The Top 17 Hostels in Europe
With new hostels opening up all over Europe every year, the competition among them has become fierce. Finding a hostel in any given city is relatively easy, but finding a hostel you can book with confidence knowing it’s among the best is no easy feat. Here at BootsnAll we are all independent travelers ourselves, and hostels are a huge part of how we travel and what we recommend, so we’ve tried to take some of the guesswork out of the process for you.
We’ve compiled what we consider to be the top hostels in Europe. Our recommendations rely on the vast experience of our writers and editors, along with user ratings, location information, and value comparisons. Part of the hostel experience is rolling the dice on who else happens to be booked there at the time, so we can’t guarantee your stay will be perfect, but we do think booking into one of our top hostels gives you a great head start on your visit to any one of these 17 popular European cities.
>> Europe is absolutely full of hostels – some great, some good, some downright dismal. Although these are some of the best, don’t overlook the hidden gems you might find in our more comprehensive listings for hostels in Europe.
St. Christopher’s at The Winston
The Flying Pig is certainly more famous, but the Winston has even more going for it. They combine a first-rate hostel with 30 private hotel rooms, a private beer garden, and their own well-known nightclub, which is popular with Amsterdam locals as well. In addition to being well run, the Winston provides a unique experience as it’s completely filled with custom art and design that makes every room special, so it feels like the place should cost much more. The location is also ideal, being right on the best nightlife and pedestrian-only street in the non-sleazy part of the infamous Red Light District.
>>book a hostel in Amsterdam
Albareda Youth Hostel
This newer hostel is already known for getting booked up well in advance, so you know they must be doing something right. The facilities are clean and new, the staff is friendly and helpful, and free Wi-Fi is among the many features on offer. The Albareda is one of the few hostels in Europe that won’t allow those over 35 to stay, but even still the place has a reputation as being peaceful and a great contrast to the abundant nightlife near the Las Ramblas and the Marina, which are each a short walk away.
>>book a hostel in Barcelona
EastSeven Berlin Hostel
In a city full of hostels, the newcomer EastSeven stands out for the consistently high marks it gets from past guests. There are larger and more famous hostels in Berlin, but none with a better location. The EastSeven is right in the trendy Prenzlauer Berg area of the former East, surrounded by bars, cafes, and restaurants, with plenty of cheap options for the backpacker crowd. You’ll find close and convenient public transportation, which makes a big difference in a sprawling city like Berlin that is far too big to see effectively on foot. Add in free Wi-Fi and good rates, even on private rooms, and that seals the deal.
>>book a hostel in Berlin
Lybeer Travellers’ Hostel
This famous place has everything a traveler could want. The location in the heart of the medieval city center is excellent, and the super friendly staff gets rave reviews from nearly all who pass through. Throw in reasonable prices, free breakfast, free internet, and the option of private rooms, their own bar and self-catering kitchen, and you’ve got exactly what you are looking for in a hostel. Bruges isn’t known for its mad nightlife, but still it’s good to know this place has a reputation for being a quiet place to sleep anyway.
>>book a hostel in Bruges
Home Made Hostel
The Home Made is another of those European hostels that just seems to hit all the marks. The location is central and convenient to everything the visitor needs, the staff are famously friendly and helpful, the rooms are comfortable and clean, and they have free Wi-Fi and good self-catering facilities. Combine all this with a character-filled place that is passionately run by travelers, and you’ve got one of the most popular and lively hostels in the whole country.
>>book a hostel in Budapest
There is a lot of competition among hostels in Dublin, and the Globetrotters stands out for its professional staff, a good central location, and for its famous and filling breakfast that is included in the bed price. There’s a hostel and also a bed & breakfast attached in this 200-year-old building, so visitors wanting a bit more privacy have that option as well. There are several other hostels in this part of Dublin, which is not far from the Temple Bar nightlife district, but none that have earned such a solid reputation among past guests.
>>book a hostel in Dublin
Castle Rock Hostel
In a city known for its downtown fortress, it’s hard to imagine a better location than right in the shadow of the castle itself. The facilities and staff get high marks from backpackers as a truly authentic place that treats their guests with respect. The best entertainment district in Edinburgh is just steps away, but the Castle Rock Hostel also has fun and games within, as well as free Wi-Fi and free weekend walking tours of the area.
>>book a hostel in Edinburgh
The Academy rates very high with past guests, and it’s easy to see why. The location next to the Duomo in the heart of the city puts every tourist attraction and plenty of great food and nightlife within easy walking distance. And the combination of a historic building and all new furniture and fixtures gives guest the best of both worlds. This artsy place doesn’t have bunks, but rather individual beds in small rooms that can be configured any way your group likes. With a total capacity of only 24 beds, it’s no surprise this place gets booked up early, but their prices are still quite reasonable considering the location and everything else.
