The Philippines has become a popular destination in Southeast Asia for digital nomads and remote workers, and it's not hard to see why. The cost of living is relatively low, there are plenty of coworking spaces and cafes with WiFi, the locals are friendly, and almost everyone can speak English, which makes working remotely for digital nomads a breeze. What's more, the tropical climate is perfect for those who want to escape the cold, and there's a neverending list of things to do and places to discover.
The country boasts an impressive 7,641 islands with a wealth of natural beauty—from the stunning beaches of Boracay and Siargao to the lush jungles of Palawan— making it a great destination to get out in nature. The country is also home to a wide variety of cultural attractions—from old churches and heritage houses to lively cities, charming villages, vibrant markets, and colorful festivals.
Perhaps one of the best things about the Philippines for digital nomads is its affordability. The cost of living obviously changes based on your location, with cities like Makati, Manila, and Cebu being more expensive than others. This is also true for tourist destinations, such as Boracay and Palawan. Your monthly costs will depend on your lifestyle choices as well—if you're someone who eats at local street markets and cooks meals at home, you can keep your expenses low.
In recent years, Siargao Island's popularity has rapidly increased for good reason. Not only is this small place incredibly beautiful, but it's also famous for its waves—making it a paradise destination for surfers from around the world. It has stunning white sand beaches, gentle turquoise tide pools, and enchanted lagoons, but the best part is that you can explore everything the island has to offer within a day since its total land area is only 437 square kilometers!
While Siargao isn't as developed as some of the other places on this list, the island has begun to draw digital nomads who are looking for tranquility and a more laid-back lifestyle. You can find beachfront neighborhoods with views of the ocean or stay inland among rice paddies and jungle vistas. The coworking spaces, cafes, and hotels with WiFi (many of which are located right on the beach!) make working remotely a cinch, and there are many recreational activities available to enjoy in your downtime. The most popular coworking space is Lexias Hostel and Workspace Siargao, which is also available in the beautiful islands of El Nido in Palawan and Boracay.
Siargao is a foodie's paradise, with an impressive array of cafes and restaurants to explore. Spotted Pig Siargao is a great spot for coffee and all-day breakfast. And if you prefer vegan food, Shaka Café is your go-to spot. If you're in the mood for some Italian dishes, head to Kermit Restaurant. Or, Isla Cabana Beach Restaurant & Bar offers a delicious mix of Asian and Western cuisine, while Buddha Thai cuisine is perfect if you're craving pad thai or tom yam kung soup.
When the night falls and you want to have some fun, head to Cloud 9, the most popular beach on the island, for some bonfires, drinking, and dancing. Whether you're looking to catch the big game on TV or just relax with friends while enjoying a picturesque view of the beach, Barrel Siargao is the perfect place for a night out. Another cool option to chill out is The Smoking Joint BBQ Siargao if you're in the mood for some barbecue and local beer.
By working remotely in Siargao, you have more free time to enjoy the lovely activities that this island offers. Take a surfing lesson, go on an island hopping adventure, or spend idyllic days lounging at these best beaches: Guyam Island, Daku Island, and Naked Island. The triple island tour is one of the most sought-after choices among travelers. Other great options include exploring the island's many caves (Hagukan Cave, Magkukuob Cave, Balitas Cave, and Crystal Cave) or visiting other stunning natural attractions such as Sugba Lagoon, Sohoton Cove National Park, and Taktak Falls.
Makati City and Bonifacio Global City (BGC) in Taguig are two of the most popular places to live and work remotely in Metro Manila, also known as the National Capital Region. These neighborhoods offer a great mix of everything that digital nomads need: accessibility to amenities, fast internet, plenty of coworking spaces and cafes, modern conveniences, and bustling city life.
Makati is the finance center of the Philippines which plays host to various multinational corporations and a large expat community. It is home to some of the tallest skyscrapers in the country, as well as luxury hotels, countless restaurants, bars, and posh shopping malls—and you won’t have trouble finding a place to work either. Some of the many coworking spaces in Makati City include Clock In, Weremote, Booth & Partners Coworking Spaces, Acceler8, Penbrothers, The Wrkspce, Cerebro Labs, and Work Folk. These places offer everything you need to be productive, including fast WiFi, meeting rooms, and event spaces.
When you need a break from work, there are plenty of options for food and drink in Makati City. For coffee, some great choices are Commune Café which sources 100% Philippine coffee directly from farmers, The Coffee Academics which specializes in premium quality coffees, and Bad Café, if you're looking for a quaint coffee shop. For lunch or dinner, dine at Sentro 1771 for classic Filipino flavors or The Wholesome Table for organic, healthy fare. And when it's time to unwind with drinks, go Run Rabbit Run or Polilya in Poblacion, The Curator in Legazpi Village, or sip cocktails while taking in the cityscape from The Penthouse 8747 rooftop bar.
If you love art, then you should visit Ayala Museum which exhibits Filipino culture, art, and history. Another great option is the Yuchengco Museum which features rotating exhibitions of art, design, and history. One of the primary attractions in Makati is shopping. The city is home to several enormous malls, such as Greenbelt, Glorietta, and Rockwell Center. You'll find everything from luxurious designer stores to affordable brands. And when you need a breath of fresh air, take a stroll and enjoy the outdoors at Ayala Triangle Gardens.
Located just outside Makati is BGC, another popular destination for digital nomads and remote workers in the metropolis. This modern district is known for its high-end shopping, stylish restaurants, and vibrant nightlife scene. Some great coworking spaces in BGC include Compass Offices, Spaces World Plaza, Regus, Clock In, and Weremote. If you want to get some work done while enjoying a cup of coffee or a light meal, try Happy Garden Café for a garden-inspired setting, Frank & Dean for some comfort fare and fresh brews, or Single Origin for great coffee and all-day breakfast.
