20 AMAZING Hostels in Panama (2020 • Insider Guide!)

 
With epic beaches and world-class nightlife, it's hard to have a bad time in Panama City! So we made this list of the 20 best hostels in Panama City as stress free as possible so you can book a hostel that suits your travel style. And the best hostels in Panama City are...

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With epic beaches close by and great nightlife year round, Panama City is becoming one of the biggest up-and-coming backpacker cities not only in Central America but in the world.

Which is why we published this Insider Guide to the best hostels in Panama City, Panama. Panama city has dozens of hostels, and we put together this list of make it as easy for you as possible.

We’ve taken the highest reviewed hostels and organized them into different categories, so you can easily identify which is the best for your particular travel needs, and you can book your hostel quickly!

Let’s dive into the 20 best hostels in Panama City, Panama.

 

Quick answer: the best hostels in Panama City

 


Best Hostels in Panama City

 

The 20 Best Hostels in Panama City

Our list of the best hostels in Panama City, Panama is designed to do one thing – help you book a hostel as quickly as possible!

Whether you are backpacking Panama alone or traveling solo or with a partner, whether you are looking to party or chill, or maybe you are just looking for the cheapest hostel in Panama City.

Make sure you know where you want to stay in Panama City before you book your accommodation. You should choose the location depending on the attractions you want to visit – don’t end up miles away from your preferred hotspots!

Whatever your travel-style, we have a hostel for you!

Psst! Heading to a hostel? Don’t forget to pack a padlock! It’s well worth having one so you can secure your locker and protect your stuff!

 

Overall Best Hostel in Panama City – El Machico

El Machico Best Hostels in Panama City

Pool, bar, cinema, sweet location and a solid price… how could El Machico not be our best hostel in Panama City?

– $$

– Free Breakfast

– Bar & Restaurant Onsite

– Swimming Pool

The overall best hostel in Panama City is El Machico, located in the most exclusive neighborhood of the city, Marbella. As the best hostel in Panama City in 2020, El Machico offers everything the modern backpacker could need, plus a swimming pool, outdoor terrace, and their own bar. The El Machico team are super clued up about travel in Panama and are always on hand to help. El Machico has a resident dog called Bruno who is always super excited to greet new arrivals at check-in. El Machico even has an open-air cinema which could make it the coolest hostel in Panama City too!

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Best Hostel for Solo Travellers in Panama City – Zebulo Hostel

Zebulo Best Hostels for Solo Traveller in Panama City

Super social vibes make Zebulo one of the best hostels in Panama City for Solo Travelers

– $$

– Free Breakfast

– Self Catering Facilities

– Outdoor Terrace

The best hostel for solo travellers in Panama City is Zebulo Hostel for there are just so many opportunities to break the ice and make new friends! Out in the garden and outdoor terrace, they have a micro badminton court, BBQ area and plenty of places to sit and chat. Zebulo is a top hostel in Panama City for solo travellers as they offer comfy and spacious dorm rooms complete with power sockets for each guest as well as lockers available for cents. The Zebulo staff are super friendly and are always more than happy to help in any way they can.

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Mamallena Backpackers

Mamallena Backpackers Best Hostels in Panama City

A cheap hostel in Panama City with great vibes, Mamallena is a great backpacker’s hostel in Panama City

– $

– Free Breakfast

– Self Catering Facilities

– Tours & Travel Desk

Mamallena Backpackers is an ideal youth hostel in Panama City for solo travellers on a tight budget. This small, intimate hostel is friendly, welcoming and super chilled. The Mamallena team offer travellers use of their great guest kitchen and you’re allowed to bring your own booze too, saving you that bit more money to spend on exploring Panama City. As a highly recommended hostel in Panama City Mamellena has the best of both worlds, a party vibe when its called for and chilled out the rest of the time. Perfect for introvert solo travellers looking to push themselves!

