Discover more from Nomada Newsletter
Top 7 | Cheap, Livable LatAm Cities
The best places to live like a king under $1,500 a month...
Latin America, the land of stunning beaches, friendly locals, tanned skin, and bulbous bunda.
Oh, and don’t forget the amazing hiking, great food, and of course…
The low cost of living.
A man with a plan can easily live in LatAm for $1,000-1,500 a month. He’s just gotta know where to go.
I’m confident in this assertion as I’ve been living in LatAm for the past 8+ years, and for more than 5 of those years I was poor as hell.
Focusing on fucking myself into poverty one Tinder date at a time.
But alas, living cheap in LatAm is more than viable and below I’ll share the absolute best spots to do just that.
After visiting 100+ cities and almost every country in the region, I’ve detailed the top 7 low-cost cities in LatAm that meet these criteria:
Nice Airbnb options for $750 USD or less a month
All-in living for under $1,500 USD a month
Great lifestyle, eating out, partying, not living like a “local”
Tourist tings’ to do nearby
Good nightlife, attractive girls, etc.
You’ll notice two regions weren’t included: The Caribbean and Central America.
The Caribbean is not cheap. Period.
Central American cities are often quite dangerous, quite expensive, or both. Overall, you’ll find better value in South America.
You’ll also notice two countries have been excluded from the list: Brasil and Mexico.
I’d surmise there’s a dozen or so Brasilian cities you could put on this list. Where you could live an amazing life for cheap. I haven’t been to them, so I cannot comment there.
Mexico is an amazing country too. However, Mexico simply isn’t as cheap nowadays compared to other LatAm spots. Living on $1,000-1,500 a month in large Mexican cities and the popular beach spots is impossible these days. Sure, you could do it in Leon, Veracruz, or maybe Acapulco for beach lovers — but you’ll get way better value for your money in the cities listed below.
So without further ado, let’s dig in here…
1. Cali, Colombia
Far and away, the #1 place in LatAm to live an amazing life for cheap. Cali, Colombia is a gorgeous mountain city filled with stunning women, friendly people, and decent nightlife.
Plus, it’s cheap as hell.
I’m talking decent apartments for $300-750 a month, maid service for $10-15 bucks a day, eating out at nice restaurants for under $10 bucks with tip, and cheap bottle service at nightclubs.
Oh, and Cali is the salsa dancing capital of the world. Many bars host free salsa dancing lessons during the week. Only cost is you have to buy one beer.
Spanish lessons are also dirt cheap here.
While some say Cali is unsafe, I’ve never had an issue here — and I stayed months.
Stay around Parque del Perro. Right here…
There’s tons of restaurants, bars, gyms, and even a yoga studio right in the park area. Everything is cheap. Yet you shouldn’t get bored here for 1-3 months. Plus, Parque del Perro is right in the middle of the city — making logistics easy.
2. Quito, Ecuador
One of, if not, the cheapest capital city in South America. Living like a king for $1,500 a month in Quito, Ecuador is damn simple.
And the city is actually pretty nice in the right areas. Featuring mountain views and fresh weather, individuals who don’t like the heat might love it here.
Ecuador is not my favorite country, however, there’s no denying you can live dirt cheap here — and well.
While I’ve personally spent only a night here, my brokest friend lived here for almost a year and adored it. He ranks Quito as one of his top three places to live in LatAm.
The only downside is you may have trouble connecting with locals, as Ecuadorian culture can be a bit odd for westerners.
Stay close to Parque La Carolina. In the yellow-ish areas on the map…
Tons of green space. Shopping malls all around. Some of the best restaurants, bars, and nightlife in all of Ecuador.
Everyone knows Parque La Carolina and most spend time here, so you’ll have no issues with logistics.
Everything you could need will be nearby.
3. Buenos Aires, Argentina
There’s no denying Buenos Aires is a world-class city filled with amazing architecture, tree-lined streets, and a unique culture.
Many bros of mine claim BA as one of their favorite cities in the world.
Oh, and it’s insanely cheap right now! Due to the ineptitude of the Argentinian government, the US Dollar is worth its weight in gold in Argentina. The Argentinian Pesos has devalued to the point where $1 USD is worth well over $200 Argentinian Pesos on the black market.
Meaning you can live like a king for pennies on then dollar.
Oh, and Buenos Aires has some major benefits: world-class steaks for $5-10 bucks, stunningly hot women who are friendly, and a pretty nice climate for 70% of the year.
The only downside is Argentinians can be raging socialist cunts from time to time. But the prices and women more than make up for it.
Anywhere in Palermo SOHO / Hollywood…
World-class neighborhood. Easily the best neighborhood on this list. You will find anything and everything you could possibly need right here.
