1,900 square feet with two to four bedrooms and two bathrooms but no garage.
Lying east of the Phoenix Metropolitan Area on the edge of the Superstition Mountains, Gold Canyon is a small Central Arizona town of about 10,000 people. The nearest city is Apache Junction, which has a population of about 42,000 and is a 10-minute drive away.
Low $200s - Mid $500s
Mountainbrook Village is a 5-minute drive from the center of Gold Canyon and has 1,659 attached and single-family homes for the 55+ active adult. Amenities include two 18-hole golf courses, a fitness center, a ballroom, a library, a cafe, and an arts and crafts studio. Outside, there are two pools, a spa, and courts for tennis, pickleball, bocce, and basketball.
This community has a wide range of models, the smallest being 1,332 square feet with two bedrooms, two bathrooms, and a two-car garage. There are many available configurations, with the largest homes offering 2,491 square feet. These have three bedrooms, a den, two-and-a-half bathrooms, and a two- or three-car garage.
Low $200s - High $300s
A 15-minute drive north of downtown Vail is Del Webb at Rancho Del Lago, a gated community of 522 single-family homes with a 50+ age restriction. Amenities include the 18-hole Del Lago Golf Club, a 14,000-square-foot clubhouse, a fitness center, a ballroom, a library, and an aerobics and dance studio. There are also two outdoor pools, an 18-hole putting green, and courts for tennis, pickleball, bocce, and racquetball.
There's a range of models starting at 1,212 square feet with two bedrooms, two bathrooms, and a two-car garage. The largest homes are 2,823 square feet with three bedrooms, a den, three bathrooms, and a two-car garage.
Eloy is a small Arizona town of almost 20,000 people in Central Arizona, midway between Phoenix (a one-hour drive) and Tucson (a 50-minute drive). It straddles Interstate-19, and it's a place for those who want to be surrounded by desert. Picacho Peak State Park is a 15-minute drive south.
Low $200s - High $400s
Eloy is home to Robson Ranch - Arizona, a gated community for the 40+ active adult with 4,600 attached and single-family homes. Amenities include an 18-hole golf course, a Creative Arts Center with various arts and crafts studios, a Sports Club with a fitness center, indoor and outdoor pools, tennis courts, and a pickleball complex. There's also the Ranch House which has a grill and bar, private dining, a coffee bar, a billiards room, meeting rooms, and a ballroom/auditorium.
There are numerous models available in this community. The smallest homes offer 1,236 square feet with two bedrooms, a den, two bathrooms, and a one-and-a-half-car garage. The largest homes are twice as big at 2,402 square feet with two bedrooms, a den, two-and-a-half bathrooms, and a two-and-a-half-car garage. Other homes have less square footage but go up to four bedrooms.
A 50-minute drive north of Downtown Tucson, Oracle is a small Southern Arizona town with a population of about 20,000 people. It's surrounded by Arizona's desert landscape and just below Mt. Lemmon, the highest peak in the Santa Catalina Mountains at 9,159 feet.
Low $300s - High $800s
SaddleBrooke Ranch is a 15-minute drive west of the center of Oracle, and it's a gated community of 5,400 single-family homes for the 40+ active adult. A major attraction is the 18-hole SaddleBrooke Ranch Golf Club with its pro shop and driving range. Other amenities include tennis courts, a 24-court pickleball complex, indoor and outdoor pools, a fitness center, a choice of dining options, and a Creative Arts and Technology Center with a computer lab, a woodworking shop, and studios for various arts and crafts.
There are 26 models, the smallest being 1,404 square feet with two bedrooms, two bathrooms, and a two-car garage. The various configurations go up to 3,077 square feet with three bedrooms, a den, three-and-a-half bathrooms, and a three-car garage.
Green Valley is the most southerly of these small Arizona towns, being a 45-minute drive north of the Mexican border. Thirty minutes along Interstate-19 in the other direction takes you to Downtown Tucson. Green Valley is a census-designated place with a population approaching 25,000 and all the conveniences of a small town, including banks, restaurants, shops, a cinema, a library, a hospital, and other facilities.
Below $100k - Low $1Ms
A unique attraction here for many homeowners is an organization called Green Valley Recreation (GVR). This provides numerous amenities open to anyone in Green Valley who wishes to join for a fee and annual subscription of a few hundred dollars.
GVR membership gives residents access to seven major recreation centers and six smaller satellite centers. These provide numerous swimming pools, fitness centers, arts and crafts facilities, live concerts, social events, tennis courts, a large pickleball complex, and countless clubs, classes, and activities. For anyone looking to buy a home in an active adult community, Green Valley is definitely one of the best small towns in Arizona to consider.