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The 20 Best Digital Nomad Cities To Work From 2021 As An Online Entrepreneur

Wondering about the best places to live as a digital nomad? Here's the list of the best digital nomad cities 2021.

A digital nomad is someone who does their job from anywhere in the world.

All they need is an internet connection and a laptop and they could be making money from a Thai beach or Parisian cafe.

Because they have this choice, they generally don't stick to one spot and will be found traveling to countless countries. But despite how this might sound, it's not a 24/7 holiday.

They have to work hard to create an income that funds their unique lifestyle. While others are cooling down in the pool they're often working away on their latest project or finding new clients.

Choosing somewhere that you can live and work from is not easy, especially when you're new to the digital nomad lifestyle.

I'm going to share with you what to consider when choosing where to work remotely and the 20 best digital nomad cities to live in, in 2021.

What to consider when choosing where to live as a digital nomad

Before deciding your dream location as a digital nomad, you need to know what factors to consider. In this section, I'm going to cover all of the following:

  • Internet
  • Cost of living
  • Weather
  • Community
  • Safety

Internet

As a digital entrepreneur, you're entirely reliant on the internet to make money.

You need to consider not just how stable and fast the connection is in the country you want to visit. But also the specific island, city, and neighborhood, as this can vary.

It's also good to know how affordable it is to get internet access and whether it's available for free in your apartment or hotel.

In some countries, certain websites might also be difficult to access which could be a problem if you're reliant on them for work. For example, in mainland China, you cannot use Google, Facebook, and many other social media platforms.

💡 Useful resource

If you don't want to end up in a pickle with your internet connection, check the internet speeds here in advance.

Cost of living

One reason digital nomads decide to travel in the first place is the low cost of living. If you're on a tight budget, the best places to work remotely might simply be wherever is most affordable.

If you don't need to live in your expensive home city then it makes sense to upgrade your lifestyle somewhere cheaper.

You should also consider how the currency you're paid in fairs with the one you'll be converting it to.

Check out the best online banks for entrepreneurs and small businesses here.

Consider the following costs as a digital nomad:

  • Accommodation
  • Transport
  • Food and drink
  • Visas

Accommodation

Accommodation will probably be your biggest expense as a digital nomad, and you have plenty of options available.

You can use Airbnb, long-let an apartment, or stay in hotels.

The cost will vary from place to place, and will also depend on the amenities you choose.

A studio apartment with a pool in Chiang Mai could set you back just a few hundred dollars a month. Whereas most cities in Europe, for example, will be considerably more.

💡 Useful resource

Compare hotel costs around the world with this handy tool.

Transport

When budgeting for transportation, start with how you're going to get to your destination in the first place.

Also, consider whether you're planning to travel to nearby countries while you're there. Find out how expensive the flights and trains are.

You also need to consider how much day-to-day travel will cost you and weigh this up with your accommodation costs. If you choose to save money by living further out you might want to invest in a car, moped, or bicycle.

💡 Useful resource

Compare flight and car hire costs all over the world at Skyscanner.

Food and drink

As a digital nomad, it can often be cheaper to eat out than to buy groceries to cook from home.

Eat where the locals do for the best deals and swap tourist traps for markets and street vendors.

While some countries may have affordable food prices, it's important to factor in the cost of alcohol and coffee if that's a part of your lifestyle.

💡 Useful resource

You can compare the costs of commonly purchased foods such as milk, rice, fruit and bread all over the world here

Visas

Before packing your suitcase you need to check what the visa situation is where you're traveling to. This will depend on what passport you have.

Information about visas can be found with a quick Google search, or by going on your government's website.

Short-term visas are generally affordable, but you should factor the cost into your budget anyway.

💡 Useful resource

This website will explain everything you need to know about visas for remote workers and entrepreneurs around the world.

Weather

The best cities for digital nomads don't come in one specific temperature. Some people love unlimited sunshine while others prefer crazy rainstorms.

With the choice of the whole world at your fingertips, you may as well choose to live in a climate you enjoy. Look out for the following factors:

  • What temperatures do you work best in? Do you feel inspired by blue skies and sunshine or does heat make you feel unproductive and lethargic?
  • Environmental issues: such as rainstorms, flooding or even hurricane risks should also play a part in your decision. This could simply be a case of determining what time of year to go.
  • Man-made issues. Heavy pollution or even the ‘burning season' in Chiang Mai (that affects the air quality for a few months every year) is also important to consider.

