Ten sunny campgrounds in Destin Florida on the beach

Henderson Beach State Park Dunes

Ten sunny campgrounds in Destin FL on the beach

The Destin Florida area also offers a wide range of activities and attractions for visitors to enjoy, including beaches, golf courses, fishing charters, nature trails, and water sports. There are also many restaurants, shops, and entertainment venues in the area. Destin is located on the Gulf of Mexico in an area called the Emerald Coast known for its endless family fun.

The Florida Panhandle is referred to as the Emerald Coast because of the beautiful, clear green waters of the Gulf of Mexico that wash up on its white sand beaches. The clear, emerald green waters are a result of the shallow, clean waters of the Gulf, which are home to a variety of marine life and coral reefs. The combination of the white sandy beaches and the crystal clear, green waters make for a beautiful and picturesque beach destination.

The beaches in this area offer a range of activities and amenities, including swimming, sunbathing, surfing, fishing, and more. Their is a variety of both state parks and privately owned RV parks that offer an ideal campground for your next vacation.

Emerald Coast Beach on the Gulf of Mexico

Henderson Beach State Park

The Henderson Beach State Park campground is located on the Gulf of Mexico in Destin, Florida, and offers a variety of 60 campsites, including tent sites and RV sites with water and electric hookups. The park also has a bathhouse with hot showers and flush toilets, as well as a playground and a picnic area with picnic tables and six shaded pavilions. 

Amenities at the campground include a camp store, laundry facility, and a dump station for RVs. The park’s 0.75 mile nature trail offers 30 foot sand dunes and coastal scrub oaks dominated by myrtle oak, sand live oaks, and Choctawhatchee sand pines. 


Henderson Beach State Park Dunes
Henderson Beach State Park

  • Sixty campsites
  • On the beach
  • Nature trails
  • Sand dunes
  • Picnic Pavilion
  • Fishing

Topsail Hill Preserve State Park

Try beach camping at Topsail Hill Preserve State Park, located about 15 miles west of Destin. The park offers 3 miles of pristine beaches and is great for bird-watching and hiking. It also has a variety of campsites, including 22 tent-only sites, and over 150 RV sites with full hookups, bungalows and cabins.

Amenities at the campground include a bathhouse with hot showers and flush toilets, a camp store, a playground, pool, shuffleboard, and a picnic area.

Topsail Hill Preserve State Park

  • Campsites for RVs and tents
  • 3 miles of white-sand beaches
  • Nature trails
  • Sand dunes
  • Bike trails
  • Lakes
  • Shuffleboard
  • Paddling
  • Swimming

Grayton Beach State Park Campground

A top ranked option for campgrounds with lakes and beaches is Grayton Beach State Park located 23 miles east of Destin.

Grayton Beach consistently ranks among the top beaches in the United States. This state park offers a variety of campsites, including tent sites, RV sites with full hookups, and 30 cabins. 

Amenities include a bathhouse with hot showers and flush toilets, a camp store, a playground, and a picnic area. The park offers several trails including the 4.2 mile Grayton Beach Hike and Bike Trail which is a great option for wildlife viewing.

Grayton Beach State Park Campground

  • Campsites for RVs and tents
  • On the beach
  • Over 5 miles of nature trails
  • Swimming and fishing
  • Sand dunes
  • Bike trails
  • Three lakes
  • Canoe rentals
  • Boat ramp

Best Destin Florida RV Parks

The Gulf Coast is a popular destination for RVers, and there are a variety of RV parks to choose from, ranging from small, family-owned parks to large, amenity-filled resorts. The RV parks near Destin offer a range of amenities, such as full hookups, laundry facilities, swimming pools, and more.  Here are a few to consider.

Camping on the Gulf

Camping on the Gulf is a privately-owned RV park located in Miramar Beach, just a few miles from Henderson Beach State Park on the Emerald Coast Pkwy. 

This beach front RV park offers a variety of campsites for tents, RVs, and trailers, including sites with full hookups, water and electric sites, and primitive tent sites. The 215 sites includes cabins, small tents, glamping tents and 16 spots on the beach front. 

