There are too many damn hostels around the world! After devouring an entire thesis worth of hostel reviews, recommendations, listings, and photos of backpackers doing yoga, that’s the only logical conclusion I could reach. Well, that and this bangin’ list of the best hostels in the world!

Let’s be honest – not even the most experienced backpacking vagabond could stay at all of the world’s best hostels. What about a group of experienced backpacking vagabonds? 

Well then, we may just be in with a chance!

The Broke Backpacker team have lovingly offered you the secrets behind some of the most spectacular travel experiences. Seriously – no stone was left unturned in the search for these worldwide hostel starlets. 

We know what separates the good from the bad. And when a hostel turns out to be EXTRAORDINARY – it makes this list of the best hostels on the interweb. Party hostels, unique hostels, beach hostels, and hostels hiding at the furthest corners of the planet, it’s all here.

The best recommendations always come from personal experience. From real travellers to real travellers via real travellers (us!), it’s time to go hostelling around the world.

cebu philippines nacho hostel friends
Photo: @joemiddlehurst

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Defining the “Best” in “Best Hostels in the World”

Over the years, The Broke Backpacker team has stayed in its fair share of hostels around the world. We joined forces to put this one together for you — enjoy! 🙂

Hostels are a backpacker’s secret weapon. They’re your million-dollar getaway ticket into the wonderful world of budget-friendly travel.

These promised grounds hold the key to cheaper adventuring through the means of shared living spaces. And despite some being stinkier than others, there is no life quite like the hostel life

But what makes a hostel good?

The value for money, a nice common area, yummy breakfast — a good hostel is a place you recommend to a traveller at your next destination.

But a ‘best hostel’? A ‘best hostel’ is a second home. It’s a place you can’t stop talking about, even once you’re well and truly moved on abroad.

“Oh, dude, you’re going to Sri Lanka? I just know the most amazing hostel—the best I’ve ever stayed at. You have to go!”

The best hostels in the world are sticky places. They’re places you book for a few nights and end up staying for a few weeks.

Forget your travel plans (if you even had any). We’re here to stay.

Insider tip: Finding this kind of hostel is a hell of a lot easier through Hostelworld. You have endless options to choose from, in almost every hidden corner of the world.

Audy and Will at Hobbiton in New Zealand
Come on, we’re going on an adventure to find the world’s best hostels!
Photo: @willhatton__

Awesome hostels draw in awesome people, so it’s not unusual to find a crew of travel buddies. That’s the natural order of things.

But, ultimately, anything can make the best hostel… as long as you vibe with it. Insane throwdowns, unbeatable brews from the espresso machine, a comfy-ass bed, staff that make you feel like family or even just the perfect sky to watch.

As long as it feels like home. As long as you don’t want to leave.

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    The Best Hostels in Europe

    Europe has a mad hostelling scene! Long regarded as one of the two major regions in the world for novices’ first backpacking adventure, Europe’s backpacker pads are some of the nicest hostels in the world for the proverbial nomadic newbie.

    Tight facilities, high bed turnover, and extra attention to safety and sanitary practices are just some of the standards to expect in Europe. Endless, kinda unnecessary, cool extras come in troves.

    While there are also certainly independent and more family-style guesthouse-hostels, a lot of widespread hostel chains dominate Europe’s major destinations.

    Of course, Europe is big, and the standard venture hostelling through the Western locales is always going to present a much different experience to the best hostels in Eastern Europe, the Balkans, and beyond. Things get cheaper and cheekier, so you know I just gotta throw a tasty spread at you!

    1. LX Hostel – Best Hostel in Lisbon, Portugal

    What’s to love:

    LX Hostel

    • Free sangria!!
    • A rooftop bar – to enjoy said sangria
    • Immaculate vibes

    After three months of backpacking Portugal, I stayed at The LX Hostel. I only booked one night because I planned on checking out a few different hostels in Lisbon, but ended up extending my stay because of how much I loved it! (The typical backpacker love story)

    Located in the heart of the LX district, you won’t be bored during your stay. The trains and buses are within walking distance, making it easy to get anywhere in the city. 

    photo of Amanda Draper, member of The Broke Backpacker team
    Recommended by Amanda

    From the minute I arrived, I was greeted by smiley faces and warm welcomes already giving me a sigh of relief that I made a good choice by booking this stay.

    On theme with the rooftop bar that is a part of the hostel, they even offered me a welcome shot and a free sangria upon check-in. They started off strong: a GOOD first impression!

    This time around, I brought a friend along to stay at this Lisbon hostel – and it was his first time EVER staying at a hostel. He was definitely pampered with a very comfortable stay and has high expectations for the rest of his hostel days.

    2. Flying Pig Beach – Best Hostel in Amsterdam, The Netherlands

    What’s to love:
    Best Hostel in Amsterdam, The Netherlands - Flying Pig Beach
    I mean, you didn’t visit Amsterdam for culture and history, right?
    • The best chain of party hostels in Amsterdam.
    • Three different offerings; three different flavours.
    • Amazing beach hostel vibes

    This famous hostel always comes top of the best party hostels in Europe is the Flying Pig Chain in Amsterdam. With three legendary options to choose from, they’ve housed all kinds of backpackers for years. 

    1. Flying Pig Downtown Hostel is the biggest and, thus, most likely to go bonkers.
    2. Flying Pig Uptown Hostel is the smaller and homier choice.
    3. Flying Pig Beach Hostel is quite far outta town – right by the beach – but worth the trip!