💡 Useful resource

You can check out all of the latest weather updates around the world here.

Community

One downside to traveling the world is that you don't get to spend as much time with your friends and family.

Working remotely could also mean no colleagues to chat with, either.

However, the digital nomad lifestyle can still be extremely social.

If you're good at meeting new people and putting yourself out there, then you can make great relationships while on the road.

Consider the following community-based factors when choosing where to work remotely:

1. How popular is a certain place with digital nomads?

Decide if you would prefer to be around other nomads, holidaymakers, the locals, or somewhere very secluded.

2. What kind of entrepreneurs live there?

If you're an artsy, creative person you might find it hard to make connections in a tech haven. Or if you're running a bigger operation you might not find as much motivation around freelancers and smaller start-ups.

3. What kind of recourses are at your disposal?

Some cities have co-working and co-living setups where you can meet an abundance of like-minded people. Or maybe it's meetups or conferences that are at the top of your list?

Safety

Everyone should choose a safe community to live in. However, certain demographics may need to take extra care while traveling.

If you're a woman traveling alone, for example, research how safe the area is for women first so that you feel at ease exploring.

Likewise, it's always a good idea to check how tolerant a certain country is towards your religious and sexual orientation.

  • Health insurance. Always have health insurance that covers any activity you could be doing, such as water sports and motorbiking.

  • Travel insurance. If you're bringing expensive equipment on your travels then make sure it's all covered if anything happens.

The 20 best digital nomad cities

This list is comprised of the twenty best digital nomad cities to live in, as currently ranked by Nomad List.

However, it's important to note that what's perfect for you is going to be different for somebody else.

Any of these twenty could be perfect cities for you to work from, depending on your tastes and needs.

1. Lisbon (Portugal)

The remote hub of Europe

Lisbon has been dubbed the next remote hub of Europe and has an impressive Nomad List score of 4.86/5.

And personally, I would say it's one of the best digital nomad cities 2021, considering the new visa incentives they are releasing.

Lisbon boasts impeccable wifi speeds, a thriving community of entrepreneurs, and plenty of co-working spaces and events to keep you busy.

If you're looking for a slightly warmer, small, European city with affordable and delicious food then Lisbon could be for you.

💻 Top-rated co-working space: NOW

💡 Top tip

Avoid the peak season by coming in early spring and autumn if you want a little space to enjoy your pastéis de nata.

Hub breakdown

Internet: 3.5/5
Cost of living: 2.5/5
Weather: 3/5
Community: 5/5
Safety: 4.5/5

Pros

  • Quaint and picturesque (think colourful buildings, trams, and winding, cobbled streets)
  • A free and welcoming culture that is open to all types of people
  • Warm weather throughout most of the year
  • Thriving remote working community

Cons

  • Crowded in summer with lots of tourists
  • Difficult to find accommodation

2. Canggu, Bali (Indonesia)

Digital nomad homeland

Canggu is a beautiful coastal village in Bali and has a Nomad List score of 4.62/5.

Digital nomads are everywhere here, so if you're looking for a community this is a great place to start.

Canggu has all of the benefits of Indonesian food, western comforts, affordable housing, and a surfers paradise ocean.

Bali in general is really the best place to be a digital nomad when you're starting out.

💻 Top-rated co-working space: Destination Outpost

💡Top tip

There is a river splitting up the town into two main sections, meaning you're likely to stick to one side. Stay somewhere near the middle for a few nights when you first arrive and explore them both to see where you would like to spend the rest of your trip.

Hub breakdown

Internet: 4/5
Cost of living: 5/5
Weather: 3/5
Community: 5/5
Safety: 3/5

Pros

  • Locals are very welcoming to tourists
  • Very warm weather all year round
  • Thriving remote working community
  • Great for surfers, yoga lovers and vegans

Cons

  • A very high density of digital nomads (can feel crowded)
  • Weather can feel oppressive during the dry season
  • Driving and biking can be dangerous

“The first word that comes to mind when describing Bali is “green.” From jungles to rice fields, Bali shines in every shade of green, the most restful colour for the human eye. Even if you’re on the island to work, all this green is like a vacation for your senses and mind.”

Pia Newman, writing for WifiTribe

3. Tenerife, Canary Islands (Spain)

The island of eternal Spring

Tenerife is a popular Canary Island just a stone's throw from Africa. It's warm all year round with a guaranteed 320 days of sunshine. Definitely one of the best digital nomad cities.

