In a previous blog post, I discussed ten of the best digital nomad cities to visit. They make the cut for having a reliable Internet connection in most of their locations, being affordable, and having an interesting culture, traditions, and people (among other reasons, practical and otherwise). But for today, I want to put the spotlight on the best countries for digital nomads, instead of on specific cities.
The main reason for this is that some remote employment or freelance projects necessitate longer-than-usual stays for us digital nomads. I’ve personally taken on clients who required me to be in the same country they or their businesses are currently situated. This means getting to explore most of what a country offers more thoroughly and thoughtfully, up until the completion of a particular project.
Based on my experience, there are five countries I simply must recommend for the same reasons I proposed the best digital nomad cities before. Right off the bat, I will confess to going down an alliterative route for this specific list. They can help me describe what it is I love about these particular countries in a snap – as well as help me practice creative writing. So without further ado, here they are in alphabetical order.
First up is Brazil. It not only makes it to the top of the list because of alphabetical reasons but because Brazil genuinely offers so many benefits to digital nomads. It’s also on the bucket list of plenty of adventurous travelers.
For those who have to travel for work in Brazil, Florianópolis, in particular, makes for a fantastic digital nomad experience. It boasts of having so many coworking spaces and startup businesses that are attracted to the heady combination of white sand beaches and technological amenities. Jericoacoara is another Brazilian city with some of the most gorgeous sunsets to offer, along with a reliable Internet connection. Rio de Janeiro, of course, is a must-see. The city has coworking spaces and lots of carnivals and festivals, as well as Instagram-worthy landmarks. Then there is Belo Horizonte, which is fast becoming known as Brazil’s “Silicon Valley.” Many programmers and tech people have made Belo Horizonte their home mainly because of its exciting nightlife, combined with affordable accommodations.
Captivating Costa Rica
Costa Rica is small enough to explore fully, but it is packed with so many adventures and gorgeous sights that you may want to take your sweet time drinking it all in. A lot of digital nomads who find themselves there end up staying for years because it’s such an exciting, adventurous place that is also remote worker-friendly.
There are plenty of towns in Costa Rica that are ideal for digital nomads like you and me. My personal favorite is Limon, particularly in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca. It’s colorful, teeming with tropical wildlife, and have all the necessary comforts you will need to live on. Play Jaco is another location that offers a reliable Internet connection, plus an exciting nightlife and great restaurants to satisfy any palate.
I used the word “gainful” to describe this section (aside from the apparent reason) because Germany offers such an innovative, technologically-advanced culture for anyone who needs (or wants) to work there. The country boasts of having tens of thousands of WiFi hotspots all over, with an excellent average Internet speed of nearly 19Mbps!
Because of this, Germany is fast becoming known as a destination for digital nomads, with Berlin topping the list for having plenty of coworking spaces and being the birthplace of several innovative startups. Munich is also a great place to work remotely, though it can get quite expensive to live there. It’s best for those who have had a history of working remotely for quite some time now, and therefore have enough funds and know-how to afford living accommodations and other amenities there.
One of the best countries for digital nomads, at least for me, will always be Spain. I love the laid-back lifestyle and how people there take things slowly, thereby encouraging a work-life balance we digital nomads sometimes tend to forget to do.
I previously recommended Las Palmas de Gran Canaria as an exciting place to stay while in Spain. Many expats choose to call it their temporary home, and digital nomads can always rely on coworking spaces to complete their work before they can hit the beaches or visit historical landmarks there. Of course, you can’t go wrong trying to set up a remote workplace in either Madrid or Barcelona – you would be in great company with startups and tech entrepreneurs there, after all. However, if you want to try a bit of a different path while in Spain, I also recommend Javea which actively encourages remote workers from dozens of countries all over the world to partake of their rich local culture while learning from other digital nomads in an exciting, co-working environment.
Being last on this list notwithstanding, Thailand will always be a country I will recommend to friends both for its beauty and friendliness to digital nomads. There’s a reason why this gorgeous South East Asian country made it to the top of my previous list of cities for remote workers.
Bangkok has business class-level Internet and lots of coworking spaces, plus some of the yummiest and most affordable cuisine I have ever tasted in my life. Chiang Mai is another Thai destination that allows you to connect to clients and loved ones anywhere in the world. An added attraction is the affordable living it offers, plus the mushrooming coworking spaces and Internet-friendly coffee shops. But if you want to be nearer to the beach and enjoy a more tropical setting, visit Koh Lanta in Southern Thailand. There are so many activities waiting for you once you wrap up work for the day – including snorkeling, swimming, or even just watching the sunset on the beach.
This list I came up with about the best countries for digital nomads is brief – but only due to a shortage of blog space and my still-inadequate experiences, travel-wise. Given the chance (and financial capacity), I would love to explore more of the world and discover what it has to offer to digital nomads like you and me.