Travel in true backpacker style and stay at some of Europe’s coolest, quirkiest hostels this year. Hostelling is all about making memories, meeting new people and gaining amazing travel experiences without having to break the bank - and some hostels go above and beyond to create an unforgettable time for guests.
Want to stay in some of the best hostels in Europe for your travels? We’ve rounded up 20 of the coolest hostels in Europe that are breaking boundaries in budget accommodation. In the last 10 years, hostels around the world have really upped their game with innovative concepts, amazing interiors and quirky hostel events for us to enjoy. Check out our pick of the continents coolest...
Always wanted to visit the mysterious city of Istanbul? Well, you know where to stay. Located in the historic bazaar of Istanbul’s Kadikoy District, Hush Hostels is a great place to base yourself to get a feel for the city’s spirit. We love this hostel because it has a spacious rooftop overlooking the ancient city. On the roof, you can enjoy your breakfast, weekly yoga sessions, parties, music and evening events. Backpackers will absolutely love what Hush offers with clean, modern rooms, a garden area and its own cafe and restaurant.
One of the most unique hostels in Europe, Caveland in Santorini offers backpackers something completely different (but totally awesome). You sleep in caves, which are typical of traditional Santorinian architecture. These preserved caves came about because locals used to dig up their houses. Today, the caves are decorated with Greek inspired touches and decked out with modern beds and bathrooms - they even have Free Wifi. Caveland hostel is in a beautiful location overlooking the nearby village Karterados boasting sea view terrace, a large pool and a big communal kitchen. Just a 5 minute drive from the capital city Fira, you’re close to all of Santorini’s action.
Where better to stay in medieval Bruges than in a World Heritage listed Brugge step-gable house? Set in the historic Old Town, St Christopher’s at the Bauhaus is charming inside and out. Downstairs there’s a traditional Belgian beer bar where you can sample the best local beers at the nightly Beer Tasting with more than 50 types to try. Can you get anymore Belgian than that? The bar is always buzzing with locals and travellers alike. The location of the hostel is pretty unbeatable as everything in the city is walkable - or you can rent out a bike and ride down to the local windmills. Made up of private rooms and dorm rooms, this is an affordable and fun place to stay in Bruges.
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This award-winning hostel has been voted ‘Most Popular Hostel in Barcelona’ several times in the Hostelworld ‘Hoscar’ Awards. And we’re not surprised. This is a feel-good hostel located on the top end of La Ramblas, just minutes from Plaça Catalunya and a 20 minute walk to the beach. Belushi’s Bar is attached the hostel where guests benefit from daily drink deals, 25% of food and the incredible atmosphere which brings travellers from all over the world together. This hostel arranges bar crawls, club nights and weekly hostel events like Paella night which makes it a stand-out hostel for us! One of the highlights of the hostel is the outdoor Spanish terrace with traditional Catalan floor tiling - the perfect place to enjoy some Sangria under the sunshine.
This hostel is located right in the heart of Lisbon's cultural and entertainment centre. Set inside an old Portuguese mansion, this hostel has amazing staff, an amazing location and modern dorm rooms. What more could you want? What we particularly love about the Oasis is the events! The hostel runs so many cool things for their guests including free and paid-for experiences to show backpackers the very best of Lisbon. You can get involved in Beer Volleyball (where the winners get free dinner or a free bar crawl), Food Walking Tours, Street Art Bike Tours, Pub Crawls All You Can Eat BBQs and amazing value hostel dinners where you can eat 3 courses for €5 cooked by local chefs! The guys here really care about their guests - you even get a welcome drink on arrival!
If you’re heading to Oktoberfest this autumn, there is no better place to base yourself than the Euro Hostel, located just 10 minutes away from the festival grounds. Set in a beautiful historic building, the hostel was once named ‘Astoria’ one of the very first luxury hostels to open in Munich. At Euro Hostel, the staff are friendly, the German beer is cheap and if you want to experience Bavaria like a true Bavarian, the hostel has you covered with its weekly events. If you love to party, this spot has a lively bar that comes to life at night with live music, happy hours, cheap cocktails, karaoke nights, quizzes and live sports. In fact, the bar serves up Munich’s best beer Augustinerbrau from as little as €2 for half a litre during a 3 hour happy hour! You won’t find that anywhere else in the city.