This sunny island has a Nomad List score of 4.54/5 and is loved by digital entrepreneurs for its affordability, stunning beaches, and fast internet.

💻 Top-rated co-working space: Space Co-working

💡Top tip

If a community is high on your list then check out Nine Coliving for somewhere to work, sleep and play in Tenerife. Think morning yoga, ‘family' BBQ's, sea view desks and even a house dog.

Hub breakdown

Internet: 5/5
Cost of living: 3/5
Weather: 4/5
Community: 5/5
Safety: 4/5

Pros

  • A great hub to fly to other countries across the world from with plenty of cheap flights
  • Great weather with lots of sunshine
  • Plenty of fun activities to do from whale watching to volcano hikes

Cons

  • Touristy, resort-like areas
  • Very busy in Summer with holidaymakers from all over Europe

4. Mexico City (Mexico)

The oldest city in North America

Mexico City is a culture lover's dream with a Nomad List score of 4.52/5.

You'll be spoilt for choice with stunning architecture, 150 museums, and endless street food to try out.

One of the most common tips for visiting Mexico city is to make sure you book long enough to enjoy this magical capital.

💻 Top-rated co-working space: Impact Hub

💡Top tip

Although many nomads report feeling perfectly safe in Mexico City, it's recommended that you take extra precautions. You should feel safe in the following areas: Condesa, Roma, Coyoca, Polanco, Coyocan – but avoid travelling at night or with too much cash on you just in case.

Hub breakdown

Internet: 4/5
Cost of living: 4/5
Weather: 4/5
Community: 5/5
Safety: 3/5

Pros

  • A thriving community of digital nomads and (both local and foreign) remote workers
  • Affordable and reliable public transport
  • Delicious, cheap street food ($1 taco, anyone?)
  • Great weather
  • Lots of culture with 150 museums

Cons

  • Elevation sickness can be a concern for some people at 7,382 ft above sea level
  • Pollution and traffic noise

5. Chiang Mai (Thailand)

Foodie heaven

Chiang Mai is another digital nomad hotspot and has a Nomad List score of 4.5/5.

If you're looking for luxurious condos, Thai massages, and delicious food on a shoestring budget then this could be your perfect city.

There are co-working spaces on every corner and you'll never be too far from someone hunched over their laptop.

But Chaing Mai is also a creative and beautiful city. There are peaceful areas and a calming, Buddhist influence with stunning temples.

💻 Top-rated co-working space: Punspace

💡Top tip

The art village Baan Kang Wat is a creative paradise away from the thick of nomads. Eat homemade ice cream, pick up locally made souvenirs, relax with a book or learn a new skill like ceramics or kimchi-making.

Hub breakdown

Internet: 5/5
Cost of living: 5/5
Weather: 5/5
Community: 5/5
Safety: 5/5

Pros

  • Delicious and very affordable food (unbeatable night markets)
  • Beautiful temples and stunning nature with mountain views all over the city
  • Friendly locals
  • Plenty of day trips to enjoy with a scooter so you'll never run out of things to do

Cons

  • The smoky/burning season is a serious problem and you'll have to wear a mask outdoors during this time (generally between February and April but this changes yearly)
  • It's become so famous that it can feel overrun with tourists and remote workers

“Chiang Mai offers a mix of affordability, infrastructure, and quality of life that’s difficult to find elsewhere.”

Casey Hynes, writing for Forbes

6. Berlin (Germany)

The center of Europe

Berlin is a green, creative capital city with a Nomad List score of 4.49/5.

What you don't get in beaches and all-year sunshine, Berlin makes up for with majestic swimming lakes, forests, parks, and culture.

Digital nomads and entrepreneurs enjoy the many meetups and inspiring startup scene here, with a great work-life balance.

💻 Top-rated co-working space: Beta Haus

💡Top tip

In Summer, unwind after work with a Radler and currywurst while soaking up some summer sun by the river Spree. In winter, enjoy traditional Christmas markets, auburn leaves and fairy lights galore.

