DeFuniak Springs : Florida


What It Is Like to Retire in DeFuniak Springs

DeFuniak Springs is a small, historic town on Florida’s Panhandle, with a population of 5,919 (2020 Census), and is the seat of Walton County. It was named after Frederick R. DeFuniak of the L&N Railroad, who helped to establish the town as a final-destination resort and which became part of the Chautauqua Movement. The Florida Chautauqua Assemblies were held here from 1885 until they ended in 1927, with the gated community referred to during this time as "The Education Resort of the South". The Florida Chautauqua Association was founded in 1993, by the citizens of DeFuniak Springs, who helped to bring the original assemblies back to life, and it is still providing educational programs, keynote speakers, exhibits and performances. The historic town is also home to DeFuniak Lake which is considered to be a perfectly round lake, one of only two found in the world (the other is in Sweden). Beautiful homes built during the Chautauqua Movement surround the lake on Circle Drive, which is part of the town's historic district and provides for a nice walk. Florida’s highest natural point is only 345 feet above sea level, and is found on Britton Hill at Lakewood Park in DeFuniak Springs. Picture of The Chautauqua Hall of Brotherhood the centerpiece of Circle Drive, courtesy of Wikipedia and Staugbeachbum; photo of Lake DeFuniak in the daytime, and photo of the Walton-DeFuniak Library, courtesy of Wikipedia and Ebyabe, Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0/

Where to Retire in DeFuniak Springs and Home Prices

The median home value was $210,207 in early 2022, up over 33% from a year earlier.

What Is Special about DeFuniak Springs

DeFuniak Springs is a small town with an interesting history and features beautiful historic homes that surround a circular lake. The Chautauqua Assembly is an important asset to the community providing cultural events. There are also parks, which includes one with a lake that provides a swimming area and a boat ramp, a golf course, a vineyard, and the town hosts several events throughout the year.

What Is Not Special about DeFuniak Springs

DeFuniak Springs is not close to any large city, with Tallahassee 120 miles away. The closest International airport is in Birmingham, Alabama which is located about 220 miles from DeFuniak Springs.

Who Will Like Retirement in DeFuniak Springs

those looking for a small town with an interesting history, and part of the Chautauqua Movement may enjoy DeFuniak Springs. There are cultural events presented by the Chautauqua Assembly, along with parks, a golf course, a medical center and a quaint and historic library.

Local Economy Is Driven by

The economy is driven by retail, services, and public administration.

Climate and Physical Environment

DeFuniak Springs is home to the highest elevation point in the state of Florida, found at 345 feet above sea level on Britton Hill. The average January temperature is 51 degrees, with July's average at 91 degrees. The average rainfall is 63" annually.

Restaurants & Cultural Scene

There are several restaurants in DeFuniak Springs, including Hotel DeFuniak, that offer a variety of cuisine,. The Chautauqua Assembly provides cultural events with lectures, music and activities. There are many historic sites here including the train depot which now houses the Walton Heritage Museum.


The crime rate here is above the national average.

Medical Facilities

Healthmark Regional Medical Center is located here.


Destin-Fort Walton Beach is the nearest airport, about 45 miles away.

Valuable Links

DeFuniak Springs

Florida Chautauqua Assembly


What people are saying about DeFuniak Springs

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