Report_ location, location, location – (barcelona-metropolitan. com)

It sounds like the kind of lifestyle most of us would kill for. Beaches outside of barcelona Forget the nine-to-five grind, office politics and long commutes; a new generation of workers is online, travelling the world and moving on to the next destination when they’re ready for a change of scenery. Best beaches to visit in barcelona Digital nomads are trading the office for coffee bars and coworking spaces, fixed hours for flexibility, and colleagues for fellow nomads.

The availability of cheap air travel, high-speed WiFi in faraway corners of the world and a wealth of online business possibilities make this pursuit of freedom, adventure and the ultimate work/life balance increasingly feasible. Quiet beaches in barcelona An unstable employment market in which jobs are no longer for life and freelancing is often the norm adds to the attraction of rejecting the status quo and heading for the road.


As a result, hubs for ‘location-independent’ people are taking shape around the globe, from Chiang Mai in Thailand to Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam or Bali in Indonesia. Barcelona beaches review Turn up in one of these places with your suitcase and laptop and you’re guaranteed a warm welcome from the many other internationals populating the local hostels and working remotely in the coffee shops.

Closer to home, Barcelona has become one of the top European nomad hubs, up there with Berlin, Prague, Lisbon and Budapest for their alluring mix of rich culture, laid back lifestyle and an infrastructure suited to those who work on the move.

Theo Berghausen is the founder of Codino, a Meetup group for Barcelona’s digital nomad community. Beaches near girona barcelona Originally from Germany, Berghausen came to Spain three years ago and, whilst doing research for his initial plan to set up a hostel here, he realised how many people in Barcelona were combining travel and work. Beaches in barcelona map After getting involved in the local startup scene he created Codino as a way for like-minded souls to find each other. Best beaches near barcelona Codino’s monthly meetups attract a wide variety of people and Berghausen estimates that just a third are hardcore digital nomads here for a couple of months before heading to the next place. Spain beaches near barcelona “Most people do two years max of travelling then it turns into a multilocal lifestyle where there are three or four places around the world that you feel very at home,” he explained.

The truth is that, for all its apparent glamour, most people tire of the nomadic lifestyle after a couple of years. Beaches in barcelona in july Despite the obvious perks of exotic cities, tropical beaches, year-round sunshine and freedom, it can also be isolating and lonely, particularly for people travelling alone. Beaches near barcelona There is no network of family and old friends to help you through the tough moments, and no familiar places or comforting routines to rely on. Best beaches around barcelona For all the excitement and freedom the lifestyle offers, many people find the lack of intimacy hard to deal with.

One of the remote community’s main resources is a website called Nomad List, which was started by Dutchman Pieter Levels in 2014. Best beaches close to barcelona At the time, Levels was a 28-year-old entrepreneur, travelling the world and earning thousands each month from his online businesses. Top 5 beaches in barcelona In an interview with Quartz (qz.com) in September 2016, he said, “I was standing in my apartment in Medellín, Colombia looking out the window, and I realised, ‘Like, this looks really great if I take a photo, but I don’t feel any connection’”. Nudist beaches near barcelona Levels moved back to Amsterdam in February 2016.

Gemma Sissons is from the UK and has been travelling with her Dutch partner for a year and a half. Best beaches in barcelona for adults Sissons is a translator and is also setting up an e-commerce site. Beaches of barcelona Before pitching up in Barcelona in November 2016, the couple had spent time in Argentina, Brazil and Mexico. Best beach resorts near barcelona spain “We’re travelling together, so that makes it much easier,” said Sissons. Is there beaches in barcelona “We don’t get lonely as such, because we have each other, but it can get pretty intense as a couple and we miss our wider network. Best beach resorts in barcelona spain Part of our reason for coming to Barcelona came from wanting to be closer to home and our families.”

The need to connect and be part of a community has spawned a whole industry around digital nomads and location-independent workers, designed to facilitate the lifestyle and often mixing the practical with the social. Beaches in barcelona in june Hostels, coworkings, freelance-friendly cafes and social events designed for the international digital crowd are all hallmarks of a popular ‘hub’. Beach resorts near to barcelona Berghausen recognises travellers’ needs to get established quickly both work-wise and socially. Best beach barcelona tripadvisor “After all, if you’re only somewhere for a couple of months, you’ll need to make some friends quickly, particularly if you’re travelling by yourself,” he said. Good beaches in barcelona An interesting aspect of the lifestyle is the wide spectrum of people it attracts, thrown together in their search for freedom and adventure. Best beach restaurants barcelona According to Berghausen, a Codino meetup can include “anyone, from a travel blogger who makes hardly any money to business people who are making €50,000 a month from their online ventures”. Beaches in barcelona photos His experience has been that because everyone is in different businesses there is no competition, leading to an open-minded community in which it is easy to form bonds and synergies.

