The best hostels around the world

Beautifully designed and friendly on the pocket - 6 hostels to rival Airbnb for your next adventure.

While the humble hostel may have lost a little of its shimmer in the rise of share-house mega-watt Airbnb, there are still plenty of advantages to choosing one to bunker down in. Often in enviable locations, hostels today are incorporating beautiful, clever design features and more boutique-sized rooms to accommodate smaller travelling parties.

With their welcoming sense of community beating strong, hostels are still a winning choice for those looking for affordable accommodation and other like-minded travel buddies.

Here are a few of our favourite examples around the world to get you inspired.

1. Loft Hostel, Paris

This boutique hostel in Paris is a chic, well-priced gem in a city where accommodation doesn’t come cheap. Nestled in the vibrant Belleville neighbourhood, The Loft is far enough away from the tourists milling around the main sites, but easy enough to reach via a couple of metro stops. Eye-popping colour features in this funky property, with rooms either encompassing ‘baroque’, ‘cosy’ or ‘pop’ themes. Rooms are also available in a variety of configurations, from deluxe doubles to eight-bed mixed dorms.

2. Wombat City Hostel, Budapest

Opening in 2012, Wombat City Hostel Budapest occupied a former 4-star hotel, providing a great foundation for this stylish property. Extra spacious rooms with en-suite bathrooms and added extras like hairdryers maintain a ‘hotel’ feel in this fun-loving hostel in the centre of the city. As the largest hostel in Budapest, it’s definitely one for those up for a party – and the hostel organises some great bonding activities for guests. Pub crawl anyone?

3. Generator Dublin 

Taking its design cues from the neighbouring Jameson Distillery, Generator Dublin is a stylish blend of exposed brick, stone and style. Recycled Jameson bottle chandeliers illuminate the bar, and the hostel’s cafe is enclosed within a huge glass and steel ceiling. The private rooms boast clean lines and a relaxed feel. On weekends, treat yourself to a traditional Irish brekkie and kick back on some comfy chairs in the in-house cinema.

4. Lub D, Silom Bangkok

A regular on best hostel lists around the world, Lub D is Thai for ‘sleep well’ and has two locations in bustling Bangkok. The Silom location is the original, tucked away off Silom Road near the BTS sky train’s Chong Nonsi station and a plethora of cheap eats. With a sleek, industrial vibe, it conveniently includes all the little extras you appreciate in travel – personal power sockets, roomy beds, luggage lockers, relaxed common areas and excellent showers.

5. Castle Rock Hostel, Edinburgh

Location, location! At the foot of Edinburgh Castle, you can’t get much more perfectly positioned than the Castle Rock Hostel. Exuding endless grand, old-world Scottish charm, this quirky hostel lives up to its regal location with soaring ceilings, crackling fires and art-lined walls. Close to public transport, a pick up point for city walking tours and with sweeping views over the magical Scottish capital, it’s the closest hostel to a castle we’ve seen yet.

6. Generator Copenhagen

Another European Generator gem, this gorgeous hostel exudes the clean lines and cool style the Danes are known for. Housed in a building originally created by French design superstar Philippe Starck, Generator’s new life as a six-story hostel maintains its stylish origins. Lounge around amongst the blonde woods and suspended lights of the cafe, bathe in the sunlight of the petanque lounge, or retreat to your simple, stylish bedroom that spans single to 8-bed configurations.

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