If you are a remote worker and a culture buff, you may be interested in seeking out culturally rich cities to visit as a digital nomad. These are cities full of historic sites, fascinating museums, cultural venues, music festivals, and a modern innovative art vibe, all within walking or metro distance.

So, what cities should be at the top of your list if you are looking for an immersive cultural experience? Below are my top 10 picks for culturally rich and dynamically fascinating cities that are worth spending some time in as a digital nomad.

 

Athens, Greece

Athens has been known as a cultural capital across the world for more than 2,000 years and it is still worth visiting. You can spend days exploring the ancient ruins of one of the world’s oldest democracies and the birthplace of famous philosophers such as Plato, Socrates, and Aristotle.

But as you explore the city you will also discover an almost anarchic, underground modern culture. The old market at the Municipal Market of Kypseli is now a creative hub hosting festivals, DJs, and workshops. The old National Opera House now hosts the Olympia Musical Theater Maria Callas.

Of course, alongside these new bursts of culture, you will find more traditional delights to excite lovers of art and culture including the Benaki Museum of Greek Culture, Museum of Illusions, and Byzantine and Christian Museum. These sit along an increasing number of Michelin-starred restaurants and dynamic nightclubs and bars.

Greece is in the Schengen area, and you can visit on a Schengen tourist visa, or if you want to stay longer, the country does offer a digital nomad visa. It is granted for one year in the first instance and gas a minimum income requirement of EUR 3,500 per month. Read our guide to living in Athens as a digital nomad.

 

Buenos Aires, Argentina

Buenos Aires is one of the most vibrant cities in South America. As well as enjoying the region’s overall Latina charm, it is the bookstore capital of the world, famous for its second-hand markets since Argentinians never throw anything away and is the birthplace of tango dancing. But Buenos Aires isn’t stuck in the past, you are just as likely to run into underground hip-hop and rap venues as tango clubs.

The city is teeming with museums. There are large modern venues like the Museum Moderno, Museo de Arte Latinoamericano, and the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes. But you will also find small treasures like the Museo Evita and the Puppet Museum in San Telmo.

The cemeteries in Buenos Aires are surprisingly beautiful and capture the history of the city in stone. As you wander out, you will meet artists sipping mate, barbeque restaurants serving local artisan beer, and bars where you can watch local bands while you sip fernet.

Citizens of most countries can visit Argentina visa-free for up to 90 days. The country also offers a digital nomad visa for six months in the first instance with a minimum income requirement of US$2,700 per month. Read our guide to living in Buenos Aires as a digital nomad.

 

Edinburgh, Scotland

Edinburgh is only one of the ancient cities in the United Kingdom with a street cobbled in history but a people who are innovating and forward-looking. Nevertheless, Edinburgh stands out for its unique Scottish culture and ridiculously green countryside.

Walk the streets and stop in the many pubs across the city, watch street artists perform, and pop into unique shops, including a surprisingly large number dedicated to the occult. Couple this with long walks around the National Museum of Scotland and the National Galleries of Scotland, with their unparalleled art collections. Climb Arthur’s Seat, the haven of green in the center of the city, to see it all from above.

Edinburgh is also famous for its annual Fringe Festival each August, where many British performers got their start including Allen Rickman, Rowan Atkinson, and Russell Brand. But this is only one of several blockbuster summer festivals dedicated to books, jazz, and the performing arts.

As Scotland is part of the UK, you can get a visa to stay in the United Kingdom as a tourist for up to six months. There is currently no equivalent of a digital nomad visa available. Read our guide to living in Edinburgh as a digital nomad.

 

Prague, Czechia

Prague is well-known as one of the most beautiful cities in Europe and has been the cultural capital of Old Bohemia for centuries. The streets are an architectural market of Gothic towers, arch bridges looping over the Vltava River, and dozens of castles. It is called the City of a Hundred Spires, and many of these spires contain cultural venues including interesting museums and modern theatre venues.

Prague knows that it is beautiful, so it packs its calendar with cultural events including the Prague Spring International Music Festival, the Letni Lena Music Festival, and the Metronome Festival. Take in opera or ballet at the National Theater and contemporary arts at the MeetFactory.

When it comes to eating, drinking, and dancing, Prague is both affordable and vibrant. Find cabarets, jazz clubs, bars, and nightclubs open until dawn.

Czechia is in the Schengen area and also offers a digital nomad visa. Granted for one year in the first instance, the minimum income requirement is around US$2,730 per month. Read our guide to living in Prague as a digital nomad.

 

Madrid, Spain

While Barcelona may have a reputation as Spain’s most cultural city, the capital of Madrid is a less crowded but equally culturally rich city. Start your exploration by visiting the Museo del Prado, which houses a vast and spectacular collection of Spanish and European art. Next head to Thyssen, which is a fantastic testament to 20th-century art, and the Reina Sofia, which closes the city’s Golden Triangle of Art.

Madrid is also teeming with theaters, and new cultural spaces seem to be opening daily. People are excited about Cines Embajadores and the Primavera Sound Festival. If you prefer classic European shopping, head to the Gran Via, which has offered over a kilometer of high-end shopping for more than a century.

