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Looking for the best places to live in Mexico for digital nomads? You’ve come to the right place! After five years of traveling the world as a digital nomad, I decided to call Mexico home. I’m based in Puerto Vallarta and love to explore other parts of the country while working remotely.
If you’re reading this, chances are you’re itching to swap your 9-to-5 cubicle for a beachside café in Mexico.
But let’s face it, the digital nomad lifestyle isn’t just about sipping margaritas by the sea. It’s about finding a place that offers a perfect blend of reliable WiFi, affordable living, and a community that gets you.
Fail to find the right spot, and you could end up isolated, overpaying, and struggling to keep up with work deadlines. I’ve been there.
As someone who’s lived the digital nomad lifestyle for over five years and currently calls Mexico home, I know the best spots that offer not just stunning views but also a conducive work environment.
Last year alone, I explored and lived in multiple digital nomad cities across Mexico, from the bustling streets of Mexico City to the tranquil vibes of San Cristobal de las Casas.
So, whether you’re a newbie looking to dip your toes into the digital nomad life or a seasoned pro seeking a change of scenery, I’ve got you covered in this comprehensive guide to the top places to live in Mexico that offer the perfect balance of work and play.
Best Cities to Live in Mexico For Digital Nomads
1. Mexico City
The capital, Mexico City, is one of the best cities in Mexico for digital nomads. It’s a dynamic metropolis that offers a wide range of experiences, from Michelin-star restaurants to bustling markets and serene parks.
I’ve had the pleasure of visiting this city over five times, and I have grown to love it more each time.
There are endless things to keep you entertained in Mexico City, but it’s also a hub for day trips to some of Mexico’s top attractions.
Take a hot air ride balloon over the ancient Teotihuacan pyramids, relax in the Instagram-worthy Grutas Tolantongo hot springs, or visit the charming city of Puebla.
It’s a big city, so getting from one point to another can be time-consuming, but even an hour Uber will still not cost you much. There is also a subway system and buses.
Most nomads congregate in the Condesa and Roma Norte neighborhoods, which are very walkable and known for their relaxed atmosphere, green parks, coworking spaces, and cafes. It felt like every cafe I walked into was a coworking space – with many remote workers on their laptops.
Last summer, I house-sat for a girl in Condesa in the most beautiful apartment. It was terrific having cafes and restaurants right outside my door!
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It’s got one of the best Mexico expat communities, making it easy to meet new friends quickly. This Facebook group is excellent for connecting with nomads with regularly hosted meetups. I’ve been to several events and always meet great people!
2. Oaxaca City
Oaxaca City is a cultural powerhouse that’s quickly becoming a hotspot for digital nomads. With its rich history, vibrant arts scene, and delicious cuisine, it’s a place that offers more than just a pretty backdrop for your laptop.
I spent a month living in Oaxaca City, and it was an incredible experience. My journey started in the Reforma neighborhood, where I got my first accommodation for free through TrustedHousesitters.
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In the second part of my trip, I moved downtown to Co404, a popular coliving space that was a more convenient base for exploring this digital nomad city.
The community I found in Oaxaca was incredible, largely thanks to my friend Ian who introduced me to a fantastic group of friends.
It’s one of the world’s top foodie destinations, so your taste buds will be satisfied living here with some of Mexico’s best and most diverse food.
It’s a moderate-sized city, so it’s one of the best cities in Mexico to live in if you’re looking for something smaller than Mexico City or Guadalajara. It’s also got a milder climate as the altitude is just over 1500 meters (5,000 feet), so it’s a good option for those seeking something cooler.
Oaxaca City is the place to be for culture in Mexico. From spontaneous parades on the streets to constant celebrations, the city is always buzzing with life.
Weekends offer a variety of adventures, including learning how mezcal is made, visiting the stunning Hierve del Agua, and exploring local markets and the ancient Tule Tree.
I felt safe and welcomed throughout my stay in Oaxaca City. The atmosphere is friendly, but as always, it’s wise to stay alert and aware of your surroundings.
3. San Cristobal de las Casas
San Cristobal de las Casas is a charming town in the highlands of Chiapas that’s quickly gaining popularity among digital nomads. It offers a unique blend of Spanish colonial architecture, indigenous culture, and natural beauty.
I spent some time there last year and had an incredible experience living at Co404, a coliving space that’s become a hub for digital nomads.
Co404 isn’t just a place to stay; it’s a community. They have volunteers who plan daily activities, making it easy to meet other guests. The volunteers themselves are amazing humans, and I was so impressed at how much work they put in to build an incredible community.