Amenities at the RV park include a heated pool, a playground, a laundry facility, and a bathhouse with hot showers and flush toilets. It also has a camp store and a recreational area with a basketball court and a shuffleboard court. In addition to traditional camping, the RV park also offers a variety of rental units, including park model rentals and cabins. You can make reservations for campsites at Camp Gulf through the resort’s website or by calling them directly. 

Camping on the Gulf

  • 215 sites for RVs including cabins, and small tents.
  • 16 beach front spots
  • On the beach
  • Swimming and fishing
  • Two pools
  • Water slide
  • Playground
  • Laundry

Geronimo RV park

Also located on the Emerald coast is Geronimo RV Park in Miramar Beach FL. 

Close to beaches and dining in Destin, this park offers 34 large RV sites for big rigs. Amenities include restrooms, private showers, and laundry. No tent camping is available. There is a large recreation field for activities and dog walking.

Geronimo RV Park

  • 34 large RV sites for big rigs
  • Recreational field
  • Laundry
  • Concrete pads and patio
  • Full hookups
  • Cable TV and Free WiFi

Destin RV Beach Resort

This private RV park in Destin offers 36 fully-equipped sites, each with its own patio and picnic table, along with two fully equipped condos. It has private beach access and includes a heated swimming pool, shower rooms and a general store. 

The resort is a gated resort for your privacy. This is a great place to enjoy the beach which is a short walk (200 yards) away from the resort. A variety of beach services are available including beach chairs, golf carts and bicycle rentals.

Destin RV Beach Resort

  • 36 fully-equipped sites
  • Patio and picnic table with each site
  • Private beach access
  • Laundry
  • Beach services available

Emerald Beach RV Park

In Navarre FL, between Destin and Pensacola on the Santa Rosa Sound lies the Emerald Beach RV Park offering over 60 RV sites. 

It has a private beach directly on the Santa Rosa Sound, offering beautiful views of the water. There is a clubhouse, pool, private fishing pier, showers, restrooms and laundry.  Paddleboard and kayak rentals are available. 

It offers waterfront sites with their own deck to overlook the sound. This resort is minutes away from local shopping and restaurants.

Emerald Beach RV Resort

  • Over 60 RV sites
  • On the Santa Rosa Sound
  • Waterfront sites available
  • Clubhouse and pool
  • Private fishing pier
  • Laundry
  • Paddleboard and kayak rentals

Destin West RV Resort

The highly rated Destin West RV Resort is located 5 miles west of Destin on Okaloosa Island between Fort Walton Beach and Destin offers over 50 brick paved RV sites with picnic table, patio, and landscape dividers. 

This luxury RV resort offers a water front pool, access to Choctawhatchee Bay (chok-tuh-hach-ee), fishing pier, laundry, restrooms, laundry and more. This resort also shares access to some amenities including beach access with a nearby waterfront hotel resort. Check with Destin West RV Resort for a complete listing of the wonderful amenities. The hotel includes the famous grotto waterfall and pool with bar inside. Walking distance to the beach and many water activities.

Destin West RV Resort

  • 54 RV sites
  • Waterfront sites available
  • Clubhouse and pool
  • Pet friendly
  •  Bonfire and s’mores Tuesday and Thursday evenings
  • Amenities at nearby Gulf front hotel with restaurants

Navarre Beach Camping Resort

Thirty minutes drive to the west of Destin, lies Navarre Beach Camping Resort on the Santa Rosa Sound. This resort offers white sandy beaches on the sound, and is 5 minutes away from Gulf beaches. 

Enjoy waterfront RV sites, cabins, a pier, heated pool and hot tub and spacious sites with hookups and clean restrooms and laundry. Rent a kayak or paddleboard and enjoy the water.

Navarre Beach Camping Resort

  • Waterfront RV sites on the sound
  • 300 ft fishing pier
  • Basketball court
  • Heated swimming pool
  • Hot Tub
  •  Kayak and paddleboard rentals

St. George Island State Park

  • 60 campsites for RVs and tents
  • Nine miles of beaches
  • On barrier island
  • Nature trails
  • Fishing
  • Canoeing and kayaking
  • Birding
  • Stargazing platform
St. George Island State Park

Driving three hours to the east of Destin FL along State Highway 98 you will find St George Island State Park. Just four miles offshore near Apalachicola Bay, this state park is located on a barrier island on the Gulf of Mexico.  

