Top 11 Most Popular European Cities for Digital Nomads
1. Budapest, Hungary
The secret is out, and Budapest has made its way onto the digital nomad’s top destination for affordable living. Whether you stroll down the Danube River, gaze at the glory of the Parliament Building, or dip your tired body into the fancy thermal baths, it is easy to fall in love with this city. This destination is excellent for the low cost of living, plenty of coworking spaces and cafes, and signature ‘ruin bars’ to connect with your new expat and digital nomad friends. It is easy to meet these new friends in the city nightlife. On the weekends, there are plenty of things to do in Budapest, but if you want to make a day trip outside of the city, you can always visit Esztergom, Hungary’s original capital; here you will find more fantastic medieval architecture and the Pilis Mountains sitting majestically in the distance. A slight warning that once you visit Budapest, you may not want to leave.
2. Warsaw, Poland
Warsaw, Poland, is a city that has so much to offer and waiting to be explored. This Polish capital is lined with modern and historic architecture, fantastic museums, and walkable destinations around both Old Town and New Town. You must visit Malbork Castle and Wilanow Palace, which are both breathtaking in their own right. If you have a free weekend, you can also grab the 3-hour train to Krakow, relax on the banks of the Vistula River, visit Zelazowa Wola (known as the birthplace of Polish composer Frederic Chopin), or other day trips to explore the beauty and scenery around Poland. Like most major cities in Europe, the internet is fast and reliable. The digital nomad population is more plentiful in the summer months of May - October as the weather is more desirable.
3. Istanbul, Turkey
Istanbul, Turkey, is a blended city with influences from both the east (Europe) and the west (Asia). With this mix of different cultures, it is inevitable for this city to have an endless offering of culinary masterpieces - a bit selling point for those foodies. This extremely affordable city is colorful, lively, and filled with adventure. Make sure not to miss Cappadocia - famous for its fairy chimneys and hot air balloon rides. Istanbul Airport has around 300 non-stop passenger flights to more than 100 different countries, which makes this city also an ideal home base for digital nomads. Therefore weekend trips to various countries in the surrounding area are incredibly affordable. Although Turkey has been under a lot of scrutinies by the media, it is still worth a visit - maintain average traveler’s caution, and this budget city will be a surprise and ‘Turkish delight.’
4. Athens, Greece
Athens, Greece, is a destination perfect for digital nomads, especially if you are a history buff. This incredible city is attracting tourists, expats, and nomads from all over the globe. For food lovers, this is a MECCA - mousaka, saganaki, souvlaki, tzatziki; the list goes on. You can find a little hidden cafe or a five-star Michelin restaurant. Either way, you are going home with a happy belly. The Greek lifestyle is much more relaxed than most other European cities. Therefore integration and cost of living are highly desired by nomads. Since this city has been drawing startups and small businesses, it has become easier than ever for nomads to find a space to work. In coworking spaces, bars, and nights out, it is easy to connect in this international city. If you like to party and visit the gorgeous Greek Islands, your stay in Athens will be more than satisfying!
5. Lisbon, Portugal
Lisbon has become one of the most famous European cities for digital nomads due to its low-cost living, incredible nightlife, and amazing weekend trips to nearby cities. Lisbon is the perfect mix of seaside living and a complex city lifestyle. There are incredible cafes with fast and dependable wifi, amazing beaches for surfing and lounging, and the perfect scenery for meeting other expats and travelers. Lisbon is a great home base for weekend adventures to places like Porto, Nazare, or the beautiful Algarve. Lisbon has been the #1 digital nomad city by nomadlist.com.
6. Tbilisi, Georgia
If you haven’t been to Georgia yet, you are in for a sweet surprise. I am not talking about the state of Georgia, located in the Southern USA; I am talking about The Republic of Georgia, located at the crossroads between Europe and Asia. Tbilisi is one of the best remote digital nomad destinations, but it is slowly becoming one of the best in Europe. You get the same luxuries as typical European cities, but at the price tag of living in a Southeast Asian country (which is cheap). If you are a hiker, you will be drawn to Georgia's Caucasus Mountains - you can easily spend multiple weeks exploring this vast utopia. Also, a big bonus: you can stay visa-free for up to one year in Georgia! That is a huge deal - especially for nomads running around Europe trying to manage the 90-day Schengen Visa. This city is still relatively new in the digital nomad world, so make sure you catch it when it is still cheap!
