While most travellers to the Netherlands have Amsterdam and Rotterdam right at the top of their itinerary, they’re not all this country has to offer. Less than half an hour away from the capital, you can enjoy the delight of pretty Utrecht. A popular student centre, its tree-lined canals put you in mind of the capital – minus the crowds, cannabis, and sex tourists. Instead, you can enjoy the beautiful architecture of the city’s historic mansions, spend some time in one of the many cafes, and admire Utrecht’s museums.
However, before you start checking the train times out of Amsterdam, there’s something else you should figure out first – and that’s where you’re going to stay. As a smaller and quieter city, Utrecht doesn’t exactly have cheap accommodation spilling out of it. However, you’ll find value for money in the few Utrecht hostels. Yep, it’s really about quality over quantity here!
Instead of letting you search long and hard for the cheapest places to stay in Utrecht, we’ve done it for you! Taking into account a range of travel styles, personalities, and budgets, we’ve come up with a list of the best hostels in Utrecht.
So, let’s check them out. Which one is going to be the best fit for you?
Quick Answer: Best Hostels in Utrecht
- Overall Best Hostel in Utrecht – BUNK Hotel Utrecht
- Best Hostel for Solo Travellers in Utrecht – Hotel Strowis
- Best Cheap Hostel in Utrecht – Stayokay Utrecht – Bunnik
- Best Hostel for Couples in Utrecht – Bed & Breakfast – aan de Singel van Utrecht
- Best Hostel for Students in Utrecht – The Studenthostel B & B Utrecht City Center
- Best Hostel for Digital Nomads in Utrecht – Stayokay Utrecht Centrum
- Best Hostel with a Private Room in Utrecht – Hotel Oorsprongpark
Best Hostels in Utrecht
You probably don’t need any more convincing that Utrecht is the relaxing and tranquil break you need during your backpacking Netherlands trip. But before you pick a cafe by a canal, you’re going to need somewhere to stay. Our choices reflect a range of different styles, so rather than just opting for our overall favourite hostel that caters to all types of traveller, have a think about what you want from your Utrecht hostel.
Overall Best Hostel in Utrecht – BUNK Hotel Utrecht
- Canalside location
- Private pods
- Luxury rooms
With a prime location by the canal, BUNK Hotel isn’t the cheapest hostel in Utrecht, but it’s our overall favourite. The former church sits somewhere between a hotel and a hostel; private pods mean you can still have a dorm experience without having to give up your privacy, and splashing out a little more means you’ve got a lovely private room. This is a good option for couples! There’s a restaurant and a bar on-site where you can enjoy reasonably priced meals and meet other guests and locals. Want to get out and explore? Rent one of the hostel’s bikes!
Best Hostel for Solo Travellers in Utrecht – Hotel Strowis
- Oldest hostel in Utrecht
- Afternoon concerts
- Garden and living room
Having opened in 1998, Hostel Strowis has had plenty of time to get it right when it comes to welcoming solo travellers. Its relaxed atmosphere is the best feature, making it easy to strike up a conversation and find friends to explore the city with. However, you don’t need to leave the hostel to have a good time. The garden and living room host events and live music – it just depends on the weather!
Best Cheap Hostel in Utrecht – Stayokay Utrecht – Bunnik
- Free breakfast
- Cozy bar
- Lawn and terrace
We’re heading out of the city centre now. This budget Utrecht hostel is actually in a forest along the Kromme Rijn. While you won’t have the city’s museums and cafes on your doorstep, you will have several outdoor pursuits on hand, including hiking, biking, and canoeing. It’s a good job that the hostel offers a free breakfast so that you’re fuelled up for these activities! It’s not just breakfast you can enjoy at this charming hostel; we’d suggest enjoying the sun on the terrace with a beer from the bar.
Best Hostel for Couples in Utrecht – Bed & Breakfast – aan de Singel van Utrecht
- Central location
- Popular with couples!
Okay, you got us, this isn’t exactly a hostel. However, it’s inexpensive enough for a couple who have something to celebrate. The bed and breakfast is in the heart of town, with several restaurants within a stone’s throw! Fancy a night in? You’ve got everything to make that happen. Because of the intelligent design of each unit, you’ve got a kitchenette and a small but comfortable living room. Enjoy a movie on the couch before climbing the ladder up to your comfortable, extra-large doubled bed!
The GRAYL GEOPRESS water bottle is the ONLY all-in-one filter water bottle setup you'll need. Whether you need to purify the water from a hostel sink in Kathmandu or a stream trickle in the Andes, the Geopress has got you covered.
