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Pau, France

Pau: The City of Gardens and Green Space

The city of Pau, also known as the “Green City” and the “Garden City,” has one of the highest ratios of greenery per square meter per person of any European city. Further, Pau’s greenery is tremendously diverse and includes trees and plants from Japan, the Caribbean, Mexico, Lebanon, the Mediterranean, Chile, and California, this huge variety in part thanks to the English settlers who came here after the Napoleonic Wars and brought with them their love of gardening and parks.

Pau is a landscape of accessible woodlands, the steep slopes of Jurançon wine country, the history-packed Plaine de Nay and its main town of Nay, and the pretty rolling countryside and ancient towns of the Gaves de Béarn. Pau is a university town, with close to 12,000 university students living on and off campus, helping to keep it lively.

Cost Of Living In Pau

The retiree who has dreamt of France but who can’t afford Paris should consider Pau. A couple could retire here on as little as €1,800 per month.

Monthly Budget For A Couple Living In Pau, France

ExpenseMonthly CostNotes
GasN/AIncluded with electricity.
WaterN/AIncluded with electricity.
Telephone and Internet included with cable TV.
Cable TV€30

Click here for currency conversion at today’s exchange rate.

Expats In Pau

More than 50,000 expats, including many retirees, live in Pau, in the Béarn region of France. This sizable and welcoming community has developed for two reasons—the oil and gas industry and the historical connection of this part of France with the U.K. The oil and gas industry brings many working expats with families to Pau. The result is an eclectic community that includes people from all over the world—British, Colombians, Mexicans, Dutch, etc. The existence of this group means strong and ever-growing infrastructure, amenities, and services to support and facilitate expat living.

Layer on top of this what Pau itself has to offer—the scenery, the climate, and the proximity to beaches and mountains—and you understand the appeal for the other group of non-locals that has established itself here. Brits and other North Europeans have been seeking out this part of France for retirement for many years. This is a really friendly bunch of people with a wide range of backgrounds and interests always ready to welcome newcomers.

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