For some happy hour drinks or a big night out, BGC has a wide array of bars to choose from, such as Elbert’s Upstairs Bar, O2 Rooftop Bar, and XYLO at The Palace. And when you need a break from all the shopping and revelry, BGC also has its fair share of parks and open spaces perfect for getting some fresh air and exercise. Or you can visit The Mind Museum, an interactive science museum perfect for curious minds of all ages.
Cebu City, known as the Queen City of the South, is a historic and economically important city in the Visayas region. It is also the capital of its namesake province and one of the Philippines' most popular tourist destinations.
Compared to other areas in the Philippines, the city has a unique feel because of its Spanish colonial architecture. You'll come across numerous beautiful churches from the colonial era throughout the city, such as Basilica Minore del Santo Niño, one of the oldest churches in the Philippines. Cebu is home to the Magellan's Cross, a Christian cross planted by Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan in 1521. Historical places of interest in Cebu include Fort San Pedro, the oldest triangular bastion fort in the Philippines; Colon Street, the oldest street in the country; and Mactan Shrine, where Magellan was killed at The Battle of Mactan. You'll also find many ancestral houses and museums in Cebu, such as the Casa Gorordo Museum, Yap-Sandiego Ancestral House, Jesuit House Museum, and Museo Sugbo.
Few places in the world offer as stunning and varied beaches as Cebu. From Moalboal, where you can witness the popular sardine run where thousands of sardines swim around and create beautiful formations and patterns, to Oslob, where you can swim with whale sharks, to Bantayan Island, where you can relax on white sand beaches—there's something for everyone. If you love waterfalls, be sure to visit Kawasan Falls—one of the most popular spots for canyoneering.
Cebu City is another great option for living and working remotely in the Philippines. Like Makati, it has a strong infrastructure and modern amenities for remote work. The city has no shortage of coworking spaces, which is great news for digital nomads who need to get some work done. Some of the best coworking spaces in Cebu include Avant Offices, The Company, Nomad’s Hub, which is a coworking space with accommodation, and Workplace Café, a coworking cafe with four locations in Cebu City.
And no matter what your taste buds are craving, you'll be able to find a great meal in Cebu. One dish you should not miss when in Cebu is lechon (roasted suckling pig), which has gained notoriety among foodies around the world. House of Lechon is one of the most popular places to taste the dish, but there are many other great options available. For some delicious Filipino food, check out Paolito’s, a traditional Filipino restaurant, or try Sugbo Mercado Food Bazaar, a popular food park that offers a variety of local dishes. Chixboy, an al fresco dining in the mountains of Busay, home to some of the best Cebu tourist spots, is also a great place to go for some delicious food.
Cebu has a lively nightlife scene, with plenty of places to drink and socialize after a tiring day. One beloved craft beer stop is Turning Wheels Craft Brewery. Another excellent spot to unwind is at Weekend, where you can order from a menu of premium spirits and liqueurs, craft beers, and innovative cocktails. Straight Up Bar is another favorite spot to unwind. It’s a rooftop bar located at Seda Central Bloc with gorgeous views of the Cebu City skyline. If you feel like dancing instead, ICON, The Sentral Cebu, and Rue Cebu offer live music and DJ performances.
Located in the Cordillera Mountains in northern Luzon, Baguio City is known for its cool weather and beautiful scenery. Called the "City of Pines" for its abundant pine trees, Baguio provides a refreshing break from the tropical heat of the lowlands. The city's cool climate has also earned Baguio the nickname of "Summer Capital of the Philippines".
The best part about Baguio is the serenity that nature brings. For a calm stroll or bike ride, go to Burnham Park located right in the city center. For cityscape views, visit Mines View Park or Mirador Eco Park instead to get a breath of fresh mountain air. And if you're feeling adventurous, Tree Top Adventure and Bell House await you inside Camp John Hay.
La Trinidad's famous strawberry farms, Botanical Garden and Baguio Eco Park's eco-tours, and Tam-awan Village, an artists’ colony featuring traditional Ifugao huts, are only a few examples of what you can find on the outskirts of Baguio city. BenCab Museum, an art museum of National Artist Benedicto Cabrera, is also a must-visit.
Being a digital nomad in Baguio City comes with some amazing perks, like the city's year-round cool weather and its proximity to nature. There are two well-known coworking spaces here: Workhub, which also has meeting rooms and event space availability; and Calle Uno, where you can find a food hub for your coffee or lunch break needs.
In addition to coworking spaces, Baguio City has plenty of cafes where you can set up your laptop and get some work done. Some popular cafes in the city are 113 Wagner Café, a picturesque garden eatery; Arca’s Yard, which not only serves coffee but also functions as a mini-library and museum showcasing Igorot culture and antiquities; and Choco-late de Batirol, a hidden gem in Camp John Hay's verdant hills, giving it a forest retreat appeal.
Baguio offers some interesting dining options too! Foggy Mountain Cookhouse is a great spot to watch the sunset while enjoying some delicious food. However, this restaurant requires reservations in advance. Canto, on the other hand, is a local favorite that offers an authentic Baguio experience not only through its food but also through its cozy setting. If you're looking to taste the local cuisine, Farmer’s Daughter Restaurant is where you want to go. They serve dishes from the Cordillera region. Good Taste Restaurant offers Filipino and Chinese cuisine, Chaya serves authentic Japanese food, while Grumpy Joe is the perfect destination for pizza, pasta, and burger lovers. If you're looking for a good place to eat and drink at night, Craft 1945 serves Spanish food and premium craft beer or Baguio Craft Brewery is another popular spot for "good food, great music, and craft beer."
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