This Florida State park offers a variety of 60 campsites for tents and RVs, including sites with full hookups and sites with water and electric hookups. The campground has a bathhouse with hot showers and flush toilets, as well as a dump station for RVs. 

There are also several nature trails in the park, as well as a playground and a picnic area. Enjoy stargazing on the observation platform.

Florida State Parks

You can reserve a campsite at a Florida state park up to 11 months in advance through the Florida State Parks reservation system. The reservation system allows you to search for available campsites by park, date, and type of campsite. Once you have found a campsite that meets your needs, you can make a reservation online or by phone. To make a reservation for a campsite at any of these Florida State parks, you can use the Florida State Parks reservation system. In high season, it is recommended to make reservations in advance, as the campground can fill up quickly during peak season. 

It is generally a good idea to make reservations in advance, especially during peak season, to ensure that you have a campsite when you arrive. Keep in mind that campsites can fill up quickly, especially on weekends and holidays, so it is recommended to book as far in advance as possible to secure your desired dates. Some state parks also have a minimum stay requirement, such as a two-night minimum on weekends, so be sure to check the reservation policies for the park you are interested in.

St George Island State Park
Emerald Coast Beach on the Gulf of Mexico

Recommendations on picking your spot

To determine if each place is a good fit for your needs, it may be helpful to research the resort or campgrounds and read reviews from other campers who have stayed there. You can typically find information about the resort and its amenities on their website or by searching online directories. 

Reading reviews from other campers can give you a sense of the overall atmosphere and level of service at the resort, as well as any potential issues or concerns you should be aware of. It is also a good idea to consider your own needs and preferences, such as the type of campsite you prefer, the amenities you require, and any activities or attractions you are interested in.

Pet Policies

The Florida State Park pet policy allows pets in designated areas of the parks, as long as they are kept on a leash no longer than 6 feet at all times. Pets are not allowed in park buildings, including visitor centers, restrooms, and cabins, or on designated swimming beaches. Some state parks may also have additional restrictions on pets, such as a no-pet policy for certain areas of the park or a prohibition on certain breeds of dogs.

It is important to follow the Florida state park pet policy to ensure the safety and enjoyment of all park visitors, as well as to protect park wildlife and natural resources. It is also recommended to clean up after your pet and dispose of waste in designated areas.

To find out more about the pet policy at a specific state park, you can visit the park’s website or contact the park directly. You can also check the Florida State Parks website for general information about the pet policy at state parks in Florida.

For any of the private resorts, please check with the resort management for their specific pet policies.

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Best places to retire in Florida without hurricanes

With beautiful white-sand beaches, warm weather and over 230 days of sunshine a year, it’s no surprise that many people find Florida the perfect place to live out their golden years. Florida has 65,758 square miles of land (22nd largest state) and has the third highest population of any state at over 21 million residents. The four major cities in order of population are Jacksonville, Miami, Tampa and Orlando.

When looking for the best cities to retire in Florida, it is usually best to avoid the populated metro areas to avoid the high cost of living and higher crime rates. If you are looking for affordable single family homes, then the smaller cities we’ve uncovered offer more affordable options. In many cases these smaller towns are only a short drive to the beach, and in many cases are close to natural outdoor attractions for nature lovers.

Overall, Florida is a very affordable state with no personal state income tax. Statewide crime rates in Florida are below the national averages (in 2020), but can vary depending on the area within the state. Florida has very competitive prices for renting or buying single-family homes, however prices have been going up faster over the past few years because of the state’s popularity. In 2022 the cost of living in Florida is 1% higher than the national average, and housing prices are 2% higher than the national average.

Undoubtedly with all its beauty and affordability, the state of Florida is a perfect location to consider for retirement. On average however, every three years the state of Florida experiences a major hurricane. With the threat of hurricanes real, here are some points to consider when looking to retire in the sunshine state.

What are the major hazards to property that come with hurricanes?

There are three major hazards to avoid that accompany hurricanes that you want to avoid to protect your home and look after your personal safety.