Every Wednesday night, they host a family dinner that brings everyone together. The huge outdoor yard with a BBQ is perfect for socializing by the fire.
Morning yoga classes are included in your stay, adding a touch of wellness to your routine.
The town is surrounded by the lush landscapes of Chiapas, making it a dream destination for nature lovers like me. It’s the gateway to exploring the natural wonders of Chiapas, from the Sumidero Canyon to the El Chiflon Waterfalls.
To make it even better, San Cristobal is one of the most affordable places to live in Mexico. You can easily find a one-bedroom apartment for around $300-$400 per month. The food is not only delicious (think Spanish Tapas) but also incredibly budget-friendly. It’s one of the cheapest places I’ve lived in Mexico!
If you’re looking for a big city that’s more affordable than Mexico City, Guadalajara may be for you. This buzzing capital city of Jalisco offers a range of museums, historic sites, and incredible nightlife. I’ve spent many weekends here from Puerto Vallarta, and it never disappoints.
It’s Mexico’s second-largest city and a major financial and cultural hub. It’s not the prettiest city in Mexico, but the nightlife is epic, and there are many great day trips around. One you don’t want to miss is Tequila, where you can see how this famous drink is made from Agave.
To top it off, Guadalajara is one of the more affordable cities in Mexico to live in. I’ve only spent weekends here, but we’ve found amazing Airbnbs for great prices every time.
You won’t have problems with WiFi here or finding places to work – the city is full of coworks and cafes. Try Metta Coworking or Selina, which is always a great place to stay if you’re new to the city.
The digital nomad scene isn’t as large as Mexico City, but it’s growing. Connect with others through the Guadalajara digital nomad Facebook group.
Unfortunately, safety can be an issue in Guadalajara, and I wouldn’t recommend walking around here alone at night (but again, that’s common in many cities). All that said, I’ve come here many weekends with no issues.
5. Guanajuato, Mexico
Guanajuato City is an underrated destination that’s perfect for remote workers in Mexico looking for an authentic Mexican experience.
Located in the heart of Central Mexico, it offers a colorful and vibrant atmosphere that’s perfect for creative minds.
The city is known for its narrow streets, colorful houses, and underground tunnels. It’s a UNESCO World Heritage site, making it a culturally enriching place to live and work.
Walking around Guanajuato, I was amazed by its rich history and artistic culture. It’s a smaller city, making it one of the best places to live in Mexico if you want to immerse yourself in local life.
Plus, it’s a great base to explore the many natural wonders and ecotourism activities that the state of Guanajuato has on offer.
6. San Miguel De Allende
San Miguel De Allende is a smaller city in the state of Guanajuato, with just under 200,000 inhabitants. It’s a popular place for American expats but has also made its mark on the Mexico digital nomad scene.
It’s one of the cutest cities I’ve visited in Mexico. The 24-block UNESCO Heritage Site town center is full of colorful streets, beautiful art murals, and a church that will make you feel as though you’ve stepped into a fairytale.
It’s not the best place for coworking spaces since it’s up and coming as a nomad destination, so you’ll want to ensure your apartment has solid internet. Smartspace Hub and San Marcos Coworking are two options.
I spent a few days here and felt it was not a place I could live for a long time because it’s so small. That said, it may be the spot if you’re looking for a quiet place to get some work done for a month!
To connect with others, check out the San Miguel Newcomers Facebook group.
San Miguel has low crime rates and is considered a relatively safe city in Mexico. We walked around the city center at night and never felt in danger.
If you’re looking for a peaceful, affordable, and safe city on the Caribbean coast, look no further than the capital of Yucatán state. It’s one of the most beautiful cities in Mexico!
Merida is a city that beautifully blends the old with the new. Known as the “White City” for its stunning limestone architecture, Merida offers a tranquil yet vibrant atmosphere that’s perfect for digital nomads.
I haven’t had the chance to live in Merida, but I’ve visited and was immediately taken by its rich Mayan heritage and modern amenities. It’s a city that offers a slower pace without sacrificing the essentials that digital nomads need.
This peaceful city is a perfect option for those seeking authentic Mexican culture, with many historic monuments and colonial buildings. But for those seeking out the nightlife, it may not be the best spot, as Merida tends to attract an older crowd.
It’s also an excellent base for day trips to some of the Yucatan’s top attractions, including several cenotes and the Chichen Itza pyramids – one of the seven wonders of the world.
Mérida is the cheapest city in Mexico for digital nomads listed, with the most affordable rent and coworking spaces. And with almost-perfect WalkScores, Mérida is a “walker’s paradise,” saving you money on a car.
