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 Students in Utrecht – The Studenthostel B & B Utrecht City Center
- Best Hostel for Digital Nomads in Utrecht – Stayokay Utrecht Centrum
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.
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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 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!
Bed & Breakfast – aan de Singel van Utrecht is one of our favourites in Utrecht but they’re not taking guests right now. We’re not sure if they’re closed for good but we hope they’ll come back soon.
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.
Hotel Oorsprongpark is one of our favourites in Utrecht but they’re not taking guests right now. We’re not sure if they’re closed for good but we hope they’ll come back soon.
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What to Pack for your Utrecht Hostel
Pants, socks, underwear, soap?! Take it from us, packing for a hostel stay is not always quite as straight forward as it seems. Working out what to bring and what to leave at home is an art we have perfected over many years.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Grayl Geopress Water Bottle
Always travel with a water bottle! They save you money and reduce your plastic footprint on our planet. The Grayl Geopress acts as a purifier AND temperature regulator. Boom!
Check out our definitive Hostel Packing list for our top packing tips!
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!
FAQ about Hostels in Utrecht
Here are some questions backpackers ask about hostels in Utrecht.
Travel Safety Tips for Utrecht
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!
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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!
And for transparency’s sake, please know that some of the links in our content are affiliate links. That means that if you book your accommodation, buy your gear, or sort your insurance through our link, we earn a small commission (at no extra cost to you). That said, we only link to the gear we trust and never recommend services we don’t believe are up to scratch. Again, thank you!