Yosemite National Park is going to give you the experience of a lifetime. The park is located in California’s Sierra Madres and is a must on any USA bucket list. It’s the best place to explore if you love starry nights and expansive skies, amazing wildlife, as well as a multitude of outdoor activities and it has over a thousand square miles of parkland ripe for any kind of adventure!

There’s no doubt about it, Yosemite offers some of the most incredible scenery in the country. The jaw-dropping vistas look like they came straight out of a postcard! If you’re the outdoorsy type, you’ll be buzzing with all the activities and adventures to get stuck into in Yosemite.

A trip to Yosemite need not cost you an arm and a leg though. Travellers can use a variety of ways to cut back on costs and one of them is to stay in hostels instead of hotels. They’re super convenient, budget-friendly, and socially charged. Hostels are your best bet if you want to save a few dollars when visiting this magnificent national park.

Quick Answer: Best Hostels in Yosemite

Yosemite National Park

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What to Expect from Hostels in Yosemite

Yosemite is one of California’s most formidable and majestic landscapes! Thousands of people travel to witness it as it has a reputation of never failing to evoke wonder and awe. It’s somewhere you can’t miss when you visit the USA and plan your trip to California.

Hotels in the area are known to be pricey. Luckily for you guys, there are heaps of hostels to save a bit of money when you’re backpacking in the USA.

Hostels in the area are known to cater to the more adventurous and outdoorsy sort of traveller, one who’s not afraid to rough it up a little bit whenever the need arises. When looking for hostels, you’ll find three types of lodgings; tents, dorms, and private rooms. So you can still do some camping in California even at a hostel.

Dorms are a great way to save money but there is limited privacy. On the other end of the spectrum are private rooms. Hostels in Yosemite are limited compared to other places. That being said, there’s no need to worry as numerous alternatives in the area, such as Airbnb rentals. You can also check out the VRBOS in Yosemite and the more traditional bed and breakfasts if you want some more options.

Yosemite Tunnel View

Although there are no hostels within the national park, several lodgings are in the nearby towns. Various room types have different prices. Private rooms are the most expensive options while dorm rooms and tents are in the same price range. As a rule of thumb, the nearer the hostel is to the sights and the more amenities it has to offer to guests, the more expensive it’s going to be.

  • Tents – $45 – $50 per night
  • Dorms – $40 to $50 per night
  • Private rooms – $75 to $200 per night

The area around Yosemite is quite vast and although there is seasonal public transportation, the best way of getting around and making the most of your time is by renting a car and driving. The lodging cost also depends on where you are staying in Yosemite. The closer you are to the national park, the more you can expect to pay. That being said, you should choose where to stay in Yosemite carefully.

  • El Portal – The nearest town to Yosemite National Park and transportation from El Portal to the park only takes about 30 minutes drive.
  • Yosemite West – The second nearest town to Yosemite National Park and has a distance of about 28 miles or around 40 minutes drive.

When looking for the best hostels in Yosemite, HOSTELWORLD is where you should go. The site has plenty of selections and is sorted out according to how they are rated by real travellers. Use the rating and reviews as a guide but don’t forget to check out the descriptions and the pictures too.

Best Hostels in Yosemite

Yosemite Bug Rustic Mountain Resort – Best Overall Hostel in Yosemite

Yosemite Bug Rustic Mountain Resort

Yosemite Bug Rustic Mountain Resort is a multi-awarded hostel chain that has everything you need for an unforgettable stay located about 27 miles from the Yosemite Valley, on a forested hillside complex. The property has a health spa that will bring you to the zenith of relaxation after a day of exploring some of the best hikes in California.

They have a yoga studio on the premises and a variety of massage therapies on offer. The hot tub and the hot rock sauna are perfect for unwinding after a busy day spent enjoying a variety of local activities such as mountain biking, climbing, and swimming.

In addition, the property itself has a one-hour nature trail, a spring swimming hole, foosball, ping pong, and other games which are perfect for entertainment, meeting fellow guests, and making new friends.

The premises has a guest kitchen which is open for use but if you’d rather not be bothered preparing meals, you can always head to the on-site bar and restaurant which serves food made from fresh and local ingredients. They serve everything from vegan meals to huge steaks.

Why you’ll love this hostel:

  • Wi-Fi
  • Sauna
  • Laundry facilities

Ask the tours and travel desk if you need any assistance with your Yosemite itinerary. They are well-versed when it comes to local activities and hikes in nearby attractions. Guests have various options when it comes to rooms. Mixed dorm rooms can accommodate up to a dozen people, and for the more adventurous, there are tent rooms that can be shared by two or four people.

Yosemite International Hostel – Best Hostel with Private Rooms in Yosemite

Yosemite International Hostel

Located in Groveland, California, Yosemite International Hostel is just 30 minutes away from the park entrance and about an hour from the Yosemite valley itself. Equipped with the best facilities, this hostel is your home away from home and the ideal place to meet other like-minded individuals from all over the world.

The shared kitchen is open for guests to use but only comes with a refrigerator and microwave. No pots, pans, or dishes. If you’d rather eat out, you’ll be happy to know that within walking distance, you’ll see several local restaurants and coffee shops. Don’t forget to drop by the Iron Door Saloon, the oldest pub in California which is an experience in itself. Pine Mountain Lake is only five minutes away from the property too.

Why you’ll love this hostel:

  • Wi-Fi
  • Laundry facilities
  • Luggage storage

The hostel offers dorms, as well as private rooms, all with free Wi-Fi. Groveland shops, including a grocery, are just five minutes away so you’ll never have to worry about where you’ll get basic items and provisions.

