Home » World News » Sun, sea, wine, culture, golf … the best places to retire in Europe, MAPPED
Sun, sea, wine, culture, golf … the best places to retire in Europe, MAPPED
July 3, 2023
Pensioners on state pensions being frozen after moving overseas
Spending one’s sunset years in the sun has long been the dream of many. Nowadays, Brits staring down retirement appear to be eyeing up an escape to Europe more keenly than ever before.
In the UK, inflation remains persistently high at 8.7 percent, well above the 6.1 percent in the EU, drastically diminishing the value of savings.
This is doubly troubling as the triple lock – which would have increased the state pension in line with inflation – is under serious threat of being scrapped.
Property prices in the UK are also near record highs, but have begun to fall fast – if ever there were a time to sell up and set off abroad, it is now.
There are an estimated 5.5 million British expats dotted around the world, around 1.3 million of which live in the EU. Far more than just holiday destinations, new research has revealed the best places to retire on the Continent.
READ MORE: Pension warning as Britons missing out on over £9,000 for retirement savings[LATEST]
The study, conducted by relocation advice site Moving to Spain, looked at a variety of metrics – from the cost of living, life expectancy, houses prices and healthcare – to work out the most attractive European destinations for British retirees.
According to their index, Portugal is the place to go. Aside from the obvious draws of sun-soaked beaches, an affable Atlantic climate, the wine and port, world-class gastronomy, plentiful golf resorts and spiritual walking routes, the western coast of the Iberian Peninsula also has a lot to offer by the numbers.
A safe country with good healthcare and almost a quarter of its population of retirement age, anyone moving there will be in good company. Living costs are affordable and housing, per square metre, is less than half the price of the UK.
Putting all this together gives Portugal a retirement index of 7.83 out of ten – higher than anywhere else.
Don’t miss… Bonds offer UK investors a gilt-edged opportunity[REVEAL] What the Foreign Office says Brits should know in Spain, Greece or Portugal[INSIGHT] POLL: Do you think you can afford to retire by state pension age?[POLL]
We use your sign-up to provide content in ways you’ve consented to and to improve our understanding of you. This may include adverts from us and 3rd parties based on our understanding. You can unsubscribe at any time. More info
Both with a score of 7.31, Spain and Italy share second place. Such is the attraction of Spain that more British expats have relocated there than anywhere else in Europe, the community numbering 300,000 at the latest count.
Life expectancy there is the second highest on the Continent, behind only Switzerland at 83.2 years, and the country boasts the most Blue Flag-quality beaches in the world – 731, almost ten times more than England’s 77 in 2023.
Alongside Portugal, Spain is also one of just seven European countries to offer a retirement visa that is well-established and easy to apply for.
Italy is also on that list, its food, culture and outstanding natural beauty making it a haven for retirees. A higher proportion of Italy’s residents are over 65 than anywhere else in Europe.
The Boot is followed by its neighbour across the Ionian Sea, Greece, with a score of 6.7 out of ten, Bulgaria (6.39) and France (5.53).
Although France scores high on a range of retirement quality indicators, it is a victim of its own success in that it registers some of the steepest property prices outside of the UK.
If sunshine alone is what you’re looking for, the tiny Mediterranean island of Malta is the place to go, blessed with 2,993 hours of rays a year.