Looking through leaves onto courtyard and Heritage Shores clubhouse in Delaware

Which Delaware community is seeing the most visits this year?

In the small state of Delaware, Sussex County is the second-most populated county in the state. Due to its popularity, this county has seen a steady population increase which has contributed significantly to the state’s overall growth

According to the Census Bureau, almost 30% of the population is over 65, and in 2010, the Wall Street Journal named Sussex County one of the best places to retire. Southern Delaware boasts a relaxed small-town feel with easy access to beaches and outdoor recreation. Combine that with low property taxes, no sales tax, and moderate housing costs, and the area becomes a great place for adults over 55. 

Sussex County is home to 13 active adult communities. Here are the top five most popular active adult communities, according to 55places.com data.

5. Bishop’s Landing - Millville

Mid $200s - High $400s

The fifth most popular community is Bishop’s Landing in Millville. Beazar Homes began building this community in 2013, and upon completion, plans to include 449 single-family and attached homes. 

The Beach Villas are attached homes with three bedrooms and two-and-a-half baths, while the single-family homes come in seven models with either three or four bedrooms and two or three baths.

Bishop’s Landing is not an age-restricted community, but active adults will enjoy the on-site fitness center, Olympic-sized pool, sundeck, tennis courts, fishing lakes, and natural spaces in the community. The clubs, classes, and activities include community-wide events, like a crab feast and 4th of July parade, as well as groups and classes that will appeal to those over 55, like water aerobics, yoga, horseshoes, Walking Club, and Ladies Luncheon.

4. Bay Crossing - Lewes

Mid $300s - High $500s

Bay Crossing is an established community of 256 homes completed in 2016. The single-family and attached models include homes ranging from two to three bedrooms, with first-floor master suites. 

Residents can bike less than five miles to the public beaches in Lewes or Cape Henlopen State Park. However, within the community, residents can enjoy the outdoor pool and sundeck, tennis court, bocce ball court, and walking trails. The clubhouse also offers game, craft, and lounge spaces. 

3. Independence - Millsboro

Mid $300s - Low $500s

Coming in at number three is another mid-sized, age-restricted community. Independence offers new and resale homes, and the community will include 455 single-family homes when complete. Builder Schell Brothers offers 12 models ranging from two to four bedrooms and two to three-and-a-half baths.

Independence Hall, the community clubhouse, truly offers resort-style living. Residents can stay active and relaxed with the spa-like amenities, including an indoor lap pool, saunas, massage rooms, an outdoor pool, and a whirlpool. Staying fit is equally easy with the fitness center, aerobics studio, tennis courts, putting greens, and walking trails.

Residents get to know each other and learn new skills in the hobby rooms, computer center, card room, bar and lounge, billiards hall, and picnic areas. Although technically located in Millsboro, Independence is about halfway between Millsboro and Lewes, about a half-an-hour drive from the beach.

2. The Villages at Red Mill Pond - Lewes

Mid $200s - Low $400s

Located in the beach-side town of Lewes, The Villages at Red Mill Pond is a mid-sized community with plans for 520 homes. K. Hovnanian and NV Homes began construction in 2009, and today, both new and resale single-family homes ranging from 1,200 to 3,200 square feet are available in this community.

The Atlantic beaches and towns of Lewes, Rehoboth, and Bethany offer residents seemingly endless recreation opportunities. However, homeowners at the Villages at Red Mill Pond can experience the scenic lakes and ponds around the community by boat or by foot along the walking trails. 

Although not age-restricted, the community offers many amenities that appeal to active adults. The clubhouse provides an exercise room, a catering kitchen, game rooms, and a lounge. Outside, the pool, spa, and patio provide a space for residents to socialize and relax.

1. Heritage Shores - Bridgeville

Low $200s - Low $400s

Heritage Shores is the most popular community in Sussex County, which is actually very understandable. Heritage Shores is the largest community in the entire state, with an anticipated 1,800 homes when it’s completed. Multiple builders continue to construct homes, allowing prospective residents to choose from well-established properties or new custom builds. 

While located farther from the beach and coastal towns, the community provides much of what residents need on site. Residents enjoy an expansive clubhouse with a ballroom, craft rooms, billiards, a library, two restaurants, a snack bar, and a wine bar. At the Fitness and Aquatic Center, residents stay active in the gym, dance studio, indoor and outdoor pool, and tennis courts. The 18-hole golf course, driving range, and putting greens provide a golfers paradise.

Also, a full-time activities director schedules events, clubs, and classes for residents to get the most out of their free time.