Hub breakdown

Internet: 4/5
Cost of living: 3/5
Weather: 3/5
Community: 5/5
Safety: 4/5

Pros

  • Free-thinking, welcoming city for people from all walks of life
  • Ideally located for travelling throughout Europe
  • Affordable food and drink
  • Co-working spaces all over the city and lots of events and meetups
  • Great public transport options and safe roads

Cons

  • Although cheaper than most capitals in Western Europe, the cost of accommodation and activities is still high
  • It can be difficult to find an apartment

7. Ericeira (Portugal)

Surf capital of Europe

Ericeira is a thriving beach town that attracts surfers, beach lovers, and digital nomads alike with a Nomad List score of 4.49/5.

Here you'll find laptop-friendly cafes and friendly entrepreneurs enjoying the slower pace of life, but you're just 40 minutes from Lisbon if you need it.

By European standards, Ericeira is an affordable place to live that will only grow in popularity.

💻 Top-rated co-working space: Salt Studio

💡Top tip

Public libraries are great places to work from if you're on a budget and want to focus in a quiet space with plenty of charging sockets. Some are not open on Saturdays, so make that your beach day!

Hub breakdown

Internet: 4/5
Cost of living: 3/5
Weather: 4/5
Community: 3/5
Safety: 5/5

Pros

  • Miles of beautiful coastline and sandy beaches
  • A small, walkable town with a relaxed atmosphere
  • Popular with established entrepreneurs and small business

Cons

  • Not a lot of nomads live here long-term as they are usually passing through on their way to Lisbon
  • Short-term accommodation can be expensive

8. Austin, TX (USA)

Voted top city for working remotely

Austin is a popular remote working location with a Nomad List score of 4.48/5.

It was voted by Carphone Warehouse as number one in a list of the best places to work remotely, due to the high quality of life it offers.

However, the comforts of big city life in Austin do come with a price tag. This might not be the best option for those starting out or on a tight budget.

💻 Top-rated co-working space: WeWork

💡 Top tip

E-scooters are an eco-friendly and affordable way to travel around this vibrant city. You just need to download the Lime or Uber Jump app to be able to pick up any parked scooters you see around and you're good to go.

Hub breakdown

Internet: 5/5
Cost of living: 1/5
Weather: 3/5
Community: 5/5
Safety: 4/5

Pros

  • Lot's of fun activities to do and things to see
  • Family-friendly and ideal for older and more established entrepreneurs
  • Annual SXSW festival for film, media and art lovers
  • Well paid remote-jobs, especially within the tech industry

Cons

  • Expensive living costs
  • Weather varies from very hot summers and cold, windy winters so make sure you book the right months for your preference

9. Ko Pha Ngan (Thailand)

Digital nomad paradise

Koh Pha Ngan is an affordable, island life option with a growing digital nomad community and a Nomad List score of 4.38/5.

It's home to the world's first beachfront co-working & living space, BeacHub, where you can hustle to the inspiring soundtrack of the sea.

Whether you're a party-goer or prefer sipping coconuts in a hammock after a day's work, Koh Pha Ngan is a tropical paradise for digital entrepreneurs.

💻 Top-rated co-working space: Koh Space

💡Top tip

Get a scooter to really explore this island and see all of the treasures that are to be found.

Hub breakdown

Internet: 4/5
Cost of living: 4/5
Weather: 5/5
Community: 4/5
Safety: 4/5

Pros

  • Glorious white sand beaches
  • Small but growing digital nomad community with co-working spaces and working cafes
  • Waterfalls, jungles and scuba diving for adventure lovers
  • Yoga retreats and large yogi community to unwind after work

Cons

  • Certain areas become very full and touristy, especially around full moon parties
  • Although still very affordable, it's more expensive than some Thai cities like Chiang Mai

10. Las Palmas, Canary Islands (Spain)

Sunny winter escape

Las Palmas is the warm capital city of Gran Canaria with a Nomad List score of 4.40/5.

The thriving digital nomad scene, beaches, reasonable prices, and year-round sunshine make Las Palmas a popular choice for location-independent entrepreneurs.

You'll be spoilt for choice for co-working spaces and industry events, so growing your network should be a breeze.

💻 Top-rated co-working space: The House

💡Top tip

Spanish is the main language spoken in Las Palmas so check out Gran Canaria School of Language if you're looking to brush up on your skills with an intensive course.

