More and more remote workers are packing their bags and taking the opportunity to live the digital nomad lifestyle. And why wouldn’t they? If all you need is a reliable internet connection to make your money, working online opens the door to work from just about anywhere in the world – from dreamy beaches in the South Pacific to cosmopolitan European cities.
While the digital nomad movement has been growing for many years, the pandemic spurred a surge in remote workers in search of the ideal destination (or destinations) to make the most of the situation. The result was an exponential jump in digital nomad hotspots, as countries around the world became more open to hosting these curious visitors and created special visa schemes for them.
Many digital nomads like to hop from place to place, taking advantage of as many of these cities and countries as they can. Others are more interested in finding a stable and long-term place where they can get work done, plant roots, and enjoy amazing food and scenery all at once.
If you’re one of the remote workers or online entrepreneurs who have the opportunity to do something like this, then you probably already know there are a ton of incredible places to consider! Below, we take a look at some of the best places for digital nomads around the world, considering their costs, things to do, and other important factors for the digital nomad lifestyle.
Best Digital Nomad Destinations in the World
1. Prague – Czech Republic
First up is the European city of Prague, the capital of the Czech Republic. Prague has become a major digital nomad destination in recent years thanks to its stunningly beautiful architecture, affordable cost of living, and fast internet speeds – according to Speedtest.net, Czechia ranks at #45 in the world for internet speed, which should be more than sufficient for remote work.
The Czech Republic is part of the European Union and Schengen Area, so you can stay up to 90 days on a tourist visa as a non-European. If you need more than that, you can apply for the country’s Digital Nomad Visa, known as a D-Visa. Both options provide the opportunity to see a ton around this great country and beyond, thanks to cheap flights and trains around the borderless bloc.
The pros of Prague include things like a very large ex-pat and digital nomad community, plenty of coworking spaces, and a mix of modernity and traditional charm that make it truly beautiful urban living. If you want to explore nearby areas, consider visiting the nearby towns of Pilsen, Cesky Krumlov, and Olomouc, which offer a variety of historical attractions.
The downsides of Prague include the fact that it can get quite cold in the winter, so if you’re not a fan of the cold, prepare to bundle up! When it comes to language, English is widely spoken and understood in Prague, although Czech is the official language. All of this makes the city of Prague one of the best places for digital nomads Europe has to offer.
See Related: Is Prague Safe? Things to Know for Travelers
2. Mexico City, Playa del Carmen and Tulum – Mexico
More and more Americans and Canadians are ditching the cold winter months and heading south of the border to Mexico. And while this country has always been popular among retirees from its northern neighbors, it’s become known as one of the best countries for digital nomads from the region as well, as it’s close to home and in the same or a similar time zone.
Mexico City is a great option for digital nomads on a budget, with a low cost of living, even for a single person. There’s also incredible food, rich culture, and bustling nightlife.
There are plenty of coworking spaces, and the big city vibe will help keep you motivated and inspired. However, the city is landlocked and more expensive than other Mexican cities, and you may have to deal with the occasional earthquake here.
If you’re looking for something a little more tropical and laid-back, consider Playa del Carmen or Tulum. They make for great sun-filled escapes from the hustle and bustle of city life with their beautiful beaches, amazing food, and warm weather. Your free time can be filled with plenty of activities, such as scuba diving, snorkeling, and swimming, and it’s easy to find like-minded people in this region.
Overall, Mexico is a place with welcoming locals, fantastic food, and conditions that are great for remote work and fun in between. Americans and Canadians can stay up to six months at a time without any visa formalities – perfect for a winter escape from the north – while a residence permit may be possible for anything beyond that
See Related: Tulum vs Cancun: Which is Better to Visit?
3. Lisbon – Portugal
The beautiful capital of Portugal is a great option if you’re looking for a place to stay in western Europe. Lisbon has become one of the most popular digital nomad spots on the continent with its stunning coastal views, sunny weather, and affordability.
While Lisbon prices have risen within the past year, it’s still one of the more affordable places in Europe, especially for a capital city. You have access to fresh, quality food, a long coastline, and lots of activities nearby, such as surfing, sightseeing, or exploring the vast cultural history. Many international residents now call Lisbon home, so you’ll easily meet other digital nomads from around the world.
This European capital is in a central location in the middle of the country, allowing for easy travel north to the lovely city of Porto with its tasty wine or south for a Mediterranean getaway in the Algarve. Lisbon will also provide a good workout with its abundance of hills and stairways.