There are numerous websites and apps to help make the nomad lifestyle easier, from online forums to apps for finding freelance-friendly cafes and coworking spaces. Barcelona beaches map Nomad List is one of the most popular resources for those planning where they should head to. Best beach hotels near barcelona It collects and publishes users’ ratings of different cities, and gives an estimate of how much it costs to live there for a month. Top 10 beaches in barcelona A quick look at Barcelona reveals that it scores seven out of ten on the nomad rating. Beaches near barcelona airport It gets top marks for fun, nightlife and places to work but is let down by its bad air quality and lack of air conditioning and central heating. Map of barcelona beaches The cost of life here as a nomad is also notably higher than life as a local; short-term rentals and frequent eating out don’t necessarily come cheap.

But, to be location independent doesn’t mean you have to move on every two months either. Beach resort near barcelona el prat airport Barcelona is home to many people who work remotely and have chosen to settle in the city for its lifestyle and amenities. Barcelona spain beaches photos Twenty-six-year-old Arturo Mendez is from Mexico and has lived here for five years. Beach hotels near barcelona spain Mendez works in app store optimisation and, although every few months he travels somewhere for two months, Barcelona is his base and the place he calls home. Beach barcelona hotels He said that he chose Barcelona “because it is a mix of what I look for in a city. Barcelona spain beaches pictures It’s a blend of culture, gastronomy, international people, good cost of living, young communities and social activities”.

For Mendez, the main attraction of this lifestyle is the freedom it offers. Beaches near barcelona el prat “You have all the freedom you can think of. Spain barcelona beaches You decide when and where to work, and who to work with. Beaches in barcelona tripadvisor You can work in pyjamas or drinking a beer in a chiringuito next to the beach while you answer your emails,” he said.

Although living mostly in one place takes away the issue of isolation, an office-free life still has its challenges. Best beaches barcelona map Mendez described the downside of home working: “Working from home can become tedious very fast. Quiet beaches near barcelona Working from the same place you live in is difficult and having no coworkers to talk with gives you a feeling of solitude. Best beaches of barcelona Also, the lack of certainty that you will have work next month is something that stops most people from working from home, and is surely one of the most negative aspects.”

Michael Romano moved to Barcelona from California in 2013, with his wife and two children, then aged seven and 11. Beaches in barcelona in september Romano is a partner in a software company that is based mostly in Europe. Beaches in barcelona in may For him, the move to Barcelona was spurred on by the need to be in the same time zone as his Europe-based partners. Beaches near barcelona spain Like Mendez, Barcelona was the main choice for lifestyle reasons. Beach hotels in barcelona spain “Creative and visual arts are very strong here. Beaches in barcelona It is a fantastic place for designers, artists and architects, and the influx of foreigners has expanded the diversity of ideas. Beach near w hotel barcelona Many people from other places want to live here. W beach barcelona The trick is for them to find good jobs and integrate,” he said. Best beaches in barcelona spain For Romano and his family, the experience of starting a new life abroad has been positive and enriching. Barcelona spain hotels near beach He described moving here as a family as “the best part of the whole experience. Beach resorts near barcelona girona Barcelona is a great place to grow up. Are there beaches in barcelona The combination of living in the centre of a great city with all the culture and infrastructure, but without the danger and crime, is an important quality of life issue”.

Romano sees the challenges of working remotely in Barcelona as the same as anywhere else, namely keeping focused and productive. Barcelona spain attractions beaches As his clients are mostly based in the US, he has the additional complication of working with different time zones, which can be disrupting to family life.

Berghausen also sees focusing on work as a major issue. Beaches of barcelona spain Whether you are uprooting every couple of months or working the hours you want from home, the reality is that it can be hard to be productive. Best beaches by barcelona And, unless you have hit the ‘passive income’ jackpot, it’s likely that being productive is central to maintaining your lifestyle. Beaches around barcelona “Creating a routine and life/work balance is important.” The coworking spaces that have mushroomed in the city in the last five years offer a way to establish a routine and to escape from the sitting room table, just as they also create a sense of camaraderie and the possibility of making new connections. Beaches south of barcelona These spaces range from small, cosy centres to multi-storey buildings with restaurants and conference rooms. Beaches in barcelona spain top Most operate with a monthly membership that costs from €80 to €250 depending on your schedule, facilities and whether you have a fixed desk.

