6 Reasons Why Bend, Oregon is a Great Place to Retire

Bend, Oregon has become a popular destination for retirees, here are 6 reasons why.

  1. You get to experience 4 distinct seasons.

Bend is a great place to retire if you love the outdoors with four different seasons – spring, summer, fall…and winter.

Often gets snow in the winter and, as a retiree, you can cuddle up in front of the fire or get out and enjoy it when opportunities for snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, snowboarding, downhill skiing, snowmobiling and even dog-sledding are just minutes away.

And in the other three seasons, you’ll have ample opportunity to get out and enjoy the average 300 days of sunshine whether you’re a golfer, a mountain or road biker, hiker or just someone who likes to spend time on the gorgeous Deschutes river or one of the many nearby lakes on your kayak, boat or paddleboard!

  1. No sales taxes

Five states in the US do not have sales or use tax, and Oregon is one of them. There’s no motor vehicle tax, no business and occupations tax, and there are no taxes on stocks, bonds or securities. There is a state income tax, though, and pension payments are taxable.

Talk to your tax and financial advisor if one reason why you’re thinking of retiring in Bend is because of the tax situation. Oregon’s top income tax rate is over 10%.

For more tax information, check out: https://www.retirementliving.com/taxes-new-york-wyoming#OREGON and Oregon’s own official website: http://www.oregon.gov/DOR/pages/index.aspx.

  1. Active lifestyle embracement

As mentioned above, Bend provides opportunities for so many outdoor sports that people are spoiled for choice. Tourists come here from all over the country, throughout the year, to engage in activities that people who live here can take for granted.


There are plenty of golf courses in Bend and nearby communities, giving the city the nickname of “the Palm Springs of the North.” In 2013-14, Golf Digest listed three of the courses as among “America’s 100 Greatest Public Courses.” If you’re golf enthusiasts you’ll have heard of the names of some of the designers – Peter Jacobsen and Jim Hardy’s design of Brasada Canyons, the Jack Nicklaus Course at Pronghorn Resort, Tetherow designed by David McLay Kidd (a llnks style course) and Crosswater designed by Bob Cupp.

Canoeing and kayaking

The Deschutes River runs right through Bend. There are plenty of spots to rent a canoe, kayak or standup paddleboard and go down the river. In 2015 the Bend Whitewater Park opened to provide a bit more excitement to the more adventurous.


There are over 51 miles of bike trails in Bend’s urban trail system. Mountain bikers can head out to several trails in the nearby Cascades.

Skiing, snowboarding, sledding

The closest ski resort to Bend is Mount Bachelor (so named because it stands apart from the Thee Sisters peaks). Mount Bachelor is 18 miles west of Bend, and offers cross country (Nordic) skiing routes, downhill skiing, snowboarding and even offers a sledding experience by Iditerod racer Rachael Scdoris.

  1. Great Shopping

Bend has several shopping malls including Bend Factory Stores, the Old Mill District, the Cascade Village Shopping Mall, and the Bend River Promenade.

The Bend Factory store offers some major brand name stores such as Christopher & Banks, Coach Factory Store/Coach Men’s Factory Store, Eddie Bauer Outlet, Pearl iZUmi and among their necessities-of-life offerings, the Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory.

The Old Mill District is an extremely popular destination, with shops, and access to the Deschutes River for kayakers, paddleboarders and canoeists.

There’s a Barnes & Noble bookstore in the Forum Shopping Center, along with its clothing stores, specialty stores and grocery stores.

  1. Arts and Entertainment

There are different variations of an active lifestyle. Walking along the Deschutes River as it winds through downtown Bend may be active enough for you. To stimulate the mind, you want art and theatre, and Bend delivers. There are several art galleries in Bend, each offering a variety of events throughout the year as well as showcasing local artists.

Concerts and variety and comedy shows are a regular staple at the Tower Theatre, as well as touring shows – typically musicals, such as Annie and comedy acts such as Louie Anderson. It also offers a monthly lecture series, for example “Nature Nights” with a different naturalist talking about wildlife in Oregon. The Tower Theatre is called “Bend’s Living Room” because it is the place for art and entertainment.

Classical music is on offer at the Les Schwab Amphitheater. The Amphitheater is just a few steps away from the Old Mill District, where you can shop and dine to your heart’s content.

  1. Eclectic dining establishments

Foodies will love the restaurants in Bend. Cuisines of all kinds are available, from fast food staples to diners to fine dining establishments such as The Blacksmith Restaurant, Chanterelle at Pronghorn Resort, and Brickhouse Steak & Seafood.

To decide if Bend is the best retirement city for you, why not plan a visit today?

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