Retirement Hobbies

Written by True Tamplin, BSc, CEPF®

Reviewed by Subject Matter Experts

Updated on September 07, 2023

Are You Retirement Ready?

Importance of Retirement Hobbies

Retirement is a significant milestone in a person's life, marking the transition from a career-driven lifestyle to a more relaxed and flexible way of living.

However, it is important to remain active and engaged during this stage of life, and one of the best ways to do this is through hobbies. Retirement hobbies can provide numerous benefits, from mental stimulation and personal growth to socialization and overall well-being.


Physical Hobbies


Gardening can take many forms, from growing vegetables and herbs to planting flower beds and creating beautiful landscapes. Many retirees find joy in tending to their gardens, watching plants grow, and enjoying the fruits of their labor.

Gardening offers numerous benefits, including exercise, stress relief, and a sense of accomplishment. It is also a great way to connect with nature and improve the aesthetics of your living environment.

Walking and Hiking

Retirees can enjoy the great outdoors by visiting local parks, nature reserves, or national parks. Walking and hiking trails offer varying levels of difficulty and provide opportunities to explore beautiful landscapes, observe wildlife, and breathe fresh air.

Regular walking and hiking can improve cardiovascular health, reduce stress, and help maintain a healthy weight. These activities also offer the added benefit of socializing with fellow hikers or joining walking groups.


Golf is a popular retirement hobby that can be enjoyed at any skill level. Many golf courses offer lessons and clinics specifically for older adults, allowing retirees to learn the game at their own pace.

Golf is not only a form of exercise but also a social activity. Playing with friends, joining a golf league, or participating in tournaments can foster new friendships and create a sense of community.


Swimming is a low-impact exercise suitable for retirees, especially those with joint pain or mobility issues. It provides a full-body workout, improving cardiovascular health and muscle strength.

Many local pools and recreation centers offer swimming clubs and classes specifically designed for older adults. These classes provide instruction, socialization, and support for retirees interested in swimming as a hobby.

Yoga and Pilates

Yoga and Pilates are gentle forms of exercise that can help improve flexibility, balance, and overall well-being. They are particularly beneficial for retirees, as they can help prevent falls and improve mobility.

Both yoga and Pilates incorporate elements of mindfulness and stress reduction, helping retirees find relaxation and mental clarity. Many studios and community centers offer classes designed for older adults, providing a supportive and welcoming environment.

Creative Hobbies

Painting and Drawing

Retirees interested in painting or drawing can explore various styles and techniques, such as watercolor, oil, acrylic, or sketching. Experimenting with different mediums can provide endless opportunities for self-expression and creativity.

Local art studios, community centers, and galleries often offer classes and workshops designed for older adults. These classes provide instruction, support, and the opportunity to connect with other like-minded individuals.


Photography allows retirees to capture meaningful moments, document their travels, or simply explore the beauty of everyday life. With advancements in digital photography, it has become easier than ever to learn and enjoy this creative hobby.

Online tutorials, classes, and workshops can help retirees learn digital photography techniques and editing skills. These resources enable individuals to enhance their images and create stunning visual stories.


Writing offers a way for retirees to express themselves, document their life experiences, or create fictional worlds. Journaling and memoir writing can be therapeutic and provide a lasting legacy for family and friends.

Retirees may also enjoy exploring fiction writing or poetry, allowing their imaginations to run free. Writing groups, workshops, and online forums provide support and feedback for those interested in honing their writing skills.


Retirement offers the perfect opportunity to learn a new instrument or rediscover a passion for music. Whether it's piano, guitar, or even the ukulele, learning to play an instrument can be a rewarding and enjoyable pastime.

Retirees can also explore their musical talents by joining a choir, community orchestra, or local music group. These organizations offer social connections, a sense of accomplishment, and the joy of performing.


Crafting hobbies such as pottery, woodworking, or sewing allow retirees to create unique, handmade items. These activities can provide a sense of accomplishment and pride in one's work.

Crafting can also be a way to create meaningful gifts for loved ones or keepsakes to remember special moments. Local craft stores and community centers often offer classes and workshops to learn new techniques and skills.

Social Hobbies


Volunteering provides retirees with a sense of purpose and the opportunity to give back to their community. Many local organizations, such as schools, hospitals, and non-profits, welcome the skills and experience of retirees.

Retirees can also volunteer their professional skills to help organizations in need, such as offering financial advice or marketing expertise. Skill-based volunteering can be a fulfilling way to continue using your knowledge while making a difference.


Traveling is an exciting way to explore new cultures, meet new people, and create lasting memories. Many tour companies offer group travel opportunities specifically designed for retirees, providing a safe and social environment to explore new destinations.