The downsides of Lisbon include the fact that it can be very crowded in the peak tourist season, and there may be a language barrier at times for those who don’t speak Portuguese. However, most people find that the pros outweigh the cons of the digital nomad lifestyle in Portugal, and are happy to take advantage of the country’s digital nomad-friendly visa schemes and paths to permanent residency.
See Related: ViaTravelers Staff Picks: 10 Best Places For Travel
4. Bangkok and Chiang Mai – Thailand
Thailand is one of the most popular digital nomad destinations in the world and home to some of the best cities for digital nomads in Southeast Asia. Bangkok and Chiang Mai are two great spots to consider if you’re looking for a place to work remotely from this fascinating region. Both are major cities with an incredibly low cost of living, have digital nomad infrastructure like fast internet and co-working spaces, and offer plenty of opportunities to appreciate the local culture.
It’s easy to get around both cities. Bangkok has an excellent and cheap public transport system that includes trains, buses, and rideshares.
The typical cost of a train ride is $0.30! In Chiang Mai, you can get around by tuk-tuk inexpensively or by renting a scooter for about $8 to $12 – it’s also easy to walk to most places since the city is so small and compact.
The local cuisine of this country is unique and delicious, so you won’t run out of incredible food options. There is an abundance of cheap street food everywhere, or you can opt for slightly pricier scenic rooftop restaurants at resorts in Bangkok.
You can quickly travel from Thailand to other exciting Southeast Asian countries like Vietnam or Malaysia – also home to some great digital nomad cities – on a cheap Air Asia flight. Don’t forget to enjoy the beautiful beaches of the southern part and the islands of Thailand, too.
See Related: Best Places to Visit in Thailand & Things to Do
5. Medellin – Colombia
If you are interested in spending time in South America, Medellin in the vibrant country of Colombia is an excellent option. This is one of the best digital nomad cities Latin America has to offer, thanks to its great weather, the growing ex-pat community, and affordable cost of living.
Perk yourself up in the mornings with the amazing local coffee and enjoy the stunning views of Medellin in the evenings. The city is known for its street art scene, colorful buildings, and lively nightlife. There are plenty of co-working spaces to choose from, and lots of activities, such as salsa classes and hikes close by.
The city is also close to other popular locations, such as Cartagena and the Caribbean coast, which makes it easy to take weekend trips and explore the country. The mountainous rainforests to the city’s south and east are dotted with national parks that are absolutely breathtaking.
While language barriers can be a problem here, Spanish is a language that most digital nomads have some familiarity with, and English is becoming more and more widely spoken. Colombia, along with many of its neighbors, has an unfortunate reputation when it comes to safety – but this doesn’t have to be a problem if you follow simple safety tips like you would anywhere. A specific digital nomad residence permit is available for long-term remote workers coming to Colombia.
See Related: Cheapest Places to Fly Around the World
6. Ubud and Canggu – Bali, Indonesia
One of the most exotic and exciting places for digital nomads is Bali. Located in southern Indonesia, one of the very cheap countries for digital nomads in the Asia-Pacific region, this island is known for its active digital nomad community.
This stunning island digital nomad destination offers a lot of potential for working remotely, with plenty of beautiful beaches and breathtaking views. Ubud and Canggu are two popular areas that offer plenty of co-working spaces and activities. Most digital nomads and long-term visitors base themselves in the southern part of the island, where busy villages and more infrastructure are located.
Local people are known for their friendliness and hospitality. The delicious cuisine of this region includes a wonderful mix of Indonesian, Indian, and Chinese flavors. Be sure to take part in popular local activities such as surfing and yoga classes, and explore the breathtaking nature of the island – just be careful around the monkeys, who sometimes like to steal food, phones, and jewelry!
Living costs in Bali are spectacularly low, especially if you get away from the major tourist centers. Internet connectivity is good enough to work, except for perhaps some of the very remote villages. Indonesia recently released a digital nomad visa to make it simpler to stay in Bali for more than the standard 30 days.
See Related: Best Bali Organic Food Eateries
7. Ho Chi Minh City – Vietnam
If you want to spend time living and working in a bustling city in Southeast Asia, Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon) is an excellent option, known as one of the particularly cheap cities for digital nomads. Living costs are well under $1000 per month for above-average accommodations and amenities, and food and adventures don’t come with very high price tags either.
The District 1 area along the river is a popular spot for visitors and ex-pats, as it offers plenty of co-working spaces, lots of restaurants, and non-stop partying until 5 am. However, if you want something quieter, District 3 is just to the west and probably more your speed – plus, it has a busy night market known for great street food.
Coffee culture is big here, and there are many independent coffee shops lining the streets. Many of these shops have internet access and provide a great place to work. When you finish for the day, there are many cultural attractions in the city, such as the War Remnants Museum and the Cu Chi Tunnels, which are well worth a visit.
