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Living a Equestrian Lifestyle in Aiken, South_Carolina

Horse lovers will find Aiken, South Carolina great place to live or vacation. This town of 29,000 in western South Carolina’s Sand Hill country grew up as a healthy retreat where the wealthy could escape from hot weather. The “Winter Colony” as it is called has always been popular with the horsy set for fox hunting, steeplechase, and polo horses. Many people come here to either raise their horses or watch them race in steeple chases - the Imperial Cup each March and the Holiday Cup in October. Both of these steeplechase races are sanctioned by the National Steeplechase Association. The Aiken Thoroughbred Racing Hall of Fame and Museum is a local a tribute to the famous flat racing and steeplechase Thoroughbred horses that have trained here. Photo of downtown Aiken courtesy of Wikipedia and Festiva76.

Where to Retire in Aiken and Home Prices

There are many active adult communities in the area with a wide variety of facilities, as well as areas within town in nice neighborhoods. According to Zillow, the median home value was $220,645 in early 2023. These prices can be deceptive as there are many homes and estates on the market for millions of dollars, whereas some condominium prices may be far less.

What Is Special about Aiken

Named bySouthern LivingMagazine as the 2018 Souths Best Small Town. SaidSouthern Living: Spend a weekend in this town, and youll see what makes it so special. The town is home to the Aiken Tennis Club (court tennis), the University of South Carolina at Aiken, Steeplechase and Thoroughbred racing, Aiken Thoroughbred Racing Hall of Fame and Museum at Hopeland Garden, and Hitchcock Woods. The Aiken Polo Club hosts Sunday afternoon matches. There are many active adult communities here. Woodside Communities has prepared an excellent article about Aiken, "101 Reasons Why We Love Aiken".

What Is Not Special about Aiken

The very large (2100 acres) urban forest, Hitchcock Woods, is smack in the middle of Aiken. Traffic struggles daily as commuters, service vehicles and families driving back and forth to school and church are forced to circumnavigate the privately-owned forestland. The location of Hitchcock Woods proximate to all of and prominent in Aiken stifles this community's growth and residents' easy enjoyment of this region. Aiken is not considered a walkable community. Its location in the countryside, away from the coast and near the Georgia border, might not appeal to everyone.

Climate and Physical Environment

Aiken is located on the west-central edge of South Carolina. The average July high is 94 and the average January low is 33. June is the wettest month of the year.

Restaurants & Cultural Scene

There are many restaurant choices as several fast-food chains are located in Aiken. The University of South Carolina provides cultural events and the Aiken Academy for Lifelong Learning offers many full time classes. Residents also enjoy outdoor concerts, ballet and symphony, and good amateur theatre.

Crime

The crime rate in Aiken is above average.

Medical Facilities

Aiken Regional Medical Center.

Transportation

Augusta Regional Airport is 21 miles. It is not considered a walkable community - you have to drive for most errands. I20 is just to the north.

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