Editor’s Note: In October, 2011, after publication of this article, the city of Harrisburg filed for bankruptcy protection, though its petition was subsequently dismissed by a federal court. It’s unclear what impact the municipality's financial difficulties will have on its status as an affordable city for retirement.
With its gracious layout, the lovely Susquehanna River, and plentiful festivals and events, Harrisburg is a magnet for cyclists and pedestrians.
Harrisburg's 50,000 shade trees, 4.5-mile-long Riverfront Park and 20-mile greenbelt around the city showcase its modern skyline, lovely old cathedrals, elegant Capitol complex and well-maintained historic districts.
The surrounding Pennsylvania Dutch countryside, with its covered bridges, farms, restored mansions and rich Civil War history, is equally inviting.
Six four-year colleges in the area add musical events, drama — and youthful energy.