Don’t be deceived by the ritz and glamour of the tall skyscrapers of Calgary, this city is a home for cowboys and country living. With rodeos and country music, Calgary is a place where you can truly experience the frontier culture in Canada.
Being a bit off of the beaten path and attracting more cattlemen than backpackers, you will not have a whole lot to choose from when it comes to youth hostels and budget hotels.
There is no need to start unpacking just yet! We brought together all the best budget hostels and cheap hotels to one place so you can book with confidence that you will be staying in the top hostels in Calgary!
Pull out your cowboy hats and get ready to boot scoot to adventure in Calgary!
Table of Contents
Quick answer: The Best Hostels in Calgary
- Overall Best Hostel in Calgary – Wicked Hostels
- Best Hostel for Solo Travelers in Calgary – Hi Calgary City Centre
- Best Cheap Hostel in Calgary – The Calgary Hub
- Best Hostel for Couples in Calgary – Bright Home BnB
- Best Hostel for Digital Nomads in Calgary – Unwind Place
The Best Hostels in Calgary
From the best hostels to the coziest BnBs, this list will help you find that one stay in Calgary that best suits how you like to travel!
Best Overall Hostel in Calgary – Wicked Hostels
– Free Breakfast
– Pub Crawls
There is not a single backpacker’s hostel in Calgary that can hold a light to Wicked Hostels. This stay has carved its name as the top hostel in Calgary with its tons of freebies. With free breakfast, laundry, and even club entry, this hostel will provide you with a little bit of everything. They will really get the party started with their karaoke nights, pub crawls, and Wild Wings Nights! Out of all of the hostels and BnBs in Calgary, this is the one stay where you will that classic backpacker’s experience!
Best Hostel for Solo Travelers in Calgary – Hi Calgary City Centre
– Free Breakfast
– Free Towels
If you are looking for a backpacker’s hostel that will put you within minutes of all the best sights, restaurants, and bars in Calgary, look no further than HI Calgary City Centre! When you aren’t out tasting all of the local delicacies and experiencing Canada’s unique culture, this hostel is the perfect place to just kick back in the lounge and meet other travelers! If though you are a solo traveler, you will find that the shared kitchen and relaxing lounges are great places to meet other guests also looking for an adventure in Calgary!
Best Cheap Hostel in Calgary – The Calgary Hub
– Breakfast Not Included
– Shared Kitchen
– Near the Airport
Bringing together all the chill vibes of a hostel and the small touches of home from a BnB, this one of a kind backpacker’s hostel is the perfect place to kick off your adventure in Calgary. If you have an early or late flight, this hostel is near the airport, only 10km away! Even if you are just looking to take in the sights of Calgary, the Stampede Park and McMahon Stadium are just a few kilometers away! With free coffee in the morning and a garden made for meeting other travelers, there is no better hostel in Calgary to just put up your feet and relax!
Best Hostel for Couples in Calgary – Bright Home BnB
– Free Bicycles
– Hiking Trails
– Breakfast Not Included
If you and your better half are traveling to Calgary, don’t ruin the mood by staying in a backpacker’s hostel, why not check out a cozy BnB instead? With its sunny glass-enclosed terrace, homey rooms, and relaxing lounges, this BnB is one of the best places to reignite the spark while on the road. With the train just 1km away, you will have the entire city of Calgary laid out before your feet! There is no better place to kick off your vacation than by waking up with a tea in hand and watching the sunrise on the terrace or balcony over another perfect day in Calgary!
Best Hostel for Digital Nomads in Calgary – Unwind Place
– Airport Pick-up
– Car Rental
Are you a digital nomad who needs a place to crash for a few days to catch up on some writing or editing? This BnB will give you all the same price and laid back atmosphere as a backpacker’s hostel but with a quiet environment and great workspaces to write in peace. Each of these spacious and comfortable rooms come with their very own desk, making for the perfect place to spread out your gear and get to work! With its very own terrace and cozy lounge, this stay will make y0u feel right at home in Calgary’s relaxing suburbs.
