Travellers don’t usually expect to find games rooms, rooftop bars, traditional cooking classes or free walking tours in budget accommodation costing as little as £2.70 per night – but those are some of the perks offered by this year’s best hostels around the world.
Now in its 17th year, Hostelworld.com’s annual awards, the Hoscars – like the Oscars for hostels – rates budget properties around the globe, judging them on value for money, location, atmosphere, facilities, security, character and cleanliness. Judges also take into account reviews from the website’s 1.1million customers.
The hostels below have beaten more than 17,700 properties in 180 countries to claim their gongs. Scroll down for this year’s winners and start planning your next trip…
Best Hostel in Europe and Best Atmosphere – 5 Terre Backpackers, Cinque Terre, Italy
The 5 Terre Backpackers boasts incredible views of Cinque Terre National Park in Italy
The 5 Terre Backpackers is close to the lush Cinque Terre National Park in Italy’s La Spezia province.
According to Hostel World, it’s ‘an undiscovered paradise’.
Guests can enjoy ‘amazing’ panoramic mountain views and meet fellow travellers in the restaurant and bar, or relax in the patio and garden area. The hostel even offers a day trip sailing along the beautiful Riviera, which is peppered with picturesque villages.
Price: Dorms from £21.14 per night. Rating: 9.9.
Best in Oceania and Best Location – Adventure Q2 Hostel, Queenstown, New Zealand
Excursions including rock climbing and bungee jumping are available at Adventure Q2 Hostel in Queenstown, New Zealand
Adventure Q2 Hostel aims to provide its guests with ‘the best possible escapades in Queenstown’ through excursions such as rock climbing, bungee jumping off Kawarau Bridge or skiing or snowboarding on Coronet Peak.
The hostel will even lend explorers a GoPro to capture all their adventures.
Pub crawls can be arranged, while those looking for a quieter evening can enjoy the lounge for movie nights and PS4 gaming, or indulge in a terrace barbecue.
Price: Dorms from £19.91 per night. Rating: 9.7.
Best in North America – Maya Papaya, Antigua, Guatemala
A traditional Guatemalan breakfast is one of the highlights at Maya Papaya in Guatemala
The Maya Papaya is situated in Antigua Guatemala, a short walk from the Santa Catalina Arch and five miles from the ‘hobbit houses’ in the remote mountainside village of Hobbitenango. Guests can treat themselves to a traditional Guatemalan breakfast, take a drink at the bar and meet fellow travellers in either the lounge or garden area, says Hostel World.
Price: Dorms from £9.23 per night. Rating: 9.5.
Best in South America – Mapatagonia Outdoor Hostel, Puerto Varas, Chile
A century-old colonial house with a spacious garden welcomes visitors to Puerto Varas in the Chilean Lake District
Nestled in Puerto Varas in the Chilean Lake District, Mapatagonia Outdoor Hostel is located in a 100-year-old colonial house (luckily with Wi-Fi and power showers).
‘Head out for days of outdoor activities including rafting, kayaking, biking and mountaineering before relaxing in the spacious garden for delicious barbecues and a spot of sunbathing,’ says Hostel World.
Price: Dorms from £11.54 per night. Rating: 9.9.
Best in Africa – Rodamon Riad Marrakech Hostel, Marrakech, Morocco
The boutique-y Rodamo Riad Marrakech Hostel has a stunning swimming pool and a cocktail bar in the central courtyard
Hostel World says: ‘Travellers looking for an authentic Moroccan experience should check out the Rodamón Riad Marrakech Hostel, a short walk from the beautiful Majorelle Gardens and busy Djemaâ El Fna Square.’
There’s a rooftop terrace and bar with views of the Atlas Mountains and the Koutoubia Mosque, it adds, as well as a restaurant and an on-site swimming pool.
The common areas have TVs, games and laptops.
Price: Dorms from £15.43 per night. Rating: 9.5.
Best in England and Most Popular in London – Hostel One Notting Hill, London
Hostel One Notting Hill: Free ‘delicious’ dinners and in one of London’s ‘most beautiful neighbourhoods’
This 19th-century building is ‘located in the heart of one of London’s most beautiful neighbourhoods’, says Hostel World.
It adds: ‘Hostel One Notting Hill is a stone’s throw away from tourist attractions including Portobello Market, Hyde Park and Kensington Palace. After a day exploring the historic capital, spend the evening relaxing and indulging in the free delicious dinner with your fellow travellers.’