ST CHRISTOPHER’S INNS AT THE VILLAGE
If any hostel knows how to innovate, it’s this one. St Christopher’s At the Village in London Bridge is the perfect place for the modern backpacker looking for a little more privacy but still wanting to embrace socialising, partying and meeting new people. Taking dorms rooms to the next level, the awesome Japanese-style capsule beds at this hostel provide much more privacy than normal bunks. Plus, they come equipped with USB power points, plug sockets and LED colour-changing lighting. The bar at the hostel is incredible hosting weekly parties with DJs, drink deals and 25% off food for guests.
If you’re looking for a budget hostel in a central city location with a party atmosphere and modern rooms, then you can’t get much better than this one. It’s even been featured in numerous magazines and UK papers as the UK’s First Capsule Hostel.
GALAXY POD HOSTEL
The Galaxy Pod Hostel feels like you’ve travelled to the future because you sleep in space-like pods fitted with TV’s. Pretty cool. If you’ve always wanted to travel to Iceland’s capital, this might just be the place if you’re looking for something new and exciting. There’s even a VR arcade in the hostel with loads of different games to choose from. Located in East Reykjavik, this is a highly rated location for exploring the city.
The romantic city of Venice has a number of great hostels but Hostel Anda is one of our favs. The main reason we’ve included Anda in our list is because we’re a sucker for cool interiors and unique furniture. This design hostel is super funky with pops of colour and cool arty features throughout including swing chairs and a trendy urban garden. The contemporary shared guest kitchen is one of the hostel highlights; it looks like something you’d find in a trendy restaurant.
FLYING PIG DOWNTOWN
The Flying Pig Downtown is the most famous party hostel in Amsterdam. People come from all over the world to stay here just to get the Piggy experience. Located on the Red Light District and just a few minutes from Dam Square, you couldn’t be better placed to experience the city. This is a chilled out hostel where you can socialise in the hostel bar, get involved with the daily activities such as karaoke, pub quizzes and bar crawls - you can even tuck into a homemade Dutch dinner on Sundays. Set in an old 18th century building, the hostel has a very charming, family vibe. At night, the hostel throws parties with live DJs where you can really let your hair down.
Heading to party in Ibiza soon? The Amistat Hostel is right in the heart of Sant Antoni, just 200m from the beach and Ibiza’d legendary party venues. This hostel has everything you need for an Ibiza trip: an amazing swimming pool, a chilled out terrace and comfy beds to cure that hangover. Amistat also organises some really cool hostel events including paella making, dinner & cooking lessons, dancing and music workshops, bike rental, pool events, water sports at the beach, fitness classes and several different tours of the Ibiza. There’s always something fun going on!
CATS HOSTEL SOL
Cats Hostel Sol is an amazing backpacker base for exploring Madrid. We have four words: Serious Moroccon Riad Vibes. The centre of the hostel boasts a beautiful Arab-Andulasian style 17th century patio, the perfect place to chill on cushions or enjoy the hostel sangria parties. The patio is a really special part of the building that has actually been listed as a protected historical heritage site in the city, plus it has a stunning fountain in the middle that is filled with sangria for special events. Located in the very heart of Madrid, Cats offers its guests a whole bunch of exciting activities such as Tapas tours, themed parties, paella cooking shows, walking tours of the city, quiz nights, drinking games, beer pong tournaments and more.
We wouldn't choose anywhere else to stay in Rome other than Alessandro Palace. Why? Because it's like one big family. You're going to feel right at home with all of the weekly events such as Happy Hour on the Roof every Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday! Plus, Pizza night on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Close to Termini Station, the hostel is in a great location for exploring the city and within close reach to the Colosseum, Trevi Fountain and Spanish Steps. In the evenings make the most of the awesome hostel bar serving up cheap drinks and a party atmosphere. Don't forget to look up - you'll see Michelangelo’s masterpiece “The Creation” painted on the bar ceiling. There's also a second bar on the roof terrace - the perfect place to enjoy a cocktail in the summer. The hostel even has its own fitness room if you want to get a workout in.
