Sign in business district of Venice, Florida, a small retirement town in Florida.

8 Towns in Florida that Are Ideal for Seniors

Affordability, beautiful scenery, and a welcoming local community are three essential elements to look for in the ideal town to retire or relocate to as a senior, and Florida's eight small towns for seniors are the perfect balance. While many choose to leave America and fly out to tropical Asian and South American countries, retirees and seniors can find everything they seek within the Sunshine State of Florida. From calm nature-centric towns like Safety Harbor, with its lively and supportive community, to waterfront upscale communities that reflect the ultimate American Dream, Florida is rich with distinguished small towns to call your next home. 

Mount Dora

The historic Lakeside Inn and verandah in Mount Dora, Florida,
The historic Lakeside Inn and verandah in Mount Dora, Florida. Image credit Nigel Jarvis via Shutterstock.

Mount Dora, which ranks on the list of best Florida Towns for Seniors, is a central town that attracts retirees from major cities like Orlando and Tampa seeking a peaceful place to call home. Scenic views of Dora Lake and Mount Dora Lake House are some of the town's most distinctive features, along with its historic downtown square that makes almost every list of the best main streets in Florida. The community culture in Mount Dora is yet another main reason to relocate in your senior years, as the town holds the title of "The Festival City" among state locals, bringing out the best of creative local efforts and offering endless opportunities to mingle and make new friends. Major local events in Mount Dora include the Blues & Groove Weekend, the Spring Crafts Show, and the Plant & Garden Fair. One of the more affordable towns on this list, the minimum average income per single resident in Mount Dora is roughly $47,600. The Leesburg Regional Medical Center, South Lake Hospital, Florida Hospital-Waterman, and The Villages Regional Medical Center are the area's four major public healthcare facilities. The W.T. Bland Public Library in Mount Dora is where clubs and gatherings are held. 

Cedar Key 

Island city of Cedar Key off the northwest coast of Florida with kayaks on the shore
The island city of Cedar Key is off the northwest coast of Florida. Image credit Linda White Wolf via Shutterstock.

The fishing and resort town of Cedar Key is the perfect retirement town for those seeking a waterfront town to call their new home. Despite being a popular tourist destination for slow-life lovers, Cedar Key stands out, ranking as the most affordable beach town according to a study from Upgraded Points and multiple news outlets. In addition to being income tax exempt, studies found that the average weekly stay in Cedar Key costs an average price of $1,330. In contrast, other popular beach destinations would cost roughly $4,547. The town's untouched nature in places like Cedar Keys National Wildlife Refuge adds to its appeal among nature enthusiasts and those avoiding crowded destinations and prefer to spend their retirement days exploring new waterside hiking trails home to thousands of bird species. Popular hiking trails in the area include Cedar Key Scrub East Loop, Cedar Key Museum Nature Trail, and the Cedar Key Reserve trial. Additionally, the town's isolated, far-out location and island setting in the northwest of the state make it one of the most peaceful, underrated decisions to call home. 

St. Augustine

Aerial view of St. Augustine, Florida
Aerial view of St. Augustine, Florida.

One of the best places to retire in Florida is also renowned for being America's oldest town, featuring all elements that make the Sunshine State one of the best places to retire, from sunny beaches to architectural remnants of the Spanish colonial era. Home to many retirement communities disguised as luxury retreats, seniors moving to St. Augustine are assured quality care while living their vacation dream year-round surrounded by palm trees and crystal-clear waters. Allegro Senior Living, Silver Treasures Assisted Living near Fort Moose State Park, and Riverside Cottages at the Shores are some of the top-rated facilities in the area, along with many others competing with a unique theme and setting. While living expenses are typically higher in St. Augustine, with its housing market being 26% more than the national average, the state's income tax exemptions make it one of the most sought-after communities for patriotic retirees and history buffs. Founded in 1565, newcomers can spend years there before learning all about the town's historical tales and landmarks, ranging from the Castillo de San Marcos Monument to the 40-acre Fort Mose Historic State Park. 


Athens Theatre in historic small town Deland street view
Athens Theatre in historic small town Deland street view. Image credit SR Productions via Shutterstock.

Deland is the place to retire for those pursuing a sense of tight-knit community and culture within a reasonable distance from major cities like Orlando and Jacksonville. Like much of Florida, Deland also enjoys exceptionally sunny climates and is home to world-class golf courses. Home to a thriving art scene, Deland's downtown is decorated with murals. It is a base for an artistically creative population that beautifies their hometown with small shops and public events like the Deland Outdoor Art Festival every spring. Blue Spring State Park, located 8 mi south of downtown Deland, De Leon Springs, and Bulow Creek, are a few state parks that add to the town's appeal and popularity among nature enthusiasts. With 20% of the population aged over 65 and older, Deland attracts retirees from all over the Sunshine State for its affordably of living, averaging $2,931 in monthly expenditures according to the Nasdaq best towns Florida Cities to retire on a $3000 budget in 2023. 