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Best Party Hostel in Panama City – Hostel Villa Vento Surf

Hostel Villa Vento Surf Best Party Hostel in Panama City

Cheap drinks + emapanadas + pool all open late = Hostel Villa Vento Surf is the best party hostel in Panama City, Panama

– $$

– Free Breakfast

– Bar & Cafe Onsite

– Swimming Pool

Choosing the best party hostel in Panama City was easy, of course, it’s Hostel Villa Vento Surf. Their Makanao Cafe team whip up a mean (and cheap!) selection of cocktails each night and serve up kick-ass empanadas until midnight daily. If you’re looking for a chilled out hostel where drinking is the ‘done thing’ then Villa Vento Surf is for you. The combination of their swimming pool, perfect backpacker bar and bright graffitied walls makes Villa Vento Surf the second coolest hostel in Panama City too.

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Best Cheap Hostel in Panama City – Hostel Danicole

Hostel Danicole Best Cheap Hostels in Panama City

Hostel Danicole has the lowest dorm rates in the city, making it our pick for best budget/cheap hostel in Panama City

– $

– Self Catering Facilities

– Fitness Centre

– Laundry Facilities

The best cheap hostel in Panama City is Hostel Danicole as they offer the cheapest dorm rates in all of the city. As the best budget hostel in Panama City, Danicole hasn’t skimped on service or cleanliness. Although the dorm rooms are basic they are more than ample for a traveller who is keen to get out exploring and just needs a place to crash. Danicole has a ‘fitness centre’ which consists of a punching bag and a few dumbells but defo enough to get a good training session in! They have a ping-pong and pool table too.

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Mochila & Art Hostel

Mochilla & Art Hostal Best Hostels in Panama City

Basic but efficient, Mochilla & Art Hostal is a top budget/cheap hostel in Panama City

– $

– Free Breakfast

– Free Parking

– Laundry Facilities

As a top budget hostel in Panama City, Mochila & Art Hostel is basic but bang on. With a good selection of dorm rooms in a clean and bright hostel building, as cheap and cheerful hostels go Mochila is on the money. Their dorm rooms have both fans and A/C to suit everyone’s preference. Although Mochila doesn’t have a guest kitchen they are in a great neighbourhood for foodies! Within a short walk of the front door, you’ll find Chinese, Italian and local restaurants serving up a decent feed for a few dollars a pop.

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Best Hostel for Couples in Panama City – Magnolia Inn

Magnolia Inn Best Hostels for Couple in Panama City

Awesome for all types of travelers, Magnolia Inn is especially great for couples

– $$

– Self Catering Facilities

– Outdoor Terrace

– Luggage Storage

The best hostel for couples in Panama City is Magnolia Inn. For couples seeking a cute and cosy private room while being able to mix and mingle with fellow backpackers while in Panama City, Magnolia Inn is the ideal place. Located in the heart of Casco Viejo Magnolia Inn is a highly recommended hostel in Panama City for their hostel is bright, clean and housed in a charming, restored French colonial mansion. The private rooms at Magnolia Inn get booked up quickly so be sure to snap ’em up fast!

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Best Hostel for Digital Nomads in Panama City – Hostal Casa Areka

Hostal Casa Areka Best Hostel for Digital Nomads in Panama City

While no substitute for a co-working space, Hostal Casa Areka is a great hostel for all travelers, but has a bit of room for Digital Nomads to get some work done

– $$

– Free Breakfast

– Bar Onsite

– Swimming Pool

The best hostel for digital nomads in Panama City is Hostal Casa Areka, particularly for digital nomads who have got the work-life balance sussed out! Casa Areka offers travellers a decent breakfast and a reliable internet connection in their nightly dorm rate. If you fancy working while dangling your feet in the pool, you sure can! If you need a little quiet space to work in there is a cosy lounge area perfect for working in while your hostel mates are off exploring. Casa Areka is a brilliant Panama City backpackers hostel for those working on the road.