Traveling around the country and the whole region is cheap and easy. Be sure to explore the major city of the north, Hanoi, which is another digital nomad hub in Vietnam. Da Nang, in the center of the country, is home to some of the best beach resorts in the region – not a bad place to get some work done.
See Related: Most Beautiful Places in the World | Scenic Spots
8. Budapest – Hungary
In terms of digital nomad destinations in Europe, the joined cities of Buda and Pest have always been a favorite, thanks to Budapest’s central location on the continent and its wonderfully low cost of living for the region. Plus, this beautiful city is full of stunning architecture, lovely bridges, and great bars and restaurants.
The country now has a visa just for digital nomads, which makes it much easier to stay here. If you’re approved for the White Card visa, you can stay for up to a year, while a standard one will allow you up to 90 days in the Schengen Area. If you qualify, you can’t go wrong with the longer option – there is so much to see in this European city, in the rest of Hungary, and in the surrounding countries.
Budapest is a great place to work remotely, as it has numerous co-working spaces and cafés with free wifi. For your days off, the city offers an abundance of activities to take part in, such as exploring the many museums and galleries, visiting historic buildings and castles, or taking a Danube River cruise. If you’re there in December, Budapest’s Christmas Markets around the city center are some of my favorites on the continent.
The downside to Budapest is that its winters are extremely cold, with temperatures reaching -10°C, so bring your warmest clothes! You can warm up by swimming in the thermal baths of Széchenyi, with its toasty, year-round pools filled with naturally warm water. For many reasons, this is one of the most interesting digital nomad destinations in Europe.
See Related: Best Warm Winter Destinations in Europe
9. Buenos Aires – Argentina
So, what’s the best country for digital nomads with their sights set on South America? It’s hard to say, but the vibrant country of Argentina and its cosmopolitan capital, Buenos Aires, certainly make the shortlist. Although the city has a cost of living that’s slightly higher than others on the continent, you’ll generally find a higher quality here, and it’s still quite fair.
Buenos Aires has a growing number of coworking spaces with fast internet and very fair rates, costing an average of $100 USD per month. They also provide great networking events for digital nomads and entrepreneurs who want to meet other ex-pats and locals.
This vibrant city offers plenty of activities and attractions to explore, including many museums, parks, and churches. You can also experience lively nightlife and an array of restaurants, bars, and clubs. If you love to dance, then you’ll have plenty of opportunities to learn the country’s famous tango.
Don’t miss the opportunity to go further beyond the capital, either. In fact, you can go abroad quite easily – the neighboring country of Uruguay is just a short ferry ride away and makes for a fascinating off-the-beaten-path destination. You can also experience the plains of La Pampa, the snow-capped mountains of the Andes, and the exotic scenery of Tierra del Fuego and Patagonia.
See Related: Best Sabbatical Destinations: Trip Ideas for a Career Break
10. Tamarindo and San José – Costa Rica
The Central American nation of Costa Rica is an increasingly popular destination for digital nomads, and for good reason. Tamarindo and San José are some of the best places for digital nomad families in the country thanks to their safety, their ex-pat communities, and their overall fantastic scenery and environment.
San José is the country’s capital and its largest city. It offers plenty of attractions, such as the Gold Museum, National Theater, and Central Park. A single person can live in San José for less than $1,000 per month while adding a family won’t really increase that amount exponentially.
If you prefer to be within walking distance from the sand, Tamarindo is a great spot for beach lovers, with an abundance of activities such as surfing and snorkeling. Accommodation is slightly more expensive in this small seaside town than it is in the capital, but still far less than you’d expect to pay in many other oceanfront locales. A number of idyllic beaches and exotic jungles are just a short jeep ride away.
Costa Rica has been welcoming long-stay visitors for years, and you’ll find an active digital nomad community spread across the country. The ex-pat community should make it easy to find friends and settle in here, and the locals are known for being incredibly friendly and welcoming.
See Related: Where to Stay in Tamarindo: Best Areas & Neighborhoods
11. Nassau and Freeport – The Bahamas
Speaking of dreamy beaches, many digital nomads might be happy to consider a country made up almost entirely of them: the Bahamas. Nassau and Freeport are two of the main population centers in this island chain and are some of the best digital nomad places in the Caribbean.
Nassau is the capital and where you’ll find the main international airport of the country. Therefore, it’s also where you’ll find a ton of housing options, shopping, local restaurants, and tourist resorts, like the famous Paradise Island. Some of the most unreal, white-sand, crystal-clear-water beaches can be found here and within short boat rides of Nassau.
