Udaipur is India's Rising Digital Oasis for Remote Workers


When I ask my travel guide about his favorite Indian city, he doesn’t hesitate for a moment. And when I ask him why Udaipur, he responds that I should wait until we arrive to see it for myself. 

Some might say that my opinion of Udaipur was already biased from the beginning—before I even arrived—but in reality, the so-called ‘Venice of the East’ is so enchanting that it doesn’t require any upselling. This is also the reason why I made it my longest stop along my 3,000-kilometer railway journey from New Delhi to Goa, which also stopped in Jaipur and the backwaters of Kerala.

Located in southern Rajasthan—and almost equidistant between the capital city and Mumbai—Udaipur is characteristic of its state which is affectionately referred to as ‘The Land of Kings’. Indeed, its palaces and fortifications are reminders (and remainders) of the many monarchs that have ruled this land and the battles fought to conquer it.

Photo by Pranav Panchal on Unsplash

Udaipur’s defining feature, the 16th-century City Palace, greets us from its regal, hilltop seat overlooking its subjects as far as the Aravalli Hills. The 11 palaces within the grounds were built over the span of more than 400 years by 22 generations, yet this is not noticeable to the uninitiated eye. The architectural design remains consistent throughout, from the granite and marble work to the delicate mirror work, and intricate murals.

Much like the palace, Udaipur itself has been evolving into a modern city that is welcoming countless remote workers. The city has been hastily improving its digital infrastructure and livability, as part of the government’s ‘Smart Cities’ agenda which has resulted in many advancements. Internet connectivity has improved, coworking spaces have popped up along narrow alleys, and co-living digital nomad villas have given waterfront havelis (mansions) a new lease on life—but there’s more to it than that.

GO THERE: Join us on our upcoming retreat in Udaipur for solo travelers ready to embrace the power of monsoon magic.

Udaipur's Transformation Into a Digital Nomad Destination

Photo by Vivek Sharma on Unsplash

Udaipur seems more thoughtful in its city planning when I compare it to the others we’ve explored so far. It’s less ‘organized chaos’ and more "breathing room." It’s India ‘lite’ for those like me, who are first-time travelers to India and traveling solo, or what some might call “alone.”

But you’re never really quite alone when you adopt the digital nomad lifestyle, especially not in Udaipur. Here is a destination where nomadic residents can cultivate their work-life balance between the picture-book landscapes, open-air bars, boat rides along Lake Pichola to visit the Jag Mandir Palace or a scooter joy ride around Fateh Sagar Lake. It’s a walkable city, and one that invites you to play and crisscross the many bridges that arch over its lakes and canals; picnic at the botanical gardens; hike (or ride) to the top of Mansapurna Karni Mata Ropeway for panoramic views; and then watch the sun melt into the water from a roof-top bar.

India’s City of Lakes

Photo by Rowan Heuvel on Unsplash

The best way to explore Udaipur is to do so before the day awakens and things get too busy (and hot). By sunrise, the canals are already lined with men and women washing their clothes as Jagdish Temple resounds with prayers to Vishnu. It’s an other-worldly experience, as aluminum milk bottles are stacked onto wooden, hand-drawn carts ahead of the morning run, children run off to school along walkways that are being swept with palm fronds, and peak-hour traffic pauses—if only for a moment—as cars wait for cows to cross the road in the direction of the water. 

When the heavy afternoon heat gets too stifling that’s the time to retreat into an air-conditioned coworking space, try your hand at art classes, or take a nap until dusk brings with it some respite as it reawakens the nightlife.

Once you see what I’m talking about when I talk about Udaipur, you’ll see I’m not overselling it.

Where to Stay in Udaipur

Due to its growing popularity as a digital nomad destination, hotels like The Artist House offer coworking spaces or ‘workation’ packages to compete with fully-serviced, co-living villas (with broadband internet). The Old City (Chandpole and Lal Ghat) is loved for its charming atmosphere. Here, you’ll find family-run guesthouses, boutique hotels, and hostels, while further afield (Hiran Magri and Shobhagpura) boast fully-serviced apartments and private homes in gated communities that can be rented on a short- to medium-term basis.

Weather and Climate in Udaipur

Pack your sunnies, sunscreen, and light-colored, breathable clothing as Udaipur is hot and humid, especially between March and June when temperatures may reach up to 104° F (40° C). The best time of year to visit is in the ‘winter’ months, between October and February when temperatures are milder and range between 50° F (10° C) to 77° F (25° C). Meanwhile, the monsoon season (July to September) brings with it moderate to heavy rainfall and high humidity. 

Culture in Udaipur

Photo by Abhay Singh on Unsplash

English is widely spoken in Udaipur, but it never hurts to learn a handful of basic Hindi phrases, which helps with cultural integration and is often smiled upon—no matter where in the world you find yourself. Being respectful of religious and cultural traditions also goes a long way and it never hurts to ask if you’re unsure.

Coworking Spaces in Udaipur

While Udaipur’s internet connectivity has improved significantly in recent years, general internet speeds plateau at 20 Mbps, which is why it’s always a good idea to give yourself some leeway before hard deadlines to account for any possible failures to the generally reliable power supply or slower-than-what-you’re-used-to internet speeds. Research the reliability and speed of the internet connection before finalizing your booking. Coworking spaces offer faster internet, air-conditioning, ergonomic chairs, shared workspaces, private meeting rooms, various office services, as well as networking opportunities. Check out: Akshat coworking, Habitus coworking space, Qdesq.

India Visa Guide for Digital Nomads

While India does not have a digital nomad visa, remote workers can obtain a 30-day single-entry eVisa or a 90-day multiple-entry eVisa valid for one year or five years. American and Japanese digital nomads have additional visa privileges. Read our India Visa Guide for Digital Nomads for more information about which one is best suited to you.

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