Top 10 Best Destinations to Retire in Europe

You have had a hard-working life and you are fed up with it. Now it’s time to retire and have the life you’ve always wanted. Have you ever thought of retiring to another country? What are the best destinations?

I personally had this thought many years ago when I went to Spain for a short trip, and it was amazing. I was born in Florida, and I was always interested in having a house in Europe, somewhere I could have breakfast near the sea. How amazing is that?

Let us know in the comments which countries are the best destinations.

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1. Alicante, Spain

In Spain, you’ll have over 300 sunny days per year, and for those summer lovers, this climate is going to be perfect! The summer is going to be dry and very warm since the winter is mild compared to other countries in Europe where the temperature can go below 0 degrees. For seniors who suffer from cold weather and who are not allowed to be exposed to lower temperatures, this destination is one of the best in Europe. The cost of living is also an important factor to consider.

Alicante has good prices if you are planning to buy or rent a house, plus the food is actually very affordable. Most of the Spanish people speak English pretty well in this area just because it is a touristy destination as well.

In case you didn’t know, Spanish is actually a pretty easy language to learn, even if your native language is English.

2. Malta 

This country is pretty well-known just because it is visited yearly by so many people. It has one of the best climates in Europe and is also a place where you could easily live. Besides the fact that English is their second official language, people from here are very friendly! Who doesn’t want friendly neighbors?

If you are a nature lover, you can go to the island of Gozo and to Mellieha, two of the best destinations Malta can offer, which were also rewarded with the title of “Best Hidden Gems in Europe”! How cool is that? I would definitely pack my bags and go there as soon as possible, even for a trip.

3. Samos Island, Greece 

Located near Bodrum in Turkey, Samos Island has been a Greek island for more than a century. Because it’s located like this, Samos has one of the best climates. You will have plenty of time to travel between Turkey and Greece because they are so close. And the surroundings!

This is such a nice destination to retire to. Samos beaches have a lot of fishing villages, so if you are into this hobby, you will love this area for sure. Are you ready to pack your bags?

4. Portugal 

Many retirees have chosen this specific country because of its climate and breathtaking scenery. Porto and Northern Portugal are two perfect destinations for retirees who want both an active social and cultural life.

Regarding the quality of life, Portugal has a lot of facilities, from public hospitals and private medical clinics to tons of shopping places, which are pretty affordable.

If you are interested in travel, you will have plenty of nice destinations to visit. Do you like Portugal? Would you move there?

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5. Tuscany, Italy 

The entire country of Italy is stunning, and it is unquestionably a place where you would want to live! With such a nice climate and a lot of historical places to visit, Italy quickly became one of our favorite destinations.

Tuscany is one of the most beautiful regions in Italy and it’s among those destinations which were ranked as having the best landscapes in Europe.

You just have to visit Tuscany once, and then you will come to the conclusion that this is going to be your destination to retire! Trust me, you won’t have any regrets.

Your best activities in that area can be a visit to San Gimignano or Siena, and you can also visit the Uffizi Gallery or the Pallazzo Vecchio.

Where are you from? How’s the winter there? In Tuscany, winters are very mild and they barely have snow. I would love a winter without snow and cold.

6. French Riviera, France 

When you talk about France, you should know that Paris is one of the most popular and actually prettiest cities in the world. But did you know that they also have the world’s best health care? It’s also a very budget-friendly place to live in. The French Riviera is mostly famous for its beautiful villages, but also for the climate.

You can lie down on the beach from Monday to Sunday without any worries, and you will also enjoy that it’s close to Monaco, Nice, and Menton. Who doesn’t like France now, honestly?

Did you know that studies have shown that in recent years, more seniors have been considering retirement abroad?

7. Budapest, Hungary

Budapest is becoming a popular retirement destination for most Americans. Why? Because they have an attractive cost of living, the surroundings are amazingly beautiful, and the food is excellent. Compared to New York, the cost of living in Budapest is 57% lower, and if you want to rent a place, it will be 83% lower. How cool is that?

Even if their language is pretty hard to learn, I would personally move to Hungary. Another bonus is that English is a commonly spoken language. If you are interested in moving here, you should know that you will receive permanent residency only after three years of continuous living in Hungary, along with strong proof of financial responsibility and property ownership. Did we convince you?

8. Prague, Czech Republic

That’s a fact! Prague is incredible, and no other city in Europe can compete with it. This capital is both ancient and modern, and it’s like a home for all the foreigners, mostly retirees. Prague is mostly known for its Baroque and Gothic churches and architecture in general. The healthcare system is one of the best in Europe and the costs are budget-friendly.

The doctors are well-trained and most of them are actually English-speaking. You can obtain a long-term visa and apply for permanent residency after living legally for five years in the Czech Republic.

9. Ljubljana, Slovenia

You’ll notice that we mostly recommend cities from a specific country, but we also recommend the entire country. In this case, Ljubljana, in particular, offers a lot of benefits if you are planning on retiring there. Slovenia, as a country, has been a member of the European Union since 2004.

The capital is actually a mix of old and modern, which offers you access to beaches, lakes, and mountains. The cost of living is attractive and, compared to New York, is 41% lower. Would you consider moving to Ljubljana? Tell us in the comments.

10. Split, Croatia

Croatia is mostly a tourist destination but it’s also quite attractive for all the retirees. Here you will have warm and dry summers and mild winters since nobody likes snow, right? If you are planning to stay longer than 90 days, you must apply for a temporary residence permit, which is going to last for a year.

You can get permanent residency only if you stay there for five years (as a temporary resident). Don’t worry about the language since Croatians speak English pretty well. Healthcare is considered good here, and the doctors here are proficient.


Why would you move outside the USA? For most seniors, the cost of living is the main factor. A lot of popular retirement destinations in Europe have living expenses similar to the USA, but usually, weather, culture, and the environment are other influential factors. You must know that each country has different rules.

But in general, most require evidence of your income level and private health coverage, so don’t worry! If you really want to move to another place when you retire, you should consider a few things first and read more about the country in which you desire to relocate.

You might also like 10 Great Part-Time Jobs for Retirees.


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