So, you’ve agreed with your boss that you can work remotely as a digital nomad for a few weeks or months, but where do you choose to fly? Will there be decent wifi? Where will you be staying? And could it all get a little sad and lonely once the tourist shine fades? This is where digital nomad villages come in.
These tend to be loosely organized nomadic communities that center around coworking spaces and coliving apartments, with a central social media group to plan joint activities and events.
Lots of Europe top digital nomad destinations are still in big cities like Lisbon, Barcelona and Budapest, but nomadic villages are now beginning to provide urban infrastructure in quieter pockets of Europe. For people looking for a less hectic “job”, they can be a great place to settle down for a short time and meet like-minded people. So where are they?
The best digital nomad villages in Europe
The Portuguese archipelago of Madeira is apparently the birthplace of the world’s first digital nomad village. Established in February 2021 – when most of Europe was plunged into Covid restrictions – the village is designed to be a one-stop-shop to help nomads settle on the island.
👉 Read: What do locals think of digital nomads?
Arrivals have access to a free coworking space, advice on finding accommodation and permission to join the nomad’s Slack group – where events such as hikes and sunset beach fitness classes are posted every week. Locals said subdued that they like the climate (it’s 24°C even in November), the proximity to nature and the relaxed atmosphere of the island.
The Canary Islands, Spain
Like Madeira, the Canary Islands are geographically closer to Africa than mainland Europe, making them another attractive option for those looking for warmer climates in winter. If you are looking for a true digital nomad community experience, Las Palmas in Gran Canaria is home to nomadic city, an established remote work community offering coliving accommodation, private coworking space recommendations, and a Facebook group for nomads to connect and socialize.
If you are looking for a slightly less intense and organized experience, there are others, small nomadic communities in Tenerife and Fuerteventura to discover, all offering coworking spaces with fast wifi.
One of the booming digital nomad villages is Lagos in the Algarve region of Portugal. It offers coliving and coworking spaces and a Facebook group to meet your traveling colleagues. Nomads have previously told Sifted that Lagos community caters especially well to those looking for “mindfulness activities” (think meditation, yoga, ecstatic dance, and holotropic breathwork). So, if you are looking for ways to unwind after the work day, Lagos could be the digital nomad community for you.
Most of the other digital nomad villages on this list are pretty confined to sun, sand, and sea, but beach life isn’t the only way to be a digital nomad in Europe. Bansko is a ski resort in the Bulgarian mountains and has become one of Europe’s leading digital nomad communities in recent years.
During the summer months, the city becomes a haven for hikers, climbers and mountain bikers, and is one of the cheapest places to live on Europe’s digital nomad map. The station now has several coworking and coliving spaces, and a lively Facebook group featuring all sorts of events for nomads throughout the year.
Five years ago, a couple from San Francisco moved to a picturesque town near Trento, Italy, hoping, like many other nomads, to experience something new. While the hiking, skiing, and summers on the lake — not to mention great schools and the beautiful city nearby — were appealing, they realized one thing the digital nomad village was missing: community.
So they launched Trento Remote, a so-called all-in-one program for remote living. Participants receive help finding accommodation and coworking spaces, while Trento Remote also organizes meetups, events and curated “adventures” to help participants make local and international friends.
The best of the rest
If none of these places appeal to you, there’s still plenty to offer the digital nomad – you may need to head to a larger city to find what you’re looking for.
These are the next most popular places for nomads in Europe, according to nomadlist, a resource that rates locations based on factors such as wifi quality, cost of living, and safety:
Tim Smith is Sifted Iberia’s correspondent. He tweets from @timmpsmith