Hostels are a staple for the budget traveler; especially, in Europe where travel prices are high. Luckily for intrepid travelers, hostels are no longer just a place to park your luggage and lay your head. All across Europe, hostels have become destinations in and of themselves. The hostels listed below are beautiful, comfortable and full of amenities that’ll enhance your visit. Here are the best hostels in Europe:
St. Christopher is the patron saint of travelers and the namesake of a chain of higher-end hostels across Europe, but their Barcelona building stands out among the rest. Just seconds away from La Rambla, the stylish hostel boasts clean architectural lines and décor by local graffiti artists. Next door, is the hostel-owned bar and chill space, which turns into a dance club later in the evening. Other amenities include free breakfast and coffee, beds with privacy curtains and free city tours.
In a city full of neat hostels, the art deco inspired Independente stands out. The building, which used to be the residence of the Swiss Ambassador to Portugal, now houses 11 dorm rooms and four private suites with balconies. Guests can also take advantage of the beautiful sun terrace and the hostel’s hip bar.
If you have time, check out the Decadente restaurant at the base of the building for some great modern Portuguese food. If you’re on a budget, seven Euros gets you an in-hostel buffet dinner.
Miss Sophie’s is more like a boutique hotel than a hostel, with chic design features and private apartments and suites as well as dorm rooms. There are rain head showers (yes, even in the dorm rooms), motion sensor lights and fluffy beds. There’s a well thought out bar with a large beer and wine selection. Best of all, Miss Sophie’s has its own personal chef who can whip up breakfast on demand—no stale bread and cereal buffet here!
Hostel Celica has long been a favorite of those hostel aficionados looking for something different. Formerly a prison, the building has been transformed into a beautiful hostel and display of local alternative art. Guests can stay in actual former prison cells, complete with bars, that have been redecorated, each by a different local artist. If you’re the claustrophobic type, escape from your room to the beautiful garden, which is lit by candles in the evening. There are often free performances here as well.
This hostel, in downtown Milan, understands that it’s the little details that make a hostel so enjoyable. Things like a free welcome cocktail, a sunny balcony and a complimentary buffet breakfast (available all day long). There’s also plenty of shared space, including a pretty kitchen, a chill common room and a large bar which hosts happy hours and is a popular nightlife spot for travelers and locals alike.
There are several Plus Hostels in Europe, but the Berlin location has become famous for its wonderful amenities including a swimming pool and a sauna. Yes, really. The indoor swimming pool is open to all guests, as is the sunny outdoor courtyard, complete with artistic sculptures and pet rabbits. The Opera Bar and Restaurant offers pizza and other entrees.
Accommodation in London can be expensive, but this hostel will keep you comfortable on a budget. Located near the Elephant & Castle tube stop, Safestay is close to lots of cool coffee shops, restaurants and bars. Inside, the hostel is bright and funky with a bar and pool table. The best part about Safestay however, is the rooms with their thick bedding, privacy curtains and ensuite bathrooms.