If you’re worried about safety, you’ll be happy to know Mérida is also one of the safest cities in Mexico.
This Mérida, Mexico Expat Community Facebook group is great for connecting with other nomads and expats.
Monterrey is a bustling metropolis nestled against the backdrop of the Sierra Madre Oriental mountain range. It’s a hub for business and innovation, making it a compelling choice for digital nomads who thrive in a fast-paced environment.
While I haven’t lived in Monterrey, I’ve visited before and was impressed by its modern infrastructure and vibrant arts scene. It’s a city that offers a unique blend of natural beauty and urban sophistication.
Monterrey is known as the “Sultan of the North” and is a leading industrial and business center in Mexico. It’s also home to some stunning natural attractions like the Chipinque Ecological Park.
Best Beach Cities in Mexico for Digital Nomads
9. Puerto Vallarta
When it comes to places to live in Mexico on the beach, Puerto Vallarta has my heart. Call me biased, but I truly believe it’s one of the best places to live in Mexico for digital nomads who want a city by the sea.
Once just a small beach town, Puerto Vallarta has grown into a mid-size city, attracting expats and digital nomads in Mexico who want to be close to nature while still having the amenities that a big city provides.
I fell in love with Puerto Vallarta while living there in the winter of 2021 and decided to make it my home base this last year. I even bought an apartment!
What makes Puerto Vallarta so special is its prime location on the Bay of Banderas with the Sierra Madre Mountains in the backdrop. It’s a paradise for outdoor adventure.
You can go hiking along the coast, spot whales from the shore, or swim in pristine waterfalls just a few km from downtown.
While not as cheap as some places in Mexico, it has an affordable cost of living, especially compared with major cities in North America.
I wrote a comprehensive digital nomad guide about the cost of living in Puerto Vallarta that goes into detail about how much my monthly expenses are.
You won’t need a car while living there. Puerto Vallarta is a highly walkable city with many of the best neighborhoods in close proximity.
Most nomads live in Zona Romantica, El Centro, 5 di Diciembre, or Versalles. The city has a beautiful boardwalk that takes you along the coastline downtown for over one km.
If you don’t feel like walking, the city is well connected with busses that only cost 50 cents, and Ubers are just a few dollars across town.
You’ll quickly fall in love with how easy it is to meet other people in Puerto Vallarta as a digital nomad.
The city has several coworking spaces and cafes to choose from, as well as regular digital nomad meetups that you can find out about through Facebook and WhatsApp groups.
This is the Best Facebook group for nomads, with regularly hosted meetups. Playing volleyball is also a great way to meet other people.
Safety is always a concern for those moving to Mexico, but honestly, it’s never been a problem for me while living in Puerto Vallarta.
This guide about Puerto Vallarta safety has more information on how I felt living there as a solo female traveler and tips for staying safe.
Sayulita is a beach town on the Pacific coast, about an hour away from Puerto Vallarta. It’s become popular with expats and nomads in Mexico for its surf and party vibes but is notorious for its poor WiFi, so it may not be the best place if you need a reliable high-speed connection.
I love living in Puerto Vallarta and being able to go to Sayulita on the weekends, but for me, it was too small to live there. That said, I know many digital nomads who love living in Sayulita over Puerto Vallarta.
Due to the small size and high demand, prices in Sayulita have skyrocketed in the last few years as more digital nomads flock to this city.
While it may be expensive, living in Sayulita has its perks – especially if you are into surfing. It’s got a vibrant nomad community, making it super easy to meet other people. The Sayulita expats and newcomers Facebook group and Digital Nomads Sayulita/San Pancho are a good place to start.
Sayulita has boho surfer vibes, and many coffee shops and co-working spaces have opened up as more nomads flock to this small town.
The WiFi is a problem here, but Sayulita CoWork and Selina are good bets for decent speeds. If you’re renting an Airbnb and plan to work from there, be sure to get them to send you a screenshot of the speed.
11. Puerto Escondido
One of the best places for expats in Mexico who love to surf is Puerto Escondido, a small town on Mexico’s Pacific Coast in the state of Oaxaca.
For beginner surfers, head to Playa Carrizalillo, which has gorgeous turquoise water and easy-to-ride waves.
Surf and parties tend to go together in Mexico, and Puerto Escondido is no exception. The Zicatela neighborhood comes alive with parties at many bars on the weekends.
It’s also a perfect place for those looking to relax and connect with nature, with a vibrant wellness scene and many yoga classes. You can take part in a baby sea turtle release or go dolphin watching – we actually saw orcas there! Not to mention the incredible sunsets.
