Even though Asia, South America, and parts of Europe are very popular among digital nomads, the US has plenty of amazing cities – both large and small – for the digital nomad community and location-independent workers.
In this article, I will share my top picks for the absolute best cities for digital nomads in the U.S., based on the beauty of the place, its affordability, safety, and community.
|Lively city life and serene beachside relaxation.
|Affordable living, plenty of co-working spaces, rich in history and arts.
|Vibe of a college town with cultural richness.
|Active arts and music scene, cheap, networking opportunities, picturesque parks, efficient public transport.
|Tech haven with great networking opportunities.
|Proximity to tech giants, high quality of life, pleasant weather, tech networking, higher living cost.
|San Jose, CA
|Merges technology with rich cultural diversity.
|Home to tech innovations, cultural diversity, extensive public transport, abundant green spaces, high living expenses.
|A blend of urban and beachside lifestyle.
|Excellent lifestyle, sunny weather, growing tech scene, very high living costs.
|Tranquil environment and community-oriented spirit.
|Natural beauty, affordable living, growing tech scene, community feel, good work-life balance.
|Santa Clara, CA
|Tech epicenter with rich cultural backdrop.
|Home to tech companies, cultural attractions, well-connected transit, tech networking, high living costs.
|Suburban retreat with all the amenities of a big city.
|Peaceful suburban environment, close to Chicago, high quality of life, affordable living, recreational spaces.
|Unique blend of urban and suburban lifestyles near D.C.
|Close to D.C., urban amenities, outdoor activities, higher living costs.
|San Francisco, CA
|Global tech hub.
|Tech ecosystem, cultural diversity, scenic beauty, networking opportunities, high living costs.
|Eclectic & vibrant, although expensive.
|Creative scene, tech growth, community spirit, outdoor lifestyle.
|Fort Collins, CO
|Small-town charm with a rich cultural scene.
|Focus on sustainability, cultural offerings, affordable living, outdoor adventures, strong community.
|Beachside paradise that flies under the radar.
|Stunning beaches, affordable living, friendly community, relaxed pace.
|Midwestern charm and urban greatness.
|Cost-effective urban living, cultural richness, community networks, green spaces, diverse food scene.
Probably the list above is not enough for you – so let’s get a bit more in depth below.
No matter if you call yourself a location independent person, a digital nomad, remote worker or anything else, if you are looking for a great place to be in this year – within the US – I’ve got you covered!
1. Wilmington, NC
Wilmington, located on the North Carolina coast, offers digital nomads in the US affordability, plenty of co-working spaces and a solid enough scene to spend your free time and connect with like-minded people.
It has plenty of co-working spaces, from modern hubs to cozy cafes and is overall an emerging hub for creatives and tech professionals.
While it’s not the most popular destination for digital nomads, for me, the charming balance between city life and beachside relaxation is all that matters. So pick this one if you agree.
2. Providence, Rhode Island
Providence combines the intellectual vibe of a college town with the cultural richness of a larger city.
Being a small city, it’s very easy to navigate – which is something I really appreciate, especially in the US where you always seem to have to drive a few hours to get from one place to another.
Although small and definitely off the radar for most nomads, it has a lower cost of living compared to other Northeast cities, but plenty of nice offers for location independent workers.
Efficient public transport, picturesque parks and a nice community, while also being close to good universities and tech startups. A great place to be in this year.
3. Sunnyvale, CA
Sunnyvale, CA is a suburb of Silicon Valley and one of the absolute best cities for digital nomads in all of the U.S., especially if you want to be close to tech companies like Apple or Google.
You DO want to be there as a digital nomad!
Sunnyvale offers affordable housing options with plenty of places to work from (think: co-working spaces, if you don’t want to bunker up in your own home office), as well as lots of options for you to find rent or even buy a property.
Sure, Sunnyvale is not necessarily extremely friendly for those who are just starting over their nomadic lifestyle, as it is a bit on the expensive side. But if you already are generating some solid income, you’re all set!
Plus, with year-round sunny weather, who wouldn’t want to work from a patio café in Sunnyvale?
4. San Jose, CA
If you’re looking for a place that is just as technologically rich as Sunnyvale but a bit more affordable, San Jose, CA should be your next stop on your U.S. digital nomad journey.
San Jose is home to companies like Facebook and Adobe, so if you’re looking to rub elbows with some of the top tech minds in the world, this is the place to be.
Like Sunnyvale, San Jose offers a wealth of co-working spaces for you to get your work done as well as lots of affordable housing options. The only downside? San Jose is HOT (emphasis on hot) during the summer months.
I personally like that, but I know some don’t. If you are in the latter category, don’t worry – I’ll have you covered as well with some of the recommendations below.
But back to San Jose, I have to say that it is one of the best cities at the moment to relocate to as a digital nomad or remote worker.
If you’re interested in reading about more cheap but nice US cities, I have the perfect article for you here!
5. Miami, FL
If you’re looking for a place where the weather is great year-round, Miami should be your next stop.
Miami may not have as high of an availability in affordable housing options (though it does exist!) or co-working spaces that can compete with cities like San Jose and Sunnyvale; but what Miami has going for it are the endless beaches and amazing nightlife.
If you’re into Latin American culture, Miami is also a great place to be – there’s always something going on and the people are incredibly warm and welcoming. Just be prepared for some high humidity levels when there!
6. Boise, ID
Boise, ID is a hidden gem for digital nomads who are looking for a truly unique place in the USA.
