Cascades at Southern Hill near Tampa, Florida is the perfect setting for a sun filled retirement.

Cascades at Southern Hill near Tampa, Florida is the perfect setting for a sun-filled retirement.

In the cold of winter, thoughts often turn to hot and sunny vacations. For retirees, cold winter months can also prompt thoughts of retiring to a warmer climate. There are many destinations across the country which let retirees say goodbye to snow and ice. Here are 10 great destinations to get you started on your search, in no particular order.

1. Boynton Beach, Florida

In the heart of Southeast Florida, Boynton Beach offers sunny skies, native palms, and sandy ocean shores. The area features plenty of shopping centers and local attractions, while also being within easy access of the Palm Beach International Airport. There are many well-established active adult communities in the area, such as Aberdeen Golf & Country Club, Palm Isles, and Valencia Reserve.

2. Tampa Bay, Florida

On Florida's Gulf Coast, the Tampa Bay area is a popular destination for active retirees. Sunny beaches lure many relocating retirees, but the area also features a diverse mix of recreational and cultural attractions. There are several large, resort-style communities in the Tampa Bay area, such as Sun City Center and Timber Pines, as well as intimate neighborhoods like The Grove or Cascades at Southern Hills.

3. Naples, Florida

Further south on Florida's Gulf Coast, the Naples area features many upscale communities with elegant homes and impressive amenities. Most developments in Naples are open to all ages, yet their diverse homes and resort-style clubhouses are ideal for many active adult retirees. Just a few of Naples' fabulous developments include Pelican Bay, Lely Resort and VeronaWalk.

4. Hilton Head, South Carolina

Hilton Head is a well-known tourist destination, yet this beautiful area is also a prime retirement destination. This tranquil setting offers sandy beaches, lush forests, challenging golf courses and plenty of Southern charm. Retirees can choose a home in a large community like Sun City Hilton Head or opt for a quiet neighborhood like Baynard Park or Alston Park at New Riverside.

Del Webb Sweetgrass is a fantastic resort-style 55+ community near Houston, Texas with a 50-acre lake and miles of trails.

Del Webb Sweetgrass is a newer 55+ community near Houston, Texas with a 50-acre lake and miles of trails.

5. Houston, Texas

Moving away from the East Coast, Houston features a thriving urban center surrounded by many appealing suburbs. Active adult communities often include resort-style amenities, such as golf courses, hobby and game rooms, sports courts, and state-of-the-art fitness centers. Just a few of Houston's suburban communities include Del Webb Sweetgrass and Bellavita at Green Tee.

6. Austin, Texas

Active adults seeking a Texas retirement may also want to consider the Austin area. This distinctive city offers a thriving art and music scene, as well as sunny weather, diverse shopping districts, and beautiful scenery for outdoor recreations. Many active adults settle in nearby Georgetown, where there are fabulous age-restricted communities like Sun City Texas and Heritage Oaks.

7. Phoenix, Arizona

Since 1960, when Del Webb opened its first Sun City, Phoenix has been a well-known retirement destination. Today, the area boasts an impressive array of resort-style communities, along with shopping centers, restaurants, performing arts venues, and other cultural attractions. The area also features Green Valley Recreation, an organization which combines amenity access across more than a dozen participating active adult communities.

8. Tucson, Arizona

The higher elevation in Tucson makes this area a slightly cooler alternative to nearby Phoenix. Mountain vistas, outdoor recreations, and an active art scene help shape Tucson's distinct personality. The area features many resort-style communities with beautiful homes, golf courses, and amenity-rich clubhouses. These include large developments like SaddleBrooke, as well as small neighborhoods such as La Cholla Hills.

9. San Diego, California

In Southern California, San Diego offers near perfect retirement weather with warm summers and mild winters. Beaches, golf courses, shopping centers, restaurants, and other local attractions support an active retirement lifestyle. While San Diego may be a more expensive retirement destination, many active adults find their dream homes in well-established communities like Ocean Hills Country Club or Oceana.

10. Palm Springs, California

Located in the Coachella Valley, Palm Springs is a desert oasis that draws vacationers and retirees year after year. Palm Springs is known for its golf courses and resorts, as well as luxury shopping districts and world-class dining. Nearby active adult communities include Sun City Palm Desert, Trilogy at La Quinta and Indian Ridge Country Club.

From coast to coast, there are many beautiful retirement destinations which feature warm weather, fabulous homes, and exciting recreations.