The gorgeous Swiss city of Lucerne has a well-preserved old town, sunny plazas, candy-colored houses, and stunning waterfront promenades. Many people refer to it as the pocket-sized version of Switzerland, and, according to legend, an angel showed the first settlers the ideal location to build a chapel in the area. Said chapel still stands there today!

Lucerne is the perfect place to start your Swiss journey. It’s such a beautiful city that will give you a magnificent insight into the country. Switzerland might be expensive, but it’s totally doable on a budget!

A great way to cut back on expenses is to stay in hostels. Not only are they economical and comfortable, but they are excellent places to meet other travelers.

Check out these epic hostels in Lucerne to save some bucks while you travel.

Quick Answer: Best Hostels in Lucerne

Chapel Bridge Kapellbrucke Lucerne Switzerland

What to Expect from Hostels in Lucerne

mt pilatus lucerne
Photo: Roaming Ralph

Often called the most gorgeous city in Switzerland, Lucerne looks like something from a postcard. To say that it is marvelous, is an understatement. However, Switzerland is still one of the most expensive countries in the world, and hotels and hostels in Lucerne are predictably expensive.

Fortunately, as expensive as Lucerne may be, you don’t have to spend a load of money on where to stay. Take advantage of the many hostels in the area that are still considerably cheaper than hotels.

Hostels are generally smaller than hotels, with a unique social atmosphere that you won’t find elsewhere. Those staying tend to be more open, and willing to talk to others. The common areas in hostels are the ideal places to meet backpackers from all over the world, exchange a few travel stories, and swap insider tips and tricks.

Hostels are not (normally) managed by big companies. Rather, the majority are maintained and owned by backpackers who have traveled the world themselves, and can give a unique perspective to budget travelers. They often go out of their way to ensure their guests have the best time, and are more than happy to share the area’s best kept secrets.

Staying in hostels doesn’t always mean sharing a room with strangers. Just like hotels, hostels also offer guests a few options, such as private rooms, family rooms, mixed dorms, and same-sex dorms. Predictably, dorm rooms are the most affordable – the more people in a room, the cheaper. Those who want privacy, and are willing to spend a bit more, can go for private rooms.

Your hostel’s location can easily make or break your vacation. It’s important to choose hostels that are near the city center, in proximity of bars, restaurants, stores, local markets, as well as bus and train stations for convenience.

  • Dorm rooms – from $30 to $80
  • Private rooms – from $100 to $220

HOSTELWORLD is the best place to find hostels in Lucerne. With due diligence, you will be able to find one that suits all of your needs. Check the photos, read the description, and take a look at the reviews before booking to avoid unpleasant surprises.

Best Hostels in Lucerne

There are hostels in Lucerne to cater to all different types of travelers. Let’s check out some of our faves!

Best Overall Hostel in Lucerne – Backpackers Lucerne

Backpackers Lucerne
  • $
  • All rooms with balconies
  • In front of Lake Lucerne
  • Book exchange

Located right in front of the lake, Backpackers Lucerne is one of the best hostels, thanks to its magnificent views.

The property is just a 15-minute walk from the main station, making getting around quick and easy. It is also just a moment’s walk from the beach for lazy days and dipping into the cool waters after a day of exploring.

Why you’ll love this hostel:

  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Laundry facilities
  • Bicycle parking

You will have a choice of private rooms and shared dorm rooms – each with a private balcony where you can sit, relax, and admire the stunning views. The kitchen is open for everyone to use should you want to prepare your own meals. Just visit the nearby local stores and stock up on groceries to cook up a real feast!

The hostel has spacious communal areas, including a lounge with board games, foosball, and a table tennis set up. Hang out with your traveling companions, make new friends, and prepare your itinerary for the following days. This comfortable space will quikcly become your favorite place to stay.

Just when you thought we were done, there are also books in the lounge, free internet access and laundry facilities. Stay connected with your loved ones back home, check out reviews for your next day trip, and find all the must-see sights – Backpackers Lucerne has everything you could possibly need!

Epic Hostel with a Pool in Lucerne – Young Backpackers Homestay

Young Backpackers Homestay Lucerne
  • $
  • Hot tub
  • Outdoor terrace
  • View of the alps

If you’re visiting Lucerne for its landscape, this lovely hostel is a stunning place to stay, with amazing views of the Alps from its terrace. A perfect place to hang out, mingle with other travelers, have your morning coffee and even do a little work, it’s a fave spot within the property.

Situated on the hills of Lucerne, the hostel has a perfect vantage point to admire the beauty of the surroundings. It is only 10 minutes away from the train station, with free tickets available at the reception.

If you are exhausted from all the sightseeing, take a dip in the outdoor swimming pool and relieve your body from backpacker aches in the sauna – at an extra cost. A soak in the jacuzzi promises a restful night sleep.

Akin to a luxury hostel, you will find everything you need on the property. A café and bar are on the premises for a decent meal and drinks after an enjoyable day spent outside. The games room is open to anyone who would like to try their luck on a game of foosball, or board games.