    Although they have a party hostel label, and they do indeed also have an amazing party vibe, that wasn’t what I went for. Nor did I have to partake in the party to have one of the best experiences of my life. 

    photo of Laura Hall, member of The Broke Backpacker team
    Recommended by Laura

    I walked through the doors as a solo backpacker and didn’t stay that way for more than a couple of minutes. Actually, I met more people at these hostels who are still in my life today than anywhere else in the world. 

    Something about the walls of these hostels holds a special type of energy that encourages people to be their best selves. For that, I’ll always consider this one of my favourite hostels around the world!

    3. Freeborn Hostel – Best Hostel in Timisoara, Romania

    What’s to love:
    Best Hostel in Timisoara, Romania - Freeborn Hostel
    Some homes just happen to be a hostel.
    • Family vibes through-and-through.
    • Homemade pálinka is served.
    • Car rental is available.

    I have a dream of travelling to Romania, and part of that stems from my friend’s insistence that I one day stay at Freeborn Hostel. It’s neither a hippy haven, a grunge palace, nor a tightly wound Western hostel chain: it’s a home.

    Raul is the owner-in-question who dishes out shots of pálinka and wipes the floor with guests in Mario Kart (post-pálinka inebriation). He, his mother, and his family go above-and-beyond the call of duty to make this hostel a home (and to make their home a hostel).

    The additional bonus of being in Romania is that you’re getting about as cheap and off-beat as backpacking in Europe can be.

    Something about this is way earthier and more authentic to me than a big fancy hostel could ever be. A man with a dream to create a space and home for travellers tucked away in a city in Western Romania where almost no one goes. You had me at Mario Kart.

    Keep reading?

    4. War Hostel – Best Hostels in Sarajevo, Bosnia, and Herzegovina

    What’s to love:
    Best Hostels in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina - War Hostel
    And now for something completely different.
    • A truly unique experience.
    • And more rewarding than a pub crawl.
    • The owners are dedicated to the cause.

    Actually, I heard of this hostel in a documentary first and thought it was the most unique hostel in the world! Is it a comfortable stay for the night? Hell no!

    For anyone who doesn’t know the sobering history of the Yugoslav Wars and the dissolution of Yugoslavia, this is one of the most poignant homages you will encounter.

    It’s a real-life dedication constructed by survivors of the war for backpackers to experience the soundscape, lifestyle, and conditions people were subject to in one of the most barbaric conflicts in modern Western history.

    There’s a two-night-minimum stay as it’s the owner’s belief that this is necessary to receive the full level of insight from the experience.

    Traveller reviews say that it’s neither overwhelmingly dark nor is it tacky. However, it is rewarding, and it is one of the best hostels in the world for what it seeks to (and does) accomplish.

    The beds suck, the interior decor is depressing, there’s no WiFi… and that’s the whole point.

    Keep reading?
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    The Best Hostels in Southeast Asia

    Number two of the beginner backpacking regions, Southeast Asia also attracts travellers of the young, bright-eyed, and yet-to-be-jaded variety. Parties are endless and really the main focus for people, along with clearing their chakras.

    Hostels in Southeast Asia tend to have somewhat more basic amenities and services than their European counterparts, although that largely depends on where you are (eg. Singapore vs. Thailand vs. Laos).

    While you generally won’t find the cheapest hostels in the world there anymore (backpacking in Southeast Asia simply isn’t as low-cost as it used to be), you will find some of the best value ones.

    5. Tribal Hostel – Best Hostel in Bali, Indonesia

    What’s to love:
    Networking or Digital Nomad-ing – all possible at Tribal!
    • The best fucking hostel the world has ever seen.
    • A heaven for Digital Nomads!
    • MASSIVE Coworking Area and Infinity Pool
    photo of Will Hatton on a motorbike, founder of The Broke Backpacker site
    Recommended by The Broke Backpacker

    Tribal Hostel – Bali’s first purpose-built co-working hostel and perhaps the greatest hostel in the world!

    An ideal hub for digital nomads and backpackers, this very special hostel is a warm hug of hospitality and a high-five of adventure, all wrapped in one package.

    What is Tribal Hostel (other than the brainchild and passion project of the world’s most renowned 21st-century swashbuckler)?

    It’s the hostel every digital nomad in Bali has fantasized about during those endless months on the road. A spot that effortlessly combines all the essentials of a top-notch hostel into one gloriously impossible-to-leave bubble.

    A workspace for the remote workers, a playground for the backpackers, a den for the dirtbags, and a home for every vagrant and windswept traveller that floated in.

    Come on down to visit the TREMENDOUSLY HUGE co-working space, or jump in our gigantic pool for a refreshing dip accompanied by one of our iconic Tribal Tonics (the best signature cocktails you’ve ever had in a hostel – I guarantee you that!), to break up the day’s hustle, brainstorming, work, and board games!?

    6. Get Hi Hostel – Best Hostel in Chiang Rai, Thailand

    What’s to love:

    Get Hi Hostel, Chiang Rai Thailand

    • Free breakfast every morning (AND it is delicious)
    • Comfortable beds WITH curtains
    • Really fast Wi-Fi in all areas of the hostel (For digital nomads in Thailand)

    Mmm, I easily could have filled this list with Thailand’s insane hostels. I considered a party hostel in Koh Phangan, but this is way cooler! It easily makes the top 10 hostels in the world.

