You’ve boxed up your home, packed a bag, and waved goodbye to friends and family—there’s just one question left, “where to next?”. In all of the uprooting, life-changing, and overwhelming stress of planning, figuring out exactly where to work remotely can sometimes fall to the bottom of the to-do list.
If you know that you want to live, work and travel somewhere, but spinning a globe or throwing a dart at a map isn’t working for you, we’re here to help. We’ve studied our atlases, chatted with the experts, and downloaded all of the apps to compile the very best list of the top workcation locations. From the ever-popular Chiang Mai and Bali to the often-overlooked Goa and Kuala Lumpur, here are our top 10 remote work destinations for digital nomads.
1. Lisbon, Portugal
Often considered the #1 destination for remote workers, Lisbon is really enjoying its time in the limelight.
The cosmopolitan city boasts a big reputation with everyone from entrepreneurs and digital nomads to start-ups and Fortune 500 companies (here’s looking at you, Google) taking residency in the sun-soaked city.
Lisbon is not only the capital but the crowning jewel of the country. Remote workers can enjoy the rich history of the city, taking the iconic yellow trams between their accommodation and their chosen place of work. With countless cafes, coworking spaces, and generous outdoor areas—the choices are endless. Although most fly directly into Lisbon with the country's main airport located in the capital, alternative arrivals into both Porto (in the North) and Faro (in the South) are available. Busses and trains are typically chosen to travel between the cities and offer an inexpensive way to tour the country.
2. Chiang Mai, Thailand
Thailand has long been a favorite destination for remote workers, backpackers, and global travelers. With a favorable exchange rate, fascinating culture, wild nightlife, and gorgeous scenery, what Thailand doesn’t have isn’t worth having. Most remote workers fly directly into Bangkok, the chaotic metropolis characterized by towering skyscrapers, grand temples, and the intoxicating smell of tuk-tuks. The Thai capital can be a bit too intense for most and it’s often said that it takes two or three visits to really appreciate the city. But it’s not Bangkok that holds a place on our top list–in the North of the country, away from the hustle and bustle of the city lies Chiang Mai.
Despite being the second-largest city in the country, the slow pace and relaxed lifestyle of Chiang Mai make it a must-visit, hard-to-leave destination that’s perfect for remote workers. The city is home to affordable apartments, cheap coworking spaces, and fantastic food options—all just a stone's throw away from the central old town. Remote workers searching for a high quality of life without breaking the budget will feel right at home in Thailand’s second city.
3. Goa, India
Located on West Coast, Goa is India’s smallest state, offering some of the country’s most beautiful landscapes. Just south of Mumbai, Goa is a hotspot for relaxing and unwinding away from the noise of the city. With stunning beaches that the state has become known for, unrivaled nightlife, and rich history with unsuspecting Portuguese influence.
Remote workers typically fly directly into Goa International Airport, just a short drive from the coworking hotspots of the state. Those searching for the lively party scene will find the best results in the north of the state whereas relaxing beaches and yoga retreats can be found in the south.
The cost of living in Goa, despite being one of the highest in India, is one of the lowest on our list with an approximate monthly spend of a little over $1,000 for nomads. One of the few downsides to the location is the infrastructure of the villages in the area. Power and internet outages are commonplace, making the state a somewhat unreliable place to work.
However, with a stunning coastline to explore, a low cost of living, and a fantastic remote working community, digital nomads are sure to love Goa!
4. Dubai, UAE
With more than 200 different nationalities residing within the City, Dubai offers a cultural melting point impossible to recreate. The city's popularity has exploded with the increase in remote working opportunities with digital nomads flocking to the UAE in their droves. The constantly evolving skyline is dominated by the Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building, with the peak overlooking the city.
Landing at Dubai Internation Airport, the city center is just a short drive away and offers a diverse mix of restaurants, coworking spaces, cafes, and tourist attractions. The city is famous for its wide roads and, with almost every location a short drive away, cars are a priority for getting from A to B although buses, metros, and cycle lanes are all available.
The Dubai experience is all about luxury with digital nomads and remote workers able to find anything and everything they could desire in the streets. From waterparks and skydiving opportunities to indoor skiing and to the newly opened Museum of the Future, the city has it all.
This luxury experience does, however, come with a price tag—something to keep in mind before booking flights with a sightseeing itinerary in hand.
5. Bali, Indonesia
One of the most popular remote working destinations, and the go-to location for countless freelancers and start-ups, is the Indonesian island of Bali. Famous for its cameo in Julia Roberts’ 2010 blockbuster “Eat Pray Love”, Bali always been a haven for tourists and remote workers alike. Part of the island's secret recipe lies in its variety—there really is something for everyone in the Indonesian paradise.
Lovers of watersports will find world-class surfing, diving, and swimming. Fans of eating will love the fresh food, açai bowls, and incredible cafes/restaurants. Devotees of work will appreciate the fantastic selection of coworking spaces, idyllic cafes, and fast, free WiFi.