More of the Best Hostels in Calgary
– Close to the Airport
– Train Station Nearby
– Breakfast Not Included
Looking for another budget stay in Calgary close to the airport? This BnB will have you staying just 8km away from the departures terminal in one of the coziest and homiest houses in the neighborhood! If you are looking to explore some of Calgary, you will find that the Zoo Botanical Park and the Prehistoric Museum are just a short ride away! Located in a quiet suburb, right by the train station, you can enjoy the peaceful side of Canada while still having all the best sights in Calgary a short tram ride away!
– Barbeque Pit
Although you won’t find any dorm beds at this stay, the owners of this BnB gear this home towards adventure travelers and backpackers. With its relaxing vibe and homey atmosphere, you will feel like you are staying with friends rather than at an impersonal hotel. Even though you are in the suburbs, you will find tons of restaurants and bars nearby! Get ready for a journey where the nights are spent lounging about in the living room, chatting in the garden, or huddling around the fire while snacking on some delicious barbeque!
– Breakfast Not Included
This brand spanking new budget hotel will blow you away with its spacious studios and a location putting you within 10 minutes of downtown Calgary. Putting you within a stone’s throw of Calgary Stampede and the memorial park, there is no better place to base yourself out of!
With its ultra-modern, sparkling clean rooms, you will be staying in a BnB with all the luxury of your 5-star hotels! Although this is a step up from your backpacker’s hostels, M Lofts will make every penny well spent with its spacious rooms and vibe that makes you feel right at home!
– Located in Inglewood
– Entire Apartment
There is no need to confine yourself to a dorm room when you can literally call a whole apartment your home during your stay in Calgary! With its bright and sunny rooms and boutique-style, this BnB in the heart of Calgary will make you feel more like a local than just another traveler. What will really make your jaw drop is the designer decor, wooden beams, and polished hardwood floors. Top it off with this home being over 100 years old, you won’t be able to find a more charming place to base yourself out of when exploring Calgary!
– Shared Kitchen
– Shared Lounge
Even though you will be staying in one of the more quiet and peaceful neighborhoods of Calgary, this BnB will have you staying right in front of a bus stop taking you to the downtown. With this homestay’s sparkling clean rooms, homey vibes, and inviting lounge, you will feel like you are staying in your long lost home away from home rather than is a boring old hotel. If you are looking to get out and have an adventure, some of the best hiking and cycling trails in Calgary are located right by this BnB!
– Fitness Center
– Whole Apartment
This is another BnB that will give you the same price as a backpacker’s hostel but all the comfort and luxury of a 5-star hotel. Other than the spacious rooms on the 20th floor of this apartment building, this complex also comes with its very own gym, terrace, and a fire pit. It’s not only the stunning decor inside the apartment that will make you fall in love with this BnB, but the views of Calgary from the deck will make you never want to check out! Located in the heart of downtown Calgary, backpackers will be able to pamper themselves in this one of a kind budget stay!
– Hot Tub
– Private Kitchen
There is no better place to kick back and relax in Calgary than from the sunny rooms with floor to ceiling windows in the city’s suburbs. Although you will be in one of the more quiet neighborhoods of Calgary, you will still have all the best sighs and restaurants a short walk away. From your floor to ceiling windows, you will be given sweeping views of the city with the Calgary Tower being seen right from your apartment! Complete with a hot tub and even a gym, you will be having a luxury stay for just a little more than what you’d pay for a dorm bed at a hostel!
– Free Bikes
– No free breakfast
If you are wanting to truly live that North American suburban life, then this homestay is perfect for you! This spacious and homey BnB will have you staying in cozy rooms, lounging in a spacious living room, and soaking up the sun in their relaxing backyard. You will also find that there are plenty of cycling trails nearby if you are wanting to get out and explore Calgary’s stunning natural beauty. With its welcoming atmosphere, you will feel just like part of the family while staying in this warm and inviting homestay!