    Get Hi Hostel is a small hostel in Chiang Rai owned by an AMAZING Thai woman (First) and an American who fell in love and never left Thailand (Joe). When you first walk into the hostel, you will notice sticky notes everywhere and Polaroids of people who came and quite literally never wanted to leave. 

    photo of Amanda Draper, member of The Broke Backpacker team
    Recommended by Amanda

    This is a social hostel but not the kind that prides itself on “SEX, DRUGS, AND FREE BEER” like some party hostels in Bangkok. This is a more chilled version. Honestly, way more chill lol.

    Get Hi Hostel prefers karaoke nights and family dinners. We went on a few bar crawls during my stay but these bars played reggae music, were full of locals, and had pool tables for entertainment.

    However, if you are more into the bar scene, they can show you some of the most lively party scenes in Thailand! No joke.

    One day I was sitting at a table with strangers, the next we were dancing on top of tables in a random bar in Chiang Rai. Pretty cool, right?

    7. Green Mountain Homestay – Best Hostels in Ninh Binh, Vietnam

    What’s to love:
    Best Hostels in Ninh Binh, Vietnam - Green Mountain Homestay
    Sweet mama bojama.
    • Oh, my eyes, it’s too pretty!
    • Exceptional hospitality.
    • Kickass breakfast with even better coffee to accompany.

    Holy hell this place is gobsmacking—easily one of the most beautiful hostels in the world! Just look at it!

    Let’s list just exactly what here is the tits:

    • Breakfast is on point.
    • Coffee is equally on-point.
    • The beds are heavenly.
    • The views! (I’ll take the world’s best mountain hostel over the world’s best beach hostel any day.)
    • Again… that lushness!

    Seriously, I don’t know how this place flew under my radar for so long. It’s been winning a lot of awards lately putting itself ahead of Vietnam’s other amazing hostels, so I suppose you should get your ass over there now before it blows up any more! It’s definitely in a very beautiful area of Vietnam to explore, but’s let be honest…

    If you’re staying somewhere this pretty, why ever leave?

    Keep reading?

    The Best Hostels in Asia

    Well, Asia is big! It’s also hella expansive—there really ain’t that many cultural similarities between Japan and Lebanon.

    Once you step outta Southeast Asia, the well-denoted backpacking trail kinda evaporates (except, arguably, in parts of South Asia).

    Some countries have a tight-knit Europe-inspired hostelling scene some have next-to-nothing (eg. all of Central Asia), and some places are so cheap that you may as well just haggle a private room (eg. hostels in India).

    travelers sitting on charpois in a blue veranda while relaxing at one of the best hostels in the world
    What a damn good hostel in Asia looks like!

    Similarly, the vibe and standards of hostels in Asia vary greatly depending on where you are. From dingy squalors to pimped-put boutiques and even a splattering of some sustainable eco hostels, there’s a lot on display.

    However, there are some true hidden gems out there too. Asia attracts some extremely intrepid backpackers of the strangest kind, and the best hostels in the world…?

    They pull in the best people.

    8. Yangshuo Sudder Street Guesthouse – Best Hostel in China

    What’s to love:

    Sudder street hostel in Yangshuo, a view of the outdoor pool and garden with mountains in the background.

    • It’s got a freaking swimming pool!
    • Comfortable pod beds with curtains
    • Outdoor garden and terrace with an amazing view

    Up until this point, my experiences with Chinese hostels had left something to be desired, let’s put it that way! But a stay at Yangshuo Sudder Street Guesthouse still remains the most incredible hostel experience I have had to this day.

    Set in the picturesque mountain town of Yangshuo the Sudder Street Guesthouse offers the most insane views possible from a hostel dorm room, let alone the mind-blowing private rooms! 

    photo of Nic Hilditch-Short, member of The Broke Backpacker team
    Recommended by Nic

    The hostel itself features custom-built bunk beds with curtains, powerpoints and personal lights. Plus, the mattresses themselves are next-level comfortable.

    There are some great social spaces in Sudder Street Guesthouse including a movie room with a wood burner, a Fussball table as well as a massive fully equipt kitchen. 

    Now for the best part, the swimming pool! That’s right, this hostel has a swimming pool in the back garden with views of the mountains.

    If you want to explore further Yangshuo Sudder Street Guesthouse offers bicycle and electric moped hire as well as organising some great tours and transport. 

    9. Tomorrowland Hostel – Best Hostel in Ella, Sri Lanka

    What’s to love:

    • A place to be creative and feel at home.
    • With the best family vibes.
    • Probably doggos.

    Tomorrowland remains serene and perfect perched above the cloud forests of Sri Lanka’s lush hill country. It’s been a fair few years since a Broke Backpacker team member has hiked up that height – yet this place still makes the list.

    photo of Tomás Monteiro, member of The Broke Backpacker team
    Recommended by Tomás

    I visited many cool hostels in Sri Lanka, but in 2019 – before all that shit went down – none captured my heart like Tomorrowland. You ascend the mountain greeted by a painted tripper’s den.

    Inside the open corridor-less space, a carrom board takes centre stage. Doobies are never far away, neither is a cuddle with a furry friend, and the family dinners will comatose (and, once, k-holing).

    The management has changed hands over the years, yet the walls still draw amazing travellers in.

    Tomorrowland: the sticky palace on the mountain. Enter, forget your itinerary, and stay however long you stay.

    10. UNPLAN Shinjuku – Best Hostel in Tokyo, Japan

    What’s to love:
    Best Hostel in Tokyo, Japan - UNPLAN Shinjuku
    Plan… to unplan (#2deep4u).
    • In the heart of Tokyo.
    • With the classic Japanese attention to detail.
    • Swanky and modern.

