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Cascais, Portugal

Portugal has everything you could want in retirement – golf, beaches and restaurants – and yet it’s cheaper than most everything else in western Europe. It’s one of those great off-the-radar finds if you can take advantage of it before everyone else gets there.

The nation prides itself on being laid back – the opposite of a bustling city like New York, Budd said.

Cascais is a scenic resort town on the Atlantic coast and the people are very friendly.

It’s just 15 miles away from the capital but extremely affordable: One expat told AARP that she rented a huge apartment/office with a pool for $1,000 a month and that you could buy a nice home for $250,000.

Photo: Luca Trovato | Getty Images || Source: AARP