The 10 Best Destinations for Digital Nomads Ranked

How do perfectly normal folks become digital nomads? They look at their surroundings and say yeah, I could leave all this behind for a villa in Spain, and then they actually leave it all behind for a villa in Spain.

It’s not the thinking so much as the doing that sets them apart.

Suppose that's you. Suppose you're done with the same routine day after day. Where would you go? Forget the obvious beach towns and tourist traps. That defeats the purpose of embracing a new way of life.

Lucky for you VisaGuide has a Digital Nomads Index that objectively ranks the best places to live for people who can live anywhere, and – spoiler alert! – your current location did not make the list. Again.

Here’s VisaGuide’s top 10, with some details on what it means to be a digital nomad in these countries.

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Pluses: A six-month grace period from having to pay taxes; low minimum-income requirement; solid health infrastructure; fast internet.

Minuses: Fairly high cost of living; 15% tax rate when you have to pay taxes.

Let’s talk about how VisaGuide pulls together this index. It constructs a single number for each country out of the following Lego pieces:

  • The tax rate
  • Whether nomads get a tax moratorium, and for how long
  • Internet speed
  • Minimum income requirements for visa applications, if any
  • Monthly living costs, averaged
  • The country’s popularity among tourists
  • The country’s Global Health Score

When VisaGuide adds up all the numbers, Spain comes out on top. It’s not the cheapest or the healthiest, but it’s a great place to web-surf and follow the Mediterranean diet. The climate’s pretty nice, too, though VisaGuide doesn’t include that in its in rankings.

If Spain sounds appealing to you, you have to apply and show:

  • Private health insurance with full coverage in Spain
  • No criminal record for five years
  • A one-year employment contract with a non-Spanish company
  • At least three years of work experience or a college degree

Additionally, spouses and families can join their digital nomad if the nomad can prove a proportionally higher income.

It’s actually not that much rigmarole, and if it lands you a villa in Valencia, it’s totally worth it.

The Best Places to Visit In Spain: From Cordoba to Valencia


Pluses: No taxes over the full visa length; low cost of living.

Minuses: Slow internet; lower health score.

Buenos Aires generally shows up on the list of the world’s most expensive cities (the most expensive in South America, according to Mercer), which dissuades a lot of potential nomads from considering Argentina.

Here’s the thing: Just like you don’t have to live in New York City, you don’t have to live in Buenos Aires. There are plenty of great places to live in Argentina that aren’t Buenos Aires.

Mar del Plata or Bahia Blanca are perfectly serviceable substitutes.

The Argentinian government has yet to firm up specific requirements for digital nomads beyond proof of income, but in general the more paperwork you have – passport, rent contract, bank-account statements, health-insurance paperwork, proof of education and employment – the easier it will be for Argentina to allow you to stay and work.

Wouldn’t hurt to brush up on your Spanish, though. And take some tango lessons.

See why Argentina made our list of best places to travel for introverts


Pluses: No taxes over the full visa length; fast internet.

Minuses: Lower health score; high minimum income.

If you have your heart set on living in Europe, Romania is a good bet, according to VisaGuide.

What makes it great? Certainly not the Soviet-era cinder-block architecture, especially in Bucharest, the country’s capital.

The better places to flop are in the country’s mountainous north – and yes, we’re talking about Transylvania. (Cue squeaky-hinge noises and bat sounds.) Cluj-Napoca is the capital of the region and offers a vibrant arts scene and lots to do, while Brasov has castles, parapets, and old city walls.

The language barrier is real in the outlying areas, but otherwise Romania has a lot to offer young, mobile professionals – and it’s interested in bringing more nomads into the country, touting the country’s:

  • Easy application process
  • Tax-free status
  • Internet infrastructure
  • Coworking spaces
  • Low cost of living

If that sounds appealing to you, Romania is for you.

Romania even has an ice hotel!

United Arab Emirates

Pluses: Fast internet; no taxes over the full visa length.

Minuses: Expensive; high minimum income; low health grades.

Your experience as a digital nomad in the UAE may depend on your gender and lifestyle.

If you’re female or identify as LGBTQI+ you may find the UAE difficult and constraining.

If you’re none of those things, and you like extreme heat, you may really enjoy the UAE. The country doesn’t lack for creature comforts, though they come at a price.

If you’re interested, VisaGuide has a list of requirements for digital nomads in the UAE.

If you go, check out Dubai's world class airport lounges


Pluses: No taxes over the full visa length.

Minuses: relatively low health grades; slow internet.

Croatia has been on the “next hot destination” list for a while. Still, the reasons Croatia became a hot destination to start with are still present: A gorgeous coastline, a rugged interior, livable cities, lots of recreation opportunities, and a lovely climate.

A split-level in Split may not go for cheap like it used to, but that shouldn’t take away from Croatia’s essential attractiveness as a destination for nomads.

The country offers a special digital-nomad residence permit and benefits that include:

  • Exemption from double taxation
  • The ability to stay longer in Croatia
  • Stable internet 
  • A pathway to Croatian citizenship

If that sounds good, Croatia is ready for you and your computer to make the leap.

Adventures in Croatia: From Ancient Cities to Island Escapes

Here are quick reports on the next five countries on VisaGuide’s list:


Pluses: Fast internet; low cost of living; high health grades.

Minuses: High minimum income.

You might be surprised to find Spain’s cooler Iberian sibling much further down the list. When you take apart the numbers, it’s much ado over nothing. The differences between the two are marginal.


Pluses: No taxes over the full visa length; no minimum income requirement.

Minuses: Low health grades; slow internet.

Shout-out to South America! Uruguay offers cosmopolitan and vaguely European cities along with a beautiful coastline, a special digital-nomads visa, and a region-best safety rating.


Pluses: No taxes over the full visa length.

Minuses: Low health grades.

Malta has all the good things of a Mediterranean island – warm temps, sun-drenched shores, great local cuisine – with proportionally more English speakers. Malta also offers a digital-nomad visa.


Pluses: Great health grades.

Minuses: High cost of living; high tax rate; internet not as fast as you might expect.

Norway regularly shows up on lists of the best places in the world to live, so it’s no surprise that it’s a top destination for digital nomads – despite the cost and cold.

(VisaGuide particularly recommends Svalbard, a group of islands that are closer to the North Pole than Oslo.)

Discover the Best of Norway: Fjords, Northern Lights, Oslo


Pluses: No minimum income requirement.

Minuses: Low health grades.

You don’t often hear about the landlocked, rugged, 181-square-mile Andorra. It’s beautiful, and while it lacks some services, most are available from neighbors Spain or France. (It also sort-of lacks a digital-nomad visa process, according to VisaGuide.)

Ultimately, there’s the exclusivity thing. How many of your friends are digital nomads in Tiny Andorra? You could be the trailblazer.

Bonus: Italy recently launched their digital nomad visa! An annual income of about $30,000, health insurance and accommodations set up are required.

No matter where your digital-nomad existence might take you, there’s a case to be made for travel protection that can help cover you in case of Trip Cancellation or Trip Interruption, and help pay for emergency medical expenses.

Generali Global Assistance offers a range of travel protection plans that can give digital nomads peace of mind.



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