    Look, pretty much all the hostels in Japan are going to be the nicest in the world, so I wouldn’t stress too much. Counter to the previous two features, this one is all about the amenities!

    It’s just damn sexy! It shouldn’t be a surprise that it’s consistently rated as the best hostel in Tokyo. It’s got all the modern trimmings you’d expect from a 21st-century backpacker accommodation smack-bang in the heart of metropolitan Tokyo. Pod-style dorm beds and swanky rooms in a ship run just as tight as any military maritime vessel.

    The staff know what’s up, and they keep everything sparkling clean. Between the bar, common areas, and the constant stream of people coming, going, meeting, and greeting, you’ll struggle not to have a kickass time.

    Truthfully, I just wanted to throw some of that Japanese finesse that the islands are so famous for at you. This is one of the world’s best youth hostels—modern in every sense—for all the reasons you would expect.

    Keep reading?

    11. Green House Hostel – Best Hostel in Central Asia

    What’s to love:

    Green House Hostel, Dushanbe Tajikistan

    • Perfect location
    • Feels like home
    • Filled with incredible, intrepid travelers. You won’t find any 18-year olds who get off on getting drunk in Phuket here!
    • Tons of cyclists + motorbikers – the owner can even order you any spare parts you need!
    photo of Samantha Shea, member of The Broke Backpacker team
    Recommended by Samantha

    The moment I stepped into the courtyard of Green House Hostel in Dushanbe, the capital of Tajikistan, I knew I had arrived somewhere special.

    The expansive courtyard was filled with touring bicycles, and half a dozen backpackers were chilling in the various seating areas.

    After checking in at the reception area (which is really just a cool and comfy living room of an old home!), I was even more amazed by our private room. Recently remodelled, everything looked sleek, modern and clean.

    Though the private rooms are for sure the best value you’ll find in the city, there are numerous dorms to choose from for a cheaper stay.

    The hostel also has a communal kitchen, a pay-to-use laundry machine (with ample places to dry your goods outside), and a super iconic “take what you need corner” where travellers leave all kinds of odds and ends they no longer want for others to make use of.

    It’s no surprise that Green House has stellar ratings – the owner is super helpful and will make sure you get any kind of transport or other assistance you may need.

    This place will always hold a special place in my heart as it is the sole reason why my trip to Tajikistan (which was supposed to be a hitchhiking journey) turned into an epic bikepacking adventure that remains the best thing I ever did.

    The hostel’s name is fitting because it feels like more than a hostel – I mean, it is set in an old house after all!

    Aside from the incredible courtyard that you’ll find people chilling out in day and night, there’s also a comfy living room with a TV and two couches. My room had a desk perfect for digital nomad-ing, and Wifi was excellent throughout 🙂

    There’s a corner store barely two minutes away with all the snacks you’d possibly need, along with a freshly baked non shop a few houses down. Walk a little further and you’ll reach the main road, where you’ll find numerous restaurants, grocery stores, and public transport!

    Keep reading?
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    The Best Hostels in Oceania

    Slingin’ a backpack over your shoulder and heading down to the bottom of the planet (or Oceania as we like to call it), is a big journey for many backpackers. Upon arrival, finding a decent place to rest your tired traveller head and meet new friends to explore with is CRUCIAL. 

    And, friends, I come bearing good news. The hostel scene down under is solid – especially if you’re heading to the two most popular countries… Australia and New Zealand. 

    Travellers before us have forged the path in these two countries and as a result, hostels are scattered all along the beaten tracks.

    From organised events and fancy amenities to EPIC views and cool shared spaces. The hostels here come at a high standard… and often a high price tag too.

    However, if you’re looking for a hostel in Fiji or another island in Oceania, the options are fewer and further between. However, there are still some bangers out there!

    So, let’s dive into the best of the best when it comes to hostels in Oceania. 

    12. Cool Bananas Backpackers – Best Hostel in Agnes Water, Queensland

    What’s to love:
    Are you a cool banana?
    • 3-minute walk to the beach 
    • Fully equipped kitchen with a barbecue 
    • Massive outdoor garden with hammocks

    On a glorious campervan trip along Australia’s East Coast, I stumbled upon this absolute gem of a backpackers hostel. Situated in the sleepy surfing twin towns of 1770 and Agnes Water, it sits right by the beach and offers the chill vibes you come to hang in Queensland for. 

    photo of Nic Hilditch-Short, member of The Broke Backpacker team
    Recommended by Nic

    Cool Bananas Backpackers offers a massive amount of social space from the huge living room with TVs, couches and computers to the large leafy garden with tables and hammocks.

    Not only that but there is also a large communal kitchen which is fully equipped with everything you’ll need to cook up a storm. 

    From here you can organise your place on the famous Gnarly Tours Surf Lessons and use the hostel as the perfect base for catching all the waves your heart could desire.

    If you’re arriving in a campervan, the hostel also has space where you can rent a spot, stay in your van and use all the facilities, pretty sweet!

    13. Adventure Queenstown Hostel – Best Hostel in Queenstown, New Zealand

    What’s to love:
    Best Hostel in Queenstown, New Zealand - Adventure Queenstown Hostel
    There’s an endless flow of new faces in Queenstown.
    • Pimped out kitchen!
    • Quiet yet in the heart of everything.
    • Perfect for the long-stayers.

