Gray Frame Corner

The 8 Most Livable Cities in Southeast Asia

Southeast Asia is a popular destination for nomads due to its affordability, accessibility, and fun activities. However, it is also a great place to live long-term. Nomad Capitalist recommends cities in Southeast Asia based on factors such as foreign accessibility, efficiency, variety of available services, lifestyle options, and travel availability. 

They emphasize that the best city for you will depend on your personal lifestyle preferences. As you read our recommendations, look for how these cities will fit into your nomadic lifestyle. Let’s start at the top.

Bali is a popular vacation spot and a hub for nomads, especially for startups and entrepreneurs. It offers beautiful nature scenery, vegetarian food options, and is popular for interests like yoga retreats and health classes. 

8. Bali, Indonesia

Hanoi is the cultural capital of Vietnam and a great option for nomads and expats. Hanoi is an underrated city that offers colonial charm and an excellent cultural scene for nomads. The city's unique zoning laws result in an interesting array of homes and neighborhoods, such as the tube houses. 

7. Hanoi, Vietnam

Hong Kong is an expensive but fantastic city for entrepreneurs with strong business culture and low tax rates. It offers all the benefits of big city life with beaches, greenery, and culture just a short bus ride away. Despite its real estate bubble, it has plenty of ways to live abundantly and boasts one of the world's cleanest and most luxurious airports with non-stop service to almost anywhere.

6. Hong Kong

The Philippines, particularly Manila, is a great place for global citizens due to its friendly English-speaking locals and affordability. Makati and Fort Bonifacio offer great shopping, and even luxurious apartments can be found for less than $1,000 a month.

5. Manila, Philippines

Bangkok is a city that can fit a wide variety of budgets and is a functional city where people have a lot of fun, but it may not be suitable for everyone due to its fast pace and lack of cultural venues. It’s a great city for making a budget stretch, giving you the chance to do more with your money than you might be able to in other places.

4. Bangkok, Thailand

Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam is a popular destination for location-independent workers due to its abundance of cafes, affordable living, and mix of interesting food and culture. District 1 is ideal for young singles, while other areas suit expats with families. The weak Vietnamese dong makes it great for business and bootstrapping, and it's a great place to live overall.

3. Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

Like Hong Kong, Singapore is both a symbol of economic freedom and a rather expensive place to live. It’s not as expensive as other similar global cities, but it’s also not cheap. Buying a house in Singapore is going to cost quite a bit, creating a very low yield. Singapore can be a great place to store your wealth.

2. Singapore

Kuala Lumpur is the most underestimated place for living in the world, offering good connectivity, affordable regional airline, every cuisine, and a relatively nice apartment for a quarter million dollars. It's more livable and cheaper than Singapore, making it the writer's #1 choice. Kuala Lumpur has a mix of the good from other cities like Singapore and Hong Kong, making it worth a visit before writing it off.

1. Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

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