Ever since the pandemic outbreak of COVID-19, employment has been a challenge, especially with the majority who work in offices. While most are still in the adjustment phase of working from home or remotely, digital nomads, on the other hand, are prepared for this type of scenario since day one of being remote workers.
While most remote workers enjoy working at the comforts of their home, sometimes in their jammies, because they have become accustomed to the nomad lifestyle, the desire to travel is in their veins. Wherever they may be working—be it at home, in a coffee shop, on the beach—digital nomads still need work-life balance. This is important so that work will not be sacrificed over leisure time and vice versa.
Because jobs for digital nomads entitle them to work at their own time, some have made themselves available 24/7 instead of setting a specific time to work, which sometimes makes them let go of the beautiful opportunity to explore the places in their travel destinations bucket list with their loved ones.
It must be noted that a work-life balance outlook is also dependent on the place where you are working. Some areas are stressful, which makes some remote workers prefer to submerge themselves in work. On the other hand, some places are awesome but have poor Internet connections, so no matter how relaxed or inspired you are, you will not be able to get anything done.
Of course, safety is also a concern, so it is essential to know the safest destinations in the Philippines for solo travelers if you’re the kind of digital nomad that prefers solitude. Another concern is the cost of living. Luckily, lifestyle in the Philippines is simple, making it one of the best destinations, especially for those who are just starting with the digital nomad life.
To avoid any dilemma in choosing your next destination for remote work and enjoy your digital nomad lifestyle at its best, here are the 8 best local destinations you should go to enjoy the best of both worlds:
1. Boracay, Aklan
2. Cebu City, Cebu
3. General Luna, Siargao
4. Davao City, Davao
5. Puerto Princesa City, Palawan
6. Baguio City, Benguet
7. Tagaytay City, Cavite
8. Bonifacio Global City, Taguig
Make sure to have your pen and maps ready before scrolling down!
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If you think you know everything there is to know about Boracay, then certainly you know this is one of the best places for work and play. Early in the morning, you can take a dip at the island's pristine blue waters before working, and in the afternoons, you can feast on seafood at D' Talipapa. Cap your night off by partying and meeting new people.
If your jobs require you to work online, fear not because Internet connections in Boracay are stable. If you have pocket WiFi, then most probably, you can work on the beachfront. If you don't have one, don't worry because most restaurants and cafes on the island have WiFi to do your work while sipping iced coffee or even mojito.
If your work requires you to upload and download large files on the Internet and conduct video conferences, your best bet is to book your accommodation in hotels or homestays with good locations and secure Internet connections. One of which is Alta Vista de Boracay. This hotel has all you'll ever need to promote a work-life balance as a digital nomad promoting relaxing ambiance that will surely inspire you to work. Afterward, you can take a dip at the infinity pool or sing your blues away in their karaoke room.
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Cebu City is one of the destinations you shouldn't miss in the Visayas. Digital nomads—foreigners and locals alike—include this city on their list of destinations when working remotely. This city offers the best of both worlds: urbanity and the relaxed life of the province, thanks to its beaches and other natural attractions that are sure to relax your nomad soul after a day's work. It is like living in Manila but better, because of the beaches and Cebu Lechon.
Because this city is one of the most highly urbanized cities in the country, you can expect to find any restaurant or cafe that offers WiFi connection. You can enjoy crispy morsels of Lechon belly while writing, programming, or video editing. Afterward, you can head over to the nearest beaches in Cebu for the weekend, or take a quick boat ride and visit Bohol, which is also another excellent place for digital nomads. There are also several coworking spaces in Cebu, such as IT Park and A SPACE Cebu.
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If you are fond of the waves or want to learn how to surf, then head over to General Luna in Siargao. The low cost of living in this paradise makes it easy for digital nomads to love the place. Families who want to simplify their lives further also choose this Philippine destination as their new home.
General Luna has a good Internet connection. One of the ideal places to work in this town is at Coco Surf Cafe-Bar & Store, which has a good WiFi connection and the best coffee on the island, which is best partnered with their equally delicious sandwiches and cakes.
