Knoxville TN Metro 55+ Active Adult Retirement Communities

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The Knoxville metro area in eastern Tennessee has a population of roughly 873,816. Cities and towns in the metro area include Maryville, Farragut, Clinton, Lenoir City, and more. Retiring to Knoxville, TN is a great option for 55+ adults who want to stretch their retirement dollars, live in a moderate climate, enjoy community attractions and festivals, and have easy access to major medical centers. 

Affordability and Cost of Living

Knoxville is generally considered an affordable place to retire. The cost of living in Knoxville is almost ten percent lower than the national average, which is beneficial for those on a fixed retirement income. The median home price in the area is $301,600 and other costs such as groceries or utilities are lower as well. 

Tennessee has no income tax and the state has lower than average property taxes. On the other hand Tennessee does have a tax on dividends and interest income if they exceed certain limits. Tennessee’s sales tax can be high since localities can add additional tax to the state sales tax rate. Groceries are not exempt from sales tax.

Climate and Geography

Summer in Knoxville tends to be hot and humid with average temperatures around 90 degrees with 65 to 85 percent humidity. Winters tend to be mild with above freezing temperatures and only an occasional snowfall. Knoxville experiences thunderstorms and occasional tornadoes during spring and early summer.  

The Knoxville region is known for its rolling hills, forests, and picturesque lakes. The area’s proximity to the Great Smoky Mountains makes it one of the most beautiful parts of Tennessee. The Tennessee River runs through Knoxville and its many parks and urban wilderness areas. 

Recreation and Entertainment

Golfers have a variety of public and private courses available. Egwani Farms Golf Course in nearby Rockford is a 6,807-yard, par-72 course featuring tree-lined fairways, rolling hills, and challenging water hazards. Dead Horse Lake Golf Course is a public course with scenic fairways and greens, along with a pro shop and driving range. Avalon Golf and Country Club in nearby Lenoir City offers 18 holes of challenging play across rolling hills and scenic views.

Knoxville’s thriving art and music scene has variety of performances throughout the year.  Venues include the beautifully restored 1920s era Tennessee Theatre which hosts concerts by the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra, The Knoxville Opera, and Broadway shows. The Bijou Theater was built in 1909 and home for live music, comedy, and theater productions.

Knoxville’s many museums highlight the history and culture of the region, the most well-known are:

  • The East Tennessee History Center contains exhibits on the Civil War and the region’s musical heritage.
  • McClung Museum of Natural History and Culture has exhibits on archaeology, natural history, and cultural history, with a focus on the peoples and cultures of the southeastern United States.
  • Blount Mansion, which was built in 1792, has been restored and now serves as a museum, with exhibits on life in early Knoxville and the history of the Blount family.

Great Smoky National Park is located just a short drive from Knoxville, and offers miles of hiking trails, scenic drives, and opportunities for wildlife watching. The city of Knoxville also has a large park network that offers opportunities for hiking, biking, boating, and fishing.

Other area activities include attending a University of Tennessee sporting event, shopping the boutique shops at Market square, visiting the Knoxville Zoo, or exploring the regions’ many wineries and craft breweries.

Health and Wellness

Knoxville has many fitness centers that offer a variety of classes and programs to help you stay active and healthy. There are also several parks and trails throughout the city where you can enjoy outdoor activities like hiking, biking, and walking. Stress relief and relaxation are important wellness components, and the Knoxville area has yoga studios and meditation centers as well spas that offer massage and other treatments. 

Top hospitals in the area include: 

Visiting 55+ Communities in the Knoxville, TN Metro Area 

Day One – Morning:

Take a stroll through Market Square, a bustling pedestrian area with shops, restaurants, and a farmers market. Visit the East Tennessee History Center museum which has exhibits and artifacts that showcase the history and culture of the region. 

Day One – Afternoon:

Head over to the Knoxville Museum of Art which features a collection of contemporary art, as well as exhibits that highlight the history of Knoxville and East Tennessee.  

Day One – Evening: 

Enjoy dinner at one of Knoxville’s many fantastic restaurants. Some popular options include The Stock & Barrel, or The Oliver Royale. 

Day Two – Morning:

Tour local 55 and over communities with your 55Places expert real estate agent. Touring communities gives a chance to see amenities and features first hand as well as ask questions about the homes. 

Day Two – Afternoon:

Visit the Knoxville Botanical Garden and Arboretum, this beautiful garden has over 50 acres of flowers, trees, and other plant life. Take a leisurely walk on the Knoxville Riverfront trail and enjoy the views of downtown Knoxville. 

Day Two – Evening:

Enjoy Dinner at the Bistro at the Bijou, this popular restaurant is located in the historic Bijou theater.  

Getting to the Knoxville, TN Metro Area 

Knoxville is easily accessible by car, plane, bus, or train. If you are driving, Knoxville is located at the intersection of several major highways. Knoxville’s regional airport, McGhee Tyson Airport (TYS), is a 20 minute drive from downtown and offers flights from most of the major airlines. Amtrak offers service to Knoxville via its “City of New Orleans” route with stops in Memphis and connects to Knoxville by bus shuttle. Greyhound and Megabus also offer service to Knoxville.




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