Hub breakdown

Internet: 5/5
Cost of living: 3/5
Weather: 4/5
Community: 5/5
Safety: 3/5

Pros

  • A bustling remote working scene with plenty of co-working and co-living options and a notably friendly community
  • Fun recreational activities from mountain hikes, to tapas nights and sunset yoga
  • Delicious, Canarian food
  • The warmest place to live in Europe during the winter

Cons

  • It can be difficult to find an apartment during the high season (November to April)
  • The weather gets cooler and cloudier the more north you go

ReStation is really the heart and soul of the community here, so if you’re unsure how to get started, just follow them on Facebook and go to one of their four weekly events.”

Digital Nomad Girl

11. São Paulo (Brazil)

The capital of culture

São Paulo is the vibrant, finance center of Brazil with a Nomad List score of 4.36/5.

Brazilians are known for their sociable and welcoming attitude to foreigners so you should have no problem making friends and business connections.

São Paulo is known as ‘the land of drizzle', so expect a fair bit of rain here and watch out for flooding and storms.

💻 Top-rated co-working space: Co-working offices Vila Olimpia

💡Top tip

If you're planning to do business (or make friends with the locals) it's worth learning at least some basic Portuguese. English, for example, is not very widely spoken here.

Hub breakdown

Internet: 5/5
Cost of living: 3/5
Weather: 3/5
Community: 4/5
Safety: 2/5

Pros

  • Free, public, high-speed wifi all over the city
  • Culture is everywhere, from theatre to dance, museums to galleries – you'll never feel uninspired in São Paulo
  • The business capital of Brazil with lots of opportunities and a high work ethic

Cons

  • An unstable economy that makes it hard to plan or do business long-term
  • One of the most dangerous places among this list to live as a digital nomad
  • The most expensive city in South America

12. Istanbul (Turkey)

A history enthusiasts dream

Istanbul is a really cosy place. It's huge and has a lot of co-working spaces with people from all over the world. On my personal favourites when it comes to digital nomad cities.

Straddling two continents, Istanbul is a historic and culture-rich Turkish city with a Nomad List score of 4.37/5.

You will never get bored in this huge city, but wifi can be patchy so stick to the co-working spots for getting work done.

With affordable accommodation and an up-and-coming digital nomad community, this is the perfect destination for people looking for a fascinating city to work from.

💻 Top-rated co-working space: ATÖLYE

💡Top tip

It's no longer possible to receive a visa on arrival in Turkey so make sure to get one online before you go!

Hub breakdown

Internet: 2/5
Cost of living: 4/5
Weather: 4/5
Community: 4/5
Safety: 3/5

Pros

  • Dripping in culture with world-renowned history, architecture and art
  • Affordable and multicultural food scene with an abundance of cuisines, coffee shops and restaurants to sample
  • Turkish hospitality – the service is warm, friendly and welcoming

Cons

  • Too large to be walkable and traffic can be very bad, luckily there's plenty of trams to get around this
  • The internet can be unstable
  • Turkish people can be very conservative, so dress modestly and keep drunken behaviour to a minimum

13. Playa del Carmen (Mexico)

Endless summer

Playa del Carmen has been dubbed ‘Chiang Mai at the beach' and has a Nomad List score of 4.35/5.

With year-round sunshine, Mexican food, and a thriving digital nomad community, there's a lot to like for entrepreneurs in this seaside paradise.

Whether you want to sunbathe at the beach, visit Mayan ruins, join a co-living community, or all three, you won't run out of things to do in Playa del Carmen.

💻 Top-rated co-working space: Nest co-working

💡Top tip

Selina is a popular, poolside co-working space that also offers accommodation, meet-ups, community and sunrise yoga sessions.

Hub breakdown

Internet: 4/5
Cost of living: 5/5
Weather: 4/5
Community: 4/5
Safety: 3/5

Pros

  • Lots of co-working options from laptop-friendly cafes and beach clubs to co-working and living spaces all over the city
  • World-renowned food at every price point
  • A thriving community of local entrepreneurs, remote workers and digital nomads

Cons

  • Big variations between neighbourhoods so do your research before deciding where to stay
  • Although Playa del Carmen is considered relatively safe, you should keep your wits about you as burglary and pickpocketing is common

14. Taipei (Taiwan)

A hidden gem for digital nomads

Taipei is the capital city of Taiwan, a cultural paradise with a unique fusion of Chinese, Japanese and western influences. It has a Nomad List score of 4.38/5.

With high-speed internet, co-working offices, and hassle-free visas, Taipei is being dubbed a hidden gem for digital nomads.

You won't find as many networking events and opportunities here as you might in other cities on this list. However, the welcoming locals will make up for this.

