The 3 Best Places to Retire in South America
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The 3 Best Places to Retire in South America

4 min read

Nov 16, 2015


By Jon Hillstead

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Start planning your retirement in South America!

With the cost of living on the rise in places like North America, people are starting to consider retiring abroad and recently, many countries in South America have become popular retirement destinations.  Whether you are ready for retirement or just day-dreaming about your retirement, check out our list of the top 3 places to retire in South America.

#3 Uruguay – Retire in South America

Coming in at #3 Uruguay makes the list because of its broad appeal, offering relaxing, beautiful, scenery without sacrificing modern amenities. Punta del Este is a popular holiday destination for many Uruguayans and if you enjoy beautiful warm waters, this seaside city is the ideal place to retire. Here you can find a variety of restaurants, shops, beaches and even a casino to keep you entertained. During the high season, the city is full of energy and during the low season, the pace slows down, creating a great balance year round. If beaches and city life are what you seek, Punta del Este could be the place for you. Check out our blog post that featured Punta del Este as one of the Happiest Cities in South America.

Like any country, there are different areas where real estate is more affordable; but overall, Uruguay is an affordable place to live. Uruguayans are very friendly and welcoming to foreigners and with the well-established expatriate community, foreigners have a greater sense of comfort. Uruguay is centrally located in South America, making it easy to travel to nearby countries such as Argentina and Brazil.  Uruguay has it all, great highways, easy access to nearby countries, modern amenities, and a relaxing atmosphere to call home.

Start planning your retirement in Uruguay today.


 #2 Colombia – Retire in South America

Just a flight away from many cities in the United States, Colombia ranks #2 on our list of the best places to retire in South America. This diverse country is steadily growing in popularity and is the new hotspot for those seeking a unique place to retire. Colombia is one of the most affordable countries in South America. A couple living there can get by comfortably on around $1,200 USD per month, according to International Living. Not only is the cost of living low, but Colombia offers some of the best and most affordable health care in South America. Similar to Uruguay, Colombia has seen a large increase in expat communities in cities like Medellin and Bogota and Colombians are known for being incredibly friendly and welcoming to foreigners.

In Colombia, it would be nearly impossible to find yourself bored or unimpressed. As one of the most bio-diverse countries in the world, Colombia offers a range of geography from beautiful beaches to lush jungles and mountains.

For those seeking a Caribbean lifestyle, make your way to Cartagena along the coast in Northern Colombia. Although it has become more modern, Cartagena does not lack in old colonial charm. Stroll along cobblestone streets, past colorful historical buildings and feel step back in time. No matter which city you choose in Colombia, it’s easy to live like a king without spending a fortune.

Start planning your trip to Cartagena today.


#1 Ecuador – Retire in South America

When looking for the perfect place to retire in South America, there is a lot to consider. You want to live somewhere affordable, safe and beautiful. Ecuador meets all three of these criteria, which is why we have named it the #1 place to retire in South America.

Discover the Amazon rainforest, visit the avenue of volcanoes in the Andes, explore the Galapagos islands, or relax on the coastal beaches. The cost of living is very low and affordable. Many couples can live comfortably on a budget of around $1500 USD per month. Ecuadorians are friendly and good-natured people and many speak English making it easier for foreigners. Consider taking some Spanish courses in Quito or Cuenca and fully immerse yourself in the culture.

Ecuador’s public transit system is very efficient, eliminating the need to own your own car. Cities are fairly close and easily accessible by bus.  Just the beautiful landscapes and scenery alone are enough to convince anyone to retire in Ecuador, not to mention all of the added bonuses.

Check out our Ecuador Tours to find the perfect city for you.


When thinking about retiring to South America, consider what is most important to you. I guarantee that one of these three countries will check all of the boxes.

Start planning your pre-retirement trip to South America today!

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