A bit further north and not far from the Florida coast, Freeport is the main town on the island of Grand Bahama, another major destination island. This is another place for resorts, dining, and nightlife, along with more of those out-of-this-world Bahamas beaches. Snorkeling, scuba diving, and sea kayaking are especially popular in this part of the island chain.
The Bahamas has an exceptional visa program for digital nomads, along with all of the modern infrastructure you’ll need to get work done (if you can bring yourself to work in this environment.) Many digital nomads and their families are happy to be just a quick flight from the States or Canada. They’re even happier to give up cold winters!
See Related: Places Similar to the Maldives to Visit
12. Athens and Thessaloniki – Greece
As someone who’s obsessed with the islands of the Aegean Sea and the Hellenic cuisine, there’s no way Greece wouldn’t be at the top of my list to work remotely from. However, I’d base myself in one of the country’s main cities, like Athens or Thessaloniki in the north.
The reason is simple – the islands all but shut down in the low season, leaving little to do and the possibility of getting bored. Plus, the cities provide the opportunity to travel to many islands during your time there, and to fly or take a train abroad as well.
Athens is the city that everyone thinks of when it comes to Greece. It’s filled with history and culture, like the ancient Acropolis and Parthenon, as well as artifacts of art, philosophy, and science from throughout the ages. The coasts surrounding Athens are where you can find ferries to essentially every Greek island.
Thessaloniki is the north’s major hub, and I found it just about as interesting as Athens. You can clearly see the difference in architecture, with Ottoman elements in the buildings, museums, and regional history. A walk down the seaside promenade is a great place to enjoy the sun, views, and lovely restaurants. Train lines connect Thessaloniki to the nearby countries of Bulgaria and North Macedonia for even more adventures.
You’ll find a number of other remote workers taking advantage of the Greek cities and the country’s excellent visa for digital nomads, which helps to find co-living spaces in the cities and save money on accommodation. While living costs are higher in the cities, Greece is still one of the cheaper countries in Europe.
See Related: Italy vs Greece: What’s the Difference?
13. Windhoek – Namibia
Africa certainly deserves a place on our list, and the fascinating country of Namibia is one of the newest to launch its very own visa for digital nomads working remotely. We recommend making the capital city, Windhoek, your home during your stay – but do not miss the opportunity to get out and see the deserts, coast, and bush of this exotic country.
Windhoek is a bustling but relatively small city right in the center of the country. It’s the main population center and where you’ll find the most modern housing, plentiful dining and shopping options, and like-minded people to make friends with and become a part of the community. It’s a lovely city with a rich history and colonial elements of the past to explore.
The best of Namibia will take you far beyond the city, though. Head to the coastal cities of Swakopmund and Walvis Bay to see some of the most massive sand dunes alongside the ocean in the entire world at places like Sandwich Harbour and the Skeleton Coast. Namibia’s world-famous Etosha National Park is in the north and where you’ll find giraffes, wildebeest, rhinoceros, and many other bush giants that the continent is known for.
Undoubtedly, Namibia would be one of the most exciting and exotic digital nomad spots to consider, allowing you the chance to see the best of Africa’s nature while having access to modern amenities and an English-speaking community. Frequent flights connect Windhoek to cities like Cape Town and Johannesburg in South Africa, which offer direct flights to the US.
See Related: Romantic Destinations around the World
14. Brisbane – Australia
There’s a massive part of the world to explore down under, and Australia is packed with stunning nature and cosmopolitan cities to work from. It’s also a great option for English-speaking digital nomads who don’t want to deal with any language barriers – fair dinkum, eh cobber?
We’ve chosen the northern city of Brisbane as an ideal city for digital nomads. It’s actually the largest city in the country by area and the third-largest by population. There’s plenty of opportunity to find housing that suits your personal preferences and working needs, along with a ton of wonderful restaurants, bars, and cafés to enjoy all kinds of cuisines.
Brisbane has an excellent climate thanks to its northerly coastal location. Inside the city, you can enjoy a number of parks and gardens, a koala sanctuary, and plenty of museums. Just a bit further out, some of the country’s best beaches are found on the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast, as well as a famous zoo. A major airport connects Brisbane to the rest of Australia.
There are a ton of other great cities in Australia for digital nomads – Sydney, Melbourne, Perth, and the gateway to the outback of Alice Springs are a few that come to mind. You can explore all of them by taking advantage of Australia’s working holiday visa, which allows you to stay in the country for a year not just to work remotely, but even for an Australian employer, too.
