Now I can't stress how important I think it is to make your bucket lists. For those of you that may have missed the movie "Bucket List" let me explain. Your bucket list is simply a list of things you want or need to do before you die. Simple as that! So if you always wanted to learn mandarin Chinese or walk the great wall of China then put it down on your bucket list. Put it all down on the list.
Even more important if you will be retiring with a partner is to have them also make their bucket list. Then compare your bucket lists and you may find that you have many things in common ... or not. However, as I stated before this simple exercise allowed us to determine that we weren't ready to settle down in Florida yet even though the real estate values there had plummeted making it relatively cheap to relocate there.
Looking over our bucket lists we noticed that they included a lot of travel items... want to see Arches National Monument, want to hike on the Appalachian trail, want to see Yosemite etc. So as a result we determined it might be best for us to travel for a year or two ... or more before we settle down in retirement. Also, traveling may help us better determine where we want to finally retire.
So now we are researching and investigating the RV lifestyle to see if that appeals to us... but that is another story!