It’s a little more challenging to get to as there isn’t an international airport, so you’ll have to connect in Mexico City. Many also take the bus from Oaxaca City, about 4 hours away.
There are beautiful places to stay in Puerto Escondido.
Unfortunately, accommodation isn’t the cheapest, probably due to its limited size and high demand. Expect to pay around 1000 USD/month for a place – we paid half that just for a week in an Airbnb!
That said, food is relatively affordable here, and if your main priority is surfing and you have a board – the waves are always free to use. Many people get by here on a tight budget living a minimalist lifestyle.
The town isn’t overly built up, but it’s got some restaurants, supermarkets, and shops. If you’re looking for a place to cowork or stay, head to the Selina, where you’re bound to connect with other nomads. Casa Losodel is another coworking option where you can stay.
If you’re getting your own apartment, make sure to get them to send you a screenshot of the WiFi speeds, as it can be notoriously poor. Get a Telcel SIM and hotspot yourself if it goes down – this is the downside of living here.
Join Expats in Puerto Escondido for more info about moving here.
While it’s not my favorite, there’s no denying that Tulum is a top choice for digital nomads in Mexico.
This once-sleepy beach town on the Yucatan Peninsula has blown up in popularity over the last few years for tourists and nomads alike. It was even nicknamed the “Manhattan of Mexico” due to its insane growth.
It’s a popular place for those seeking out a spiritual experience as well as those looking to party. It does tend to attract a younger crowd, which is something to consider if you’re not so into that scene anymore.
There’s no surf on the Caribbean side of Mexico, but there are plenty of other fun things to do in Tulum. You’ll be close to some of Mexico’s best cenotes, natural sinkholes you can swim in.
It’s near some of Mexico’s top diving destinations and Akumal Beach, where you can swim with sea turtles.
You’re never far from beauty in Tulum, but it comes with a price, as costs have increased significantly over the last few years.
For coworking, head to coworking Tulum and get a membership, which will give you access to multiple locations. There are also plenty of cafes to choose from.
Start with the Tulum Digital Nomad Facebook page to find events. You’ll meet people, quickly be added to a WhatsApp group, and your phone will be blowing up with things to do in no time.
Although many live in Tulum and say it’s safe, I’ve heard enough first-hand encounters of corrupt police incidents that have turned me away from it – not to mention the shootings in the news. I have a lot of friends who live here and love it, but to me, it seems like there are way safer places to be in Mexico.
13. Playa del Carmen
Playa del Carmen is the go-to destination for digital nomads who want the best of both worlds: a bustling city vibe and access to some of the most beautiful beaches in the world.
From beach clubs to jungle adventures, this city has it all for the modern nomad.
Situated along the Riviera Maya in the state of Quintana Roo, Playa del Carmen offers a stunning coastline, vibrant nightlife, and several outdoor activities. Whether you’re into scuba diving, paddleboarding, or just lounging on the beach, there’s never a dull moment.
While Playa del Carmen is generally safe, it’s always wise to stay cautious, especially during the night.
14. Isla Mujeres
Just a short ferry ride from Cancun, Isla Mujeres is an idyllic choice for digital nomads who want to balance work and leisure in a tropical setting.
During my stay on the island, I was enchanted by its tranquil beaches and vibrant coral reefs. It’s a smaller community, making it easy to disconnect and focus on your work while still enjoying the beauty of this Caribbean island.
The island is renowned for its stunning beaches like Playa Norte and opportunities for snorkeling and scuba diving. It’s a haven for those who love marine life and water sports, offering some of the best snorkeling in Mexico.
15. La Paz
La Paz is a small town on the Baja California Peninsula, offering digital nomads a serene environment that’s perfect for both work and relaxation.
I haven’t had the chance to explore La Paz yet, but it’s on my list for next year. It’s a less touristy destination than Cabo, making it ideal for those who want to immerse themselves in the beautiful nature Mexico has to offer.
La Paz is a gateway to some of the most beautiful natural attractions in Mexico, including the Sea of Cortez, known as the “Aquarium of the World.” It’s a paradise for those who love water activities like snorkeling, kayaking, and whale watching.
While La Paz may not be abundant with coworking spaces, there are several cafes and beachside spots with reliable WiFi. The community is growing, and you’ll find it easy to connect with both locals and fellow nomads – especially if you love to surf.
Why live in Mexico?
First off, you may be wondering why you would want to work remotely in Mexico. Truthfully, I never had any interest in it until the opportunity came up to live with a close friend in a cheap apartment in Puerto Vallarta.