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Luna’s Castle Hostel

Lunas Castle Best Hostels in Panama City

– $$

– Free Breakfast

– Bar Onsite

– Self Catering Facilities

Proclaiming to be the best hostel in Panama City bar none, Luna’s Castle is certainly up there and deserving of its spot on the shortlist! Luna’s Castle offers a cracking breakfast of pancakes and coffee, the perfect way to get fuelled up and ready to explore. Their bar, called the Relic, is a true backpackers bar with truly backpacker friendly drinks prices. There are hammocks and sofas throughout the hostel and a solid WiFi connection too, making Luna’s a great hangout for digital nomads. The Luna’s team are super lovely!

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The Best Travel Backpack?!

Pssssst! Not picked the perfect travel backpack yet? The Broke Backpacker team has tried out over thirty backpacks this year! Our favourite carry on backpack is the Nomatic Travel Bag.

Read our full review!

 

More Best Hostels in Panama City

Not quite happy with the selection yet? Don’t worry, we’ve got even more coming your way!

Hostel Siriri

Hostel Siriri Best Hostels in Panama City

– $

– Free Breakfast

– Bar & Cafe Onsite

– Swimming Pool

Hostel Siriri is a top hostel in Panama City, especially for those who are in town to chill out and just soak up the vibes of Central America. Hostel Siriri is one of those hostels that make you forget there is an outside world to explore, in a good way! With their own bar and cafe, as well as swimming pool with chill-out terrace, you could spend days upon days just hanging out at Siriri. Isn’t that what we’re all looking for in a Panama City backpackers hostel? Siriri is a great hostel to book if you need a few days R&R!

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Sophia’s Hostel

Sophias Best Hostels in Panama City

– $

– Free Breakfast

– Cafe Onsite

– Self Catering Facilities

Sophia’s Hostel is a cracking little youth hostel in Panama City. Offering dead cheap dorm rooms, a free breakfast and free WiFi, Sophia’s team have created an on-point hostel vibe loved by all who visit. The Parque Recreativo Omar Torrijos, the Old Harbour and Hard Rock Cafe are all within a 5-minute walk of Sophia’s Hostel. The team are always around to help give you directions or local insights on how to make the most of every moment of your time in Panama City.

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Los Mostros

Los Mostros Best Hostels in Panama City

– $$

– Free Breakfast

– Bar & Cafe Onsite

– Swimming Pool

Back in 2014, Los Mostros was voted as the best hostel in Panama City, in fact, all of Panama and they haven’t let their high standards slip since. Los Mostros is one of the coolest hostels in Panama City as they have their own backpacker bar and swimming pool. Los Mostros is the best hostel in Panama City close to the airport, they’re only a 10-minute drive away. If you’re looking for a hostel to hang out in before you fly Los Mostros is the place for you, the team can help arrange an airport transfer for you.

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Hospedaje Casco Viejo

Hospedaje Casco Viejo Best Hostels in Panama City

– $

– Cafe Onsite

– Self Catering Facilities

– Laundry Facilities

Hospedaje Casco Viejo is a brilliant budget hostel in Panama City, offering cheap dorm beds throughout the year. Hospedaje Casco Viejo has a great rooftop terrace, perfect for sunbathing, complete with comfy sun loungers too. Museum of Colonial Religious Art, the Panama Canal Museum and the Presidential Palace are all within walking distance of Hospedaje Casco Viejo. If you’re trying to stick to the food budget be sure to pick up some veggies at the corner store and cook up and storm in the guest kitchen.

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Loco Coco Loco

Loco Coco Loco Best Hostels in Panama City

– $$

– Free Breakfast

– Bar & Cafe Onsite

– Self Catering Facilities

Loco Coco Loco is a top hostel in Panama City, offering guests the chance to hang out, meet and mingle in their own bar complete with a pool table. The team are super helpful and multilingual, they can converse in English, Spanish, French and Hebrew! They always go above and beyond for their guests so if you need anything don’t be shy, just holla! Loco Coco Loco is a classic Panama City backpackers hostel with an on-point hostel vibe for a great price.

