Want to Retire in Coffee Country?

If you really like organic coffee you may be someone who would like to grow your own during retirement. Interestingly U.S. News just published an article about 3 places to retire in coffee country. We were especially interested because one of the locations is where you can grow, pick and process your own coffee from Colombia.

If you like the idea of growing, sun-drying, roasting and brewing your own coffee – from berry to cup – you’ll be interested to know that prime coffee land can be found in some of the world’s most beautiful locations. What’s more, coffee grows best at an elevation of around 4,000 to 7,000 feet. This elevation also means great weather year-round.

If you’ve got a spirit of adventure and aren’t afraid of a little ground work, you could be harvesting your own coffee as part of your overseas retirement plan. Here are three top retirement destinations that are also ideal places for cultivating coffee plants.

These are the three locations that U.S. News suggests.

Coatepec, Mexico

50,000 person town close to the university town and capital of Veracruz State, Xalapa.

4,000 feet elevation where you can grow your own coffee

Valcabamba, Ecuador

5,000 feet elevation and the highest concentration of people over age 100

You can grow coffee here year round

Manizales, Colombia

This is our favorite, situated at 7,000 feet plus or minus about 700

Manizales is in the heart of the Eje Cafetero, the Colombian coffee growing axis where the best Arabica coffee in the world comes from

Manizales and environs have a million people but you don’t need to go very far from the center of the city to find farm land suitable for coffee growing. Nearby smaller towns like Chinchina and Santa Rosa de Cabal are local commercial centers and centers for coffee processing.

Manizales nestles under the heights of the 15,000 foot volcano Nevada Ruiz seen in this photo from the Caretera Hotel in Manizales.

 

Nevada Ruiz

Nevada Ruiz

This is a town where you can go to a modern mall (Los Fundadores) and sip coffee at one of many coffee shops

Manizales: Juan Valdez Coffee Shop

Manizales: Juan Valdez Coffee Shop

or shop on palm lined streets with a panorama of mountain peaks.

Manizales, Colombia View

Manizales, Colombia View

Manizales was founded around 1850 by coffee growers who came by ox cart specifically for the ideal soil conditions and climate. It grew from a small settlement to nearly a million persons including the “suburbs” by extension up and down the hills ranging out from the mountain top center of town.

Manizales, Colombia Keeps Growing

Manizales, Colombia Keeps Growing

Mountainside Coffee Farming

If you move to Colombia and buy a piece of land for growing coffee you will be one with your neighbors. It is common to see coffee growing in back yards, especially on hillsides in the Eje Cafetero. The Carturro variety is commonly seen growing at lower elevations (3,000 to 5,000 feet) and standard Arabica is grown closer to 7,000 feet. You farm could well end up being on the mountainside where your home is on the only flat ground and you use the slope for growing coffee.

Coffee in Colombia

Coffee in Colombia

Coffee growing from the lowlands to the mountain peaks is common around Manizales.


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