Why you’ll love this hostel:

  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Laundry facilities
  • Luggage storage
  • Games room

Mostly catering to the younger crowd, those who stay here are, normally, between 18 to 35 years of age – but, you mature travelers, they don’t discriminate! It’s the perfect place for digital nomads, too! Complete your emails with a scenic country backdrop.

Laundry facilities are available for those who would like to ensure their clothes are clean when traveling, and there’s luggage storage available when you need to check out but have not finished exploring just yet! And let’s not forget the BBQ area!

Our favorite part, you ask? The cute library of second-hand books left behind by previous travelers.

Great Dorm for Couples in Lucerne – Capsule Hostel Lucerne

Capsule Hostel Lucerne
  • $
  • Near old town
  • Security lockers
  • Close to the train station

Boasting an excellent location, this capsule hostel is the first of its kind in Switzerland. Situated at the edge of the historic Old Town, it’s the ideal place to start your exploration. Old Town is still incredible to this way, with its narrow cobblestone alleyways, old bridges, and buildings, as well as beautiful medieval squares.

As well as being an excellent base, it is close by to plenty of boutiques for a bit of shopping, and cafes for trying local, delicious Swiss food.

Be sure to check out Valentino, a classic pizzeria and spaghetteria in Old Town that has a loyal clientele. They have an extensive menu of authentically prepared pasta and pizzas, as well as seafood risottos that are a must-try!

Another restaurant to try is Zunfthausrestaurant Pfistern. Yup, we know that the name is a mouthful. It dates back to the 16th century, offering seasonal Swiss cuisine, that is complemented by the stunning view of the famous Kapellebrucke.

The property is close to the train station, for easy exploring of nearby towns.

Why you’ll love this hostel:

  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Outdoor terrace
  • Book exchange
  • Express check-in/out

The hostel’s distinct aerospace design makes it a hit with the younger crowd, but everyone is welcome to stay. With 24-hour security, secure lockers, and security card access, it is totally safe for female solo travelers

Wi-Fi is free of charge and accessible in common areas, as well as rooms, for catching up on emails and posting on your blog.

There is a book exchange for a moment of peace, an outdoor terrace, and board games to help you get to know the other backpackers.

Most Affordable Hostel in Lucerne – Bellpark Hostel

Bellpark Hostel Lucerne
  • $
  • Free coffee and tea
  • Near bus station
  • Free Asian style breakfast

If you’re on a tight budget and don’t want to sacrifice on comfort, check out Bellpark Hostel. Its location is excellent, just a few minutes away by bus ride from Lucerne station, and 5 minutes from Mt. Pilatus cable car.

They offer free coffee and tea, and an Asian style breakfast is included in the rate! Nothing tastes better than free food – am I right?

The freebies don’t stop there. You will get a free public transportation ticket that is valid for the whole duration of your stay – starting with your bus ride from the train station to the hostel.

Why you’ll love this hostel:

  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Free bus ticket
  • Games room
  • Tours/Travel Desk

All of the rooms have free Wi-Fi, and there are internet stations are in the lounge for travelers who don’t have their laptops. You can check in on your loved ones, do research for your next day’s adventure, and find reviews for the area’s must-visit restaurants.

The hostel has both private and dorm rooms to choose from. Some even have balconies where you can hang out, relax, and admire the beautiful surrounding landscapes! Take advantages of the security lockers to stash your valuables for peace of mind when you are out and about.

The tours and travel desk can give you recommendations on the activities that you shouldn’t miss, as well as sights that you shouldn’t forget to see!

There are laundry facilities available for those who would like to wash their clothes, and the games room is where you can meet other travelers and share stories. A large food market is nearby where you can grab meals at more affordable prices compared to restaurants and bars.

Best Hostel for Solo Travellers in Lucerne – Barabas Luzern

Barabas Luzern Lucerne
  • $
  • Near restaurants and shops
  • Near Lucerne main station
  • Close to points of interest

If you don’t like run-of-the-mill hostels, and want to stay somewhere unique, Barabas Luzern is the ideal spot. Barabas Luzern is a unique jailhouse hostel, located in the Old Town of Luzern. In its past life it served as a real prison!

Aside from its unique history, the location couldn’t be better. It’s only a 10-minute walk away from Lucerne station, and a stone throw’s away from some of the most interesting sites such as the lion monument, Reuss River, the Bay of Lake, and Chapel Bridge.

Want to buy souvenirs? Want to sample popular local food such as schoggibrötli, veal steak, and of course, anything with chocolate? How about a drink or two after a satisfying meal? You can do it all easily, as the hostel is close to restaurants, bars, and shops.

Why you’ll love this hostel:

  • Library
  • Restaurant on site
  • Internet access
  • Luggage storage

The hostel has a library packed with, you guessed it, crime novels! You can borrow books, and spend an evening in the library – that can also be booked as a bedroom.

There are more than 50 different prison cells including single and double rooms, as well as family rooms with bathrooms.

A restaurant is onsite, where breakfast is served for a fee. If you would rather eat out, there are other places in walking distance. The kitchen is also available to use, for those who would rather prepare their food.

Internet access is free throughout the premises, and luggage storage is provided for those who want to start exploring before they’ve checked in.