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Casa MonaLisa

Casa MonalLisa PTY Best Hostels in Panama City

– $$

– Free Breakfast

– Cafe Onsite

– Self Catering Facilities

Casa MonaLisa is a highly recommended hostel in Panama City and for good reason! The hard-working team at Casa MonaLisa have created the perfect vibe in their hostel. Backpackers instantly feel at ease when they check-in to Casa MonaLisa. In the guest kitchen you’re welcome to refill your bottle from their water cooler and filter for free; helping your budget and the planet, no need to buy plastic bottles when you stay here. Cinta Costera is just around the corner and is a great, little-hidden gem in Panama City.

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Want to save the world and stay hydrated? Single-use plastic bottles are a huge threat to the oceans and planet – Be a part of the solution and invest in a filter water bottle.

The GRAYL GEOPRESS water bottle is the ONLY all-in-one filter water bottle setup you’ll need. We use it on our own adventures to purify often nasty looking water and it does a beautiful job – we have yet to get sick! This is what the whole Broke Backpacker team uses- in mountains, cities, jungles – we love it – it’s a total game changer

 

The Panama Hat

The Panama Hat Best Hostels in Panama

– $$

– Bar & Cafe Onsite

– Self Catering Facilities

– Tours & Travel Desk

The Panama Hat is a top hostel in Panama City for backpackers of all kinds. They have their own bar and cafe where they serve a mean pizza and an ice cold beer. This is the perfect place to hang out and get chatting with your fellow backpackers, share a pizza and perhaps a beer or two. The Panama Hat is a cute and cosy hostel who greet every guest like an old friend. The Panama Hat offers private dorm rooms, ideal for groups of friends travelling together who want a bit of space to themselves.

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Hostal La Dolce Vita

Hostal La Dolce Vita Best Hostels in Panama City

– $

– Free Breakfast

– Self Catering Facilities

– Laundry Facilities

Hostal La Dolce Vita is the preference for many long-term visitors to Panama City. Hostal La Dolce Vita is a Panama City backpackers hostel that caters for travellers who are in town for a long time and who aren’t necessarily up for a party every night. This is a quiet hostel with basic dorms and a fully equipped guest kitchen. There is free WiFi throughout the building and Hostal La Dolce Vita has a big back garden with patio and plenty of space to workout should you wish.

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Dianes Hostel

Dianes Hostal Best Hostels in Panama City

– $$

– Free Breakfast

– Self Catering Facilities

– Laundry Facilities

Dianes Hostel is a little-known youth hostel in Panama City that ticks all the boxes. Offering comfy bunk beds in the dorm rooms and a few private doubles too Dianes Hostel has something for everyone. The free breakfast is basic but if you’re on a super tight backpacker’s budget you can’t turn down a free feed! Dianes Hostel is on the east side of Panama City near the Park Mar and Panama Viejo, the staff have limited English but always try their best to help give directions and make travel arrangements for their guests.

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Hostal Casa Nativa

Hostel Casa Nativa Best Hostels in Panama City

– $

– Self Catering Facilities

– Laundry Facilities

– Air Conditioning

Casa Nativa is one of the best budget hostels in Panama City offering guests everything they could ask for from a budget hostel. They have a range of dorm rooms sleeping up to 10 people at a time. Casa Nativa has a lovely little garden, lush, green and full of life. It’s the perfect place to find a shady spot to sit in and enjoy a book or catching up on your travel diary. Casa Nativa is just 5-miniutes walk from Main Bus Terminal Albrook making it super convenient for your departure…not that you want to think about that before you’ve arrived!

