The Best Places to Retire in Florida

Retire in Florida

If you are looking ahead toward retirement -- or even if you’ve already retired -- you may be searching for great weather, top-notch amenities, beautiful surroundings, and plenty of activities to keep you busy. You’ll find all of these and more in the active adult communities in Florida, including those located in metropolitan areas like Orlando or coastal towns like Port St. Lucie. They are among the best places to retire in Florida -- and they might just be your new home. Join us as we explore our top 5 best places to retire in Florida and share our favorite retirement community in each.



1. Port St. Lucie

If you’re looking for an active lifestyle with an emphasis on the outdoors, you’ll love living in Port St. Lucie. This coastal town, located less than an hour north of Palm Beach on Florida’s desirable Treasure Coast, offers the convenience of a growing city with the charm of vintage, small-town Florida.


Senior living in Port St. Lucie allows you to indulge your adventurous side, with horseback riding along the beach, canoeing and kayaking through stunning scenery, or hiking the trails at a nature preserve. If you’re a serious golfer -- or just want to be one -- check out PGA Village for some of the best golfing experiences on the Treasure Coast.


If you want to spend as much time at the beach as possible, you’re in luck. The vast majority of the beaches in this area are open to the public with free admission and a variety of amenities. Go for a swim, learn to surf, or just soak up the beautiful sunshine and sea breezes.


Are you more of a spectator than a participant? You’ll love attending Spring Training for the New York Mets or watching the minor league St. Lucie Mets during their regular season. Port St. Lucie hosts some of the best active adult communities in the Treasure Coast region and should be a consideration for those looking to retire in Florida.


Top Retirement Community in Port St. Lucie

Our pick for the top retirement community in Port St. Lucie is Del Webb Tradition. Located at 12920 SW Gingerline Drive, Port St. Lucie this 55+ community has homes starting in the low $200s.



2. Orlando

Whatever your retirement goals, Orlando senior living options provide exceptional opportunities in a growing metropolitan area. Located in central Florida, you’ll find plenty to keep you busy here. If you’re thinking about engaging in some lifelong learning by returning to school, the nearby University of Central Florida is an exciting and growing campus. Be sure to get tickets to watch the UCF Knights -- the pride of Central Florida.


If you’ve been considering a second career, look no further than the opportunities you’ll find at the mega-resorts in the area. Disney, Universal, and Sea World draw tens of millions of visitors to the area each year. Here you’ll find an array of opportunities in everything from retail to guest services to HR and more. If you’ve always loved the fun of a theme park, what could be better than working there?


Or, if you’re looking forward to a more laid-back retirement, you’ll find plenty of fun activities to keep you entertained in Orlando. The city has world-class dining, shopping, and entertainment venues, offering you plenty of ways to get out and about. The nearby resorts are a terrific option for spa-lovers, with all the latest and greatest treatments. And, if you’re a sports fan, you’ll love supporting the NBA’s Orlando Magic or join the rest of this soccer-mad city and root for the Orlando Pride and Orlando City Soccer Club.


Top Retirement Community in Orlando

Our pick for the top 55+ community in Orlando is the coming soon Del Webb Sunbridge. This 55+ community in St. Cloud is located on Narcoossee Road and is close to the action of Orlando. New homes will be starting in the mid-$300s.



3. Fort Myers

Fort Myers started to boom when the likes of Thomas Edison and Henry Ford built winter homes along its shoreline. To this day, people still enjoy this midsize metro area with a charming small town heritage as an excellent place to call home after retiring to Florida.


Nestled along the Caloosahatchee River, senior living in Fort Myers offers the laid back and relaxed mentality that you would expect to find in Florida. Residents enjoy the numerous beaches as well as public and private golf courses in their spare time. With the relatively low cost of living in the city, residents have funds to enjoy the nearby entertainment and liveliness of the revitalized downtown area. Some of the top activities for active adults in Fort Myers include a visit to the Edison and Ford Winter Estate Museums, a walk along Six Mile Cypress Slough Preserve, and catching a performance at the Barbara B. Mann Performing Arts Hall.


Top Retirement Community in Fort Myers

Our pick for the top retirement community in Fort Myers is Tidewater by Del Webb. This 55+ community in Estero is located at 20110 Tavernier Driver, near the action of Fort Myers, and features new homes starting from the high $200s. This community is also a Blue Zone Lifestyle community, meaning it focuses on residents’ community, lifestyle and spirituality needs.



4. Jacksonville

Located in Northeastern Florida, Jacksonville is situated where the St. John’s River meets the Atlantic Ocean. Like Orlando, Jacksonville is one of the major regional business centers in Florida, making it a perfect hub for people who may consider a second career after retiring.


In addition to being home to companies like Fidelity Financial, senior living in Jacksonville also offers plenty of activity for 55+ residents looking to spend time outside. Local residents in Jacksonville can enjoy over 20 miles of coasts perfect for exploring or can take a stroll in Jacksonville’s extensive urban park systems with walks through Tree Hill Nature Center, Little Talbot Island or Huguenot Park. For those who feel adventurous, seniors can plan a trip to see a beautiful Florida waterfall at the nearby Devil Millhopper Geological State Park. The park’s 120-foot deep and 500-foot wide sink hole leads to a miniature rainforest and is a designated National Natural Landmark.


For active adults in Jacksonville who prefer to exercise by doing a little shopping, the St. John’s Town Center open-air mall features over 150 stores with numerous name brand shops and a plethora of dining options.


Top Retirement Community in Jacksonville

Our pick for the top retirement community in Jacksonville is the newly opened Del Webb eTown. This 55+ community in Jacksonville is located at 11246 Town View Dr. and features our newest GenYou floor plans, designed for today’s active adults. Etown’s urban new homes start in the mid $200s.



5. Palm Beach

Palm Beach is located in South Florida and is separated by the mainland by the Lake Worth Lagoon. Known as the winter home to hotel and railroad tycoon, Henry Morrison Flager, this town is rich with glitzy estates and beaches. Those looking to retire can enjoy active senior living in Palm Beach with long strolls along the sandy Palm Beach Municipal Beach or enjoy a visit to the Gilded Age mansion of Henry Morrison Flager. Since Palm Beach year-round weather averages a comfortable 78 degrees, residents can enjoy ample golfing, hiking or outdoor shopping any time of the year.


Top Retirement Community in Palm Beach

Our pick for the top retirement community in Palm Beach is Boca Flores, a 55+ community in Boca Raton. Located at 9114 Passiflora Way, these new homes start in the low $400s.


There’s a reason everyone makes the drive in search of the best senior living in Florida. Whether you love big-time city life or small-town charms, you’re sure to find an amazing Del Webb property right where you want to be. Check out the neighborhood amenities, the quality residences, and the built-right-in social activities, then get ready to begin your idyllic Florida retirement.



Contributed to The 55+ Society by Christy Murdock Edgar

Looking for more Society tips and learnings? Return Home here.

Published 10.5.19

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