This is our favourite hostel for adrenaline-seekers and adventurous travellers. If you need to escape urban life and be at one with nature, Balmer’s hostel in Interlaken has everything you need to have an activity-filled trip outdoors. The hostel is surrounded by sparkling lakes and mountains, sitting on the foot of the Jungfrau mountain range.
At Balmer’s the activities are endless from skiing, snowboarding, skydiving, glacier climbing, canoeing, water rafting, paragliding and more. Depending on the season, the hostel has the activities to suit. The different type of sleeping options are cool too: you can camp, stay in the chalet-style hostel rooms or the hammock room. The apres-ski is also amazing. Join the hostel every evening for its fondue nights. Party at the hostel bar or in winter relax in the hot tub. In summer, enjoy hostel BBQ’s and the swimming pool!
ST CHRISTOPHER’S INNS CANAL
Can anything beat enjoying free hostel breakfast on the water? At St Christopher’s Inns, enjoy water views of Canal Saint Martin from the hostels outdoor terrace. This modern hostel is located in a charming part of Paris with easy access to 5 different Metro stations, making getting around the city super easy. This is one lively hostel so you're guaranteed a fun time! The bar turns into an epic party in the evenings where you can make the most of daily drinks deals, beer pong and live DJs. The perfect place to meet other travellers. The hostels rooms boast modern POD beds with curtains so you can get some extra privacy - very handy. The hostel runs free walking tours, bar crawls, city tours and passes and other fun hotel events.
Looking for a central location in Budapest? The Maverick Hostel is the best place to stay in the city because almost all of the sights and attractions are walkable. This hostel is full of rich history too, which is why we love it so much. It’s the perfect mix between historic and new, located in a renovated royal mansion built by the Hapsburg dynasty. How cool is that? Plus, you never have to worry about being low on caffeine because guests benefit from free tea and coffee all day! The hostel offers bike hire, caving tours, wine tasting excursions, pub crawls and even escape room experiences.
SUNFLOWER BEACH HOSTEL
Sunflower Beach Hostel If you’re looking for a party in Rimini, make yourself at home at Sunflower Beach Hostel. Just 200m away from the sandy Adriatic coast, the hostel organises beach volleyball and booze cruises so whether you’re there with friends or travelling solo you’re bound to make friends left, right and centre. Explore the historic city centre in the morning and then retreat to the beach for some well-deserved R&R in the afternoon - with the hostel bar open 24hrs and an awesome daily Happy Hour you might be in for a long night! Make the most of the hostel chill out area and the cocktail swimming pool, and head to the bar for the free pasta party (you’re in Italy after all). One thing’s for certain if you’re in Rimini for your travels this summer, Sunflower Beach is the coolest hostel in town.
ST CHRISTOPHER’S INNS
The Scottish capital is one of our favourite places in the world. The quaint, cobbled streets, the friendly people and all of the traditional Scottish pubs make it a fantastic place to visit. Where to stay? The St Christopher’s Inns hostel couldn’t be better placed right in the heart of Edinburgh’s Old Town, with easy access to all of the main pubs and bars and sights and attractions (plus, everything is cheaper in the Old Town). The hostel is cosy, homely and like one big family.
Tag along to one of the hostel bar crawls to see what Edinburgh is all about. Belushi’s the rock n roll bar below the hostel serves up juicy burgers, bar snacks and a selection of drinks so it’s the perfect place to plan your days in the city with a coffee. If you book direct, you can get free breakfast too! At night, the bar comes to life with students, locals and backpackers alike - you have to try the different flavoured shots!
Our friends at Copenhagen Downtown always give their guests an amazing stay. All of the rooms at the hostel have been designed by local artists so no two rooms are the same. If you’re into art, you’ll love this hostel because there are funky designs everywhere. See how the Scandanavians party at the buzzing hostel bar; in the evenings you can enjoy the live music, hostel parties and daily Happy Hours. Since Copenhagen is the cycling capital of Europe, you can rent a bike from the hostel to explore the city. The staff are super friendly at Copenhagen Downtown which makes the whole experience even better: we highly recommend this hostel if you’re coming to Copenhagen.