    This is another of the top-rated hostels in the world—winner of no short number of awards—and it’s certainly the best hostel in Queenstown! That’s why I’m sending you here: for Queenstown.

    Queenstown is the biggest backpacking hub of New Zealand and its picturesque tourism and adventure capital. A snow-town in the winter months, an everything-else-town in the summer months, and a party town all year round.

    Adventure Queenstown Hostel is the best place to stay for the slow travellers who like to spend a season here.

    Decked out with bicycle parking, ski/snowboard storage, and an absolutely insane kitchen decked for cooking all manner of banquets, it’s easy to feel at home here for however long suits. It’s also located away from Queenstown popping bars meaning sleep comes easy between the rad adventures and mad parties.

    It’s one of the best hostels in the world located in one of the premier backpacker bubbles of the southern hemisphere. Failing that, I’d just drive an hour up the road to Wanaka. It’s way better.

    Keep reading?

    Best Hostels in North America

    Honestly, I thought North America’s hostel scene was kinda wack, and then I realised that I forgot that Mexico classifies as North America. Yay, Mexico!

    Canada and the USA’s backpacker hostels are yet to truly embrace the budget accommodation concept of the world hostelling scene.

    Major cities tend to have more options, but it’s nothing compared to Europe, Oz, and NZ. They definitely still bring the facilities a budget backpacker needs, but they’re way overpriced and travelling by hostel is extremely limited.

    However, you’ll still find some of the coolest hostels in the world in Mexico. As the gateway to Central and South America’s avid backpacking culture—and the most culturally vibrant country in North America—things get more adventurous there.

    14. Puerta Vieja Hostel – Best Hostel in North America (Chiapas, Mexico)

    What’s to love:

    Puerta Vieja Hostel

    • Free Dinner + Breakfast Everyday
    • Free Mojitos, Cocktails and MORE!
    • Crazy Parties and Atmosphere
    photo of Joe Middlehurst, member of The Broke Backpacker team
    Recommended by Joe

    Puerta Vieja Hostel could be the best hostel in North America. It’s certainly the best hostel I’ve ever stayed in. 

    I could not fathom how this place made any money. The price of a dorm bed was very cheap, yet they still gave you so much free stuff

    I have so many reasons why this is not only Mexico’s best hostel, but perhaps one of the world’s greatest. 

    This hostel was huge. It had the vibes of a school trip with all your friends.

    The social scene and atmosphere of the place were amazing. It was so busy, so active, and located in the heart of one of my favourite towns in Mexico – San Cristobal De Las Casas in Chiapas. This gorgeous, classic Mexican town and Puerta Vieja Hostel are a rite of passage for the waves of backpackers who are travelling between Mexico and Guatemala.

    HOSCARS Hostelworld Awards for Puerta Vieja Hostel
    In 2024, Puerta Vieja Hostel is finally getting its flowers! 

    There are so many things that I just HAVE to tell you about Puerta Vieja Hostel that I had to write a very big list. So, brace yourselves…

    • Free Breakfast (savoury, sweet, or vegan).
    • Free Dinner (meat, veggie, or vegan).
    • Free evening activities (free mojitos on Tuesdays, free cocktails on Fridays).
    • Mad parties with huge numbers of backpackers from all over the world (drunk on free alcohol).
    • Free mountain bikes.
    • Pizza oven night.
    • Volunteering opportunities.
    • Terrace with hammocks, campfire and bar.
    • Three common areas.
    • Comfy beds.
    • Cinema corner with a PlayStation.
    • Table tennis.
    • Fusball Table.
    • Temazcal ceremonies, and more!
    Read more

    15. M Montreal – Best Hostel in Montreal, Canada

    What’s to love:
    Best Hostel in Montreal, Canada - M Montreal
    More hostels need to take product shots in the snow.
    • Two hot tubs…
    • On the roof.
    • In the snow!

    I realised that while I had plenty of the world’s best hostels featured on this list, I didn’t have a whole lot of large-scale hostels (probably due to my not-so-secret love affair with off-beat and intimate locales). Enter M Montreal.

    How does 350+ beds sound? To me, existentially horrifying, but some people dig this scene! A huge rotation of new humans every day to converse and party with along with the supreme furnishings of a hostel of this size and popularity.

    A hot tub… no… wait… two hot tubs! On the roof no less! Free computer access, free breakfast, and plenty of security, privacy, and quiet in the dorms. (Seriously, sound-blocking privacy curtains.)

    Speaking of dorms, you’re loaded on options for rooms:

    1. Female-only dorms
    2. Mixed dorms
    3. Basic to deluxe private rooms
    4. Studio spaces
    5. Basic to deluxe apartments

    So, yeah, it has to be said that in hostels of this size, you do lose the ‘find your tribe’ aspect. The trade-off is that you just don’t get it this good at the grunge-grottos. It’s easily one of the best luxury hostels in the world and a heavy-hitter amongst Canada’s backpacker hostels.

    Keep reading?

    16. Ember Hostel – Best Hostel in Denver, Colorado

    What’s to love:
    Best Hostel in Denver, Colorado - Ember Hostel
    Where extremely attractive people go to bathe.
    • Boutique as it comes.
    • Full-power espresso machine.
    • Warm your footsies by the fire.

    I have a soft spot in my heart for Colorado because of weed, mountains, and weed. Plus, I’ve met good peeps from there.

    So on that note, yup – they’re 420-friendly! I’d also say that they’re another of the best luxury hostels in the world, but that kinda comes with the territory when your premises are a historic mansion with the boutique trimmings to finish.

