21 Retirement Hobby Ideas to Keep You Busy & Happy


Retirement is a chance to kick back, relax, and focus on the things you love. For many seniors, this means checking things off their retirement bucket list and living life to the fullest. You’re in the driver’s seat when it comes to how you spend your time and money. How will you make the most of this important chapter of your life?

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Many seniors have an endless list of things to explore, but even the busiest people might hit a rut from time to time. It turns out having endless time for yourself isn’t always easy! You might be open to trying new things or learning something new.

It’s all about keeping your mind and body fresh! These 18 retirement hobby ideas keep you both busy and happy through your golden years!

Retirement Hobbies That Can Help You Earn Money

One of the best ways to spend your time when retired is pursuing a business, even if it’s just in a small way. A lot of hobbies are easy to monetize, especially in our new era of online buying and selling. If you have some free time, you can try these ideas below to earn a bit of extra cash. 

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1. Buy and sell vintage goods

If you have an eye for vintage things and antiques, you might be a great fit for buying and selling online.

There’s a budding community of online sellers who browse local shops and thrift stores to sell goods to people online. As the saying goes, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure!

2. Pet sitting

Another easy way to make money while having fun is to pet sit. If you’re an animal lover, why not look after pets in your community? Because your schedule is open, a lot of people who are on vacation or who work a traditional 9-5 might be in need of your services.

3. Become an assistant

If you don’t mind helping others in small ways, you could become a personal assistant or even a virtual assistant.

Whether you help a business owner balance their accounts or you pick up groceries for a busy mom, there are a number of platforms that make this easy to do. If you have a few hours a week, why not put them to good use?

4. Sell your craft

A lot of seniors find an interest in crafts and making things as they retire. This is the perfect time to become an expert at whatever you do! Sharing your arts and crafts online could even earn you a pretty penny! You can also join local craft fairs or markets to sell locally. 

Retirement Hobbies to Stay in Shape

With so much free time, make sure you’re prioritizing your health. That means getting outside, staying active, and moving your body. Try these retirement hobbies to stay in shape as a senior citizen!

5. Join a dance group

You don’t need any formal experience to job a dance group. Not only is dancing a great way to exercise, but it’s also a social activity. Join a community or senior group to see improvements in your balance, coordination, and mobility. 

6. Take up golf

Golf earned a reputation as being the most senior-friendly activity for a reason. This is a great sport, and it’s also a great way to get outside and stay social. This truly is a game for the body and the mind.

7. Learn yoga

Yoga is another activity that’s great for seniors. It’s gentle on the body, but don’t make the mistake of thinking this isn’t difficult.

Yoga is incredibly challenging, but it’s also really rewarding. Join a beginning yoga class or watch videos online to start your own practice. 

8. Hike local trails

Take this time to explore the great outdoors. You might not have had time to hike your local trails while you were working. Now, it’s all about putting yourself first. Hike your local trails, mountains, and nature preserves to get a much-needed breath of fresh air. 

Retirement Hobbies to Exercise Your Mind

While exercising your body is important, you also need to keep your mind sharp. Make sure you’re pushing your mind further to keep your memory, stress, and mental health in check during retirement. 

9. Puzzles and cards

These aren’t just activities for a rainy day. Putting together a challenging puzzle or playing a game of cards is fun for everyone, and it puts your mental capacity to the test. Invite over a group of friends and start playing. 

10. Travel

This is also the perfect time to travel. Nothing widens your mind as much as experiencing new places and cultures. If you’re well, why not see more of the world? There are travel groups that cater specifically to seniors, or you can trek out on your own. 

11. Read

When you read, you have the opportunity to experience new things all from the comfort of your chair. Whether you read the best novels of all time, a new bestseller, or retirement magazines, you’re getting your mind into shape.

Many seniors develop a passion for reading in retirement and with good reason! Better yet, join a book club. 

12. Genealogy

Why not trace back your ancestry? Genealogy is becoming more popular nowadays, particularly with seniors. Thanks to the internet and popular genealogy books, it’s easier than ever to learn about your family history. You might learn something you never knew about yourself. 

Altruistic Retirement Hobbies

While we like to think of retirement as a time to put yourself first, sometimes it’s also important to help others. Doing good for the world brings purpose into your own life. 

13. Volunteer

One of the most popular things to do upon retirement is to volunteer. Ou might work in a museum, serve meals at a kitchen, or join a women’s club. No matter what you choose, make sure you’re passionate about being there. 

14. Become politically active

No matter how you feel politically, your voice should be heard. Now you have the time to volunteer with a grassroots organization, local political candidate, or an action committee. Contact your local city to ask where you can help. 

15. Foster a pet

Many animal rescue groups have more pets than they can handle. Taking in a pet as a foster allows you to give the dog or cat a comfortable home while they wait for adoption. They’re also great companions!

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16. Become a member

Many local groups and organizations have paid memberships for those who want to help or get involved. You can likely become a member of local schools, museums, gardens, and parks. 

Retirement Hobbies for Couples

Retirement is also the perfect chance to bond closer with your partner. Whether you’ve been married for decades or you’re dating someone new, try these hobbies for couples.

17. Explore your town

When you’re working all the time, you can’t always stop and smell the roses. Why not use this time to explore your own community together?

You might find a neighborhood or side of town you’ve ever been to. Explore these nooks together!

18. Cook together

With your newfound free time, you might discover a new passion for cooking. Research new cuisines and recipes and try your luck at cooking a delicious meal together. Don’t forget to bring the wine! 

19. Plant a garden

Gardens are challenging, especially if you’ve never started one before. Planting a garden together is a new way to work on a project as partners in your new life stage. Perhaps you plant your favorite veggies or just some pretty flowers. Either way, do it together. 

20. Travel somewhere new

While traveling alone or with friends is great, traveling as a couple is the most romantic way to see the world.

With so many senior hotel discounts, there’s no excuse not to explore the world beyond your backyard. Where will you go next?

21. Go to the gym

Last but not least, get healthy together. Even if you’re both gym newbies, challenge each other to go to the gym regularly. Couples who workout together, stay together! 

Planning for the Best Retirement

Even if you have an endless list of things you want to do when you retire, it always helps to have more ideas. It’s hard to consider just how much free time you’ll have when you finally retire, but it might actually surprise you. These ideas above are perfect no matter what you’re interested in! Whether you want to see more of the world or donate your time to your community, this is the best opportunity to develop your interests and hobbies. 

Have you started planning your own retirement? The first step is to begin end-of-life planning. Once you have your important details taken care of, your time belongs to you. What will you do next?

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