Visit the Palacio Real and the El Retiro Park during the day, and then discover the city’s exciting food scene with everything from classic tapas to Michelin-starred fine dining. The nightlife is also memorable, though most bars and clubs don’t open until at least 11 pm and stay packed until dawn.

Spain is in the Schengen area and also offers a digital nomad visa. It is granted for one year in the first instance and has a minimum income requirement of EUR2,300. Read our guide to living in Madrid as a digital nomad.

 

Marrakech, Morocco

Stepping into Morocco feels like stepping into a different world with its distinctive architecture, sounds, smells, and pace of life. Marrakech is full of fascinating Souks selling colorful treasures and tea shops where you can people-watch.

But here, art is not hidden behind the walls of museums, even though there are a few excellent ones to visit such as the MCC Contemporary Collection. Art and culture are woven into the fabric of life. This is why Yves St Laurent was so inspired by the city. Walk the streets and see master craftsmen hard at work and displaying their results.

Make sure to visit Anima Garden, a stunning green artistic venue on the outskirts of the city, Jajjjah Tea Room by artist Hassan Hajjaj, the Jardin Rouge artist’s residence, and the Riad Monceau jazz bar.

Tourists can visit Morocco visa-free for up to 90 days, and you can request an extension once you are there.

 

Mexico City, Mexico

Mexico City is a charismatic and cosmopolitan capital with historical beauty, modern innovation, and still offering an affordable cost of living. The streets are a mix of colonial palaces, well-preserved homes, and traditional shops including the famous old bookstore El Laberinto, next to the Teatro de la Cuidad Esperanza.

Mexico has more museums than many visitors imagine including the Museo Nacional de Antropolgia, exploring pre-Colombian cultures, the Frida Kahlo Museum, Palacio de Bellas Artes, and modern Museo Jumex. Discover the art produces today at the La Ciudadela artisanal market. Discover antiques at La Lagunilla.

Mexico City is also the perfect place to drink rum, smoke cigars, and feel like a spy from a 1950s novel. You will find nooks on the street serving surprisingly good food and speakeasy underground bars that feel like stepping back in time. If you prefer something brighter, discover new Spanish-language bands at the annual Nrmal Festival every March.

You can stay in Mexico visa-free for up to six months, and there are several options if you want to stay for longer. Read our guide to living in Mexico City as a digital nomad.

 

Mumbai, India

Mumbai is one of India’s most modern, vibrant, and welcoming cities and is one of the best cultural capitals in the country. It is, after all, called the City of Dreams and the central hub for Bollywood. Therefore, this is naturally where you will find institutions like the National Center for the Performing Arts, Prithvia Theater, and the annual Kala Ghoda Arts Festival.

While you will find “big Bollywood” culture in the city, there are also grassroots movements promoting indigenous art, dance, and music. The Marol Art Village is one of the best. You can also discover India’s more spiritual side, for example with a trip to Elephanta Island to see the rock-cut carvings in ancient Buddhist caves.

Sample Mumbai’s street food at Ashok Vada Pav and traditional Indian curries at Bombay Canteen. Mumbai also has one of the best nightlife scenes in the country. Go for casual drinks any night and stay out at the clubs until the wee hours on weekends.

If you get an e-tourist visa you can stay in India for up to 180 days. Read our guide to living in India as a digital nomad.

 

Sao Paulo, Brazil

Brazil is a country with an incredibly rich culture. Every city has streets filled with music and dancing. The enormous city of Sao Paulo has more to offer than most, with gems tucked in among the skyscrapers and favelas. Every street is teeming with restaurants, bars, and samba bands.

Start at the Sao Paulo Museum of Art, South America’s largest art museum, and then head to the Museu de Arte Sacra, religious art in an 18th-century monastery. Discover the darker side of Brazil’s history at the Museu do Ipiranga.

For something different head to a train station reformed into a symphonic orchestra theatre with state-of-the-art acoustics. For modern art, head to Choque Cultural for tattoo, skateboard, and graffiti-inspired art. Book bugs should head to the incredible Livraria Cultura bookstore.

You can visit Brazil as a tourist for up to 90 days on a tourist visa. They also offer a one-year digital nomad visa with a minimum income of just US$1,500. Read our guide to living in Sao Paulo as a digital nomad.

 

Seoul, South Korea

Seoul, the capital of South Korea, is a cultural melting pot of old and new with ancient temples and gardens and modern K-pop culture. The vast metropolis is full of creative restaurants, packed markets, and historic architecture. This all mixes to make Seoul feel insanely cool.

Discover the historic side of the city at Changdeokgung Palace, a 200-year-old royal residence and UNESCO World Heritage Site, and discover modern art at Leeum Samsung Museum of Art. The National Museum of Korea is the country’s flagship history museum, historic culture is celebrated at the National Folk Museum, and the darker side of Korea’s history is on display at the War Memorial of Korea.

Eat at Gwangjang Market, find arty shops in the Insa-ding historic district, discover trendy young culture at Hoongdae, a buzzy area near Hongik University, and shop the enormous weekend markets at the Common Ground underground shopping hall. Get your Instagrammable photos at the Ihwa Mural Village.

You can visit South Korea on a tourist visa for up to 90 days per visit. South Korea has also recently released a digital nomad visa, though the minimum income level is high at around US$64,000 per year. Read our guide to living in Seoul as a digital nomad.