30 Fun Things to Do in Retirement

They’re called your golden years for a reason. Now that you’re ready for retirement, it’s time to live a little! Not sure what to do with all of your free time? Stay busy with these 30 things to do after retirement!

Enjoy the Honeymoon Phase

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You’ve worked hard your whole life, so now you can take some time to just do nothing! Throw away your day planner, sleep in, and go on vacation. Though you’ll eventually want to think about how to structure your day in retirement, enjoy the first few months by taking it easy!

Make a Daily Schedule

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If you start to feel bored in retirement, add a little structure back into your life! From establishing a bedtime and wake-up time to picking a weekday to visit your grandchildren, creating daily habits will make your days feel meaningful and focused. Adjusting to retirement can take some getting used to, but it will go a lot smoother if you develop a routine early on!

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Pen a Bucket List

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Have you made a bucket list yet? One way to maximize your time after your working years is to write down your goals and dreams so you can start prioritizing the trips and activities that really matter to you. Goals on your bucket list can be as simple as learning a new language or as extreme as going skydiving.

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Get a Part-Time Job

If you’re wondering how you can earn money after retirement, consider getting a part-time job! Tutoring, substitute teaching, becoming an administrative assistant, or working in retail are just a few of the best part-time gigs for seniors.

Try Golfing

Photo via @goboomerlife

When it comes to retirement activities, few come to mind quicker than golfing! This is a favorite among active older adults because it’s a great way to get in some exercise while spending time with friends and family. Walk the course to get in your daily steps, or rent a cart if mobility is sometimes tricky. Whatever you prefer, this low-impact sport is a great way to engage in competition and fun!

Buy an RV

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There’s no need to stay in one place! Especially if you plan to downsize your home, purchasing a camper or travel trailer can be a great way to see the U.S. Trying to choose your first destination? Check out these best national park road trips! If you want to be on the road full-time, there are even ways you can make money while traveling in an RV!

Go Abroad

Photo via @jnywtnb

Life after retirement promises an abundant amount of free time. And what better way to spend it than to see the world? Whether you loved jet-setting in your working days or have never traveled abroad, now is your opportunity! Don’t want to do the planning alone? Senior focused travel groups like Grand Circle Travel, ElderTreks, and many others offer tour programs specifically designed for adults 55 and older.

Learn a New Language

Photo via @duolingo

Whether you‚Äôre preparing for a trip abroad or simply want to improve concentration, learning a new language is a fun activity that will help keep your memory sharp!¬†Free resources like¬†Duolingo¬†allow you to practice new languages through an app on your phone or tablet, while subscription-based services like¬†Rosetta Stone¬†provide more comprehensive lessons on the computer. You can also find¬†language¬†books, CDs, and programs¬†at¬†your local¬†public library!‚Äč

Take an Online Class

Photo via @masterclass

There are endless benefits to continuing your education. From staying cognitively sharp to expanding the way you see the world, the internet means there are no bounds to what you can learn after you stop working. Check with your local library or universities to see if they have online courses available. Sites like Masterclass also offer courses for purchase on everything from wine tasting to filmmaking!

Audit a College Class

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Many community colleges and public universities will allow you to sit in on undergraduate courses for free. While you won’t earn any credit for observing or receive grades for your work, you’re welcome to take notes and do additional exercises on your own. This is a great way to keep expanding your knowledge on a variety of subjects without the costs of higher education.

Pursue Hobbies

Have a passion for puzzles? Want to learn how to knit? Interested in building model railroads? Retirement promises plenty of time to rekindle old hobbies and pursue new activities. Whether you start with gardening, watching sports, or getting back into crosswords, use your retirement years to return to doing things just for fun!

Join a Card Club

Photo via @karunahospice

In terms of beloved retirement hobbies, playing cards has stood the test of time. Rally your fellow card players to start a weekly tradition of playing bridge, pitch, or poker! This is a great way to participate in some healthy competition while spending time with your friends.

Get Involved in Your Community

Photo via @newsdurham

Early retirement is a perfect time to get involved with charity and community organizations.  Many of the most rewarding hobbies for retirees involve giving back. Spend time prepping meals at a soup kitchen, walk dogs at a humane society, or drive cancer patients to treatment. If you’re not sure where your skills can be best utilized, Senior Corps can connect adults 55 and over with volunteer opportunities in their community, as well as abroad!

Try Photography

What better way to slow down than to capture the world around you? Birds, sunsets, and grandchildren’s birthday parties are the perfect opportunities to practice photography skills and save special moments. Online resources like Digital Photography School give you access to product reviews and how-to videos, while sites likes Photoshop tutorials help you up-level your photo editing abilities. Use Meetup to connect with like-minded photographers in your area, or join a Facebook group like Inside The Box for daily photo inspiration!