💻 Top-rated co-working space: Futureward

💡Top tip

The public transport in Taipai is fast and efficient, but downloading a public transit app on your phone first like Go! Taipei Metro will make it even easier.

Hub breakdown

Internet: 4/5
Cost of living: 4/5
Weather: 3/5
Community: 2/5
Safety: 5/5

Pros

  • Friendly and warm locals who welcome foreigners from all walks of life
  • World-renowned coffee culture and known as ‘night market mecca' where you can get delicious and affordable street food
  • Hassle-free 3-month visas for those coming from the EU, USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Japan and Chile

Cons

  • Weather varies so make sure you book the right season for your preferences
  • The language barrier can be difficult and websites rarely have English translations
  • Bad air quality

15. Da Nang (Vietnam)

Authentic Vietnamese living

Da Nang is a hot and humid coastal city in Vietnam with a Nomad List score of 4.30/5.

Home to an international airport, it's an ideal place to start or end your travels in Vietnam or South East Asia in general.

There is an up-and-coming digital nomad community here. While you'll be spoilt for choice with affordable cafes and co-working spaces to work from, there aren't as many meetups and events to attend (yet).

If you want to explore authentic Vietnamese culture, spend your evenings at the beach and your working days guzzling strong coffee then try out Da Nang.

💻 Top-rated co-working space: The Embassy

💡Top tip

Take a trip to Hoi Ann on your day off for a walk back in time through a well preserved, ancient trading town with unlimited photo opportunities.

Hub breakdown

Internet: 4/5
Cost of living: 5/5
Weather: 4/5
Community: 3/5
Safety: 4/5

Pros

  • Amazing day trips and lots to see
  • Beautiful French-influenced architecture
  • Delicious, affordable food and strong cafe culture
  • Stylish and cheap condos designed to a high standard

Cons

  • The city is still developing and there is a lot of construction
  • Be wary of getting ripped off
  • As with all Vietnamese cities, you need to keep your wits about you around traffic

16. Cape Town (South Africa)

For the nature lovers

Cape Town is best known for its unbeatable nature and animal species, and it has a Nomad List score of 4.26/5.

From beach days to mountain hikes, safaris, and wine tours, Cape Town has entertainment covered.

Foodies are also catered for here with a vibrant food scene.

Digital nomads may struggle with the lack of free, stable public wifi and frequent power shortages.

However, there are plenty of co-working spaces that offer a better connection, making this up-and-coming location ideal for nomads looking for something a bit different.

💻 Top-rated co-working space: V&A Waterfront Co-working

💡Top tip

Join the Cape Town Digital Nomads Facebook group to get involved with and even organise your own meetups around the city with other entrepreneurs.

Hub breakdown

Internet: 2/5
Cost of living: 3/5
Weather: 4/5
Community: 3/5
Safety: 1/5

Pros

  • Stunning nature, with some people describing it as ‘the most beautiful city on earth'
  • Plenty of accommodation options from luxury hotels to Airbnb's and affordable apartments
  • A creative haven for artists, writers and designers with a thriving film industry
  • Tourists from many countries can get a hassle-free 3-month visa that can be extended to 6 months once you arrive

Cons

  • The internet is not the fastest and can be lost altogether when there's a power shortage
  • You're advised not to go out anywhere after dark in Cape Town as it can be very dangerous
  • Prices go up a lot during Christmas and Easter so avoid these periods if you're on a budget

17. Porto (Portugal)

Comfortable and quaint

Porto is the colorful, hilly, coastal city known for its stunning (UNESCO world heritage site) old town along the Douro River and it has a Nomad List score of 4.25/5.

There are fewer digital nomads here than in Lisbon. However, if you like intimate meetups and co-working spaces that are not too busy, then this could be your perfect place.

You can also enjoy affordable fine dining, cobbled street walks, and local wine tours.

Porto is ideal for anyone who enjoys the finer things in life, whatever their budget.

💻 Top-rated co-working space: Selina

💡Top tip

Porto is full of networking opportunities for digital nomads. Check out Free-co-working Thursdays where you can try out different co-working spaces every week and meet plenty of like-minded entrepreneurs.