Storm surge – The low pressure created by the hurricane causes an increase in sea level above the normal high tides. This affect is known as storm surge and is the cause for the highest number of casualties and damage to properties from hurricanes. According to FEMA, storm surges have been known to go as far inland as 25 miles. For more information on storm surge check out this storm surge risk map.

Flooding – The large amounts of rainfall that accompany hurricanes can cause flooding, especially in low-lying areas. Flooding can occur in low-lying areas miles from ocean shorelines and is the major threat from hurricanes for people living inland. During hurricane Ian in 2022, inland flooding effected parts of Orlando in the center of Florida. Flood insurance is not always required by mortgage companies and many damaged homes were not insured. Elevation (height above sea level) of a home is important in forecasting impact from flooding Here is a useful tool to determine elevation by address.

Strong winds and Tornados – Hurricane force winds cause damage to homes, trees, and infrastructure. During hurricane Ian in 2022 which hit the southwestern coast of Florida near Fort Meyers, approximately 10 tornadoes were reported as far away as Ft Lauderdale FL on the eastern Atlantic coast.

Avoid the coasts and low-lying areas.

When a hurricane lands in Florida, the large amount of rainfall along with the storm surge and high-water levels, wreak havoc with roads and residences and can endanger people living in those areas. To avoid mandatory evacuations or boarding up your home, avoid low-lying areas around both west coast and east coasts because they tend to be the most vulnerable areas.

When planning a move to Florida, there are many resources available to help you chose a safe location. For example, this map provided by the National Hurricane Center, a part of NOAA shows there most of the major hurricanes have landed over the past 110 years from 1900 to 2010. As you can see from the map, most of the hurricanes hitting Florida coasts have occurred in southern Florida and along the Florida panhandle.

To stay as safe as possible from hurricanes new residents to Florida should consider North, Central, and Inland Florida. These areas have historically experienced the least impact from hurricanes. Avoiding a place directly on the Atlantic coast of Florida or the western Gulf Coast will shield home owners and renters from the strongest winds and storm surge that is seen when hurricanes immediately make landfall.

We’ve compiled a list of Florida cities and small towns that could each be a great place to retire in the sunshine state. We picked a range of communities using a variety of criteria including affordability and low crime rates. This makes this list available to a wide range of household incomes. Each area’s crime rate was considered and a preference was made for areas with a low crime rate so new retirees can have a safe place to live. Despite this, we recommend everyone should independently work to find the ideal place that suits their personal needs. Real estate agents with in depth knowledge of the local area should be leveraged to help find a new home.


Just north of Gainesville off I-75 lies the vibrant town of Alachua. Known as a nice family suburban area with plenty of space, and about a 20-minute drive from the University of Florida. If you like the outdoor adventure, you’ll like what Alachua has to offer. Just outside of town, you will find San Felasco Hammock Preserve State Park. Alachua county offers a variety of fun on the water in the many rivers, lakes and springs. If you enjoy fishing, or cruising in a kayak you’ll have plenty of things to do.

Main Street Alachua
Crime RateBelow FL and U.S. Averages

St. Augustine

Just south of Jacksonville on the north Florida Atlantic coast sets the beautiful town of St Augustine. As oldest European settlement in North American, St Augustine was originally established in 1565 by Spanish explorers. This coastal town boasts easy access to miles of beaches, and a vibrant historic old town. St. Augustine’s lies on the north side of Florida’s Atlantic Coast, and despite being right on ocean, the number of hurricanes in this area of Florida is lower than other coastal areas. Being on the ocean does make this area more susceptible to hurricane damage due to storm surge, flooding and high winds.

St. Augustine River Walk
Crime RateAbove FL and U.S. Averages

Fernandina Beach

If you do like being on the ocean and want to avoid the parts of Florida known to get more hurricane activity, then come stay in Fernandina Beach, the northern most Florida city on the Atlantic coast. Fernandina Beach is on Amelia Island, voted one of the best islands in the United States by Conde Nast Traveler.

The island offers miles of beautiful soft white sand beaches, abundant wildlife and calm, crystal-clear waters. The city of Fernandina Beach offers an amazing array of restaurants, shopping, and nearby golf courses.