7. Sofia, Bulgaria
One of the most underrated countries in Eastern Europe is Bulgaria. Digital nomads are looking for new destinations in Eastern Europe to call home with low cost of living, fast internet, and comfortable living arrangements, and that place is Sofia. The city is relatively compact, so finding expats, connecting with locals, and finding your way around the city is simple and efficient. This little city in the Balkan region is ready for digital nomads to explore this new location for the beaches and the mountains. Three hours by car in either direction, and you are in a completely different terrain which is great for weekend trips to either destination. With a city of 1.2 million people, there is plenty to enjoy, such as St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, Boyana Chuch from the 10th century, and plenty of red wine. So grab a glass and make Sofia your new digital nomad home.
8. Split, Croatia
Your next digital nomad home and Game of Thrones destination in Eastern Europe will be Split, Croatia. With a very eclectic history, Split has been under Roman, Venetian, Austrian, French, Italian, and Yugoslav rule. The countries' influence on Split’s food, culture, and architecture can be seen. This digital nomad city is a UNESCO World Heritage Site filled with breathtaking palaces, beautiful cathedrals, and tiny alleyways. This city is excellent for history and culture, combined with the calm blue Adriatic Sea. As a digital nomad, you will find plenty of coworking spaces, cafes, and meetups to connect with other expats. And you cannot mention Split without mentioning the incredible nightlife. If you want a weekend trip around this city, we highly recommend the Blue Cave and Hvar, Plitvice Lakes National Park, or a 3-hour drive down to Dubrovnik.
9. Bansko, Bulgaria
A majestic Bulgarian city known as Bansko sits at a whopping 3900 feet (1200 meters) above sea level in the Vihren Mountains. The little village will be an excellent place to call home if the mountains and great outdoors pique your interest. Nature lovers are naturally drawn to this incredible destination with a wide variety of outdoor activities such as mountain biking, climbing, hiking, and skiing. And the best part is that you are only a 2-hour drive from the Greek coastline, so nature walks in the morning and beach gazing in the afternoon are highly encouraged. Due to this growing popularity, more digital nomads seek out this little mountain town. With a variety of coworking spaces, low cost of living, fast wifi, and annual international conferences, expert nomads know that this is the place to be! Take a weekend trip to a vineyard, soak in the hot springs or enjoy a day trip to Sofia. The adventure is yours!
10. Berlin, Germany
Berlin as a digital nomad, is a perfect spot to call home if you are looking for liberation and a carefree lifestyle. Berlin, Germany’s capital, is known for living out wild fantasies, but also an excellent opportunity to maintain a work-life balance with plenty of cafes and coworking spaces all across the city. Whether you choose the neighborhoods of Kreuzberg, Wrangelkiez, or Prenzlauer Berg, you are bound to meet a fantastic community of expats, travelers, and digital nomads. If you need a weekend escape from the hustle and bustle of the city, take a train to Potsdam to visit Germany’s Sanssouci Palace or a small trek through the Harz Mountains. Regardless of how you spend your time in Berlin, make time for a cruise on The River Spree - a must-do in Berlin!
11. Madeira, Portugal
Have you ever heard of the Portuguese island of Maderia? Just north of the Spanish Canary Islands, you will find the volcanic island of Madeira. This island joined the digital nomad scene in 2021 when the Regional Government of Madeira constructed a ‘Digital Nomad Village’ to provide coliving, coworking, and community for digital nomads. Since their trial run in June of 2021, digital nomads have been flocking to this location for its dramatic black sand beaches, crystal clear waters, and tropical island lifestyle. This destination feeds the souls of both nature lovers and wine connoisseurs. Whether you stay in Funchal, the capital city, Punta Do Sol, or Santa Cruz, you will find this island paradise with a perfect blend of fast internet, outdoor activities, delicious seafood, and bumping nightlife. Whether you speak Portuguese, Spanish, or English, all are welcome!