The Best Hostels in The World

I have traveled to more than 85 countries and I have stayed in over 200 hostels around the world. Yes, hostels are safe and clean. The hostels the most people think of doesn’t exist anylonger.

Today, you can find hostels that are more like hotels, hostels that are situated in homes, hostels that feel more like Bed & Breakfast, hostels that have a pool, a restaurant, a bar, and sometimes they even have gyms.

I love hostels. Thanks to hostels, I’ve been able to travel more than the average person to more countries than I could’ve imagined myself going to when I started to travel.

Each time I travel I stay in hostels. I book the hostels online – Hostelworld and Booking.com, and sometimes Agoda.

Click here to get €15 off your accommodation on Booking.com 

How to find the best hostels

1. Check the ratings

Before I book a hostel I always check the ratings, I never stay in a hostel rated lower than 8 (out of 10).

2. Read the reviews

I always read the reviews. The reviews are very important when you choose a hostel. Here you find information about the hostel that you won’t find on the booking page. My tip is to read the bad reviews. If the same negative comments comes up a lot then you know that this is a potential problem. You know what the worst to expect should you choose this hostel.

If you’re not into party-hostels then read the reviews carefully. On Hostelworld, if I read a review which says; ‘the best hostel in the world’ and the reviewer is a male 18-21, then I know it’s a party hostel.

3. The staff

I never book hostels with bad reviews about the staff. It’s the staff who sets the atmosphere in the hostel. If they are grumpy, annoying, or unhelpful, you will not like your stay and probably not the place or the city either. Great staff is friendly, likes to talk and socialize, go above and beyond normal duties to help out, and you instantly feel welcome. In my opinion, the staff is the most important asset. I can deal with small dorms, no breakfast, bad weather, and off beat location if the staff is fantastic.

4. Choose smaller hostels

I like hostels that are different, cozy hostels that feels more like a home than a hostel. I don’t like the big chain hostels like Generator, Wombats, Base, and so on. These are modern, big, clean hostels with hundreds of beds and professional staff, but it feels like you’re staying in a hotel. Absolutely no atmosphere. It’s difficult to meet people as a solo traveler in these hostels because the atmosphere is cold and impersonal just like in a hotel. I prefer the smaller, individual hostels where you get to know the owner and the staff.

5. Avoid bedbugs!

Also, I never book hostels where I see the word ‘bedbugs‘ in the reviews, and neither should you. Bedbugs have nothing to do with cleanliness, a five star hotel can have bedbugs as well as a hostel, my advice is to stay away. Don’t think that you’re only staying for one night. The bedbugs will bite you and the bites will take weeks, sometimes months, before they disappear. Bedbugs can get into your clothes and your bag, and you’ll carry them with you from place to place. They are very difficult to get rid off once you get them into your home, and it will take several visits from the exterminator before you will be able to sleep peacefully again.

My Favorite Hostels around the World

I have compiled a list of my favorite hostels around the world. The hostels are listed in random order. The list will continuously be updated as I’m constantly travelling and staying in new hostels several times per year.

Note: since I’ve been traveling and staying in hostels over the last 12 years, some hostels might have changed owner, closed down, or are not as well managed as when I stayed there. This is why it’s so important to always do your own research before you book a hostel!

 

Africa

  • The Jollyboys backpackers, Livingstone, Zambia

Reservation: Hostelworld and Booking.com

I stayed here twice in 2011 and in 2012. The chill out zone was my favorite place in Zambia (except for the Vic Falls and the Lion Encounter Project). The dorm rooms are basic, but the restaurant, pool and chill out zone are fab. It’s super easy to meet other travelers here and I loved this place.

Jollyboys

Asia

  • Dearly Koh Tao, Ko Tao, Thailand

Reservation: Hostelworld and Booking.com

This is the cleanest and poshest hostel I’ve ever stayed at, it felt more like an hotel than a hostel and the price reflects this. Easy to meet other travelers, and helpful and fun staff makes this my favorite hostel in Asia.

 

  • Thresher Cove Resort & Dive Centre, Malapascua, the Philippines

Reservation: Hostelworld and Booking.com

If you love to dive then you should stay here. This resort was newly opened when I stayed in 2014. It had one dorm room. The locations is great, off the main beach, and the resort runs a dive operation, the restaurant was fantastic, and the pool was nice. The beach is pretty lame for the Philippines, but overall, this was a cheap place to stay and dive for a few days.