Very walkable and clean too. Safe enough. Restaurants, bars, and nightlife around every corner.
Oh, and stay two years in Argentina and you could get a second passport ;)
4. Arequipa, Peru
For bros who love to hike, Arequipa is an ideal low-cost locale. The second largest city in Peru, this mid-city mountain city has amazing hiking and nature nearby. Plus, this city gets the second-most sunshine hours in all of South America. Ideal for sun worshipping nomads.
Oh, and it’s cheap as hell. You could live a decent life here for $1,000 USD a month.
Nightlife is fun here, although can be a bit backpacker-ish during high season. And the women look a bit more “European” compared to Lima, as Arequipa is closer to Chile than it is to Lima.
I wouldn’t choose Arequipa over other cities on this list if I already had some online monies coming in. But for those starting out where every penny counts, this is a great option.
Around Yanahuara and/or Mall Plaza Cayma, close to the center…
There’s a nice mall about 15-20 minutes walking from the city center and Plaza de Armas. The area is walkable and one of the nicer neighborhoods in the city.
Plus, it’s right next to the center and all the action.
Airbnb options kind of suck in Arequipa, though. Don’t expect baller high rises and great views, as there near impossible to come by here.
5. Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Bolivia
To be frank…
Most of Bolivia blows. Santa Cruz de la Sierra is the only city in the country I’d recommend anyone spend any time.
However, Santa Cruz has a lot to offer.
The largest city in Bolivia, SC offers dirt cheap living, insane nightlife, and friendly locals. There’s also some cool nature shit to do nearby, including wildlife tours to see jaguars and anacondas.
While I’m a big fan of Santa Cruz, it’s a pretty difficult city to get to and the Bolivian visa can be a pain in the ass for Americans.
$1,500 a month here will give you an amazing lifestyle, though.
Around Barrio Equipetrol, basically anywhere between Ventura Mall and the center…
While you won’t find any super walkable areas or wolrd-class neighborhoods here, like in Buenos Aires, staying in Barrio Equipetrol gets the job done.
You’ll find tons of cafes, bars, restaurants, and gyms in this area. Most of the good nightlife is in the center, but I wouldn’t recommend staying in that area. Just not enough amenities.
Lots of the buildings here have nice pools too.
6. Pereira, Colombia
I’ve never met a man who went to Pereira, Colombia and left disappointed. Not a damn one. Just never happens.
Girls in the “coffee region” of Colombia are smokeshows. There’s not a ton of gringos here. The weather is amazing most of the year. Amazing mountain views all around. Great nature and hiking nearby.
Oh, and Pereira is insanely cheap. One could live like a king here for $1,200 USD a month without issue.
I almost didn’t want to include Pereira on this list, as the place is just too good.
The only downside is the city is somewhat small and you’ll have to take a couple flights to get here. But most bros find it worthwhile to spend a month or three in Pereira.
You’ll want to stay around “Circunvalar” while in Pereira. Do NOT stay in the center…
Here you’ll find almost all of the cities high-end restaurants, bars, and malls. The majority of nightlife is centered around here, as well.
Apartments are dirt cheap, great mountain views can be had, and almost everything is walkable when staying here.
While Pereira might be a bit small for some, there’s no doubt you can live an amazing life for cheap in this great neighborhood. Most apts here come with pools and nice balconies too.
7. Asuncion, Paraguay
Paraguay holds a special place in my heart. I found the locals in Paraguay to be some of, if not the, friendliest people I’ve ever met.
When I spent 3-4 months in Paraguay a few years back, there were literally no gringos. It was a hidden gem.
That’s changed currently.
With all the covid bullshit and hostile tax regimes in the western world, many foreigners have been moving to Paraguay for the easy permanent residency and quick second passport.
As such, prices are going up — significantly. I’d say Asuncion is the most expensive city on this list. However, Asuncion is still cheap and you can live a damn good life here for less than $1,500 a month.
Nightlife is amazing. Girls cute. People friendly. Weather is pretty decent year around, although hot in the summer.
But Paraguay is hard to get to, and to be honest, there isn’t a ton to do from a tourism standpoint. Especially for longer stays.
Only option is Villa Morra, as it’s only walkable area…
Staying around “El Cafe de Aca” offers the absolute best logistics in all of Paraguay. You’ll be in walking distances to bars, clubs, malls, and tons of great steakhouses.
Villa Morra is also smack dab in the middle of the city and a logical meeting point in Asuncion.
Prices are going up here, but I wouldn’t stay anywhere else in Asuncion. Truly no other options.
Worth it to pay a bit more for a place with a pool here in the summertime.