Digital nomad destination: Hanoi

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Hanoi is a bustling city to the north of Vietnam, and one of my all time favourite digital nomad destinations. Hanoi has it all – fast, readily available, reliable WiFi, excellent work places with high potential for business and social networking, amazing food, a wide choice of accommodation, fun relaxed nightlife, easy transport via motorcycle taxi, relatively low living costs, outdoor spaces, one of the best coffee scenes in the world, unique culture and a nice base from which to visit some of Vietnam’s natural & cultural wonders in the north.

I felt completely at ease and safe as a solo female nomad working in Hanoi. I didn’t need to be as guarded about the safety of my laptop & I felt completely relaxed to explore the town day or night on my own or with new friends. Although there are lots of motos, the city maintains a relaxed vibe, where nothing rolls too fast!

Home base

In terms of where to base yourself in Hanoi, good options are endless, however I preferred to be based around the Cathedral area next to the bustling Hoan Kiem (Old Quarter). For something longer term, I may have chosen Tay Ho/Westlake. A 5 minute walk from the Toong co-working space was my favourite guesthouse in Hanoi: Maison D’Orient, which I wrote about in greater detail on tripadvisor. Specifically the Cinnamon rooms provided all that I needed to work at night and enjoy my stay comfortably within the budget I had set to be able to extend my funds over a long term trip.

Working spaces

Whilst in Hanoi, I worked at Toong co-working spaces. The excellent facilities, well appointed spaces, professional staff, great service, convenience of in house catering & reliable wifi at Toong greatly contributed to my enjoyment of working in Hanoi so much.

Caffeinate

Outstanding coffee is available up, down, and around every windy corner you turn in the streets of old Hanoi and its surrounds. Don’t miss out on trying egg coffee (cà phê trúng) & yoghurt coffee (sua chua ca phe) on a low slung stool in one of the many hidden cafes across the town. The cafes in Hanoi were so popular, that Hanoi was one of the few towns where I didn’t find too many venues where I was comfortable to work (at least for more than an hour or two), given that people would be waiting for tables. 

 

 

 

Hoàn Kiếm Lake, Hanoi

Digital nomad destination: Vietnam

Vietnam was the very first stop on my digital nomad trails throughout SE Asia, and I had selected this location with good reasons in mind. I was looking for a destination that would allow me to focus on my tasks at hand and also offer a unique cultural experience outside of work.

From my research, Vietnam promised fast, reliable WiFi, various co-working spaces, an excellent cafe scene, good budget accommodation, a plethora of street food and nice travel opportunities. After spending one month working out of Vietnam, I can attest that it did indeed deliver all of the above.

What surprised me, was that Vietnam’s start up scene is maturing rapidly and there was a definite tech buzz around Hanoi and particularly Ho Chi Minh (Saigon). Saigon’s co-working spaces are full to the brim with Vietnamese and foreign entrepreneurs and techies collaborating on a wide range of projects. It is an exciting and positive work environment. The co-working scene provides many social opportunities, and it’s also easy to meet other travellers. One day, as I was walking around the backpacker area in my exploration of the city, I was approached by a team of programmers and digital marketers who were developing a new social networking app. They asked me to perform some user testing so that I could provide early feedback on their app. This contributed to my feeling that Ho Chi Minh is like the San Francisco of the East! All round, working out of Vietnam proved to be productive, motivating and fun.

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Photo by Holly, in Ninh Binh