Amelia Island, Fernandina Beach FL
Crime RateBelow FL and U.S. Averages


If the Gulf Coast is more your style, then go discover Niceville FL, located along the Florida panhandle along the Gulf of Mexico. Nearby Destin FL has become a popular place for tourism in recent years. Given its endless stretches of white sandy beaches, wonderful fishing, and great shopping, Destin rivals some of the popular cities in south Florida.

Just inland from Destin is the wonderful community of Niceville, worth a visit and maybe even a long-term stay. Close to Eglin Airforce Base, Niceville offers proximity to beaches, nature trails and the rural northern Florida culture. It does lie on the Gulf of Mexico and is more vulnerable to the affects of hurricanes.

Niceville FL
Crime RateBelow FL and U.S. Averages


If you like the outdoors, then the city of Ocala in central Florida may be for you. Recently called the Horse Capital of the World, it has a large number of thoroughbred farms and training centers nearby. Its proximity to the Ocala National Forest is another outlet for adventure lovers who like to get outside and go boating, fishing or horseback riding.

Ocala Park
Crime RateBelow FL and U.S. Averages

The Villages

Florida’s amazing climate and all the amenities of The Villages maybe why it is one of the largest retirement communities in the United States. Started in the 1960’s, The Villages is a master-planned community in the heart of central Florida with a growing population of over 80,000 retirees (+55 and over). If you want to ditch your car and opt for a golf cart, then this is the place for you. Its location away from the coast protects it from the high-winds, and storm surge that accompany hurricanes and tropical storms.

The Villages FL
Crime RateBelow FL and U.S. Averages


If you enjoy an active lifestyle and plenty of water sports, the town of Tavares lies between Lake Dora and Lake Eustis and offers many water activities. In addition there are many trails for hiking and nearby golf courses. Like many wonderful towns in Florida, despite the high quality of life that can be found here, Tavares still boasts a median home value below the national average.

Tavares FL
Crime RateBelow FL and U.S. Averages


On the north side of Orlando, on the shores of Lake Apopka, lies the city of Apopka FL, known for its indoor flora industry. We think you should consider it because of its affordability, charm, shopping, and proximity to many outdoor attractions such as Wekiwa Springs State Park and the Lake Apopka Wildlife Trail, or fishing in Lake Apopka. Northwest Recreation Complex is an amazing 182-acre outdoor sports complex featuring an outdoor amphitheater and hosts local festivals.

Dock at Lake Apopka
Crime RateBelow FL and U.S. Averages

Winter Garden

East of Orlando where there were formerly orange groves lies the beautiful town of Winter Garden FL. Winter Garden has the best location and small town feel while being close to the conveniences of Orlando, and the entertainment areas of Disneyworld and Kissimmee. The downtown area hosts a variety of events and an top voted Farmers Market on Saturdays throughout the year.

Saturday Farmers Market, Winter Garden FL
Crime RateBelow FL and U.S. Averages

Citrus Springs

Closer to the gulf coast and 90 minutes north of Tampa lies the town of Citrus Springs FL. Citrus Springs is an affordable town experiencing rapid growth and with median home prices that are below the Florida and U.S. averages. With plenty of outdoor activities and a small-town feel, it is popular with retirees as well as growing families. Just to the east of Citrus Springs lies Crystal River FL where you can see Manatees up close as they come to bathe in the warm underground springs.

Crystal River, near Citrus Springs FL
Crime RateBelow FL and U.S. Averages


Located halfway between Tampa and Orlando lies the wonderful town of Lakeland FL. The area offers many outdoor activities including Lake Mirror Park with its lakeside promenade and historic amphitheatre and the botanical gardens of Hollis Garden. If you need some beach time, then Clearwater Beach FL is a little over an hour away.

Hollis Garden, Lakeland FL
Crime RateBelow FL and U.S. Averages

St Cloud

South of Orlando next to East Lake Tohopekaliga lies the town of St Cloud FL. If you are looking for a small-town feel, it is getting harder to find in Florida, but St Cloud can offer you a good taste. With a vibrate downtown area, and active waterfront area by the lake, there are many things to keep you busy in St Cloud. Walt Disney World is approximate twenty minutes’ drive to the north. There is a growing retirement community in the area.

