Our ideal digital nomad destination has warm weather, good vegetarian food, beautiful scenery, interesting things to do, low cost of living, decent WiFi, and availability of apartments (with kitchens) to rent for 1-3 months. The artsy town of Ubud in Bali not only meets all our requirements but we don’t even need to rent an apartment—here houses are the norm, always with a garden, and often with private pools. Since the success of the book and film Eat Pray Love Ubud has become increasingly popular and new villas are springing up in every rice field so there are many to choose from.
Airbnb has revolutionised travel. It makes it easy to find apartments (or rooms in people’s homes) around the world, providing a cheaper, more comfortable, and more interesting alternative to hotels. We love it and stay in Airbnb apartments often.
If we stay anywhere for at least a week we’ll try to rent an apartment—it’s how we feel at home without ever having a home. This is the fourth year of our series about how we find apartments as we travel. Last year we found some wonderful places without the struggles we’d had in previous years, and I asked whether we were just lucky or whether we were getting better at the search. This year was another good year, and although I think our experience helps, holiday rentals are becoming more common, and sites like Airbnb are making it much easier to find apartments in advance, without having to turn up and put in the leg work.
When I was planning my first half marathon I had visions of staying in a cute B&B a few minute’s walk from the race start line. No worrying about parking or portaloos, and I’d be back in no time for a shower afterwards. When I finally committed to the race six weeks before I realised this wasn’t going to be possible—everywhere was booked up. My run was in Healdsburg, a pretty and rather posh town in Sonoma wine country, about an hour north of San Francisco. Prices are high here, especially on a Saturday night in October (harvest season) when there’s a half marathon in town.
Our travels are a constant search for a place to call home—not a permanent one (we have no desire to settle down)—but a temporary base where we can feel comfortable and settled, even just for a few days. Usually apartments are best for feeling at home, but on our recent trip to Cappadocia, an otherworldly land of volcanic rock formations in central Turkey, we found a hotel that did just as well.