>>book a hostel in Florence
The Flamingo Hostel is one of the more decorated places in the region, so its reputation for consistent quality is hardly a secret to travelers. The location in a sturdy 17th Century building right next to the main town square and the nightlife area gives guests easy access to everything and yet a quiet place to sleep. They have free breakfast, and a cheap bar and restaurant, so it’s easy for guests to keep costs down. The friendly staff and modern facilities add to the appeal of a stay in this historic district, so the Flamingo tends to get booked up before most of its competition.
>>book a hostel in Krakow
Astor Museum Hostel
Of the four Astor hostels in central London that are all highly regarded, the Museum is the best. This compact hostel in a historic building is known for its friendly staff and comfortable and cozy facilities, and it also has the impressive wall art throughout that is a trademark of the entire chain. On top of that you can count on one of the best locations in this sprawling city, being extremely close to the British Museum and also Oxford Street, Soho, and Covent Garden. Most of the competition can be found more tucked into dull neighborhoods, so having so many useful sights and places to eat and drink nearby is a major plus.
Check out more hostels in London on EuropeanHostels.
RC Miguel Angel
With its excellent location just steps from the Puerto del Sol square in the heart of Madrid, this hostel already has a lot going for it. You are in the center of the main shopping district, on top of a major transportation hub, and there is a nearly unlimited number of places to grab a cheap bite to eat or drink close by. Most guests give the RC Miguel Angel very high marks for a good atmosphere, well maintained facilities, and friendly staff. It’s not really a party hostel, but there are hundreds of places within a short walk where the party goes on all night, so having a quiet place to sleep is worth quite a bit in a city like Madrid.
Wombats City Hostel
This Vienna-based mini chain of hostel/hotels is a hit with its Munich location, as it consistently gets high marks from previous guests, particularly the party hostel crowd. Its location in the lively neighborhood just across from the main Munich train station couldn’t be more convenient, and the facilities are clean and as professionally run as you’d expect from a German hostel. Being so close to the city center and all transportation options makes celebrating nearby very easy, but still the in-house bar is often packed and raucous, so there are better choices for those who just want a quiet night’s rest.
Villa Saint Exupery
This place continues to rack up accolades from travel writers, and it’s hard not to join in the chorus. The rates are very reasonable in an area not known for cheap beds, and yet the facilities and staff always get rave reviews from past visitors. Guests have access to a popular complimentary breakfast buffet each morning, and there is free Wi-Fi and computer terminals too. The location may not be ideal, as it’s well outside the Nice city center, but there is shuttle service available nearly around the clock, and the in-house bar is known for very cheap drinks so this place has an international social scene of its own.
The St. Christopher’s chain has another winner in this new and large hostel overlooking the water. Known for its modern features and cleanliness, the location is also good, especially considering it’s near to a metro station and also close to the Gare du Nord train station. The hostel has its own bar/club, but it’s also two Metro stops away from the trendy and bohemian Montemarte district, where backpackers can daydream of being a poet until they get back on the train to their next city.
Having a devilishly clever name isn’t enough for a hostel to get by, even in a city always jammed with visitors. Fortunately the Czech Inn does many other things well too as its consistently one of the top rated hostels in Prague. This is one of the growing number of artsy backpacker places in Europe, and they’ve also got a hotel/apartment option as well. Having a location in the non-touristy modern part of the city isn’t much of a problem since public transportation is cheap and easy, and most of the competition is surprisingly expensive.
This is one of quite a few hostels conveniently located near Rome’s main Termini train station, and this is often one of the first to get booked up, which certainly says something about its reputation. You’ll be greeted by their famously pleasant staff before you notice that M&J’s is one of the cleanest hostels in Europe. Both the dorms and private rooms are unusually comfortable, and each guest gets the continental breakfast buffet each morning at the Living Room cafÃ© next door, as well as a coupon for a free drink to help get your pub crawl started later on.
Hopefully, the idea of spending one or more nights in a prison cell is a novelty for you, and if so the LÃ¥ngholmen will seem even better. This former prison on an island in the heart of Stockholm is one of Scandinavia’s most popular hostels for many reasons other than the novelty factor. The cells each contain 2 to 4 bunks and are surprisingly comfortable and quiet. The facilities are modern and clean, and they have a bar, restaurant, and free Wi-Fi. The historic Gamla Stan town center and the trendy Sodermalm area are close by, so the prices here are quite reasonable considering the Stockholm alternatives.
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