Price: Dorms from £20.88 per night. Rating: 9.5.
Best in Asia – Cheerful Hoi An Hostel, Hoi An, Vietnam
One of the perks of Cheerful Hoi An Hostel in Vietnam is its location in the heart of the Ancient Town
Nestled in the heart of Hoi An Ancient Town, Cheerful Hoi An Hostel offers ‘peaceful’ and centrally located accommodation a short walk from the Hoi An Historic Museum and less than two miles from Bang Beach.
Guests can experience Vietnamese culture with local foods and even be taught the local language by staff in the garden, according to Hostel World.
Price: Dorms from £4.62 per night. Rating: 9.9.
Best for Solo Travellers – 360 Hostel Barcelona Arts&Culture, Barcelona, Spain
360 Hostel Barcelona Arts&Culture has a sun terrace and a steam room
Offering ‘a real flavour of the best of Barcelona’, 360 Hostel Barcelona Arts&Culture was awarded Best for Solo Travellers. Here, you can snap arty photos of Gothic architecture on the free Old Town walking tour, satisfy your appetite at a paella-making class, or bond with fellow travellers over free tapas, says Hostel World.
For those looking to relax, it adds, there’s a sun terrace and even a steam room. Guests can also easily wander to the bohemian El Born neighbourhood to explore boutique shops, quirky restaurants and cool bars.
Price: Dorms from £15.33 per night. Rating: 9.7.
Best Solo Female Hostel – Hostel One Prague, Czech Republic
Hostel One Prague is located in the ‘edgy’ district of Zizkov
Situated in the ‘vibrant and edgy’ district of Žižkov, Hostel One Prague promises a memorable experience where guests can mingle, according to Hostel World.
It adds: ‘There are walking tours and activities during the day, and the hostel’s own bar, aptly named The Rave Cave, for those looking to start their night off right. For a quieter evening, guests can watch a movie, enjoy a guitar session in the communal lounge, or simply chill in the garden with a drink.’
Price: Dorms from £15.35 per night. Rating: 9.6.
Best Solo Male Hostel and Best Large Hostel – Los Patios Hostel, Medellin, Colombia
The rooftop bar at Los Patios Hostel Boutique in Colombia offers panoramic views of the valley
You’ll find Los Patios Hostel Boutique in the city of Medellin, nestled in a tropical valley in Colombia, says Hostel World.
It adds: ‘Each unique floor is designed to celebrate one of Colombia’s natural wonders: the mountains, jungle, ocean and plains, while rooms are named after the country’s most-loved destinations. Head to the rooftop bar to soak up some Colombian rays and share a drink with friends while taking in the jaw-dropping views, hit the onsite gym, or chill in the games room complete with a PS4.’
Price: Dorms from £12.48 per night. Rating: 9.5.
Best for Pre-Uni Gap-Yearers (aged 18-24) –The Hat Madrid, Madrid, Spain
A great common area, restaurant and bar are some of the highlights at The Hat Madrid
The Hat Madrid prides itself on having a ‘super-friendly’ vibe with ‘all the benefits of being located in the buzzing Plaza Mayor’.
Hostel World says: ‘Situated close to popular sites such as the Puerta del Sol, Grand Via and La Latina, there’s plenty to do nearby. The Hat Madrid boasts an amazing common area, a restaurant and a bar, as well as an inviting rooftop terrace and solarium.’
Price: Dorms from £18.32 per night. Rating: 9.5
Best for Graduate Gap-Yearers (aged 25-30) and Best Medium Hostel – Yes! Lisbon Hostel, Lisbon, Portugal
Portugal’s Yes! Lisbon Hostel has a cosy lounge and offers free city walking tours
Yes! Lisbon Hostel is ‘a fantastic spot for meeting like-minded travellers’ says Hostel World, ‘with common areas including a cosy lounge featuring board games and a PS4, as well as an on-site bar for drinks.’
It adds that there’s a free walking tour around ‘the famous cobbled streets’, and a restaurant for local cuisine and swapping travel stories with new friends.
Price: Dorms from £14.46 per night. Rating: 9.6.
Best for Career Breakers (aged 31+) – Home Lisbon Hostel, Lisbon, Portugal
Home Lisbon Hostel looks more like a trendy boutique hotel than budget accommodation costing less than £15 per night
Home Lisbon Hostel is a 200-year-old building found in the famous Baixa neighbourhood in the heart of Lisbon.