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Paradise Hostel

Paradise Best Hostels in Panama City

– $$

– Free Breakfast

– Bar & Cafe Onsite

– Swimming Pool

Paradise is a highly recommended hostel in Panama City and it’s not hard to see why. With their own gated compound featuring the main mansion building, cafe and bar, as well as a guest swimming pool, Paradise is deserving of its name! Parque Recreativo Omar Torrijos and the bay of Panama are easily reachable from Paradise Hostel and of course, the staff will be more than happy to give you directions. The free breakfast is basic but helps you save a few Balboa each morning.

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What to Pack for your Panama City Hostel

Pants, socks, underwear… Here are some other items you might not have thought to pack.

 

Powerbank1. Power Bank: Probably one of the most important travel accessories – a decent power bank. Charging your phone up to 5 times in a row, the Anker Power Bank is a true lifesaver on long adventures or bus rides. Slick looking, handy and not too big, it easily fits in even the smallest travel bag or your pocket. Charge 2 devices at the same time with the double USB port.

 

Active Roots Water Bottle2. Active Roots Water Bottle: Hostels are increasingly meeting backpackers’ demands for potable (drinkable) water. Now is better than ever to start traveling with a reusable water bottle! Aside from cutting down single-use plastic, The Active Roots stainless steel water bottle will also keep your favorite beverage hot or cold all day long and it’s sized perfectly to fit an entire bottle of wine. ‘Nuff said.

 

Noise Cancelling Earbuds3. Noise-Cancelling Earbuds: You’ll have some pretty sorry roommates – it happens from time to time. These noise-canceling earbuds help mitigate the damage. The comfortable and ergonomic design won’t hurt your ears while sleeping no matter how long you keep them in. Increase the quality of your sleep by listening to some relaxing music at night or just enjoy the silence.

 

Universal Adapter4. Universal Travel Adapter: Not every country has the same electrical plug style, so carry along a universal travel adapter. You’ll want one that covers varying voltage levels, has protection from power surges, a fried laptop is not fun, and enough ports so you don’t have to spend all day individually charging your devices.

 

best toiletry bag for one bag travel5. Active Roots Toiletry Bag: Keep your bath-and-beauty items organized and in the right place with this water-resistant bag. With large compartments, mesh and enclosed clear sections, you can fit everything you might need inside. Hang it up or let it stand on its own – this bag is a must-have for dorm-lifers.

 

Travel Pillow6. 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.

 

Why you should travel to Panama City

It’s hard to have a bad time in Panama City, and with the help of this guide, you’ll be able to quickly book a hostel in Panama City and focus on what matters – partying and working on your tan!

So which of the best hostels in Panama City are you going to book? The best party hostel in Panama City? Or how about the best hostel for solo travelers in Panama City?

If you still can’t pick, we recommend booking at El Machico. With a great location and an on site bar, swimming pool and open aired theatre, it’s hard to beat it!

El Machico Best Hostels in Panama City

 
And don’t forget to sort your travel insurance before heading to Panama City! 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, our favorite travel insurance provider.

Getting an estimate from World Nomads is simple – just click the button or image below, fill out the necessary info, and you’re on your way!

world nomads insurance banner 

More Epic Hostels in Panama and Central America

Hopefully by now you’ve found the perfect hostel for your upcoming trip to Panama City.

Planning an epic trip all across Panama or even Central America itself?

Don’t worry – we’ve got you covered!

For more cool hostel guides around Central America, check out:

 

Over to you

By now I hope our epic guide to the best hostels in Panama City has helped you choose the perfect hostel for your adventure!

If you think we’ve missed anything or have any further thoughts, hit us up in the comments!

Yay for transparency! Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. This means that if you book your accommodation through the site, The Broke Backpacker will earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. Your support helps keep the site going.


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With epic beaches and world-class nightlife, it's hard to have a bad time in Panama City! So we made this list of the 20 best hostels in Panama City as stress free as possible so you can book a hostel that suits your travel style. And the best hostels in Panama City are...

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