Best Hostel for Students in Utrecht – The Studenthostel B & B Utrecht City Center
- Free pizza
- Central location
- Long stays available
Utrecht is a popular student city. If you’re studying your Erasmus year here, this could be an excellent place to base yourself as you search for a flat. There are plenty of freebies on offer when you arrive, including breakfast, tea and coffee, and even BBQs during summer. It’s a popular hotel for musicians too, with guitars, a piano, and even djembes on site.
Best Hostel for Digital Nomads in Utrecht – Stayokay Utrecht Centrum
- Central location
- Laptop-friendly workspaces
- Bicycle hire
The second Stayokay hostel on our list, this spot is perfect for a digital nomad. With unlimited fast, free Wi-Fi throughout the hostel and several spots where you can work, it’s definitely got that side of things covered. There’s also a bar and cafe where you can kick back and meet other travellers. Be sure to take advantage of the bicycle hire to explore the city after a hard day’s work!
Best Hostel with a Private Room in Utrecht – Hotel Oorsprongpark
- Free breakfast
- Bicycle hire
- Tea and coffee
Perhaps you’re tired of sharing sweaty, noisy dorms on your travels. Maybe you just want a touch of luxury. Either way, you’ll be delighted with Hotel Oorsprongpark. Offering single and private double rooms, it’s within walking distance of all the best shops, cafes, and nightlife of Utrecht’s city centre.
Breakfast and bicycle hire can be enjoyed for an extra fee. Though it’s a perfectly lovely place to stay, this B & B doesn’t offer a common room (other than breakfast), so if you’re looking to meet other travellers, this might not be the right spot for you.
What to Pack for your Utrecht Hostel
We don’t often travel without these essentials. Packing your bag properly is the first and most important step to have a successful trip!
1. 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.
2. Power Bank: Everyone knows the mini heart attack when your phone is about to run out of power. Surviving long bus rides without charging stations can be agonizing, which is why every backpacker should have this Anker Power Bank. You can charge your phone up to 5 times, or plug in two devices simultaneously. With high-speed charging and enough power to keep you going for days, you can conquer even the biggest adventures without a problem.
3. Headphone Splitter: Being stuck on a bus or plane with only one phone that has good music or shows downloaded can be pretty annoying if your travel buddy wants to share headphones. With this Headphone Splitter, you won’t have to listen with only one ear anymore. Your friend can plug in their headphones at the same time, so both of you are entertained (on both ears!).
4. Active Roots Microfiber Towel: Having your own towel on your travels is a game changer. The Active Roots Microfiber Towel is perfect for travellers who are looking for a lightweight, quick-drying and extremely soft option. The antibacterial material is super water-absorbent and resists odor buildup because of its antimicrobial material. Ain’t technology cool?
5. Universal Travel Adapter: This universal travel adapter charges your devices in (pretty much) every country – definitely a lifesaver when travelling around the world. The plug also regulates the power output depending on which device you’re charging. No more fried hair dryers or electric razors!
6. Playing Cards: These waterproof cards are essential kit for every backpacker. Play by the pool, beach or at your hostel after a long day with travel buds, without your cards breaking or getting soaked. And once you pull out those cards, the chance that you’ll be the hero of the night is pretty high (no promises though).
Why You Should Travel to Utrecht
The historical religious centre of the Netherlands, you can learn a lot about the country’s history and culture here. It’s no wonder that locals call it the hidden gem of the Netherlands! Don’t miss the Dom Tower – the tallest building in town. On a clear day, you’ll be able to see Amsterdam from here.
Make sure you pick the right hostel for your stay. After all, your base in town will set the tone for your trip. If you’re still having trouble deciding where to stay in Utrecht, that’s understandable; after all, you have just seen seven amazing hostels! We’d just like to remind you of our top recommended hostel in Utrecht – BUNK Hotel Utrecht. It boasts an excellent location, as well as offering great value for money!
And don’t forget to sort your Netherlands travel insurance before heading to Utrecht! 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!
Final Thoughts on the Best Hostels in Utrecht
There are so many reasons to add Utrecht to your Netherlands itinerary. Whether it’s to visit museums on Dutch history, culture, and religion, take a cruise along the city’s peaceful canals, or simply sit in a cafe and watch life go by, you’re sure to enjoy this compact city just 30km southeast of Amsterdam (you’ll find loads of hostels there as well).
When planning your trip to Utrecht, don’t downplay the importance of picking the right place to stay. Are you a backpacker who wants to be first with a beer and last to bed? Perhaps you need to work as you travel but still want a sociable atmosphere. Or maybe you don’t care where you stay as long as you have a bed and a healthy bank balance. Whatever you want, there’s a hostel in Utrecht for you!
We hope you have an incredible trip to the Netherlands. Have you been to Utrecht before? If so, why not let us know where you stayed and what you loved about it… if it’s a hostel, of course!
Do you own or run a kick ass hostel? Want to be featured in this list? Get in touch at [email protected]
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