The price of paradise is one of the biggest pulls for the digital nomad community with a low-cost dream life making Indonesia the perfect stomping ground for start-ups and easy-going freelancers. Beachfront villas, private pools, and incredible homestays can all be snapped up for stunning deals, begging the question of why would you choose anywhere else to go? Bali may be the default destination for remote workers, but if the island's popularity has taught us anything it’s that if it’s not broken, don’t fix it.
6. Barcelona, Spain
Found on the Northeastern coastline of Spain, Barcelona is a destination that all digital nomads dream of when planning a workcation. Barcelona is alive with an incredible nightlife scene, fantastic beaches, breathtaking hikes, and forward-thinking infrastructure that makes getting from A to B a breeze. Outdoor enthusiasts will love the wide range of different hiking trails, most accessible via public transport with the Serra de Collserola Natural Park and the Serra d'Ordal Nature Reserve just a short trip away.
The gothic architecture will stun at every corner when exploring the city, from the famous Serra d'Ordal to the ever-popular Carrer del Bisbe. The Gothic Quarter is one of the top places to spend your time during a visit to the bucket-list city.
There are more than 2,000 startups throughout the surrounding region of Catalonia, with remote workers drawn to the top quality of life that only the Spanish sun can offer. It’s easy to see why so many expats and digital nomads call Barcelona home and with a dedicated digital nomad visa on the way, more remote workers will be able to enjoy the favorite Spanish corner.
7. Miami, United States
Nestled on Florida’s southeastern tip, Miami is a destination that offers far more than any other typical U.S. city. Known for its sunny beaches, high-energy nightlife, and appearances in the legendary 80s police show Miami Vice, the city is full of life on every corner. But there’s more to Miami than partying and crime—the city is full of culture and offers a fantastic place to spend a remote working vacation.
Remote workers can enjoy the Bayside marketplace, head down to Little Haiti, or spend their time eating world-renown Cubanos in Little Havana. There are plenty of options for coworking and cafes too. From “The LAB Miami” to “WeWork Miami”, there’s a remote working vibe that every digital nomad can gel with.
The cost of living down in Miami may be more expensive than the typical remote working location, but with countless social and professional opportunities offered by the city, it’s easy to see why.
8. Buenos Aires, Argentina
The Argentinian city of Buenos Aires offers visitors a unique blend of Latin and European with Spanish, French, and Italian features mixed into the South American city.
Remote workers can head down to the historic neighborhood of La Boca, and check out the markets of Feira de San Telmo, and the Bosques de Palermo park during their stay. The food scene in Buenos Aires is sure to please foodies with hole-in-the-wall eateries, top restaurants, and wonderful working cafes are all available
Digital nomads looking to book their accommodation in Buenos Aires should keep their eyes on the internet connection speeds offered. Although the city is fantastic in many ways, the average internet speeds can be a bit of a letdown. Still, the city is highly recommended and with an inexpensive average trip cost and high quality of life, digital nomads, freelancers, and remote workers love utilizing the city as a budget base.
9. Mexico City, Mexico
Located in Central America, Mexico City proves a popular choice among digital nomads. With a population of almost nine million, the Mexican capital is not only the largest city in the country but the most populous. Mixed within the locals is a community of digital nomads and remote workers residing in hotels, Airbnbs, and private rentals, enjoying the culture and the lifestyle in Mexico.
Despite the overwhelmingly positive experiences shared by digital nomads spending time in Mexico City, there are security concerns and tales of robbery and corruption are common in the country and travelers, tourists, and remote workers and encouraged to take care when navigating the streets in the evenings.
A rich history, incredible food scene, and convenient time difference for U.S.-based nomads make Mexico City a fantastic choice when heading out on a workcation.
10. Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Often only considered a layover city, the Malaysian capital of Kuala Lumpur is one destination with something to prove.
Conveniently located as a popular stop-off spot for holiday-makers visiting Australia, KL is criminally overlooked as a fantastic destination not only for holiday-makers but for remote workers, too.
All international flights land at KL international airport, just a short one-hour ride away from the thriving city center. The skyline is dominated by the Petronas Towers, overlooking the green space of KLCC park. These can be climbed for a fantastic view of the city or, alternatively, head over to the KL Forest Eco Park and the Menara to look back at the iconic twin buildings. Kuala Lumpur offers high-quality accommodation, fantastic local food, and great coworking spaces all on a low budget. It’s for this reason that remote working is popular in the city with ex-pats and digital nomads often using KL as a hub for exploring South East Asia.
Our Top 10 Workation Destinations
Our top 10 remote work destinations, all offering fantastic food, impressive architecture, and fascinating cultures are all waiting to be explored.
From the popular Lisbon and Chiang Mai to the lesser-visited Buenos Aires, and Kuala Lumpur, there’s a remote working destination to suit. Every solo remote worker, digital nomad family, or freelancing couple around the world has an alternative life waiting for them across the globe.
Adam Mace is Nurall's Lead Contributing Writer and a full-time digital nomad in search of the best hikes, unique stays, and local delicacies. When he’s not exploring far-flung places he can..
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