Medellin is an incredible city that’s emerging as a must-visit destination if you are backpacking in Colombia! It’s desperately trying to shed its image as a “drug city” to one of innovation and creativity. With its warm weather year-round and locals (know as Paisas) who know how to have a good time, any itinerary to Colombia should definitely include a stop in “the city of eternal spring.”
There are tons of amazing hostels in Medellin, which can make it really difficult to choose one. That’s why I’ve created this list of best hostels in Medellin for 2018, broken down by your interests. You’ll be sure to find a hostel that fits your needs, saving you time and money!
Although more and more people are visiting Medellin, there are still some not-so-great areas. To make sure you stay safe while travelling, you’ll want to be sure you’re in one of the neighbourhoods that are popular with both expats and tourists.
Most of the nightlife, restaurants, and culture are centred around El Poblado and Laureles. Most of the hostels included in this post are located in or very near these two neighbourhoods, but all of the hostels reviewed here are in very safe areas of this amazing city.
Quick answer: The best hostels in Medellin
- Overall Best Hostel in Medellin – Hostel Rango Boutique
- Best Hostel for Solo Travelers in Medellin – Purple Monkey Hostel
- Best Cheap Hostel in Medellin – Hostal Casa Paraiso
- Best Hostel for Couples in Medellin – Be Okay Hostel
- Best Party Hostel in Medellin – Paisa City Hostel
- Best Hostel for Digital Nomads in Medellin – Black Sheep Hostel Medellin
- Best Hostel in Medellin Near the Airport – Casa Mosaico
What to look for to find the best hostels in Medellin
- Location – Medellin is a massive, sprawling city with loads of little barrios (neighbourhoods) to explore. The public transportation is quite good. There are two metro lines – the only ones in all of Colombia – as well as a few cable cars to take you up the mountain into the local ‘hoods. As I mentioned above, the two most popular neighbourhoods for gringos are El Poblado and Laureles. That’s where you’ll find the best nightlife but don’t worry, the areas are big enough to get away from the party if you need some sleep.
- Price – By backpacking standards, Medellin is a bit on the pricey side. Your Southeast Asian shoe-string budget might not get you quite as far in South America, but it’s still much cheaper than travelling in the USA, Western Europe, and Japan. You can still find a meal for $2-3 and local beers for $2-3 in a bar. As far as hostels go, you can still find beds for as low as $8 per night in the best hostels in Medellin.
- Amenities – Most of the best hostels in Medellin include breakfast or they have an equipped kitchen. Many of the reviews of these hostels mention hot water for the showers, which is hard to find elsewhere in Colombia, especially on the coast. With Medellin quickly becoming a digital nomad hotspot, strong wifi is super easy to find.
The Best Hostels in Medellin
These are 20 of the highest reviewed hostels in Medellin, broken down into categories to help you find the one that’s perfect for you. You’ll be able to travel to Medellin without worrying about your accommodation.
Best Overall Hostel in Medellin – Hostel Rango Boutique
- Free Breakfast
- Free Lockers
Hostel Rango Boutique has everything you could want in a hostel. There’s fast wifi from top to bottom, a free European style breakfast, plus they have a bar and a restaurant on site making it easy to meet new friends. Although the private rooms are a bit on the pricey side, you’ll definitely get your money’s worth, making it one of the best hostels in Medellin. Plus, it’s located in the heart of El Poblado – a top district in Medellin for eating, drinking, dancing, and socializing.
Best Hostel for Solo Travelers in Medellin – Purple Monkey Hostel
- Free Breakfast
- Lots of Activities
- Orthopedic Mattresses
Purple Monkey Hostel’s main focus is encouraging interaction between guests. Playing host to multiple weekly activities such as a pub crawl and free movie night on the rooftop terrace, you’re sure to meet like-minded travelers and forge long-lasting friendships. There’s a rooftop bar, two communal areas, a TV room, and a kitchen for you to cook your own meals. It’s certainly on of the best hostels in Colombia.