Carole Touati and Axel Ruis opened Coco Coffice in Barcelona two months ago. Barcelona beaches in june They arrived as freelancers in Barcelona 16 years ago, and decided to settle here after falling in love with the city. Best beaches in barcelona tripadvisor The coffice (a coworking space that offers a more cafe-style vibe) trend took off in France two years ago. Best beaches in barcelona Touati and Ruis wanted to offer something to those people who have very temporary needs—most of their clients come for a day or a week. Beaches outside barcelona You can even pay by the hour. Best beaches north of barcelona The first hour costs €4 and includes snacks, use of the kitchen, WiFi and a desk. Best beaches near barcelona spain The coffice is ideal for people who love to work in cafes but worry about overstaying their welcome (or blowing their daily budget on coffee and cake). Beach resorts near barcelona airport Touati recognises that the social and productive aspects of life as a location-independent worker are both important, and Coco Coffice organise meetups and encourage people to get to know each other. Costa brava beaches near barcelona “You have to make an effort to meet new people and be willing to network when you’re a digital nomad,” said Touati.

Touati and Berghausen also cite the rising cost of accommodation in Barcelona as one of the main challenges of working here remotely. Barcelona best beaches Cost of living is a key part of being location-independent—part of the attraction of Chiang Mai in Thailand is no doubt that you can enjoy the good life for under $800 a month. Barcelona beaches in july Over the last year, rental prices in Barcelona have soared by 18 percent according to property evaluators Tinsa. Best beach holidays near barcelona This will certainly have an effect on those on a lower budget looking to stay here for just a few months, though it may not deter the higher earning nomads. Beaches in barcelona city Touati is concerned that this will make the city less attractive. Beach resorts near barcelona spain “Barcelona is getting more and more expensive which makes the future for coworking in the city uncertain. Barcelona beaches in september It’s possible that people may not want to come here because it won’t be so financially advantageous, with higher housing prices and the increased cost of living,” she said.

At the same time, the rising prices in Barcelona may also convince people already living here that working online for more buoyant economies makes good financial sense. Barcelona spain beaches A third of the attendees at Codino events are internationals living in Barcelona, working in normal jobs and looking for a lifestyle change. Hotels near beaches in barcelona One of the ongoing issues that locals and foreigners face in Barcelona is the lack of well-paid work. Beachfront hotels in barcelona spain According to the Agencia Tributaria, the average annual salary in Barcelona in 2014 was €21,775, almost a third of London’s average, which stood at 48,023 pounds (€57,339). Best beaches outside barcelona And, although falling rapidly, the unemployment rate is still high in Catalunya, and currently stands at approximately 15 percent in Barcelona.

For Romano, who is working in a small but expanding business, one of the advantages of coming to Barcelona was the possibility of finding qualified people at affordable prices. Pictures of barcelona spain beaches “Our growing but bootstrapped company needed more specialised talent, but we were a small fish in a big pond in the Bay Area, which is very expensive and very competitive. Beach holidays near barcelona spain Barcelona is an international city with lots of talented people, and the sluggish economy meant that we could do more with less investment,” he said.

High unemployment has no doubt contributed to Barcelona’s current entrepreneurial renaissance. The best beaches in barcelona Along with Berlin, it is now one of Europe’s main hubs for startups looking to get a foothold before making the move to Silicon Valley. Best beaches near barcelona resorts This shows no signs of abating, with huge public and private investments currently being made in technology and startup incubators. Best beaches in barcelona area And, while ‘proper’ jobs are thin on the ground, more of Barcelona’s residents will see that there is little to lose by going it alone.

So, what does the future hold for Barcelona as a hub for digital workers? For those looking to use the city as a long-term base, Romano feels that a lot of it comes down to how easy the authorities make it for people to move here. Top beaches in barcelona He found the process of getting a visa costly and time consuming. Beaches in barcelona area “It was very confusing and involved lawyers and flights back and forth. Most beautiful beaches in barcelona The massive bureaucracy in Madrid was a mysterious black hole.” For Berghausen, who works more with short-term residents, the answer is in continuing to innovate to create affordable and stimulating work/life environments. Barcelona beaches best He sees more smaller hubs eventually being created in towns outside the city, where prices are lower and there are less distractions.

For those of us who live and work in Barcelona, the city’s new identity as a digital hub brings much to enjoy in terms of energy and vitality. Barcelona beaches in august It is also attracting new talent, evident in the number of seminars and talks taking place each week in coworking spaces and startup incubators about all things digital and startup related. Does barcelona have beaches Time will tell how this buzz will affect the local economy and whether the concentration of knowledge and ambition will eventually translate into more opportunities locally. Beautiful beaches near barcelona If you’re tempted to leave your day job in search of a life of freedom, but worried about the city’s rising rental and house prices, take your time, get to know the local digital community and use the available opportunities to learn from them before you make the leap. Beaches in barcelona reviews And if things don’t work out quite as planned, take heart, there’s always Chiang Mai.