Traveling can also be an educational experience, allowing retirees to learn about different cultures, languages, and histories. This can lead to a greater understanding of the world and an appreciation for diverse perspectives.

Book Clubs and Discussion Groups

Joining a book club or discussion group allows retirees to share their ideas and opinions with others, fostering intellectual stimulation and social connections. Book clubs often explore a wide range of genres and topics, expanding participants' reading interests.

By discussing books with others, retirees can discover new authors, genres, and perspectives. This can lead to a lifelong love of reading and continuous intellectual growth.

Bridge and Other Card Games

Card games such as bridge, poker, or canasta provide mental stimulation and strategic thinking. These games can help keep the mind sharp and active during retirement.

Playing card games also offers a social outlet, as individuals can participate in friendly competition and enjoy the camaraderie of fellow players. Many community centers and clubs offer card game gatherings for retirees.

Dance Classes and Clubs

Dance classes, such as ballroom, salsa, or line dancing, can provide retirees with a fun and active way to stay fit and social.

Dancing can also help improve coordination, balance, and flexibility, making it an enjoyable and beneficial hobby for retirees.

Dance clubs and classes provide a welcoming environment for older adults to connect with others and build new friendships. Many studios and community centers offer dance classes tailored to the needs and abilities of retirees, ensuring an enjoyable experience for all.

Intellectual Hobbies

Lifelong Learning

Retirees can pursue their intellectual interests by enrolling in continuing education courses at local colleges, universities, or community centers. These courses often cover a wide range of subjects, from history and literature to technology and science.

Online learning platforms, such as Coursera, edX, and Udemy, offer retirees the opportunity to learn new subjects or skills at their own pace. With a vast selection of courses available, retirees can continue their intellectual growth from the comfort of their homes.

Language Learning

Learning a new language can be a challenging and rewarding endeavor for retirees. It not only enhances cognitive function but also opens up opportunities for travel and cultural exploration.

Language classes and conversation groups offer a supportive and social environment for retirees to practice their language skills. Many community centers, libraries, and language schools offer courses and resources specifically designed for older learners.

Genealogy and Family History

Genealogy allows retirees to delve into their family history, uncovering stories and connections from the past. This pursuit can be both fascinating and rewarding, providing a deeper understanding of one's heritage and roots.

Numerous online resources and databases, such as and, make it easier than ever for retirees to research their family history. Local libraries, archives, and genealogy societies can also provide valuable information and support.

Puzzles and Brain Games

Engaging in puzzles and brain games, such as crossword puzzles, Sudoku, and trivia, can help keep the mind sharp and active during retirement. These activities offer mental stimulation, improve problem-solving skills, and provide a sense of accomplishment.

Regular mental stimulation has been linked to improved cognitive function and a reduced risk of age-related cognitive decline. Puzzles and brain games provide a fun and engaging way for retirees to maintain their mental agility.

Astronomy and Stargazing

Astronomy and stargazing offer retirees the chance to explore the wonders of the universe and appreciate the beauty of the night sky. With a telescope or binoculars, retirees can observe celestial objects such as planets, stars, and galaxies.

Many local astronomy clubs and organizations host events, stargazing parties, and workshops for individuals interested in learning more about the cosmos. These events provide a supportive and educational environment for retirees to pursue their interests in astronomy.

Final Thoughts

Retirement is an important phase in a person's life, and engaging in hobbies can help promote overall well-being, mental stimulation, and socialization.

Physical hobbies such as gardening, walking and hiking, golf, swimming, yoga, and Pilates can improve cardiovascular health, mobility, and mental clarity.

Creative hobbies such as painting and drawing, photography, writing, music, and crafting allow retirees to express themselves, create meaningful items, and learn new skills.

Social hobbies such as volunteering, travel, book clubs, and discussion groups, bridge and other card games, and dance classes can foster social connections and intellectual stimulation.

Finally, intellectual hobbies such as lifelong learning, language learning, genealogy and family history, puzzles and brain games, and astronomy and stargazing offer opportunities for intellectual growth and exploration.

Overall, retirees should consider engaging in a variety of hobbies to promote a fulfilling and active retirement.

Retirement Hobbies FAQs

About the Author

True Tamplin, BSc, CEPF®

True Tamplin is a published author, public speaker, CEO of UpDigital, and founder of Finance Strategists.

True is a Certified Educator in Personal Finance (CEPF®), author of The Handy Financial Ratios Guide, a member of the Society for Advancing Business Editing and Writing, contributes to his financial education site, Finance Strategists, and has spoken to various financial communities such as the CFA Institute, as well as university students like his Alma mater, Biola University, where he received a bachelor of science in business and data analytics.

To learn more about True, visit his personal website, view his author profile on Amazon, or check out his speaker profile on the CFA Institute website.

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