Top 5 digital nomads cities in South America (ranked according to safety)


Heading to South America? We’ve ranked the top 5 digital nomad cities according to women safety levels.


Many women digital nomads want to visit South America but aren’t sure about the level of safety. As one of the poorest continents, crime is indeed a problem, and you do need to be on guard. Yet for every horror stories of women being attacked, there are thousands of female travelers who visit South America without any problems at all.


You may encounter advances from men especially if you are traveling as a single woman, as South America has a pretty macho and chauvinistic culture. The best way to respond is to ignore cat calls, avoid eye contact if you are uncomfortable, and walk quickly past any man giving you hassle.


We’ve listed the top 5 digital nomad hot spots (where you’ll also find other digital nomads and travelers to connect with) according to their safety levels. Click on the city names for individual city guides.


5) Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

This buzzing city can be an alluring hot mess with the crowd, partying and humidity. The city has super friendly locals, great cultural diversity, beautiful beaches and has a sizeable digital nomads community. Safety can be an issue in Rio, as the bad neighborhoods are not just limited to marginalized areas.

Safer Areas: Leblon, Botafogo, Ipanema (you will still need to be on alert in these areas).

Bad Areas: Beaches at night, Centro (at night, weekends and public holidays), The surrounding areas of Santa Teresa, North Zone


4) Buenos Aires

Argentina’s exciting capital is a mixture of European and Latin American roots. The city is full of culture, from tango dances on the streets to the culinary experience. It’s a city of rich contrasts, with cute sidewalk cafés lined next to glass-clad corporate towers. Cost of living is relatively high for South America, and crime can be a problem in this metropolis.

Safer Areas: Puerto Madero, Recoleta, Belgrano, Palermo (you will still need to be on alert in these areas).

Bad Areas: La Boca


3) Cusco, Peru

More than just the gateway to Machu Picchu, Cusco is a world heritage site that still holds on to the heritage of past generations. Spanish and Inca cultures blend together, which can be witnessed in the local cuisine and places of worship. Cusco is a popular tourist destination and digital nomads who are visiting Machu Picchu will pass through this city. Cafes with wifi are widely available, although not the fastest of speed.

Safer Areas: San Blas, Lucrepata

Bad Areas: San Pedro


2) Medellin, Colombia

From one of the world’s most dangerous city to a popular destination for tourists and digital nomads alike, Medellin has come a long way in improving the city’s image. It is one of the most developed, comfortable cities in South America, has a year-round warm climate, is relatively affordable (Colombia is the third most expensive country in South America after Chile and Brazil) and there is a huge community of digital nomads to network with.

Safer Areas: Poblado, Envigado, and other smaller areas throughout the city are reasonably safe.

Bad Areas: Comuna 13 (the higher up the mountain you go, the more danger you will potentially face),Parque de las Luces at night, El Centro (downtown) after 8pm.


1) Santiago, Chile

The capital and largest city of Chile is a sprawling metropolis framed by the Andes Mountains and surrounded by national parks.The city also has a vibrant entrepreneurial scene that lends itself to a buzzing digital nomad lifestyle. The city is also considered to be safer than other South American cities of similar size.

Safer Areas: Vitacura, Los Condes, Providencia

Bad Areas: La Legua (famed in Chile for its high crime rates), Lo Espejo, La Pintana, Puente Alto, La Cisterna, San Joaquin, El Bosque, San Ramon and La Granja. Centro, Plaza de Armas and Bellavista are safe during the day but extreme caution should be taken at night.

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  1. Hi! I’m interested in planning a long stay in Santiago. However, Nomadlist reports terribly low internet speeds - around 4mbps. Do you know if this is correct? We require about 17mbps for the type of work we do. I’m hoping the speed posted on their website is incorrect. Does anyone out there have experience in Santiago accessing higher speeds? Thanks in advance for any info!!

    1. Santiago, Chile has one of the best internet speeds in Latin America! I was able to stream and upload videos with ease from my AirBnb as well as from several cafes. - Chrys

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