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Aside from being one of the major cities in the country, Davao is also one of the safest cities, even for a solo female digital nomad. If you're planning to visit this place for your remote work, it is best to schedule it in September to October when the tropical fruits such as durian, marang, mangosteen, and lanzones are in season.
Accommodations and food are also relatively inexpensive here compared to Cebu and Manila, so you can save a lot despite staying here for a long time. Don't forget to pay a visit to the nearby islands of Samal and Talicud, and feast on the available seafood and fruits the island offers. Also, if you have pocket WiFi, don't worry because you can still connect on the Internet using that if you cannot find any accommodation that has a fixed Internet connection.
If you love serene tropical life, you should stay in Puerto Princesa, Palawan, for a week or a month as a digital nomad. Since jobs for digital nomads may entail the need to be creative, this destination is sure to bring out your creative juices as there are many inspirations just outside your door.
Puerto Princesa is tranquil, so if you love serenity paired with the perfect view and lifestyle that won't hurt your wallet, this is the place to be. Similar to other destinations mentioned above, Internet connectivity is not a problem here whether you have pocket WiFi or not. There are establishments in the area that have reliable Internet connections suitable for your needs as a remote worker.
If you want to be surrounded by your fellow professional digital nomads and students, one of the favorite coworking spaces in the city is the Think Space Coworking and Study Lounge. Here you can work and learn comfortably, and they also have a napping area where you can rest and sleep for a while if you need to.
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If the cold doesn't bother you, then the best city to be is in Baguio. Internet connection, despite frequent rains, is no problem whether you're only going to use your mobile data or connect on the WiFi of an establishment. There are also several coworking spaces in the city that are minutes away from the central business district, such as CALLE UNO Coworking Space and The CORE Workhub. These coworking spaces are also minutes away from bars or spas so you can party or get a massage after work.
Another perk in this city is cheap accommodations. There are a lot of hostels and AirBNBs in the inexpensive area and offer free WiFi access. Besides the cold weather, you will never get to experience in the metro, except if you have air conditioning units inside your homes, Baguio is one of the best cities that offers the best yet affordable food.
If you want to feast like a king but is on a budget, bring your fellow digital nomads to Good Taste. Don't forget to order their Lechon beans. If you're craving for pizza and pasta, Grumpy Joe is your best bet! Their food is the best if you're looking for midnight snacks to fuel your mind and body, especially if you're on the graveyard shift. If sweets are your comfort food, then don't miss Chona's Delight's famous chocolate cake and a shortcake of Vizco's strawberry. Remember, these establishments cannot be found in the metro or other locations mentioned in this article, so don't leave this off your travel destinations bucket list.
If you reside on the metro and are looking for a quick getaway to do your remote work, then head over to Tagaytay City. For one, you can drive or commute to and from Tagaytay from Manila. Second, similar to Baguio, it's cooler and quieter here compared to Manila, but still, you get to enjoy the mall, cafes, bars, and restaurants that offer a breathtaking view of Taal Volcano. If you're looking for a cafe that has good WiFi, food, and view, why not head over at the famous Bag of Beans? It will give you the vibe of working from a mansion.
If you're planning to stay for a couple of days, you can rent and stay on hotels or AirBNBs, which mostly have WiFi connections. If you're on a budget, you can easily find cheap but beautiful accommodations. This is the perfect location, especially if you want a dose of escape and relaxation from the hustle and bustle of the metro.
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If you are the kind of digital nomad that craves the artistic chaos and noise of the metro, then Bonifacio Global City in Taguig is the best place for you as a remote worker. Every square inch of this city either has free WiFi or has a stable Internet connection, even if you're just using mobile data.
There are also endless options when it comes to cafes and restaurants where remote workers flock and coworking spaces. Because of its prime location, accommodations in this area are quite expensive; nonetheless, if you are amenable to working at a restaurant or in the park, then surely, you'll enjoy BGC.
Digital nomads are location independent when working. So long as they have their tools and reliable Internet access, nothing stops them from doing their work. But of course, we do not live to work. So it is essential to maintain a work-life balance. To make sure that you get your well-deserved rest and play after a hard day's work, including these 8 places in your digital nomad's travel destinations bucket list.