The hostel hosts events ‘designed to immerse guests in the city’s history and culture’, including nightly dinners for the best way to taste ‘classic Portuguese home-cooking’. Stroll the cobbled streets on a free walking tour, soak up some vitamin D on the patio or lounge around in the colourful living room.
Price: Dorms from £14.56 per night. Rating: 9.6.
Best New Hostel – Wombat’s City Hostel Venice Mestre, Venice, Italy
Combining the magnificence of the floating city of Venice with the practicalities of a hostel, Wombat’s City Hostel Venice Mestre ticks all the boxes
The Wombat’s City Hostel Venice Mestre is ‘just a 10-minute train ride from the floating city and an easy bus journey to the airport’. This hostel combines ‘the magnificence of Venice with the functionality of a hostel’, offering a communal lounge and ‘lively womBar to plan your next adventure’.
Price: Dorms from £13.71 per night. Rating: 9.5.
Best Facilities – The RoadHouse Prague, Prague, Czech Republic
Run by seasoned backpackers, The RoadHouse Prague ticks all the boxes for budget travellers
The RoadHouse Prague is ‘run by seasoned backpackers who have made Prague their home with the goal of creating lasting memories for others’.
There are daily activities, says Hostel World, and nightly family dinners designed to bring guests together in a ‘friendly and welcoming’ atmosphere.
It adds: ‘The comfortable lounge has a TV and a wide range of books and board games for those lazy afternoons, while the local neighbourhood is famous for its cafes, bars and restaurants.’
Price: Dorms from £15.80 per night. Rating: 9.9.
Best Value for Money – Tropical Valley Homestay, Phong Nha, Vietnam
Family-run Tropical Valley Homestay in Phong Nha, Vietnam, offers best value for money at £2.70 per night
With sweeping river and mountain views, Tropical Valley Homestay in Phong Nha is run by a local family resulting in a ‘homely’ atmosphere.
The hostel has a restaurant serving local cuisine, a shared lounge and a large garden, Hostel World explains. Guests wanting to explore the local surroundings can sign up to daily walking and cycling tours through the caves and jungle.
Price: Dorms from £2.70 per night. Rating: 9.7.
Best for English Travellers – Cozy Nook Hostel, Da Lat, Vietnam
A great choice for visitors wanting to experience authentic Vietnam is the Cozy Nook Hostel, which offers cultural exchanges
Cozy Nook Hostel is a family-run accommodation ‘with the sole aim of providing an authentic Vietnamese experience for their guests’.
This includes the option of dining with the family and taking part in a cultural exchange, Hostel World says.
Daily activities include canyoning, trekking, and motorbike tours to explore the natural beauty and ‘relaxed vibe’ of Da Lat in southern Vietnam’s Central Highlands.
Price: Dorms from £5.73 per night. Rating: 9.6.
Best Small Hostel – Roy’s Villa Hostel, Sigiriya, Sri Lanka
Guests at Roy’s Villa Hostel in Sigiriya, Sri Lanka, all enjoy lakeside views from their bedrooms and can take part in a whole host of excursions
Roy’s Villa Hostel is ‘the ideal place’ for those looking to escape busy city streets and lose themselves in the Sri Lankan wilderness.
This hostel offers lakeside views from each of the rooms and excursions to both Lion Rock, Pidurangala Rock, the city of Dambulla and the ancient ruins city of Polonnaruwa, and travellers can also spend time with local farmers in their rice fields or swim in the local lake.
Price: Dorms from £9.23 per night. Rating: 9.9.
Best Extra Large Hostel – Wombat’s City Hostel Vienna, Austria
Located in the heart of Naschmarkt market, Wombat City Hostel in Vienna is a great choice for those interested in art and architecture
The Wombat’s City Hostel Vienna is in the heart of the city with Vienna’s biggest market, Naschmarkt, directly on its doorstep.
This hostel, says Hostel World, is a great choice for guests interested in art and architecture as it’s just south of the cultural quarter. Guests can sip a drink or two in the womBAR and have a game on the pool table, or head straight out to cultural hotspots such as the Vienna State Opera and the 13th-century Hofburg Palace.
Price: Dorms from £16.07 per night. Rating: 9.0.