It is an epic spot for a memorable Lucerne stay!

Other Hostels in Lucerne

Thought we were done? Oh no, there are still so many hostels in Lucerne to check out!

Hostel for Digital Nomads in Lucerne – Luzern Youth Hostel

Luzern Youth Hostel Lucerne
  • $
  • Free breakfast
  • Games room
  • Children’s play area

Fancy being surrounded by placid lakes, stunning mountain views, and rich culture? That’s just a glimpse of some of the things you are going to get when you stay at Luzern Youth Hostel.

A free breakfast is served daily, and is the perfect way to start your day of exploring. Located just half a mile from the city center and the lake, it only takes a few minutes to get to the shops, restaurants, and bars should you want to try out the local fares, and purchase some souvenirs.

The games room has all the amenities to play pool, foosball, or board games. Wi-Fi is available through the premises at no additional cost, too.

Those traveling with children will be delighted to know that there is a dedicated children’s play area where the little ones can entertain themselves to their hearts’ content.

Hostel with Private Rooms – Lion Lodge Lucerne

Lion Lodge Lucerne
  • $
  • Located centrally
  • Wi-Fi in common areas
  • Bus stop right in front of the hostel

Some travelers want to save money when traveling, but don’t want to give up their privacy. Lion Lodge Lucerne has some of the best hostel private rooms available in town!

Centrally located, it is just a few minutes from the Old Town, as well as shopping centers that are easily reachable thanks to the nearby bus stop. You can explore on foot, venture further by bus, or take a day trip by train. This is the perfect base for an adventurous getaway.

Wi-Fi is free, and accessible in all common areas. There are 3 large verandas, all with excellent views of the stunning vistas of Steinenstrasse, a perfect way to start or end your day.

Another Spot for Couples in Lucerne – Hotel Alpha

Hotel Alpha Lucerne
  • $$
  • Free breakfast
  • Near bars and restaurants
  • Central and quiet location

Hotel Alpha is located centrally in a quiet street, just 5 minutes to interesting spots.You can take a stroll through Old Town, and see the famous Chapel Bridge, and the Culture and Congress Centre. Ask at reception about walking tours of the town if you’re interested in venturing with a knowledgable guide.

Breakfast is served daily from 7:00 until 11:00, to prepare you for a day on the town exploring. There isn’t a restaurant onsite, but there are plenty of places to eat nearby to fill up on lunch and dinner.

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What to Pack for your Lucerne Hostel

Pants, socks, underwear, soap?! Take it from us, packing for a hostel stay is not always quite as straight forward as it seems. Working out what to bring and what to leave at home is an art we have perfected over many years.

Don’t Let Snorers Keep You Awake!
Don’t Let Snorers Keep You Awake!

Ear Plugs

Snoring dorm-mates can ruin your nights rest and seriously damage the hostel experience. This is why I always travel with a pack of decent ear plugs.

Keep your laundry organized and stink free
Keep your laundry organized and stink free

Hanging Laundry Bag

Trust us, this is an absolute game changer. Super compact, a hanging mesh laundry bag stops your dirty clothes from stinking, you don’t know how much you need one of these… so just get it, thank us later.

Stay Dry With a Micro Towel
Stay Dry With a Micro Towel

Sea To Summit Micro Towel

Hostel towels are scummy and take forever to dry. Microfibre towels dry quickly, are compact, lightweight, and can be used as a blanket or yoga mat if need be.

Make Some New Buddies…
Make Some New Buddies…

Monopoly Deal

Forget about Poker! Monopoly Deal is the single best travel card game that we have ever played. Works with 2-5 players and guarantees happy days.

Reduce Plastic – Bring a Water Bottle!
Reduce Plastic – Bring a Water Bottle!

Grayl Geopress Water Bottle

Always travel with a water bottle! They save you money and reduce your plastic footprint on our planet. The Grayl Geopress acts as a purifier AND temperature regulator. Boom!

Check out our definitive Hostel Packing list for even more top hostel packing tips!

Lucerne Hostels FAQ

Travel Safety Tips for Lucerne

ALWAYS sort out your backpacker insurance before your trip. There’s plenty to choose from in that department, but a good place to start is Safety Wing.

They offer month-to-month payments, no lock-in contracts, and require absolutely no itineraries: that’s the exact kind of insurance long-term travellers and digital nomads need.

SafetyWing is cheap, easy, and admin-free: just sign up lickety-split so you can get back to it!

Click the button below to learn more about SafetyWing’s setup or read our insider review for the full tasty scoop.

Final Thoughts

If you have never been to Lucerne, put it at the top of your list! It has history, architecture, and natural wonders that will make your jaw drop.

Exploring Lucerne is easily done on a budget with these affordable places to stay!

When in doubt, check out Backpackers Lucerne. Located right in front of a lake, you’ll have picturesque views that you will remember forever.

And for transparency’s sake, please know that some of the links in our content are affiliate links. That means that if you book your accommodation, buy your gear, or sort your insurance through our link, we earn a small commission (at no extra cost to you). That said, we only link to the gear we trust and never recommend services we don’t believe are up to scratch. Again, thank you!