Best Cheap Hostel in Medellin – Hostal Casa Paraiso
- Quiet, Chill Hostel
With amazing decorations and comfy beds, this is one of the best cheap hostels in Medellin. There is a kitchen for you to cook your own meals, a cafe on site serving different coffees and local food, and although breakfast is not included, it’s very cheap. It’s located close to a metro station and a massive sports complex with swimming pools, tracks, and basketball courts.
Best Hostel for Couples in Medellin – Be Okay Hostel
- Breakfast and towels included
Be Okay Hostel was designed with comfort in mind. With bigger beds, amazing pillows, and individual reading lights you can be sure your stay will be as comfortable as possible. The rooftop terrace is a great place to mingle and meet other guests. Located in a quiet area near lots of delicious restaurants and bars, this is a great hostel for couples. It’s definitely one of the best hostels in Medellin for 2018.
Best Party Hostel in Medellin – Paisa City Hostel
- Free welcome drink
- Great location
The best party hostel in Medellin, you’ll find it difficult to leave and actually see the city! Australian owned, this hostel has pool tables, ping pong tables, X-Box 360, and Playstaion 4. They even have salsa lessons on offer. The hostel is located near the famous Carrera 70 with lots of bars and clubs where you can practice your new moves. As one reviewer wrote, “…I might not remember places I saw in Medellin but I definitely will remember the time I spent in Paisa Hostel. Best party hostel I have ever stayed at!!”
Best Digital Nomad Hostel in Medellin – Black Sheep Hostel Medellin
- Spanish school onsite
- Sunday roast
The owner of Black Sheep Hostel has done a ton of traveling so he’s designed his hostel with travelers in mind. He can help you book tours within Medellin as well as the rest of Colombia. The hostel hosts many activities on site, most notably the Sunday roast where they make a massive feast on the Argentinian style grill, creating a very social atmosphere. They have invested heavily in their internet with a fiber optic line running directly to the hostel and three different Internet Service Providers. This makes it the best hostel for digital nomads, especially those traveling solo.
Best Hostel in Medellin Near the Airport – Casa Mosaico
- Beautiful surroundings
- Free wifi
The Medellin international airport is quite far away from the city center – over an hour to be exact. Casa Mosaico is the only hostel located within 20 minutes. It’s a great place to stay if you have an early flight out. More of a boutique hotel, they have nice spa where you can get a massage and relax to end your Colombian travels. It’s also a great hotel for couples due to their romantic hosting plans.
More of the Best Hostels in Medellin
- Free breakfast
- Great location
Super clean hostel located very close to the metro station, Sugar Cane hostel is great for travelers who love to socialize but also like to sleep. The owners are very knowledgable about Medellin and can offer great advice. The rooftop terrace is a great place to chill out and enjoy a beer. They also have a BBQ every Sunday, making it one of the best hostels in Medellin.
- Free towels
- Privacy curtains in dorms
This styish and upscale hostel is beautifully decorated. Each floor represents a different region of Colombia from the jungle to the coast, each with a description meant to inspire and inform travelers. Each dorm bed has its own privacy curtain, fan, two plugs, and a light. Although breakfast isn’t included, there is a kitchen free for guests to use and there are many restaurants in the area.
- Rooftop plunge pool
- Pool table lounge
Daytime can be quite warm in the city so the plunge pool on the roof at Casa Kiwi Hostel makes it one of the top hostels in Medellin. It’s a great place to meet people as it’s very social but you won’t be kept up at night. The bar and cinema room are just the icing on the cake. This hostel comes highly recommended!
- Free towels
- No Breakfast
Althought this hostel isn’t located in one of the more popular areas for gringos, it’s still a prime location for exploring. The free Botanical Garden is right next door along with Parque Explora – the place all Paisas will encourage you to visit. For those that like to get in some good exercise while traveling, there is a nice gym nearby as well. Free lockers, wifi, and cheap prices make this a great cheap hostel in Medellin.
- Fexible check-in and check-out
Although breakfast isn’t included, there is a kitchen on site. The staff is regularly said to be the best and friendliest staff they’ve come across, helping them in any way they can – even teaching them some basic Spanish! Centrally located near Carrera 70 (one of the party streets) there is plenty of nightlife around. They have hammocks for you to treat your hangover or chill out with a good book.
