In fact, a recent study conducted by the North Carolina Center for Creative Retirement noted that Texas has surpassed California and Arizona to claim the number two retirement destination in the country behind Florida. Texas is the second largest state in the nation based on both population and area and is often referred to as the Lone Star State. Retirees are drawn to Texas for the mild climate and wide-open spaces. Because of the large size of the state the topography varies from mountainous to forested hill country to coastal plains and prairies in the interior. There are many mountains, rivers and lakes found throughout the state of Texas.