Florida has so much more than beaches. Those who retire in Mt. Dora tell us it is “someplace special” right in the heart of Florida. About 40 miles from Disneyworld, it is a perfect place to have everything entertaining just far enough away. Overwhelmed with 3 days of Disneyworld, we drove north to find something different and ended up in this great little community. The downtown village is more than 100 years old and sits on the shores of beautiful Lake Dora. There are festivals galore, fishing in the “Bass Capital of the World” or just simply relax in the sunshine. There is a wide array of shopping, dining, wellness and entertainment and a beautifully restored park for all kinds of events. The highest point in Florida, Mt Dora is 184 feet above sea level. In January the temperature is 68 and in July it’s 91. They get about 50 inches of rain each year.
Every night of the year there is something going on after the sun goes down with live music, restaurants, or simply a walk around town. Stop by the Windsor Rose Restaurant and Tea Room for a tiny touch of old England. Lunch may include any number of teas from a wide selection, finger sandwiches, crumpets, and a great selection of desserts. The nice waitress told us she loves their little town because its just like family. Mount Dora Center for the Arts hosts the Mount Dora Arts Festival, a juried fine arts festival, on the first full weekend of February.
Mt. Dora is home to 12,000 people and nearly 19% are over 65. The mean home price is $179,000 but if you want to live on the lake, expect to pay a lot more. The town’s crime rate is about average for Florida – and below the national average. We easily found rentals in the $800 a month in a very nice neighborhood. With all the tax advantages of living in Florida, Mt. Dora is a great choice for retirement. Not everyone wants to live at the beach!
Zoom in and out on the map below to see highways, roads and attractions!