- Washing machine for guests
- Fast wifi
Casa Albaka Floresta is a colorful, bohemian style home with good vibes. It’s super clean and has great wifi. Located in one of the oldest neighborhoods in Medellin, you get a really local experience. Thanks to its location near a metro stop, it’s easy and convenient to get elsewhere in the city. The hammocks in the back make it the perfect chill spot, making it one of the best hostels in Medellin.
- Free breakfast
- Great wifi
Ivy Hostel is a top hostel in Medellin as it’s located in the popular El Poblado district but far enough away from the party that you don’t feel like you’re in it. With a custom bar stocked with artensenal and local beer as well as wine from around the world, mingling with other travelers is quite easy and fun. This is also the hostel for coffee lovers. The owners of the hostel also own the popular Hija Mia Coffee Roasters with some of the best coffee in the city. They even have a “Backpacker Survival Kit” for sale that comes with an Aeropress and a bag of coffee!
- Free breakfast
- Great location
The Garden of Blues Hostal is perfect for travelers who love culture, food, and nightlife. There’s a very social atmosphere, making it easy to meet new people. Thanks to their strong wifi connection, this is also a great place for digital nomads to get some work done. Plus, you’re just around the corner from some of the best cafes and coworking spaces in the city. With a beautiful garden to chill out in and a delicious, free breakfast, you’ll be sure to enjoy your time in Medellin.
- Communal kitchen
- Free lockers
This is a perfectly located hostel for football fans as it’s only a short walk from the stadium. There are also tons of cheap, local restaurants in the area. You’ll also find a huge supermarket nearby with everything you need if you would rather cook in the fully-stocked communal kitchen. The staff are extremely helpful and ready to answer whatever questions you may have about tours, onward, travel, or even finding an ATM.
- Free breakfast
- Rooftop terrace
Centrally located just between the metro stop and the party area of Parque Lleras, El Alternativo is a popular Medellin backpackers hostel. It’s a great hostel for vegetarians as it’s just down the street from an amazing vegetarian resturant called Verdeo. Although the showers don’t get the best reviews, the chilled out vibe and friendly staff make up for it.
- Free towels
Unfortunately, breakfast isn’t included at La Playa but they have an attached cafe making really yummy stuff including chicken and waffles! They have both private and shared rooms for travelers “who want to be free like the sea.” They have a rooftop bar serving up all kinds of drinks but they close at midnight. No worries, just head across the street to the Happy Buddha and party on! You’ll be able to sleep with your own fan when you return.
- Make your own pancake breakfast included
- Hot showers
One of the best hostels in Medellin, Arcadia Hostel has some great community activities such as free salsa lessons every Friday night and a free Greek-style BBQ every Sunday. They have a vibe is described as something between a party hostel and a quiet one. There’s a TV room if you just want to veg out as well as an outdoor area where you can make new friends over a beer. The staff has been described as super helpful. One staff member was even described as a great catch for the single ladies!
- Free breakfast
BlackPine is a great place for travelers who just want to chill out in a hammock with a book after a day of exploring. It’s location near a metro station makes it easy to explore the entire city. Breakfast is included and they have a kitchen for guests to use. You’ll be able to save some money by cooking for yourself. The nearby supermarket has everything you’ll need.
Conclusion to the Best Hostels in Medellin
Get ready, because Medellin is a wild and exciting ride. Remember, while Colombia as a whole is getting safer, it’s always best to book accommodation in areas that are popular with tourists. That’s why my number one recommendation is Hostel Rango Boutique…
Hopefully, with the help of this article, you’ll find the best hostels in Medellin, so you can focus on the whole reason we do what we do – experiencing a new place and its culture!
What do you think? Are these the best hostels in Medellin? Let me know in the comments if you know of some others that should be included!
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Need More Inspiration?
- Ultimate Backpacking Colombia Travel Guide
- Panama to Colombia via San Blas Islands
- Things to do in Medellin
- Trekking to Ciudad Perdida, The Lost City of Colombia
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