 

  • DaBlend Hostel, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

Reservation: http://dablendhostel.com, Hostelworld and Booking.com

The atmosphere in this hostel is the best. You instantly feel at home. It’s well managed. The local staff is great and speaks fluent English. The breakfast on the rooftop, with three different options that include fresh fruit, is the best I’ve ever had in any hostel around the world.

 

  • Halley Hostel, Hanoi, Vietnam

Reservation: Hostelworld and Booking.com

A small hostel in a tall building in the Old Quarter’s of Hanoi. The location is perfect; hidden away in an alley, hence the name, but only a 5-minute walk to the lake, the night market, and the walking street where all the bars are. Inside the hostel it’s very quiet and relaxed. You can’t hear the noise from the streets at all.

The dorms have windows and a balcony. The beds are the most comfortable beds I have ever slept in. Each bed has a duvet, fluffy pillow, curtain, a locker, light, and outlet.

Free breakfast is included and is served every morning on the roof top. The staff is super friendly and helpful, and very happy. This hostel is my hidden gem in Hanoi.

 

  • Zuli Zen Homestay Tam Coc, Ninh Binh region, Vietnam

Reservation: Booking.com and Airbnb

A small house, right outside of the village of Tam Cook, owned by the lovely Li who makes you feel right at home, give great local tips, and cooks delicious meals. There are two private rooms and one dorm room in the house. Coco, the dog, is the friendliest and cutest dog that I’ve ever met, she doesn’t bark or jump up on you.

 

  • Cozy hostel, Kota Kinabalu, Borneo, Malaysia

Reservation: Hostelworld and Booking.com

Jia and her sister are the owners of this small and cozy hostel in Borneo. They live, breathe, and love their job which also reflects on the friendly atmosphere. You can wash your clothes for free and breakfast is included in the price.

 

  • Onederz, Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Reservations: Booking.com and Hostelworld

A small, super clean hostel by the Riverside with modern facilities. Close to markets, restaurants, bars, and the beautiful walk along the river.

I’ve stayed in the 4-bed female dorm on four occasions and the quality and friendliness of the staff have always been the same. Bright rooms with windows and high ceilings and 24 hour A/C. The beds are very comfy with outlet, bed lamp, and smart set up on the beds to hang up your clothes and towel. Lockers in the dorm.

The bathrooms have soap, q-tips, hairdryer, and the showers hot water, body shower and shampoo. They clean the bathroom several times per day.

They also have private double room.

 

  • Onederz, Siem Reap, Cambodia

Reservations: Booking.com and Hostelworld

The sister hostel in the North is a lot bigger than the one in Phnom Penh. The building is modern with a roof top pool and a good restaurant, cheap bar, and a TV lounge where you can watch Netflix movies and shows. The staff organizes tours to the temples, and help you book buses around Cambodia and to the neighboring countries.

The dorm is exactly like the dorms in PP with comfy beds, hangers, lockers, and A/C.

The location is perfect in SR, right next to the night market, a few blocks away from the Walking street where the party is, but far away to not be disturbed by any noise or drunk people.

I like the fact that you take off your shoes before you enter the hostel. The floors are clean and you don’t have to deal with brushing off sand from the bed sheets.

 

  • Manila Z-hostel, Manila, The Philippines

A very modern and western type of hostel in a safe area in Manila. Fantastic rooftop bar with an amazing view of the city. Helpful and friendly staff. Very clean hostel. If you want to sleep, stay in the lower floors, the bar is open all night and you hear it if you stay on the upper floors. Breakfast was good. The best wi-fi in the Philippines.

The area is good. There are a lot of small restaurants, shops, and bars. A few minute walk and you’ll find shopping malls and bigger restaurants.

 

Europe

  • Hostel Majda’s, Mostar, Bosnia

Reservation: Hostelworld and Booking.com

Located in the old town this hostel is more like a home than a hostel. Majda and her brother runs the hostel in their old home and they are so helpful and friendly. Majda cooks breakfast every morning and really takes care of the guests. Free coffee and tea. The garden is amazing, especially in the summer. Very easy to meet other travelers.

 

  • City Circus, Athens, Greece

Reservation: Hostelworld and Booking.com

This hostel is better than most of the hotels in Athens. The building is beautiful. Painted ceilings, a nice lounge, good restaurant and bar, and friendly staff. I loved the area, a bohemian, cool area with lots of local restaurants and pubs. Only a few minute-walk to the Monastiraki square where you can catch the subway or walk up to Acropolis. I stayed in a 4-bed female dorm with ensuite bathroom. The room was airy, clean and modern with comfy beds and big lockers. They also have private rooms. I met a lot of families and couples staying here.

