Clayton : New york


What It Is Like to Retire in Clayton

Clayton, New York, is a small town in the Thousand Island Region of Jefferson County.  It's a peninsula surrounded by the St. Lawrence River and close to the Lake Ontario, with Canada as the northern border.  The town  measures over 100 square miles, including 20 miles of water and several of the Thousand Islands.  Clayton's entire downtown is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.  For such a small community with a population of just under 2,000 year-round residents, Clayton has received a lot of recognition.  Coastal Living Magazine named Clayton as the Best Small Town in the Great Lakes Region, it has also been recognized as one of America's "Coolest Small Towns" by Budget Travel Magazine, and Michelle Obama, the First Lady of the United States, designated it as one of the newest "Preserve America Communities".


Where to Retire in Clayton and Home Prices

Zillow reports the home value to be $169,395 in early 2020, but homes on the water can sell for much more at over $1,000,000.


What Is Special about Clayton

Clayton is a tourist community which offers many recreational activities such as boating, kayaking, diving and hiking. Clayton has two state Parks-Cedar Point State Park and Canoe-Picnic State Park which is on Grindston Island and only accessible by boat.


What Is Not Special about Clayton

Clayton is a very popular summer vacation spot in the Thousand Island Region, and becomes very crowded; winters are long and cold.


Who Will Like Retirement in Clayton

Retirees who want to live near the water with a lot of outdoor activity in a walkable, historic community, and who wouldn't mind the winter weather.


Local Economy Is Driven by

Tourism, construction, and retail


Climate and Physical Environment

The average January temperature in Clayton is just about 20 degrees. Typically, the most snowfall occurs in December and January, averaging close to 30 inches each month. Clayton averages about 83 inches of snow during the winter.  July's average temperature is 68 degrees.


Restaurants & Cultural Scene

Clayton is the cultural center of the Thousand Islands as it has many art galleries, along with the Handweaving Museum and the Thousand Island Museum. Clayton is also home to the Antique Boat Museum which houses the largest collection of antique and classic boats in America. It host the Antique Boat Show and Auction each August and is also the site for the biennial Antique Raceboat Regatta.  Clayton Opera House is a year-round performing arts and community center which has recently undergone a $3,200,000 renovation. It offers concerts, lectures, dances, films and classes.  The town also host many festivals during the summer and fall.



The crime rate in Clayton is very low, almost non-existent.


Medical Facilities

River Hospital in Alexandria Bay is 10 miles away; Samaritan Hospital in Watertown, is 12 miles away.



Watertown International Airport, 20 miles away, is the closest airport .


Valuable Links

Town of Clayton

Clayton, NY

Clayton Opera House


What people are saying about Clayton

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