    The hot tub, fireplace, or espresso machine is the spot meet fellow travellers. The dorms are the place to chill with plenty of privacy and comfort in your fancy semi-pod-style bunks. And, for those of us still with jobs and adult responsibilities, there are secluded working spaces too.

    Relative to Denver, the location is tops, close to all the Boho stylings of the music and arts hub. It is crazy expensive, but this is honestly more-or-less a flashpackers boutique hostel. Besides, the States still really hasn’t grasped the concept of budget backpacking so much.

    Keep reading?

    17. Tribu Hostel – Best Beach Hostel in Holbox, Mexico

    What’s to love:

    This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Tribu-hostel.jpeg

    • Daily free activities
    • Close to the beach (less than 100 m)
    • Party bar with live shows, open mic night and jam sessions

    To me, one of the best hostels in North America without doubt.

    Why? Tribu Hostel has everything you are looking for in a backpacker hostel. Cool, smiling staff who invite you to free activities like salsa lessons, walking dogs from the local dog shelter, morning yoga, slackline and jam sessions, some chilling areas with hammocks, and one of the best night bars on the island.

    bio pic for Sebastian Garcia Vivas, member of The Broke Backpacker team
    Recommended by Seba

    A colourful and laid-back vibes hostel where you are going to meet other enthusiastic backpackers at a throwing stone from the beach where amazing sunsets gather all the travellers in a magical connection. You’ll find your next travel buddy or make some unique friendships for sure. 

    I remember my days being yoga in the morning, midday cooking together with some folks I met there (yes, you can use the kitchen), beach, walking with the doggies, sunset, and drinks and party at the hostel’s bar.

    In my opinion, one of the best beach hostels in the world. A really nice, relaxed vibe given by the amazing staff, music, and live shows.

    Travel with peace of mind. Travel WITH a security belt.
    Active Roots Security Belt

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    It looks exactly like a normal belt except for a SECRET interior pocket perfectly designed to hide a wad of cash, a passport photocopy or anything else you may wish to hide. Never get caught with your pants down again! (Unless you want to…)

    Hide Yo’ Money!

    Best Hostels in Central America

    Falling somewhere between Southeast Asia’s insanity and Europe’s attention to detail is the remainder of the Americas. Again, it’s a very wide net, but there are a few standard things to expect amongst Central America’s hostels.

    Plenty of surf, sun, and nature is the name of the game, and some of the world’s craziest hostels—a full-power party paradise—are to be found backpacking Central America. The drugs are also way better quality than in Asia, so you know how bananas that shit is gonna get!

    18. Greengo’s Hotel – Best Hostel in Guatemala

    What’s to love:

    Greengos Hostel Pool

    • Remote Jungle Location
    • Great Vibe with Crazy Activities
    • AMAZING Hostel Design
    photo of Joe Middlehurst, member of The Broke Backpacker team
    Recommended by Joe

    Nestled in the deep jungles of northern Guatemala is Greengos Hotel – an eco-resort/hotel/hostel, just walking distance away from the EPIC Semuc Champey.

    Greengo’s is a sustainability-focused hotel-hostel, driven by the mission to:

    “Provide an energetic, beautiful space for travellers to unwind and create memories while minimizing environmental impact and give back to the community and planet.”

    There are just a few simple reasons why Greengo’s Hotel is one of the best hostels in Central America.

    Firstly, it is located just 10 minutes away from the famous Semuc Champey. Being able to explore the glorious natural turquoise pools of the Cahabon River at your own pace was just magical. Greengo’s takes you on mad activities here, like river tubing and cave exploring.

    All the other hostels in the area are located in the town of Lanquin, which is a very bumpy and long ride away. Greengo’s really is in the jungle! This famous hostel has some of the best-designed communal spaces I’ve ever seen.

    Despite having some standard drawbacks which you could probably expect from such a remotely located hostel like this, Greengo’s is such a great hostel that it had to make this list!

    19. Surfing Turtle Lodge – Best Hostel in Nicaragua

    What’s to love:

    • Located ON an Empty, Serene Surf Beach
    • The Best Staff and Community Feeling
    • On-Site Turtle Nursery and Hatchery
    photo of Joe Middlehurst, member of The Broke Backpacker team
    Recommended by Joe

    Surfing Turtle Lodge is tucked away on a private beach close to Los Brasiles on the Pacific coast of Nicaragua.

    If you’re backpacking in Nicaragua and you love surfing AND turtles…you are gonna want to check out the Surfing Turtle Lodge!

    Surfing Turtle Lodge is located around 30 minutes from Leon (including Chicken Buses and boat rides over tidal rivers). You are free to leave and go into town, but they have good food on-site, so you don’t need to go anywhere.

    Life at this dreamy beachside surf hostel is incredible. I stayed here for over two weeks last year and made true connections with the staff from WorkAway and the local community in this remote, off-grid location.

    A day in my life at Surfing Turtle Hostel included waking up, going for a surf, doing some yoga, playing beach volleyball, and slacklining with guests and staff. Then, I’d be getting silly drunk at the beach minibar and watching the baby turtles hatchin’ from their beachy nests at night.

    If that doesn’t sound like the ideal surf hostel experience, I don’t know what does. Surfing Turtle Lodge is one of my personal favourite hostels in the world.