Hub breakdown

Internet: 5/5
Cost of living: 3/5
Weather: 4/5
Community: 3/5
Safety: 5/5

Pros

  • A fast, stable internet connection and easy, efficient public transport means digital nomads will feel comfortable very quickly in Porto
  • Surfing lovers flock to try out the waves here
  • Portugal is the 4th safest country in the world, visitors from all walks of life can feel safe here, day and night
  • Unique, vibrant and inspiring architecture

Cons

  • There is not so much of a street-food scene as other places on this list, so low-to medium-cost sit-down restaurants are the standard
  • The nomad community here is small, so expect much smaller meetups than in Lisbon

“Opening up like a pop-up book from the banks of the Rio Douro, edgy-yet-opulent Porto entices with its historic centre, sumptuous food and wine, and charismatic locals.”

Lonely Planet

18. Prague (Czech Republic)

History rich in the heart of Europe

Prague, the picturesque capital of the Czech Republic with a Nomad List score of 4.62/5.

There is a thriving digital nomad community in Prague and you'll never be far away from a co-working space or friendly cafe.

The internet speed here is excellent and you'll meet entrepreneurs from all walks of life.

Whether you're a craft beer lover or come for the opulent, gothic architecture, there's so much to fall in love with in Prague.

💻 Top-rated co-working space: Impact Hub

💡Top tip

If you're staying for over a month and coming from outside of Europe then you'll save a lot of money by investing in a local SIM when you first arrive.

Hub breakdown

Internet: 5/5
Cost of living: 3/5
Weather: 3/5
Community: 5/5
Safety: 5/5

Pros

  • There is an entrepreneurial mindset in Prague with no shortage of co-working spaces or networking events to attend
  • Prague is very safe
  • Green city with lots of parks and countryside day trips within easy reach
  • Czech design is world-recognized and will be inspiring to designers and creatives

Cons

  • There's a lot of tourists during the summer holidays and just before Christmas
  • Although not bone-chilling, you will experience proper winters in Prague so if you're not fond of hats and scarves then stick to Spring-Autumn

19. Buenos Aries (Argentina)

Vibrant cafe culture

The cosmopolitan city of Buenos Aries is as vibrant as it is affordable and it has a Nomad List score of 4.29/5.

You will never run out of cafes to work from in Buenos Aries. With a rich blend of South American, Parisian, Spanish, and Italian influences you'll fall in love with their unique cafe culture.

With solid wifi, plenty of nomads, affordable steaks, art on every corner, and vibrant architecture – what more could you want?

💻 Top-rated co-working space: Huerta Co-working

💡Top tip

The underground metro (called Subte) is an efficient and affordable way to travel around the city, but when you're travelling with luggage or after-hours use Cabify, since Uber is banned here.

Hub breakdown

Internet: 4/5
Cost of living: 4/5
Weather: 4/5
Community: 4/5
Safety: 3/5

Pros

  • Thriving digital nomad community with lots of co-working spaces and remote working professionals to network with
  • Very affordable accommodation with co-living options available
  • Free public healthcare available that anybody can use if needed
  • Very multicultural and foreigners are welcomed from all over the world

Cons

  • The economic crisis means some locals are struggling and petty crime is common
  • Buenos Aries suits a more adventurous nomad who is prepared to go with the flow so if you prefer a quieter, more predictable pace of life this might not be for you

20. Bangkok (Thailand)

The city that never sleeps

Bangkok is the ever buzzing capital of Thailand with a Nomad List score of 4.34/5.

Beautiful temples, delicious street food, western comforts, floating markets, affordable accommodation, and the most luxurious malls you've ever seen.

You will never run out of things to do in this major city, and there are lots of digital nomads and remote workers to connect with.

The weather is hot and often humid but the spectacular rainstorms and rooftop pools will help to cool you down.

💻 Top-rated co-working space: Hubba

💡Top tip

Ferries are a great way to travel to popular attractions around the city. They're inexpensive and great for sightseeing. Some malls even offer free journeys so you may as well try them out and visit the food court for lunch.

Hub breakdown

Internet: 5/5
Cost of living: 4/5
Weather: 4/5
Community: 4/5
Safety: 4/5

Pros

  • Fantastic public transport and for braver travellers, tuk-tuks are an affordable and fun way to get around
  • Great health care
  • Entrepreneurs and digital nomads from all over the world work hard here
  • The locals are warm and welcoming, the service is world-renowned and English is widely spoken so you will feel well looked after

Cons

  • Avoid Khao San Road if you don't like very touristy, back-packing crowds
  • Bangkok is a major city and can feel hectic and crowded in parts
  • Bad air quality and congestion

Frequently asked questions about being a digital nomad

What are the cheapest cities to live in as a digital nomad?