Practice an Instrument

Photo via @jlmusicdance

Quit practicing piano decades ago? Always wanted to play the drums? Your retirement years are an ideal time to return to your musical roots or nurture them for the first time. Head to the local library to check out music books or teach yourself how to play any instrument with free tutorials and classes on YouTube!

Take an Art Class

Looking for something fun and easy to do after you retire? Sign up for art classes! Whether you want to paint, draw, or sculpt, you can find classes with local art galleries, museums, libraries, and universities. There are even businesses throughout the country where you can paint and drink wine at the same time!

Dance the Night Away

Get your groove on! Not only could you pay for private ballroom dance lessons, but there are many free dance groups for senior citizens as well. Check your local senior center or social hall for everything from waltzing lessons to Zumba classes. Don’t worry if you don’t have a partner! Dancing is a fabulous way to meet new people if you’re single and retired.

Help Out in a Classroom

Fill your days with love and gratitude! Go read in your grandchild’s classroom or offer to chaperone a field trip. Being around young people promises lots of laughs and will keep you feeling energetic and youthful!

Schedule Coffee Dates

What better way to spend your hard earned time off than with friends? Setting up recurring coffee or lunch dates is great way to make sure you’re getting plenty of social interaction and staving off loneliness.

Mentor a Young Person

Spending time with the younger generation will benefit them as much as it will you! If you’re looking for ways to enjoy your retirement, sharing your knowledge and stories with others is a sure-fire way to add joy to your day! Plus, they’ll be able to teach you helpful things about technology, social media, and current trends.

Prioritize Family

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Retirement life is perfect for maximizing family time! From scheduling family dinners to offering to watch the grandkids, an open schedule means you can visit family near and far.

Go to the Movies

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Experience movie magic often! Not only do most major theaters offer reduced ticket prices and matinee showings, but local cinemas may even have memberships or passes for senior citizens who attend regularly as well.

Take a Cooking Class

Photo via @cookingemem

Discover (or rediscover) the art of cooking! Meal prep might have lost its luster when your schedule was jam-packed. But now that you have more free time in retirement, you can take a cooking class, buy a new cookbook, or finally make that recipe you saved years ago!

Stay Active

Photo via @bowlinbu

Wondering how you can enjoy retirement for the long haul? Prioritizing exercise will help you keep feeling great both physically and mentally. Hike, bike, kayak, lift weights, schedule weekly tennis games‚ÄĒdo whatever you can to stay active! Also, check out¬†Silver Sneakers¬†(a fitness program included with most Medicare Advantage plans) to see if you‚Äôre eligible to join a gym or take fitness classes totally free of charge!

Start a Book Club

If cards and golf aren’t your thing, gather some friends once a month to talk about a great book! Most public libraries offer book clubs based on genre or shared interests. Or you can join a group on Goodreads, sign up for Oprah’s Book Club, or follow Reese Witherspoon’s monthly book club on Instagram, if you prefer online discussions and are more comfortable staying at home!

Head to the Local Library

Photo via @omahalibrary

Even if books aren’t your favorite, public libraries offer lots of programs and events that will get you out of the house. Book clubs, movie nights, reading challenges, and technology classes can all be attended here for free! Plus, your local library offers access to computers and other technology that you may not have at home.

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Audition for Local Theatre

One of the best things to do when you retire is to get involved in theatre performances with fine arts groups in your community! Most local plays, musicals, and operas only require a few weeks of rehearsals and shows, so you’ll be able to stay busy and make new friends without long-term time commitments.

Be a Museum Guide

Photo via @kombizz0

Are you a history buff? Do you love spending your days at the art museum? Become a guide! As a museum docent, you can give tours and spread knowledge on the topics you love. Not to mention, this is a great way to make a little money in retirement while also getting to see the latest museum exhibits.

Reconnect with Your Heritage

Photo via @dompathug

Get in touch with your roots during retirement! Check out Ancestry to trace your family tree, or join 23andMe to learn about your family’s genetic makeup. Better yet, plan a trip to Salt Lake City to visit the world-renowned Family History Library, where you can conduct your own genealogical research!

Prioritize Relaxation

Even though you’ll have a budget to stick to, save up so you can indulge a little! Get a massage, enjoy a pedicure, do yoga, and find other activities that help you relax. You’ve worked hard your whole life, so make your retirement years about slowing down and actually stopping to smell the roses!

Figuring out what to do in retirement is a journey that’s different for everyone! It will take some time to determine what kind of schedule, activities, part-time work, and volunteering opportunities are right for you. Considering a move to a new home in retirement? Check out these guides to retirement housing options and how to downsize for retirement!


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