Morganton : North carolina


What It Is Like to Retire in Morganton

Located on the Catawba River in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, is the small town of Morganton, North Carolina, that features beautiful scenery, outdoor adventure, and a vibrant downtown. With a population of about 17,000, Southern Living Magazine referred to it as a “small town we love.” Morganton has many historical sites and districts which reflect the development of the area by yeoman farmers, and later cotton plantations and textile mills. Today the town is filled with unique restaurants, shops and art galleries. It is also home to North Carolina School for the Deaf, Western Piedmont Community College, and a small regional airport. Photo of Mountain sky over Lake James courtesy of Wikipedia and Lily Dancy U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (public domain); photo of a home in the West Union Street Historic District, on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places, courtesy of Wikipedia and Warren LeMay (public domain)


Where to Retire in Morganton and Home Prices

According to, the median sale price of a home in Morganton was $140,530 in early 2020.


What Is Special about Morganton

Morganton is a small city in a beautiful location with a lot going on.  The charming, walkable (and bike-friendly) downtown offers unique dining, breweries, wineries, shops, and galleries. Along with outdoor recreation opportunities are museums, art events, festivals and concerts held throughout the year, and Western Piedmont Communitiy College offers a variety of Personal Enrichment courses. 


What Is Not Special about Morganton

Winters are cool and the nearest large city is Charlotte, about 75 miles away.


Who Will Like Retirement in Morganton

Those who enjoy the outdoors amidst the beauty of the Blue Ridge Mountains, and like a change of seasons would enjoy living here. Morganton has several parks and walking trails, golf courses, an arts center, historical district, and medical center. It also has a low cost of living and a low crime rate.


Local Economy Is Driven by

Burke County Schools and Blue Ridge HealthCare are the biggest employers, but manufacturing and tourism also help to drive the economy.


Climate and Physical Environment

The average January temperature is about 38 degrees, with July's average at 77 degrees.  Morganton gets a trace of snow during the winter months but less than 5 inches.


Restaurants & Cultural Scene

The City of Morganton Parks and Recreation Department maintains more than 400 acres of public parks along with the Morganton Greenway System which offers biking, jogging and picnicking; the town also provides community gardens and a year-round Aquatics Center; Burke Arts Council is host to several cultural and artistic events that include classes, exhibits and Arts on the Square; The Historic Morganton Festival is held each summer and is one of the biggest in this part of the state, with music, concerts and vendors; Morganton also hosts the annual Oyster Outing and Ghost Tours in October. For more fun and culture, Asheville and Charlotte are both about an hour away.



The crime rate in Morganton is below the national average.


Medical Facilities

Blue Ridge HealthCare is located in Morganton.



FootHills Regional Airport is nearby, but the closest large airport is in Charlotte, about 75 miles away.


Valuable Links


Downtown Morganton

Morganton, NC

Burke Arts Council

Historic Morganton Festival


What people are saying about Morganton

A beautiful community for MidwesternerS
We built a house in Morganton in the only golf community in Burke County, Silver Creek Plantations, 8 years ago, and have lived here now for 1 year full-time. We miss the Midwest, but this community is the best substitute, naturally beautiful, 4 seasons, \"without\" the harsh winters. If you like the outdoors and being within 45 minutes from the best retirement city, Asheville, NC, than Morganton would be ideal for you. Wonderful people in our community and the town, always friendly and helpful, low cost of living, and a great retirement place. Come for a visit, you won\'t leave.
Posted by Theswede62 on December 25, 2015

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