    20. Bambuda Castle – Best Hostel in Panama

    What’s to love:
    Best Hostel in Boquete, Panama - Bambuda Castle
    Some hostels are all about the sky.
    • It’s a castle!
    • With private hobbit-style bungalows.
    • And plenty of other royal trimmings.
    • Legendary hostel in Boquete

    Oh, snap! Shut it down, boys, it’s a fucking castle: this is the best hostel in the world, life won, list complete! (It’s not; please keep reading.)

    Ok, so maybe I got overexcited, but can you blame me? There’s a goddamn rock climbing wall up the castle tower. There are also two hot tubs, which is cool, but still not as cool as Spiderman-ing up a castle wall!

    It’s a bit outta town, but that’s alright since they offer a free shuttle service. It also just means you’re surrounded by nature with plenty of hiking and exploration potential.

    The hospitality is excellent (as if you were staying in a castle). The facilities are excellent (as if you were staying in a castle). And the feasts are excellent (as if you were staying in a castle). You’ll feel like royalty rather than a smelly backpacker in Panama crashing in a hostel.

    ANNND… if you round up enough guests, there’s absolutely nothing stopping you for recreating the Battle of Helm’s Deep!

    Keep reading?

    The Best Hostels in South America

    South America is extremely diverse, and the backpacker hostels across the continent reflect that. Much like Asia, “You can find anything you want here,” and that is 100% true, albeit generally at a higher cost (Peru and Bolivia notwithstanding).

    There’s a well-carved backpacking scene across South America. From the shamanic practices of the Andes and Amazon to some of the best surf destinations in the world to the snowy powder of Colombia (heh), you’re going to find a hostel to meet every desire in South America.

    Surfies, hippies, party people, culture vultures, historians, and adventure-seekers all travel to South America, and you’ll find them all at some of the most beautiful hostels in the world!

    21. Los Patios – The Best Hostel in South America

    What’s to love:

    Los Patios

    • EPIC Roof Top Overlooking Medellin
    • The Best Hostel for Digital Nomads
    • INCREDIBLE Hostelworld HOSCARs Awards
    photo of Joe Middlehurst, member of The Broke Backpacker team
    Recommended by Joe

    Whenever people ask me about the best hostels I’ve ever seen, Los Patios is always one of the first places I think of.

    Whilst backpacking in Colombia, I stayed at Los Patios Hostel in Medellin. This place left a lasting impression on me and is one of the best hostels in the world, without a doubt. 

    Los Patios Hostel is a locally owned backpackers paradise in amongst the madness of Medellin, Colombia. This massive hostel located in El Poblado boasts TWO buildings with beautiful indoor graffiti themes for each storey. 

    From the bottom up, this Medellin hostel was stacked with cool features like chill-out cribs, PS4s and coworking spaces. On the top floor though, was one of the best rooftop pools I’ve ever seen, with a crazy backdrop of Medellin. 

    Activities were being hosted by the hostel such as yoga classes, Spanish school and salsa dancing when I was there last year. Despite being so big, the hostel still had a busy atmosphere in the evenings.

    HOSCARS Hostelworld awards for Los Patios Hostel

    It’s not just me who thinks Los Patios is one of the best hostels in the world. Check out their impressive haul of Hostelworld HOSCARs Awards by Los Patios over the past few years.

    22. Wolf Totem Guesthouse – Best Hostel in Pisac, Peru

    What’s to love:
    Best Hostel in Pisac, Peru - Wolf Totem Guesthouse
    Goddamn I love mountain hostels!
    • About as boho-modern as they come.
    • Designed with long-term travellers in mind.
    • Divine location.

    Truthfully, I wanted to find a Peruvian tripper’s den to recommend; you’re in the land of Ayhausca, baby! They generally don’t advertise on Hostelworld though, so here’s Wolf Totem Guesthouse. This place has been “designed as a holiday from the holiday for the long-term traveller”.

    I feel that so hard.

    Sometimes, as a traveller, you don’t want to keep moving. You just want to stop somewhere and… sit for a bit. That’s when you stay at Wolf Totem Guesthouse.

    It’s a perfect stop for digital nomads to set-up shop with even more creature comforts than home can offer. (Afternoon breaks with espressos and sauna, Senor?) Long-term travellers who just need a month’s vacation from the road to detox their mind can collect themself here.

    On the mountain, in the valley, and above the ancient remnants of the Incas sits this beautiful hostel in Peru that’s built for the long-stayers.

    The design is an ultra-modern boho-hipster-chic hybrid smashed with gorgeous touches, and while I feel it could do with a splash of Goa-infusion, it’s hard to deny what the owners are setting out to accomplish: a home for travellers.

    Keep reading?

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      The Best Hostels in Africa

      Africa—the last great backpacking frontier. Whereas near-untouched regions like Central Asia offer untold exploration for the pure adventurists, many parts of Africa are more of a place for adventure-seeking tourists.

      You’d be hard-pressed to find a backpacker who isn’t piqued by Africa though perhaps saving it for later in their career of vagrancy.

      Backpacker hostels in Africa are few and far between. The major destinations—like Morocco, Egypt, and South Africa—have them in droves, as do many major cities. Outside of that, they aren’t the most common form of accommodation in Africa and a lot are still going to be working out the kinks.

      All the same, they’re definitely going to be your best hub for meeting travel buddies in Africa to hit the road with!

