Vietnam is an increasingly popular digital nomad hotspot. Most people head to Hoi Chi Minh City or (to a lesser extent) Hanoi, but we knew those cities would be too hectic for us. A few years ago we looked into Hoi An, a much smaller town in the centre of the country, but it seemed impossible for find rentals for just one or two months. Thankfully, things have changed, and it’s now easy to find a house to rent.
We chose Canggu for our last week in Bali for one reason: the food! Other Balinese beach towns have their benefits: Balangan has a beautiful beach, Amed is quiet and undeveloped, Kuta has ideal beginner surf conditions, but none of them have great food for vegetarians. After being spoilt in veggie paradise Ubud, we couldn’t face going back to plates of boring fried rice.
Ubud has overtaken Chiang Mai as our favourite digital nomad destination in the world. Where else can we afford to rent a house with a pool and rice field view? Add to that beautiful scenery, an incredible vegetarian food scene, plentiful yoga classes, a fascinating culture, and friendly people. It’s a very easy place to live and a difficult place to leave—we kept extending our stay and eventually left after nearly five months (longer than we’ve spent anywhere else except Chiang Mai). We know we’ll be back.
Ubud isn’t the kind of place where you need a long to-do list. None of the sights or activities are “must-dos”. If all you did during your stay was eat, walk through the rice fields, and perhaps get a massage or take a yoga class, then that’s a successful Ubud visit in my opinion. That said, if you are feeling more active, there are plenty of things to do in Ubud to occupy your time.
I love theme parks. I love eating ice cream to a dramatic film score soundtrack. I love walking through carefully constructed, exquisitely detailed scenes, imagining the hard work that a team of immensely creative people put in to make me feel like I’m in a 1920s-era, hyper-stylised New York.