The following locations have been taken from Nomad List.

Using the typical cost for a digital nomad per month, including cheap, short-term accommodation in a private room in the center of a city and eating out three times a day.

  • Nha Trang, Vietnam ($618 a month)
  • Senggigi, Lombok, Indonesia ($624 a month)
  • Kathmandu, Nepal ($681 a month)
  • Bengaluru, India ($742 a month)

How do you find co-working spaces as a digital nomad?

You can find co-working spaces by talking to other nomads, researching online and Facebook groups.

Check out the Croissant app to help you find and book co-working spaces all over the world.

How do you make friends as a digital nomad?

When traveling, you'll cross paths with people from all over the world.

You'll make lifelong friendships, business connections and meet like-minded entrepreneurs.

Try the following ways to make friends as a digital nomad:

  • Facebook groups. Whatever city you're considering visiting as a nomad, they'll be a Facebook group for it.
  • Meetup. For meeting people with shared interests – from artificial intelligence to wine tasting.
  • Nomad List. With a paid membership you can join their forum and Slack community and meet other digital nomads.
  • Digital nomad events. Check out Nomad Summit, Running Remote and the Dynamite Circle.
  • Co-living/working spaces. The easiest way to make friends abroad is through joining in with existing community spaces and the local events they hold.

What healthcare options are there for digital nomads?

Whenever you're away from home you should always have valid travel and healthcare insurance.

There are lots of options so do your research to find what works best for you, but these are some popular choices:

Safety Wing: “SafetyWing was founded to support nomads like ourselves by building an adaptable software-based safety net for everyone in the world.”

World Nomads: “Inspiration, opportunities, and travel insurance to help you fuel your curiosity, find your journey and travel bravely.”

Cigna Global: “Looking after your health and well-being, all across the globe.”

What are the best and hardest things about being a digital nomad?

Pros of being a digital nomad:

  • You get to travel the world without sacrificing your income
  • Experience cultures, places and cuisines you never dreamt of
  • Absolute freedom
  • You can make a lot of savings

Cons of being a digital nomad:

  • It can feel quite isolating moving around so frequently and be hard to make deep connections
  • Easy to get distracted if you struggle with self-discipline
  • Sacrafice of material comforts

All in all, it's up to you to decide whether the pros outweigh the cons or the other way around.

In my opinion, the best way to know is to try it for yourself.

How much should you pack as a digital nomad?


How much you pack is really up to you.

It depends on the following factors:

  1. How frequently you're planning to travel
  2. If you're travelling between different climates
  3. How long you're travelling for
  4. How minimalist you are
  5. If you need any specialist equipment for your work

Here are a few ideas of bags to take with you on your travels:

  • Osprey Ozone 18″/36L Wheeled Luggage
  • Kathmandu Federate Adapt Pack
  • NOMATIC® 40L Travel Bag


What equipment do you need as a digital nomad traveling the world?

You don't need anything more than your laptop and passport, but here's a few things that could be helpful:

  • Laptop
  • Laptop stand
  • External hard drive
  • Reusable water bottle
  • Noise-cancelling headphones
  • Charger adapter
  • First aid kit
  • Camera
  • Tripod
  • Packing cubes

Should digital nomads still travel during the Coronavirus pandemic?

As digital nomads, we are guests in a country, and should never cause more harm than good to a place that we visit.

Here are some simple rules to follow.

  1. Always follow the government's guidelines, stick to any national or local lockdowns and wear a mask when appropriate.
  2. This situation will not last forever, so restrict yourself to essential travel until it's safe for everybody. This way we'll be back to normal much sooner and the tourism industries can recover quicker.
  3. When you are travelling, remember how much some of these places rely on tourism and try to spend what you can to support them. A small amount of money for you could make a big difference to somebody's livelihood.

Final words

I hope you found this article helpful and discovered some new places to consider working remotely from in the future.

There really is something for every type of digital nomad out there. Covid has reminded us all how lucky we are to be able to travel freely as entrepreneurs, and what a luxury it is to call a new place home whenever we like.

Hopefully, we'll all be back traveling the world with our laptops again in no time.

What are your best digital nomad cities 2021?

Let me know in the comments!

Written by
Johannes Larsson
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