What to Pack for your Calgary Hostel
Pants, socks, underwear… Here are some other items you might not have thought to pack.
1. Active Roots Microfiber Towel: Having your own towel is a must when traveling since most hostels don’t provide them. Plus as a backpacker, use of a towel will extend further than just showers, it’s a minimalist yoga towel and a great beach blanket/towel combo! The Active Roots Microfiber Towel is really the best solution for backpacking.
2. Active Roots Toiletry Bag: The Active Roots Toiletry bag keeps all of your bathroom essential items organized instead of flowing around your backpack. Having everything handy and accessible in one water-resistant bag is a bathroom lifesaver. This toiletry bag also helps from being that embarrassed person walking back to the dorm room, in a towel, to grab forgotten shampoo.
3. TRTL Travel Pillow: Long flights and bus rides are quite uncomfortable (most obvious statement of the day). Most travel pillows… Well, you know how they are. TRTL travel pillow is different. I mean, look at it! It’ll cuddle you to sleep every ride and it does a pretty damn good job of supporting your neck so you don’t get that stiffness or legendary popping when you stir.
4. Playing Cards: Name your ideal night: I’m for a few cheap beers and some card games. Oh, and you don’t even have to be drinking to enjoy a game – having cards with you traveling definitely helps out on those long airplane or beach days! Make sure to snag a waterproof deck to protect from the pool, ocean or Chang.
5. Padlock: Keep your stuff safe, guys. Unfortunately not all dorm lockers share the same security standard. You’ll want a lightweight lock that can fit all the various dorm lockers you’ll clip it to. Having a padlock that is flexible and can fit a variety of locker styles is the best way to make sure none of your belongings wander away while you are out.
6. Universal Travel Adapter: This universal travel adapter charges your devices in (pretty much) every country – definitely a lifesaver when travelling around the world. The plug also regulates the power output depending on which device you’re charging. No more fried hair dryers or electric razors!
Why you should travel to Calgary
From your classic backpacker’s hostels to cozy homestays, Calgary has a place to suit all kinds of travelers. But for us, Wicked Hostels takes the cake for giving travelers that perfect hostel experience in Calgary!
Travel Safety Tips for Calgary
Don’t forget to sort your travel insurance! We’ve put together a roundup of the best travel insurance for backpackers – check it out here, or if you’re low on time, get a quote from World Nomads now, our favourite travel insurance provider.
More Epic Hostels in Calgary and North America
Hopefully by now you’ve found the perfect hostel for your upcoming trip to Calgary.
Planning an epic trip all across Canada or even North America itself?
Don’t worry – we’ve got you covered!
For more cool hostel guides around North America, check out:
- Best hostels in Toronto
- Best hostels in Banff
- Best hostels in Anchorage
- Best hostels in Seattle
- Best hostels in Jasper
- Best Hostels in Canada
Over to you
Calgary puts you right on the edge of adventure! With the Banff National Park and all of Canada’s most breathtaking lakes and mountains nearby, you will be torn between the bars in Calgary and the great Canadian wilderness!
But what will really make your adventure in Calgary one to remember is the hostel that you call home.
Are we missing any great backpacker’s hostels in Calgary from our list? Let us know in the comments below!
Yay for transparency! Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. This means that if you book your accommodation, buy a book or sort your insurance, I’ll earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. I only link to stuff I’ve actually used and never endorse crap. Your support helps me keep the site going.
Need More Inspiration?
- Backpacking Canada on a Budget – Maps, Itineraries, and Things To Do
- 35 Best Hostels in Canada
- MUST READ: Where to Stay in Calgary
Noodle addict. City dweller. Aaron Radcliffe is the marketing ninja for The Broke Backpacker, founder of Nomads Nation and Co-Founder of Ditch Your Desk.