 

  • Hostel of the Sun, Naples, Italy

Reservation: Hostelworld and Booking.com

Amazing staff. Great atmosphere and easy to meet other travelers. They organize a lot of social events. The hostel is located close to Metro stop, old town and the harbor. Reception and some dorms located on 7th fl, the rest on 2nd. I stayed in mix 4-bed dorm. My only complaints were the bathrooms. Only three on the 2nd floor so get up early if you don’t like to wait.

 

  • Old Town Hostel West Wing, Kotor, Montenegro

Reservation: Hostelworld and Booking.com

This is a fantastic hostel located in the old town that offer dinner and breakfast for only 5 EUR, social events every night, very good tours around Montenegro, and helpful and friendly staff. It’s a big hostel with 150 beds but feels small and, as a solo traveler it’s easy to meet other travelers. Kotor is a beautiful small town on the coast of Montenegro, and is well worth a visit.

 

 

  • Rock Valley Hostel, Goreme, Turkey

Reservation: Hostelworld and Booking.com

A rather big hostel w pool and a small garden. Mixed crowd. Backpackers, families and couples staying here. The staff is great, helpful, friendly and acommodating every need of the guests. I booked all the tours, hamam, horseback riding etc. through the hostel. I stayed in the dorm for 8. It was a bit crowded but okay. The location is great. Close to restaurants and buses, but still in a quiet area.

rock valley

Oceania

  • Dorset House Backpackers, Christchurch, New Zealand

Reservation: Hostelworld and Booking.com

I loved the building. An old house built in the 1880s, high ceilings, big rooms, big windows etc. Free wi-fi. Located in a nice, residential area, close to the centre and the park. It’s very quiet. Normal beds – no bunk beds. The hostel didn’t feel like a hostel but more ‘homey’. Accommodating staff. I checked in after hours and they left a letter for me with instructions and gave me the door code over the phone.

 

  • Somerset House, Collingwood, New Zealand

Reservation: www.bbh.co.nz

Owned by a British/Japanese family who live in the house next door. This hostel is well kept and super clean. You eat breakfast together with the owners in the morning where they give you the best local tips and recommendations. The only complaint I have is that you have to pay for WiFi. Located close to the beautiful Golden Bay and Albert Tasman National Park on the South Island.

 

  • Greenstone retreat, Kumara, New Zealand

Reservation: Hostelworld and Booking.com

A small hostel and Bed & Breakfast off the beaten path on the South Island of New Zealand. The dorms were in a small house and the private rooms in the bigger house next door. A big garden with tables, chairs, and hammocks. In between the houses there was an outdoor well equipped kitchen. As a Swede, I especially liked that everything was recycled. Good wi-fi, very quiet at night. I stayed in the 4-bed dorm. It was clean with very comfy beds. The hostel is owned by a couple, one from England, and they’re super helpful and friendly. A cute dog kept me company during my stay.

 

  • Deco Stop Lodge, Luganville, Vanuatu

Reservation: Hostelworld and Booking.com

The location is great. 10-15 min walk from town, on a hill overlooking the ocean. A big, cool pool on a fantastic deck with amazing views. The whole place had a relaxed and friendly atmosphere. I stayed in a 3-bed dorm room, and it was nice. There was a fan, lots of hangers where you could hang your clothes, a fridge, and a big ensuite bathroom. The staff was friendly and helpful. The breakfast had fresh fruits, cornflakes, toasts with jam, peanut butter or vegemite. The restaurant was a bit pricey and the food was good. The owner drove me to the airport when I left which was such a nice gesture.

North America

  • Blue Moon Hotel, NYC, USA

Reservation: Hostelworld and Booking.com

This isn’t a hostel per se, but I had such a good time in this dorm so I have to mention it. The hotel only have a few dorm rooms and I stayed in the female dorm with ensuite bathroom. The room was crowded with beds as you can see in the photo. And since the room was so small you got to know your room mates really well. It felt like I had been invited to a big slumber party. We, the girls I met got a long so well, we actually took a photo of us all in one of the beds. The location is cool. The street is filled with cool bars, shops and restaurants. Very bohemian and artsy. It was a nice surprise!

 

As I mentioned in the beginning the list will be updated as soon as I encounter more amazing hostels around the world. Do you have any hostel you would like to recommend? Please send the details to me. Click here to contact me.

 

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