Sunset on Lake Tohopekaliga, St Cloud FL
Crime RateBelow FL and U.S. Averages

Punta Gorda (Babcock Ranch)

Despite its close proximity to the Gulf of Mexico waters and the potential danger from Hurricanes that brings, Punta Gorda is a beautiful town north of Ft Meyers to consider. One notable nearby community that handled the strong winds, storm surge, and local flooding from hurricane Ian is Babcock Ranch. Especially designed to handle hurricanes like Ian, Babcock Ranch made out very well, proving that it is possible to build homes to withstand strong hurricanes.

Babcock Ranch, Punta Gorda FL
Crime RateBelow FL and U.S. Averages

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How to write a retirement speech

Speaking at a retirement ceremony

How to write a retirement speech

Writing a great retirement speech might seem like a scary proposition, but with the right strategy, you can make it far less daunting. Writing great farewell speeches is not as hard as you may think. Whether it is for a friend’s retirement party or for your own retirement speech, if asked to give a retirement speech, it is a good idea to prepare ahead of time by writing the words down.

Speaking at a retirement ceremony
Presenting at a retirement ceremony
It doesn't take much time to gather information about your friend or colleague's career and personal life. This will help inform your words and ensure you have captured the key points that will grab the audience's attention.

Celebrate the incredible successes!

You might be nervous about writing such an intimate speech and fear coming across as insincere or trite. The most important thing is to speak from the heart. If your speech is coming from the bottom of your heart then it is nearly impossible to fail at writing a good retirement speech with just the right amount of sincerity and respect for your colleague or friend. 

Before beginning the process of writing a retirement speech it is important to consider the purpose of the speech. Are you speaking on behalf of a company, club, or organization, or as a personal friend? Are you giving an introduction to the retiree or are you giving the main farewell address? Once this is understood, you can begin to craft your retirement message.

The key is keeping it short and sweet (around ten minutes), speaking from the heart, using personal anecdotes rather than general facts, and focusing on what matters most: the person leaving and their contribution to the organization or team.

Thanking them for their hard work on their last day and offering good luck and best wishes are important elements of the speech. This may well be the last opportunity that coworkers have to offer their well wishes, say goodbye, wish their retiring colleague a happy retirement, or find out about their future retirement plans over the coming years.

What Makes a Great Retirement Speech?

A heartfelt speech captures the essence of the person and their achievements. It celebrates their career, the special moments they’ve had along the way, and their positive impact on others. It also gives everyone a glimpse into the person behind the achievements. A memorable retirement speech will be talked about for years to come as a true testament to the greatness of the honored person. Here are some tips to help you write a speech that encapsulates all the elements and ensures your send-off does the occasion justice.

Keep in mind the audience you address

Formal retirement ceremony
A formal retirement ceremony

Before you begin writing, think about the audience you’re talking to. You’ll want to write something that will resonate with them and send the right message about the retiree. You may have worked with the person for years or have only met them recently. Maybe you have a pre-existing relationship or not know well them at all. Regardless, you should still write with the perspective of the person you’re addressing.

If you’re unsure of your relationship with the audience, write from the retiree’s perspective.

Gather information

As a starting point begin looking for content ideas by meeting with the retiree, a coworker, or staff member who knew them well and may have stories with personal details to make give the speech a personal touch. You can also learn more by asking family members about their achievements outside of work.

By doing this well ahead of time before you begin writing, you’ll have much more content to work with and a lot of time to create a wonderful retirement farewell speech. This will also help guide you on what to speak about and how to weave their story into the speech.

Including hobbies and discussing life after retirement are enjoyable topics of a well-crafted retirement speech

Learn the Special Qualities of the Person and get some anecdotes

Once you’ve gathered as much information as possible about the person, you should try to identify the qualities and characteristics that make them unique. This will help you highlight their achievements while also giving the audience a glimpse into the person they’re honoring. You can do this by weaving in a short story or two about the retiree. 

“Often when you think you’re at the end of something, you’re at the beginning of something else.”

