Digital nomads can live for free in a community on an Italian Island

Digital Nomads
Digital Nomads

Clarese Partis, a 39-year-old software designer hailing from Los Angeles, has fulfilled her dream of working remotely from an idyllic and unconventional destination. She recently embarked on an adventure to the remote Sardinian village of Ollolai in Italy, thanks to a unique program initiated by the local municipality. The initiative is aimed at welcoming digital nomads seeking to temporarily relocate to a serene and nature-rich environment in the heart of the island, away from bustling city life.

Partis, who has been traveling as a digital nomad for the past two years, found the prospect of Ollolai too intriguing to resist. She sought solace, fresh air, mountains, and a slower-paced lifestyle, and the village promised precisely that. Ollolai, located in the tranquil Barbagia region, stands far removed from the tourist-packed coastlines of Sardinia. It’s a place where ancient traditions endure, and rustic charm abounds.

In 2018, Ollolai captured international attention by offering dilapidated homes for sale at the symbolic price of one euro, sparking a resurgence of interest in the village. Now, with the “Work from Ollolai” program, the town hall is investing 20,000 euros to host 30 remote workers from around the world over the next two years, with stays of up to three months each. Partis is among the pioneers of this initiative, and she is already relishing the experience.

The project aims to not only rejuvenate Ollolai but also foster cultural exchanges between digital nomads and the local community. In return for their free stay, participants are expected to contribute something tangible to the village, whether it be a conference, research paper, or creative project. Ollolai is seeking to attract professionals from various fields to enrich the village’s culture and knowledge.

Partis, thoroughly charmed by the village, its panoramic balcony overlooking pristine landscapes, and the warm hospitality of the locals, is balancing her work with exploring the beauty of Sardinia. Her typical day in Ollolai involves morning yoga meditation, work, outdoor strolls, and excursions to the coast or mountains. She has embraced the local food scene, relishing fresh ingredients like truffles and creating delicious dishes.

In Partis’s own words, Ollolai has exceeded her expectations, offering both natural beauty and warm camaraderie. She is grateful for the opportunity to immerse herself in Sardinia’s culture and landscapes, savoring the best of remote work and island life.

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