On my second day there, I bought a niche website about Puerto Vallarta because I knew it was a place I wanted to keep coming back. Mexico is magical – I don’t know why it took me so long to realize that.
People always talk about how cheap Mexico is, which is true, but there’s so much more to the country than that. The delicious food, rich Mexican culture, stunning landscapes, friendly people… it’s truly digital nomad heaven.
There’s a place for every type of digital nomad in Mexico. Whether you’re looking for a small beach town where you can surf every day, a large city buzzing with life, or a mix of both – Mexico has it.
Digital Nomad Visa Mexico
The Mexico entry requirements for Canadians are ideal for digital nomads looking for a hassle-free place to visit, as you can get a 180-day tourist visa on arrival.
However, in the last year, the Mexican government has cracked down on this. While tourists are technically entitled to 180 days, it’s no longer a guarantee, and it is up to the border officer how many days you will be given.
In my experience as a digital nomad in Mexico, this is most problematic coming into the Mexico City airport. For example, I was given a 90-day visa in the spring of 2022, but when I arrived directly in Puerto Vallarta, I was given 180 days.
So if you’re planning to stay a while in Mexico, you should consider a temporary resident visa, which grants temporary residence for a period greater than 180 days and less than four years. It’s not an official digital nomad visa, but it’s the best option if you’re living long-term in Mexico. I’m so happy to have mine now!
After four years, you can apply for permanent residence. No matter what path you choose, visit a local Mexican consulate or embassy for more information.
Health Insurance in Mexico
Even with low medical costs in Mexico, you’ll still want to be prepared for events like extended hospital stays.
I recommend SafetyWing, insurance built for digital nomads using a subscription-based service.
For $45/month, you can have peace of mind knowing you’re covered should anything happen. You can read my full review of SafetyWing here.
FAQ: Best places to live in Mexico digital nomad
Is Mexico a good place for digital nomads?
Absolutely, Mexico offers a variety of cities that cater to different lifestyles, all with good internet and affordable living costs.
Where are digital nomads in Mexico?
Digital nomads in Mexico are often found in cities like Mexico City, Puerto Vallarta, and Playa del Carmen, among others.
Is Playa del Carmen better than Tulum for digital nomads?
Playa del Carmen generally offers more coworking spaces and a larger digital nomad community, making it a better fit for most digital nomads compared to Tulum.
Do I have to pay taxes in Mexico as a digital nomad?
No, as a digital nomad, you’re not considered a tax resident in Mexico unless you live there for more than 183 days in a fiscal year.
How much does it cost to live in Mexico as a digital nomad?
The cost can vary widely depending on the city, but you can expect to spend between $1,000 and $2,500 per month for a comfortable lifestyle.
How long can you stay in Mexico as a digital nomad?
You can stay up to 180 days on a tourist visa, but extensions and temporary resident visas are also available for longer stays.
Is Puerto Vallarta good for digital nomads?
Yes, Puerto Vallarta offers a great balance of city amenities, natural beauty, and a welcoming digital nomad community.
Can a US citizen work remotely in Mexico?
Yes, a US citizen can work remotely in Mexico, usually on a tourist visa for up to 180 days.
Can I live in Mexico and work remotely in the US?
Yes, you can live in Mexico and work remotely for a US-based company. Just ensure you’re complying with tax obligations in both countries.
Final thoughts: Where is the best place to live in Mexico?
Mexico is a paradise for digital nomads. Whether you’re into the hustle and bustle of city life or you’re seeking a tranquil beachside retreat, Mexico has something for everyone. And the best part? You don’t have to choose just one.
I adore living close to both the beach and the mountains in Puerto Vallarta, but the beauty of the digital nomad lifestyle is the freedom it offers.
Whenever I feel the itch for a change of scenery, I can easily spend a few weeks in a new city, diving into a different culture and community. The options are endless, and the chance for new experiences is always just a bus or plane ride away.
So, if you’re contemplating a move to Mexico as a digital nomad, take it from someone who’s been living this life for years: you’ll never get bored. With its rich tapestry of cities, each offering its own unique blend of work and play, Mexico is a country where every day can be a new adventure.
Planning to visit Mexico? Check out these posts!
- How to Visit Islas Marias Mexico
- 15 Cheap Places To Live in Mexico on the Beach
- 11 Best Party Cities in Mexico
- Best Snorkeling in Mexico: 15 Amazing Places
- Guanajuato State Road Trip Itinerary For the Adventurous
- Living In Oaxaca City as a Digital Nomad
- Ecotourism in Mexico: 9 Sustainable Tours You’ll Love