Retire Here, Not There: Washington
Whether it's skiing or whale-watching, hiking or fishing, experts say retirees can find it close to Bellingham, which is nestled between the Puget Sound to the west and Mount Baker to the east. Mount Baker, which is a little over an hour from Bellingham, has 38 trails, gets more than 700 inches of snow on average per year and accommodates all levels of skiers. The San Juan Islands, which are just a ferry ride away, are a huge draw as well. These islands are known for their whale-watching (three orca pods are frequent summer visitors) and kayaking.