Fred Rogers
The prospect of a happy retirement brings a smile to many.

Prepare with a framework

The best retirement speech should be tailored to the person you’re honoring and it’s helpful to work from a basic framework. This will allow you to plan your speech and ensure you don’t digress too much or lose focus. It also helps if you have a solid conclusion to the speech, so the audience knows what you’re trying to say and why. Here are some topics you could focus on in your speech: 

  • The person’s career achievements 
  • Things the person has taught you
  • The person’s personality and character
  • The person’s contribution to the community 
  • Advice for the retiree’s future
  • The person’s legacy

Organize Your Thoughts By Writing Them Down

Whether you choose to outline your speech or not, you should definitely write down your thoughts and ideas while they’re fresh in your mind. Doing so will help organize your ideas and make it easier to put them all together when the time comes. Use index cards to jot down key points, quotes, and anecdotes that you can easily refer to when giving the speech. This can also help you identify any holes in your story or areas you need to expand on.

Keep it short — but not too short

Making your retirement speech too long is a common mistake, but it can also be avoided. You want to use the right words to say everything you want to say about the person, but you also don’t want to go too long. A good rule of thumb is to keep it under ten minutes. This gives you enough time to say what you need to but also avoids the speech becoming too long and the audience losing focus.

Add Some Humor (If Appropriate)

Humor is a tricky subject when it comes to writing a retirement speech. While it’s not strictly necessary, a funny line can help make the speech more memorable. It can also help lighten the mood and ease the tension. It’s important to use the right amount of humor. You don’t want to overdo it but adding a few jokes or funny story can help make the speech special and something thing that will be remembered fondly.


It’s easy to write a speech on the fly and get lost in the moment. However, you want to ensure you’ve rehearsed your speech a few times before delivering it at the event. This will help you avoid mistakes and make your speech more polished and natural. Finally, don’t forget to proofread your speech before you give it. This can help you catch any mistakes or areas you need to expand on. It would help if you also practiced reading the speech aloud multiple times to be comfortable with it when the day comes. Using simple sentences and speaking with a loud voice will enable any group of people from all backgrounds enjoy your keynote speech.

Get Feedback

It is always wise to seek advice from someone before you give a big speech. It is especially important to seek advice from someone who knows the retiree well, such as close friends, or someone they’ve known during their years of service. Your address will flow more smoothly if you seek feedback from someone else, and you don’t risk saying something inappropriate or putting your foot in your mouth. You should still seek input even if you know the retiree well and are close to them. A second opinion will help you fine-tune your speech so that it is just right.

The Delivery

The audience pays attention to verbal and nonverbal cues when you give a speech. Those things contribute to the audience’s experience while listening to you. Here are some suggestions to assist you in delivering a good speech:

  • Stand upright: The audience pays attention to your body language when you give a presentation. An upright posture conveys confidence and makes it easier to engage the audience.
  • Maintaining eye contact with your audience while you speak is important to appear engaged. However, looking at one person for too long may make the audience uncomfortable.
  • Your notes should be used for cues when delivering a speech. For example, it may seem as if you hadn’t prepared for the occasion if you read the entire speech from a paper.
  • It is easier to pace your speech when you are relaxed and calm. It also helps the audience understand every word you say.
  • It is essential to be audible when addressing a large crowd. If you speak clearly, with good volume, It can help the audience engage with you.
  • If you get stuck, improvise. Just share how you feel, and don’t panic
  • Using simple hand gestures or displaying emotions through laughing and smiling is a great way to engage your audience and appear honest with your words.
  • Thanking the audience for listening helps end the talk well. You may also want to reintroduce the day’s masters of ceremony to transition into the next segment.
Military retirement ceremonies filled with pomp and circumstance

In Summary

A retirement speech is a special occasion that should be celebrated. It is an opportunity to thank the person for their contributions and achievements and wish them well in the future as they start a new beginning.

Being asked to write and deliver a retirement speech is an honor you shouldn’t take lightly. However, with the right strategy, writing a great speech is far from daunting and not as hard as you might think. With some research, information gathering, and organization, you’re guaranteed to write a memorable speech that the audience will love.

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