Retire to Your Happy Place

October 30, 2020 • Fenny Peiffer


If you’re considering taking your retirement abroad, why not venture across the pond to where most say is the happiest place in the world? Scandinavia is renowned for outstanding healthcare, a generous pension program, and friendly locals that know how to live well. This corner of the globe is made up of Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Finland, and Iceland, along with some of the most spectacular scenery you’ll ever witness. From its simplistic interior design to the popular self-care practice of hygge, Scandinavia’s balanced approach to living has made it an appealing ex-pat destination.

Health and Wellness – Business Insider listed three out of five of these countries in the top 21 places to retire in the world. From Sweden’s world-class health care system to Denmark’s affinity for cycling, you’d be hard-pressed to find a region more dedicated to promoting health, and fitness. Rain or shine, Scandinavians make it a point to move every day whether it’s walking to work, or going to the gym. When it comes to receiving medical care, patients have access to state-of-the-art health facilities and cutting-edge technologies.

They have happiness figured out. Whether it’s cozying up with a book, or get together with friends, Denmark, in particular, has turned to nurture the body, and soul into an art form. Taking time to slow down, and live in the present is a major factor in the Danish pursuit of happiness. From walking the dog, and lighting candles, to enjoy a picnic in the park, Scandinavians stop to smell the roses and don’t hesitate to put their emotional health first. With such a focus on self-care, it’s no surprise Swedes have one of the highest life expectancies in the world.

Financial Practicality – According to Forbes, Norwegians have a good handle on their sensible pension program. Employees can draw from their pensions early without penalty, or allow it to grow if they plan to postpone retirement. There’s research out there that working beyond 65 has certain health benefits, so around two careers as an ex-pat could be just what the doctor ordered. By bus, train, or taxi, Scandinavia’s efficient public transportation system, and booming electric car industry, offers a cost-effective alternative to filling the tank every week.

The Scandinavian peninsula is almost otherworldly, From its breathtaking fjords to the pastoral farmlands of Sweden, the landscape alone is enough to put a smile on anyone’s face. Welcoming, and inspiring, a greater sense of wellbeing may only be a passport away.

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