      23. Happy Surf Hostel – Best Surf Hostel in Africa (Taghazout, Morroco)

      What’s to love:

      Happy Surf Hostel, Taghazout Morroco

      • Free Moroccan breakfast every morning (It is so yummy)
      • Affordable private rooms
      • AMAZING location (walking distance to the beach)
      photo of Amanda Draper, member of The Broke Backpacker team
      Recommended by Amanda

      What’s the list missing so far? One of the best surf hostels in the world! Have you heard that Morocco has killer waves?

      Down on the southwest coast, you’ll find this darling specimen Morocco’s amazing hostels open to the grommets and veteran carvers alike.

      Happy Surf Hostel is a charming beachside hostel in Taghazout that stole my heart.

      Being the first hostel I arrived at when I landed in Morocco, I soon got a taste of the special Moroccan ambience I would be immersed in for the next week.

      We were greeted by friendly locals at the reception, which smelled a bit like the ocean as they had just come back from a surf session.

      Although this isn’t a surf camp like many hostels in Taghazout, this hostel is an amazing option if you are travelling on a budget. They offer surfboard rentals and have great connections to surf camps if you want a few lessons.

      Look, I know we said it’s one of the worst countries to visit, but this hostel is a BANG for your buck, ESPECIALLY the breakfast! Every morning we were spoiled with a large selection of traditional Moroccan food. From tasty Brioche to refreshing mint tea all included. If you go, give the cats a big squeeze for me!

      24. Drifter’s Backpackers – Best Hostel in Zanzibar, Tanzania

      What’s to love:
      Best Hostel in Zanzibar, Tanzania - Drifter’s Backpackers
      I doubt this hostel could be more on the beach.
      • Unreal location.
      • A perfect spot for kitesurfing.
      • Run by a hostel veteran.

      Not of the surf variety, but certainly another of the world’s best beach hostels. Off the east coast of Africa and Tanzania is the jewel of Zanzibar Island (man, we really have been around the world)!

      Zanzibar boasts some of the most stunning beaches and shoals in the world, and at Drifter’s Backpackers, you get a front-row seat. A few steps from the dorm you’re already staring at the turquoise glimmers of the Indian Ocean.

      It’s the BEST hostel in Zanzibar for sure.

      The dorms are on the basic (and small) side, but they’re more than adequate considering you’ll be spending your days flaked out on the squeaky white sands of Zanzibar.

      Honestly, this isn’t one of the world’s absolute coolest hostels, but it is a damn beautiful one in a scrumptious location.

      The owner is already a veteran himself in the world hostelling scene, so the crew knows how to run a tight ship. Plus… I just really wanted to write about Zanzibar. That doesn’t happen often!

      Keep reading?

      25. Away with the Fairies – Best Hostel in Hogsback, South Africa

      What’s to love:
      Best Hostel in Hogsback, South Africa - Away with the Fairies
      Easy choice, man.
      • Cliff bath!
      • Surrounded by spectacular nature.
      • Still a bit of a hidden gem.

      I messaged another Broke Backpacker writer—and kinda my mentor (shh, don’t tell him)—for some dope recommendations of hostels in South Africa. He slammed me with a lot of wicked choices (South Africa’s hostelling scene is actually mad), but I just had to settle on Away with the Fairies. Why?

      The cliff edge bath. Imagine taking a hot bath—bubbles and all (bubbles not included)—a drink in one hand and a rubber ducky in the other. Now, imagine that same bath, except that you’re staring out from a clifftop at the South African wilderness

      Your smack-dab in the middle of the glorious nature at this hostel. When you’re not languishing in the bath, hiking trails and outdoor adventures are only a step away.

      And, as with all the best hostels in the world, good souls float in. Camping is available (which you should definitely capitalise on), and they serve rocking pizza straight from the oven… Which you should definitely eat in the bath!

      Boom—it’s the best hostel bathroom in the world.

      Keep reading?

      What to Pack for All Hostels Worldwide

      Generally, just your beautiful self and that dashing smile. Probably a spare pair of undies too. Past that, here are some other nifty gadgets that always make staying in hostels that much more enjoyable.

      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!

      Still struggling to pack your backpack? Then check out my essential list of hostel packing to speed things along!

      Getting Insured for Hostel Life

      The chances of harm are pretty low in a hostel, but things still happen! You could topple 60 feet out of a jungle hammock or right over the edge of a cliff bath. So, you need the right travel insurance for staying in a hostel, right?!

      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.

      Time to Book, No?

      Almost; very nearly. Soon you’ll be indulging in the hostel life in all manner of crazy places.

      You never know what you can expect when you check into a new hostel, but one thing I would say is to be optimistic. You are capable of shaping your own experiences and the experiences of others.

      Choose to be loving, choose to be happy. Be yourself, be kind, talk, interact, engage, and be respectful. Do this and you will find hostel communities and a sense of belonging in the same places.

      However, take it from me… these communities, spaces and the world’s top hostels don’t stay that way for long. Nothing lasts forever.

      So, yeah, it is bloody well high time you booked yourself into one of the best hostels in the world! Find your own damn beautiful bubble, and do it now! Time is fleeting, and these sparkling hubs for nomads, dirtbags, trippers, and hot-blooded and bright-eyed backpackers won’t be there forever.

      Lastly (since you’re almost definitely going to have a favourite hostel that I missed), hit me up in the comments below! Lemme have a little look because maybe I did miss something special. Maybe your fave is just the kinda place I’d like to stay one day.

      A group of friends smiles fro a photo as they sit in a casita in Oaxaca, Mexico.
      Now, go find your tribe.
      Photo: @audyscala
      Looking for more info on travelling the world?