Where do most Canadians retire in Mexico?

Where do most Canadians retire in Mexico

Canadians, much like their American counterparts, find Mexico an attractive retirement destination due to its warm climate, affordable cost of living, and high-quality healthcare. The locations within Mexico where Canadians choose to retire often overlap with those favored by Americans, but there are certain spots that have garnered particular popularity among the Canadian expat community. Here are some key areas where Canadians tend to retire in Mexico:

Lake Chapala and Ajijic

  • Popularity: Just as with American retirees, the Lake Chapala area, and specifically Ajijic, is hugely popular among Canadian retirees. This region offers a comfortable climate year-round, a strong sense of community, and a lower cost of living. The Lake Chapala Society, with its extensive services and activities, serves as a hub for the expat community, including many Canadians.

San Miguel de Allende

  • Cultural Haven: San Miguel de Allende continues to attract Canadians with its rich cultural scene, beautiful colonial architecture, and vibrant expat community. The city is known for its art galleries, workshops, and festivals, offering a culturally enriched lifestyle that many retirees seek.

Puerto Vallarta

  • Beachside Living: Puerto Vallarta is a favorite for Canadians who prefer beachside living with modern amenities. Its beautiful beaches, bustling boardwalk (El Malecón), and the Old Town (Zona Romántica) provide a picturesque setting combined with a lively community atmosphere.

Baja California Sur

  • Los Cabos and La Paz: The southern tip of the Baja California peninsula, including cities like Los Cabos and La Paz, attracts Canadian retirees looking for spectacular ocean views, sport fishing, and a dry, warm climate. La Paz, being less touristy than Los Cabos, offers a more laid-back lifestyle with beautiful seafront promenades and access to the Sea of Cortez.

The Riviera Maya

  • Playa del Carmen and Tulum: The Riviera Maya, particularly Playa del Carmen and Tulum, is another popular region for Canadian retirees. Playa del Carmen offers a more cosmopolitan vibe with its famous Fifth Avenue, while Tulum appeals to those seeking a tranquil environment close to nature and Mayan ruins. The entire area is renowned for its beautiful beaches, cenotes, and eco-tourism activities.


  • Colonial Charm: Mérida, the capital of Yucatán, is well-liked for its safety, cultural richness, and colonial architecture. It’s known for its warm, welcoming atmosphere and high quality of life. Canadians in Mérida enjoy access to modern amenities, healthcare, and a calendar full of cultural events.


  • Affordable Coastal City: Mazatlán, with its long sandy beaches and historic Old Town, offers an authentic Mexican experience at a more affordable price point. It’s attractive for those who wish to enjoy the Pacific coast without the higher costs associated with more northern beach destinations.

Factors Influencing Canadian Retirement Choices in Mexico:

  • Proximity to Canada: Many Canadians choose locations that are relatively easy to travel between, allowing for visits back home or for family and friends to come stay.
  • Climate: The desire for a warmer climate, especially during the Canadian winter months, drives many retirees south.
  • Healthcare: Access to high-quality, affordable healthcare is a significant consideration.
  • Community: Places with established expat communities are preferred for the social connections and support they offer.
  • Cost of Living: The lower cost of living in Mexico, compared to Canada, allows retirees to stretch their pensions and savings further.

Mexico’s appeal to Canadian retirees is multifaceted, offering a range of environments from beachfront communities to colonial cities, all of which provide a high quality of life at a lower cost. Whether they seek the vibrant arts scene of San Miguel de Allende, the beach lifestyle of Puerto Vallarta, or the tranquil beauty of Tulum, there is a Mexican retirement destination to suit the preferences of many Canadians.