Las Vegas vs Palm Springs for Retirement

las vegas vs palm springs for retirement

The battle of Las Vegas vs Palm Springs for retirement has been ongoing for years. Palm Springs has traditionally been a top retirement location for many people in California due to its favorable climate and relaxed nature. However, Las Vegas has recently become a major challenger for many of its own reasons. So which is a better place to retire, Palm Springs or Las Vegas? We compare Las Vegas vs. Palm Springs for retirement!

Las Vegas vs Palm Springs For Retirement

Financial Affordability

A major consideration for individuals seeking to retire is how far their money can go. Palm Springs has a wide variety of housing options with a median listing price that's more expensive than Las Vegas. Sun City Palm Desert is a very popular community for active adults while Palm Desert and La Quinta also have a great deal to offer in terms of available homes. There are many top-rated 55+ communities in Palm Springs to choose from.

las vegas home on golf course

Meanwhile, Las Vegas offers an abundance of home options with a median listing price less than Palm Springs. It features a number of attractive suburbs such as Summerlin and Henderson. Another financial benefit of retiring in Las Vegas is the absence of a state income tax, which is seen as a substantial incentive for moving there. In addition, Las Vegas also boasts many outstanding retirement communities for all budgets and lifestyles. One of the most popular is Sun City Summerlin, on the west side of Las Vegas.


The driving force for many people seeking to retire is a nice climate. Fortunately, both Palm Springs and Las Vegas has excellent arid desert climates with fairly predictable weather. Las Vegas has a bit more variability, with temperatures reaching a bit cooler than Palm Springs in the winters. Both can be scorching hot in the summer. Still, both of these locations will guarantee relatively warm and consistent weather preferable for most retirees.

Suitability for Visiting

One major area in the comparison of Las Vegas vs Palm Springs for retirement is which area does a better job of drawing family and friends to come visit?

One of the important considerations for many retirees is the likelihood of children, grandchildren and extended family visiting, which means the suitability of the area for vacations is often something that must be considered.

Palm Springs does have a draw for family and friends seeking a charming, small town relaxed trip. There’s a quaint downtown area and activities in the surrounding areas.

Meanwhile, Las Vegas is one of the top places to visit in the world, which makes it very appealing for family and friends to visit! In Vegas, there’s something for everyone. With the combination of robust nightlife, dining, shopping, golf and fun hotels to stay at and outdoor recreation in the surrounding area, it’s a bigger draw for visitors.

Entertainment & Recreation

One of the most critical things to consider before retiring in either Palm Springs or Las Vegas are the local entertainment and recreation options.

Palm Springs has a number of things to do particularly for those who like leisurely time outdoors. It is a favorite spot for hiking. The city also sports many boutique shops and is a great spot for antiquing and farmer’s markets, the Palm Springs Art Museum, professional and amateur theaters, and film societies.

palm springs golf course

Palm Springs has drawn a strong reputation for boasting many world class golf courses, making it a great retirement choice for those who like to spend time on the links or watch golf tournaments. In fact, there are many championship caliber courses in the area. Another popular sporting activity in the area is tennis and it’s never very hard to find an open court.

For those who like limitless options when it comes to entertainment and recreation, Las Vegas provides both leisure and excitement. Much is known about the casino environment; however, there is much more to the city than gambling including world class dining and comedy.

It is also a typical stop for most concert tours. Furthermore, the surrounding community is home to excellent opportunities for hiking and outdoors life including Lake Mead and Red Rocks Canyon. Las Vegas also has a myriad of golfing options and offers both championship and beginner level courses. Vegas also has a budding pro sports scene.

There’s the NFL Raiders since 2020 and the wildly popular Vegas Golden Knights of the NHL. Sports fans can also choose to watch the Las Vegas Aviators, a Triple-A Minor League Baseball team that plays at the brand new, $150 million Las Vegas Ballpark in Summerlin.

Las Vegas vs Palm Springs – Summary

Overall, Palm Springs and Las Vegas have many things to offer prospective retirees. Both locales excel in terms of their outdoor activities and proximity to beautiful natural settings.

Palm Springs has a bit more consistent climate in terms of temperatures and more renowned golf courses. For those who can’t stand the thought of leaving California, it provides an option to stay while moving out of the big cities.

Meanwhile, Las Vegas is a true contender with it’s financial affordability, attractiveness for visiting family and friends, dining, entertainment and recreation options and the fact that you can get greater value for your money due to lower home prices and no state income tax.

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