See Related: Australian Outback Adventure: Driving the Red Centre
15. Auckland – New Zealand
Australia’s neighbor also offers a year-long working holiday visa that digital nomads love, and many people choose to take a year in each back-to-back. New Zealand is an exotic place with an unbelievably diverse range of landscapes that beckons visitors from all over the world.
Auckland is not the capital (which often surprises people), but it is New Zealand’s biggest city and hosts the most infrastructure for a digital nomad. It’s very international and a hub for the nations of the South Pacific with a vibrant and diverse population. It’s not the cheapest city to live in, but there’s plenty to do, like the Auckland Museum, Sky Tower, and boat tours and cruises on the water.
There are an endless amount of things to do in the rest of New Zealand. Firstly, be sure to take a day trip from Auckland to the village of Hobbiton and the Waitomo Caves for some of the region’s most iconic experiences. Hop to the South Island to see some of the most spectacular mountain and maritime scenery at places like Milford Sound, and don’t miss the opportunity to try some authentic Maori cultural experiences.
You could easily spend a year in New Zealand and still have plenty more to do there, but I’d also take the opportunity to explore some of the island nations just a short flight away, as New Zealand offers some of the only flights to them. Try your best to remember to get some work done in between all this.
See Related: How to Experience the Great Barrier Reef in Australia
16. Reykjavik – Iceland
Finally, we’re going back to the other side of the world for this final digital nomad hotspot: Iceland, the land of fire and ice. Its quaint capital, Reykjavik, is an excellent place to work remotely in between exploring the island’s many unique features.
While it’s an incredible place, Iceland is best for a very successful digital nomad – this is an expensive country, and qualifying for their special visa requires a high level of income. If you fit into this category, Reykjavik is a young and vibrant place where English is widely spoken (and spoken well), and modern amenities are available, making for a great digital nomad city.
There are endless opportunities for unique things to do from Reykjavik: northern lights tours in the winter, the famous Golden Circle nature route, and the iconic Blue Lagoon thermal pools. The north of the island opens another world of possibilities, with more lakes and massive waterfalls, and whale watching during the midnight sun.
This is a great place to experience a special local culture and some of the natural world’s most spectacular phenomena, and it has everything a digital nomad could need. You’ll just need to deal with some cold temperatures and lack of daylight in the winter, and high prices year-round.
See Related: Best Day Trips from Reykjavik, Iceland
Best Travel Insurance for Digital Nomads
We know better than most that if you’re going to rock the unpredictable nomad lifestyle, it pays to be protected. Insurance companies know this too, and there are now more insurance policies, even companies devoted to nomads than ever.
While you could be all cynical, and roll your eyes about how insurance companies will try and squeeze every penny out of people wherever they can manage it – but trust me, it’s so much better to have and not need than need and not have. If nothing else, it’s great peace of mind, and with that in mind, here are a few of our favorite travel insurance companies for digital nomads.
1. SafetyWing Insurance
SafetyWing Insurance offers nomads the typical coverage for unforeseen events during international travel that may cause inconveniences, such as travel delays, baggage loss, evacuation due to natural disasters, and more. More crucially though, they offer travel medical insurance for remote workers. This package covers hospitalization, intensive care, physical therapy, and other medical-related benefits.
SafetyWing enjoys great coverage too and caters to over 175 countries around the world. Perhaps most attractive of all though is that their plans are exceptional value for money, making them a top choice for nomads on a tight budget.
2. Insured Nomads
Insured Nomads is one of our favorite firms for comprehensive coverage and great customer service. They offer some of the broadest insurance packages for nomads, including packages for remote employees that cover evacuation, repatriation, property losses, transportation, and trip delays.
Insured Nomads also provides superb medical insurance, including issues resulting from COVID-19 cases. Their ace in the hole is the coverage they offer for extreme sports enthusiasts and adventurers. Insured Nomads offers packages that cover various adventure sports like mountaineering and rock climbing, as well as scuba diving, and even motorsports.
3. World Nomads
Another one of our favorites, World Nomads can cover you for delays in hotel and flight checks, or if you have to cancel your trip. This digital nomad travel insurance will cover any damage to your luggage or gear, including wear and tear.
They offer a slew of specific coverages, with everything from scuba diving to volunteering. They have a medical policy for online workers covering emergency medical expenses – particularly medical and dental care. It will also pay for transportation to your home country if you get hurt or are a victim of terrorism as well as cases of COVID-19.
If you’re a digital nomad heading to EU countries, you need a Schengen visa, which is where World Nomads is MVP. You can use World Nomads’ digital nomad insurance for the Schengen visa application, and World Nomads will help with visa applications, ensuring a quick turnaround.
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