All too often, if one selects a small town, especially an affordable
one, as the best place to retire, certain factors such as quality of life, cultural pursuits and medical care have to be sacrificed.
However, residents of Clayton, a neighborly close-knit community of approximately 10,000, enjoy the advantages of a small
town lifestyle combined with a wide array of cultural and recreational amenities, as well as the availability of high quality
healthcare facilities afforded by urban living.
circumstances are largely attributed to Clayton's proximity to North Carolina's reknown Research Triangle, an area known for
its attraction as a center of corporate activity and scientific and medical research, and for the livability and increasing
popularity of its major cities... Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill. In fact, nearly every list of best places to retire published
in the last five years has included Raleigh and the adjacent area in some category, ranging from the best place to live, the
best place for education, the healthiest city, the best place for business, etc. It is doubtful that any other metropolitan
area in the entire country has been so widely extolled.
Clayton, located only 25 miles from downtown Raleigh and just a little farther from the corporate facilities of the
Research Triangle, should be considered as an ideal place to retire for anyone with an appreciation for the arts and cultural
stimulation. In our ongoing search for the most desirable retirement communities, we have discovered few small towns that
will rival the rich menu of cultural opportunities found in and around Clayton and Johnston County.
While nearby Raleigh offers a host of attractions, including a world class Museum
of Art, a symphony orchestra, and a major performing arts center, to mention just a select few; Clayton, itself, is home to
The Clayton Center, a beautiful performing arts center with superb acoustic qualities, which hosts a variety of entertainment
events throughout the year. Also, The Neuse Little Theatre and Johnston Auditorium, a 1,000 seat facility in nearby Smithfield
provide a varied schedule of concerts and dramatic presentations throughout the year.
Adding to the excitement and adventure of retirement living in this area are such varied events as Raleigh's major
league hockey team, the Carolina Hurricanes, the collegiate athletic schedules of the areas three major universities, Duke
University in Durham, North Carolina State in Raleigh and the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill and the annual Brookhill
Also enhancing the desirability
of this area as a place to retire is the presence of excellent state-of-the-art hospital and urgent care facilities, which
contribute to its reputation as having some of the best health care facilities in the world.
Not to be overlooked is
the fact that not only is Clayton close to an urban center like Raleigh, but also it is only two hours from the Atlantic Coast,
with its beach resorts, and about a four-hour drive to the Blue Ridge and Smoky Mountains.
All in all, it is safe to conclude that this affordable small town offers everything
needed for a highly desirable retirement community and is justifiably ranked as one of the most affordable and best places