All dorms and private rooms have access to shared bathrooms. Select suites have a seating area too, whereas outdoor lounging areas are perfect for admiring the natural beauty of Yosemite.

Guests can take advantage of the laundry facilities for an additional fee but parking is free and doesn’t need any reservation. So it’s ideal if you’re on a road trip around California.

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

Stash your cash safely with this money belt. It will keep your valuables safely concealed, no matter where you go.

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!

Other Budget Accommodation Options

Aside from hostels, other budget accommodation options are available in Yosemite that are convenient, comfortable, and clean.

Entire home in Coarsegold with Jacuzzi tub – Airbnb for Large Groups in Yosemite

Entire home in Coarsegold with Jacuzzi tub

This entire residential unit is appropriate for large groups of mates. If money is tight, splitting the lodging costs with friends you’re travelling with is ideal. It is also a great choice for an entire family or a group of pals just wanting to go on some sick adventures together!

Located in Coarsegold, about 26 minutes from the South Gate entrance of Yosemite National Park, the property has an expansive living room, formal dining room, and three bedrooms that can easily accommodate up to eight people. On top of that, the master bedroom boasts a huge Jacuzzi tub too. Pretty freaking sweet yo!

The large kitchen is equipped with all the necessities you need to prepare meals for the entire group, so you can cut back on even more costs because by not eating out. The outdoor garden comes with a BBQ in case you want some meat on the grill and dining out is a great experience at the patio. Even better in the summer with a group of mats and some cold beers.

Mountain Getaway in the heart of Oakhurst – Great Airbnb with for Couples in Yosemite

Mountain Getaway in the heart of Oakhurst

This entire residential unit is a great accommodation for couples wanting to make the most of their time while in Yosemite. Located just off Highway 41 in the heart of Oakhurst, it is only 12 miles from the south gate of Yosemite National Park.

This cosy home is within walking distance of all the amenities that you’ll need for all your adventures during your stay such as two large groceries, gift shops, pharmacies, and more. YARTS or the Yosemite Area Regional Transportation System is within easy reach too. Note though that public transit to Yosemite only operates seasonally. Guests have access to a private bathroom and the shared carpark too.

Private room in a residential home in Mariposa with free parking – Best Airbnb for Solo Travelers in Yosemite

Private room in a residential home in Mariposa with free parking

This cosy room is located in a residential home in Mariposa. Guests have access to a separate full bathroom too. The room itself comes with a TV, Wi-Fi, a dedicated workspace, toaster, coffeemaker, electric kettle, and a mini-fridge.

The property is only 20 miles from the south gate entrance of Yosemite National Park, as well as Mariposa Grove, and only five miles to Bass Lake. The town of Oakhurst is just 5 miles away where there are plenty of places for dining out.

If you’re in Yosemite during summer, take note that there is a scheduled bus to the national park that leaves from Oakhurst and back, be sure to check the schedule.

Private room in a cottage with simple breakfast in Mariposa – Epic Airbnb for Digital Nomads in Yosemite

Private room in a cottage with simple breakfast in Mariposa

Guests at this charming cottage have full access to the common areas such as the living room, kitchen, and outdoor spaces. They can also help themselves to the simple but wonderful breakfast available daily. The private entrance to the room makes it easy for guests to leave early or come home late. however, the room comes with a bathroom that’s shared with the host.

Free parking is available on the premises and it’s the perfect base for driving to the national park and Mammoth Lakes. The property is close to town where there are several choices when it comes to meals, as well as drinks.

Private room in Coarsegold near local wineries and resort – Most Affordable Airbnb in Yosemite

Private room in Coarsegold near local wineries and resort

This private room in Coarsegold can easily accommodate a couple of travellers, has a reasonable price. It comes with a few extra amenities to boot, such as a private entrance and access to a garden that has BBQ facilities, so it’s perfect for chilling after a day on the trails. Relax on the garden swing after a busy day and throw some food on the barbie while you’re at it.

The large private bathroom has a Jacuzzi tub and a shower. The room is equipped with a toaster, mini-refrigerator, and a stocked coffee bar. Take note that this quaint place has various pets roaming about but they are friendly to guests.

What to Pack for your Yosemite Hostel

Pants, socks, underwear, soap?! Take it from me, packing for a hostel stay is not always quite as straightforward as it seems. Working out what to bring and what to leave at home is an art I have perfected over many years.

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!

Check out my definitive Hostel Packing list for even more top hostel packing tips!

Yosemite Hostels FAQ

How much do hostels in Yosemite cost?

Compared to hotels in the area, hostels in Yosemite are more affordable. Dorms cost $40 to $50 per night and private rooms cost $75 to $200 per night.

What are the best hostels in Yosemite for couples?

Yosemite International Hostel is my ideal hostel for couples. It’s located near the park entrance and walking distance to local coffee shops.

What is the best hostel in Yosemite near the airport?

Here is my top list for hostels near the airport:

Travel Safety Tips for Yosemite

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.

Final Thoughts

There you have it, the best hostels in Yosemite. By now, you should be fairly ready for a great adventure that you won’t forget anytime soon and you would have already found a place to stay in and call home.

The number of hostels in Yosemite might be limited compared to major cities but that doesn’t mean that you’ll have a difficult time finding great places to stay on a budget.

If you still aren’t sure which hostel to book, you should definitely consider Yosemite Bug Rustic Mountain Resort. You will get the most bang for your buck with all its top-notch amenities and have a great chance of connecting with heaps of travellers from all over the show!

Looking for more info on travelling to Yosemite and California?