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If you’re looking for a party hostel in Berlin, then look no further. St Christopher’s Inns is a home away from home for backpackers visiting the German capital. Bang smack in the centre of Mitte and just a few minutes walk from the city’s iconic TV Tower and U-bahn train station, you couldn’t be better placed. The hostel highlights? Free breakfast (if you book direct), welcoming staff and a brilliant party atmosphere in the evenings making it one of our favourite places to socialize in Berlin. As well as dorm rooms and private rooms, the hostel even has its own shared apartments. The modern apartments are super popular so we highly recommend these if you want to sleep in style. The bar below the hostel that serves up American burgers, delicious bar snacks and Berlin’s staple dish - currywurst! Guests get 50% off food in the bar as well as daily drink deals. Free walking tours depart from the hostel every day, as well as weekly bar crawls and other fun hostel events!
Want to go somewhere completely off the beaten track? Sleep in luxurious wooden buildings hidden amongst the trees in Lapland at the 7 Fells hostel. This eco-friendly hostel is a cosy little escape from reality and you’ll 100% feel like you’re in Narnia. Make the most of free kick sleds in the winter and free bike rides in the summer! The refreshing Finnish air and snow combo is one hell of a thing to experience - but it’s even better if you get to see the Northern Lights (some of the rooms have terraces, the perfect viewpoint to see the lights). For the cold, snowy days, the hostel even has its own sauna. Grab some friends together and head to Lapland this year for a once in a lifetime trip.
PRAGUE, CZECH REPUBLIC
With custom-designed dorms, cool chill out areas and pints costing less than €1, there’s a reason the Czech Inn gets voted as the most popular hostel in Prague. At this contemporary Czech hostel, meeting new people and making lifelong friends couldn’t be easier. Just head down to the underground bar for the daily happy hour and the insane weekly events - we’re talking comedy nights, epic live music, beer tasting, karaoke and DJs - you’re guaranteed to find other backpackers partying and feeling right at home. Then the rooms are an added bonus! Each dorm has its own unique look with an old-school yet modern feel letting you get some well deserved, affordable luxury which you’ll feel from the moment you step into the swanky reception. See the sights within 20 minutes as the Czech Inn is located in the cool area of Vinohrady with one of the best tram links on the doorstep. If Prague’s on your bucket list and you want to make it as memorable as can be, check into the Czech in and you won’t regret it.
Ever thought you’d stay in a floating hostel? Well you’ll find ArkaBarka in Belgrade sitting atop the River Danube - the first hostel ever to be built over a river. The light, modern rooms and quirky hostel bar is perfect for every backpacker, and the location beside one of the city’s most popular parks means you get the best of being both next to nature and near all the action. Belgrade is one of Europe’s most up-and-coming spots for some serious partying, and ArkaBarka is just a short walk from the best of the city’s nightlife. Free wifi, free breakfast, free bikes, a welcome drink on arrival and stylish rooms with stunning river views - you can probably see why this one’s made the list.
A modern hostel in the heart of Frankfurt, Five Elements is a popular location for backpackers to stay in the city where there’s always something going on. Solo travellers will find loads of ways to meet new people here with the Crepe night every Monday, Homemade Cooking Night on Tuesdays, Pasta Night on Wednesdays, Pub Crawls on Thursday and Free Beer Tasting on Fridays. Fill yourself up on the All you can eat breakfast before heading out to explore Frankfurt. Five Elements is just a 15 minute walk to the city centre, 3 minutes walk from the train station, 10 minutes from the city’s museums and boasts having some of the best restaurants and international food on its doorstep. One of the most awesome things about the hostel is the 24/7 bar and long Happy Hour.
CITY BACKPACKERS HOSTEL
Voted the Best Hostel in Sweden every year since 2010, it’s no wonder City Backpackers is the coolest place to stay in Stockholm. The cosy vibes and friendly staff make the hostel feel like a real home away from home. Then all the extra little facilities they provide make it even better! Think free pasta in the cupboards, movie nights, free ice skate rental when the Scandinavian chill arrives and a free sauna every evening of the year. Plus each week they put on a Swedish meatball dinner for guests so you can mingle with other travellers and indulge in (arguably) the country’s tastiest dish. The location of this hostel couldn’t be better, with the medieval Old Town in walking distance and the best shopping in the city around the corner.