Safety Harbor

Quaint community of Safety Harbor consisting of a famous resort
Safety Harbor Resort & Spa exterior. Image credit Linda White Wolf via Shutterstock.

Seniors seeking a slower pace can relocate to Saftey Harbor, a community renowned for its waterfront greenery, historic downtown, and overall cozy small-town element. With over 45% of the town's population aged 45 and older, Safety Harbor balances a culturally diverse community of primarily democratic political belonging. Catch sunsets along the town's small marina, stroll the brick-paved downtown streets, and plan your relocation with the parks and recreation department that showcases all healthcare and assisted living options for newcomers. Sitting on the West Shore of Tampa Bay, Safety Harbor's history dates back to 1823. Safety Harbor is a highly desirable retirement town but is among the least affordable on this list, with average home prices of roughly $490,000. Its prime location, 19 mi from Tampa and 7.3 mi from Clearwater, is a prominent factor in the town's overall cost of living. However, prices are semi-justifiable for the perfect weather and classy, upscale atmosphere. 

Punta Gorda 

The Peace River marina at Punta Gorda and Port Charlotte
The Peace River marina at Punta Gorda and Port Charlotte. Image credit Feng Cheng via Shutterstock.

The Southwest city of Punta Gorda is one of the best retirement communities for its green waterfront setting, a blend of a vacation resort and small-town atmospheres, and endless cultural activities. The town has community homes and assisted living services that are suitable for the active and nature-loving senior demographic. Some of the top-rated senior facilities in the area include Brookdale Punta Gorda Isles near Ponce DeLeon Park, Ventura Lakes Lifestyle, and Lakewood Village communities. Private state-acclaimed healthcare facilities like Shorepoint Health, VIPcare Punta Gorda, and other locally operated centers dot the city and are prominent incentives to relocate where medical attention is important and abundant. Typical home costs in Punta Gorda are estimated to be $314,000, a medium balance between your options on this list of the best Florida Towns for seniors. Additionally, a significant portion of the town's population is seniors, with the median age in Punta Gorda being 67.


Sign in Venice, a small Florida retirement city,
Sign in Venice, a small Florida retirement city.

The ultimate senior living destination for its romantic, historical, and affordable living, Venice's population comprises a predominantly old demographic. It is a medium between cheap and expensive retirement towns in the Sunshine State. Highlights of your everyday life in Venice include the palm tree and flower-decorated historic downtown area of Miami Ave, Tampa Ave, and Nokomis Ave, where family-owned businesses come together to thrive. Pet owners can spend their days frequenting the Brohard Paw Beach Park and Woodmere Paw Park. Popular attractions to explore while getting to know the city include the Ideal Classic Cars Museum & Showroom and the beachfront trails of Caspersen Beach. Single-person annual expenses in Venice, Florida, cost up to 52,000 annually, while the average home cost in the typical home cost is $441,000, making it 30 more expensive than the national average. 


Crystal clear spring water in Manatee Springs State Park in Chiefland, Florida
Crystal clear spring water in Manatee Springs State Park in Chiefland, Florida.

Wrapping up the list of best Florida towns for seniors is Cheifland, a small community renowned for its natural attractions and a strong sense of community engagement depicted through places like the Cheifland Farmers and Flea Market. One of the least populated towns on this list, Chiefland is more of an agricultural community for retirees and seniors seeking a countryside setting without leaving Florida. It is near untouched natural destinations like Manatee State Park, and its affordability makes Cheifland a desirable community to retire in. However, due to the town's calm, secluded atmosphere, and rural location, Chiefland's closest medical facilities, Williston and Gainesville, sit roughly 31 mi from the town center, making it a less popular option among those who need frequent medical attention. Average prices in Cheifland were valued at 95,571 in 2020, while average living costs reached an estimated $2885 per month. Newcomers have endless eco-rich sites to explore when moving to Cheifland, Florida, with unique places like the Chiefland Astronomy Village, a serene stargazing destination, and the Lower Suwannee National Wildlife Refuge 18 mi from Cedar Key. 

Ultimately, Florida attracts thousands of retirees and senior citizens annually for its paradise-like setting, exceptional caretaking facilities, and resort-style affordable accommodations. From beach escape t you've always wanted to call home to small historic communities and recreational hubs, relocating to these eight Florida towns ideal for seniors means living every day as a never-ending vacation. 

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