First of all, you will have access to tons of nice co-working spaces and coffee shops that allow you to get your work done and maybe make friends that work just like you do.
There are also plenty of affordable housing options. The only downside? Boise is not a very big city and it can get cold during the winter months… but some variety in terms of temperatures never hurts.
If you really consider that a con, you can simply spend the summers here and find another place on this list for the winter.
But if you’re someone who doesn’t mind a slower paced lifestyle and loves spending time outdoors (hiking, biking, etc.), Boise is the perfect place for you to call home.
7. Santa Clara, CA
This is the final city on this list that’s in the Silicon Valley area! But it had to be mentioned, because Santa Clara is a great choice for those who are looking to be close to the Silicon Valley, but also get somewhat less expensive rental prices.
Full with digital nomads and remote workers alike, Santa Clara offers a great community of people to work and connect with.
And, as you would expect from any city in the Silicon Valley area, there are lots of co-working spaces and coffee shops that will allow you to get your work done in a pleasant environment.
Just be prepared for some traffic if you’re traveling during rush hour. Oh, wait! You don’t need to worry about that since you can choose your own hours. Ah, the perks of living this type of life!
8. Naperville, IL
Naperville, IL is a great city for digital nomads who are looking for a suburban area that has all of the amenities of a big city at a fraction of the costs.
With tons of co-working spaces and coffee shops, as well as an abundance in affordable housing options, Naperville should be at the top of your list if you’re looking to move to a location in a more suburban area.
Not to mention the fact that Naperville is one of the most relax and chill places I’ve ever seen – and you’ll find life here extremely enjoyable, and people very friendly.
Naperville is also at the very center of Chicago and all its glory, so if you’re looking to make some day trips out of this city, it’s easy enough to do.
There are lots of restaurants that offer quick lunch options as well for those who wish not to spend too much time away from their laptop.
9. Arlington, VA
Arlington, VA is a great city for digital nomads who are looking for a place that is close to Washington D.C. and all of its action.
With plenty of co-working spaces and coffee shops, Arlington offers an ideal location for those who want to be able to easily commute into the heart of our nation’s capital, but still be a bit away from the hustle and bustle.
There are endless options for restaurants that offer quick lunch and dinner menus, as well a plethora of affordable housing options.
The only downside is that the weather can be a bit colder here during the winter months.
But if you’re someone who enjoys being outside, Arlington has plenty of parks, trails and other outdoor activities to keep you busy throughout the year.
10. San Francisco, CA
Ah, the City by the Bay. There’s no doubt that San Francisco is one of the best cities in the US for digital nomads.
With endless co-working spaces and coffee shops, as well as a great nightlife scene, there’s always something to do in this city – even if you’re not working. Or especially if you’re not.
The only downside to San Francisco is the fact that it’s a very expensive city. Be prepared to spend lots of money on housing here… but know at the same time that every cent is worth spending for being in the area.
11. Austin, TX
Do you like live music and a laid back culture? Then Austin is the city for you!
Austin is an extremely affordable city with plenty of co-working spaces, coffee shops and restaurants that offer quick bite options during lunch time.
There’s tons to do in this Texas town, from going to one of their many festivals (SXSW, anyone?) to enjoying the local nightlife (some of the best in Texas!) and much more.
The digital nomad scene is on the rise in Austin, so you’ll be sure to find plenty of people to connect with here. Speaking of which, make sure you read my guide to Texas women to make sure you’re prepared.
12. Fort Collins, CO
Last but not least, I have Fort Collins for you. It is a great city for digital nomads who are looking for a more rural area to live in.
Offering an abundance of affordable housing options, Fort Collins provides the perfect mix of amenities that digital nomads need with the peace and quiet that many people crave.
And if that’s not enough, Fort Collins is only an hour away from Denver – one of the most up and coming cities in the US! But if you chose this one, you will most likely do so for the peace and quiet (as well as the affordability).
13. Pensacola, Florida
We’re getting back to Florida, but now with a smaller city – and a bit cheaper than my previous recommendation in the same state.
Pensacola is a beachside paradise with a rich historical background, offering a tranquil yet stimulating environment for digital nomads.
It’s a great choice for those seeking a slower pace with access to natural beauty, but also a solid community and friendly, welcoming locals.
The thing I like the most about this place is that it allows you to live a bit slower, more relaxed and get ideal work-life balance.
14. Cincinnati, Ohio
If you’re looking for some Midwestern charm, including a strong sense of community and networking opportunities, this is the place you need to be in.
It’s a hidden gem for digital nomads seeking a city with character, culture, and lower cost of living – at least when compared to coastal cities.
Known for its music, arts, and historical architecture, Cincinnati has plenty of parks and nature reserves, offers a diverse range of culinary experiences, from street food to gourmet and is a city you can easily fall in love with.
So, even though it’s last on my list, seriously consider it!
Related reading: The cheapest but nicest cities in the US.
These are my top picks for the best US cities for digital nomads – I made sure to include some hidden gems too and I highly recommend starting with them, actually.
Each of these locations offers something different, but they’re all amazing.
And if you’re not sure where to start, I highly recommend checking out some of the great co-working spaces and coffee shops that these cities have to offer. You won’t be disappointed.
Make sure to check out my previous article about countries where you can live on $500 per month to see what options are available outside of the US and on a much tighter budget.
And if you’ve enjoyed working remotely from a different US city not mentioned on this list, don’t hesitate to let us all know: I’m sure I’m not the only one who would like to have as many options as possible.