1. The Community
If you are moving to Bozeman, be prepared to be welcomed with open arms. There are a number of groups dedicated to people looking to make friends in Bozeman such as the Gallatin Valley Newcomers Club which hosts “Interest Group” meetups for book clubs, bridge, crafts & knitting, golf, gardening and movie lovers just to name a few! For the outdoorsy types, there are plenty of groups such as the Bozeman Adventure Club and the Big Sky Wind Drinkers, a running club founded in 1973!
Volunteer-minded residents have no trouble finding a place to dedicate their time. The Bozeman community supports a large number of nonprofits that are always looking for volunteers. The Gallatin Valley Food Bank, Big Brother’s Big Sisters, Bridger Ski Foundation, Haven, HRDC and Heart of the Valley Humane Society are just a few of Bozeman’s non-profits always looking for a helping hand.
With Montana State University holding a large amount of our population, some retirees may be concerned that Bozeman is nothing but a college town. However, Bozeman is SO much more than that! Here the students, ski bums, retirees, families, tourists, ranchers, hippies and cowboys all co-exist happily.
2. Plenty of living options
Bozeman may not have the number of actual retirement communities as you would find in Arizona or Florida but that doesn't mean there isn't a home for those that retire here. Maintenance free condos, downtown urban style living, and full-service golf communities can be found throughout Bozeman.
Anywhere in Bozeman is a good place to live in our opinion; however, there are some places that are a better fit for retirees. Once you have decided what type of home you are looking for you can begin the process of narrowing down the location. The Villages, The Willson Residences, Block M and 5 West are all excellent options for retirees looking to live near downtown maintenance free. The Knolls at Hillcrest is a 55 and older community right by tons of walking trails. Black Bull is a private golf community with a fitness center and clubhouse. Greenhouse Village is another 55 and older community right in the middle of town. This is just a small sampling of the Bozeman living options for retirees!
3. Quality health care
As Bozeman has grown over the years, the level of healthcare offered has also expanded and continues to do so. Not only that but seniors in Bozeman tend to live a healthier lifestyle because of the nature of our community and access to outdoor activities. That's a win-win.
Bozeman Health, our largest provider, is comprised of two hospitals, specialty treatment centers, a network of physician and urgent care clinics, outpatient treatment facilities and retirement and assisted living facilities. Bozeman Health Deaconess Hospital is an 86-bed facility with 200 physicians and health professionals representing over 35 specialties. Some of the specialty services they offer are the Cancer Center, Diabetes Center, Heart Center, Orthopedic and Rehabilitation Services and a Women’s Center. In addition, there are numerous private practices throughout the valley and plenty of specialty doctors to keep you healthy and active.
As of early 2019, there are plans for Montana’s largest health organization, Billings Clinic, to build a 97,000 sq. ft clinic on Bozeman’s northwest side.
4. Small town, big culture
For a small city, Bozeman offers tons of culture! We have the opera, ballet, symphony, live theater, concert venues...just to name a few! On top of these, there are so many community events each season. From Farmer's markets and downtown Art Walks year-round to annual events like the Christmas Stroll and Sweet Pea Festival. We promise, in Bozeman you get city-like culture wrapped up in our beautiful little town!
5. It's not just for snowbirds!
Spending summers playing in the Montana sunshine and winters escaping to the beach sounds pretty ideal to most, but if that’s not part of your retirement plan you still shouldn’t count out Bozeman. Yes, our winters can be cold. Yes, we get buried in snow once in a while. BUT, they are also so beautiful! The snow-capped mountains, bright blue sky and crisp fresh air are tough to beat! If you ski, Bozeman is the place to be with two ski resorts close by. If skiing isn't your thing you can still enjoy the winter with numerous walking trails to take advantage of. If you prefer look at the snow rather than play out in it, you can fill your winter with trips to the Museum of the Rockies, catching shows at the Ellen Theater, shopping downtown or visiting our wonderful public library.
6. Speaking of skiing and winter...
Bozemanites are lucky to have skiing options right out our backyard. With the “Biggest Skiing in America” at Big Sky Resort and 2,000 skiable acres at Bridger Bowl both within an hour drive of town, the obvious winter activity for many is of course, skiing. Aside from the world-class downhills skiing available to Bozeman residents, there are also countless options for cross country skiing both on groomed trails and on national forest trails.
7. Summer is where it's at
If skiing isn't your thing, not to worry...the summers in Bozeman are worth waiting out winter! In fact, we can't think of ANY place better than Bozeman in the summer. There is so much to do. Golfing at one of the many private or public courses, fishing one of the five major rivers or many area lakes, hiking or walking the countless trails, or simply taking in the spectacular sunsets from your own back patio. Trust us when we say summer is the best.
8. Plenty of dining options
If you are moving from a big city, you might be concerned there aren't enough restaurants. Luckily, you would be wrong! Bozeman might be a small town, but the dining choices in Bozeman are endless. We’re not talking about chains (although there are plenty), we’re talking about local restaurants with farm to table influences to offer the best food possible. Whether you want a Montana steak or some homemade pasta, Bozeman’s dining scene has plenty to choose from. Download our Retiring in Bozeman guide for a list of some of our favorite Bozeman restaurants.
9. Small town, but growing airport
Traveling to and from Bozeman is surprisingly easy, thanks to the Bozeman Yellowstone Airport. The airport is located only 8 miles north of Bozeman, which is a short, 20-minute drive from the center of town. The Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport has become one of the fastest growing airports in the country with more than 1.2 million passengers passing through the gates each year. There are now 16 direct flights to and from Bozeman from places like New York, Chicago, and Atlanta. Even with the airport’s growing traffic over the past few years, the lines continue to remain short – sometimes nonexistent!
10. It's beautiful
Bozeman is surrounded by mountains making it stunning in every direction. Drive down any street and you'll see mountains in the distance and big blue skies above. There's no doubt about it, Bozeman is breathtaking. So pack your skis, fishing poles, hiking boots and golf clubs! If you are considering retiring in Bozeman, you have plenty of adventure ahead of you!