My Favourite Hostels in Europe

Posted on 28. Jan, 2014 by in Europe Travel, Travel Tips

Best Hostels in Europe

While few things make me happier than falling asleep in Egyptian-thread sheets and bathing in L’Occitane toiletries, I do appreciate a good hostel as well.

My friend and fellow blogger Kash recently published the Bible of luxury hostels in Europe, which focuses on hostels with high standards, stylish private rooms and affordable prices. I strongly urge budget-strapped-visitors-with-luxurious-taste to check it out. But for now, here is my own selection of stylish hostels in Europe — not necessarily luxury, but all-around awesome.

I like good value, regardless of what price I actually pay. I absolutely love splurging on a 5* hotel room every now and then, and I expect impeccable service, marble floors and 50″ TV screen when I do. Just as I expect trendy decor and welcoming staff in a luxury hostel. I like knowing my money is smartly spent, and these hostels provide exactly that: modern decor, good location, top-notch facilities and competitive prices.

Best Hostels in Europe: My Favorites

Plus Hostel Berlin

best hostels in europe

Plus Berlin

Any  hostel that lists “indoor pool” among its facilities is a hit, in my book. And the reasons why Plus Hostel Berlin is awesome doesn’t stop there: aptly categorized as hotel/hostel, this property, which is hands-down my favourite hostel in all of Europe, gives budget-conscious travellers ample bang for their buck by offering private, spacious and tastefully designed en-suite rooms (complete with mini-fridge and TV).

Other freebies include yoga classes, reliable WiFi, sauna, inner courtyard and an relaxed atmosphere in a fun neighbourhood. I particularly liked the Opera Restaurant on site, which in addition to being fairly large by hostel standards, offers a delicious buffet breakfast as well as evening meals for less than €6 per person.

Rates start at €60 for a private en-suite room.

Singer 109 Berlin

best hostels in europe

Singer 109 Berlin

My other favourite hostel in Berlin is Singer 109, which is located minutes away from the iconic Fernsehturm and busy Alexanderplatz. One of my favourite things about this apartment-hostel is not only its extensive list of on-site activities, but its strong character; indeed, the hostel is located in a historic red brick building that dates back to the early 1900s and features a massive atrium in the centre, filled with luxuriant plants and archive photos of the building’s previous lives. A feature more often seen in private residences rather than budget hostels! Singer 101 is not as luxurious as Plus Hostel, but is a good option nonetheless.

Rates start €80 for a two-bed apartment that comes fully equipped cable TV, a small kitchenette and en-suite bathroom.

Generator Hostel Copenhagen

best hostels in europe

Generator Copenhagen

As if this great Norse city wasn’t perfect enough as it is! Generator Hostel in Copenhagen is definitely one of the best hostels in Europe, thanks to its stylish furniture (this is Scandinavia, after all), a very hygge ambiance and plenty of on-site facilities (Screening room! Bar! Free, fast wi-fi throughout! Outdoor patio!) , in addition to a killer location next to Rosenborg Castle and bustling Kongens Nytorv. Bonus brownie points for the private rooms on the top floor, which, thanks to room-wide windows, offer incredible views of the neighbourhood and make for a fine sunset-watching spot.

Despite being in the heart of one of the costliest cities in the world, Generator Copenhagen offers top value to travellers with a 5 star taste and a hostel budget. Make sure to order a sweet, delicious Somersby apple cider at the bar, one of the most popular drinks in Denmark.

Rates start at DKK 243 (€33) for a private en-suite room.

Generator Hostel Dublin

best hostels in europe

Generator Dublin

As you can probably tell by now, I am particularly fond of the Generator Hostels. Booking hostels and hotels is always a risky business, because it’s quite difficult to really know what you’re getting yourself into until you actually set foot in the property. However, one of the main advantages of staying in a chain hostel is knowing precisely what to expect in terms of standards and facilities, thus avoiding disappointment.

A lot of people steer clear of chains because they prefer accommodation with a distinct personality, but Generator Dublin is nothing if not full of character (as are all other Generators I have stayed in, including the Hamburg location). And by this I of course mean the gigantic Jameson-whiskey bottle chandelier in the common room and the unique frescoes in every room.

Rates start at €50 for a single en-suite room (minimum of two nights).

St. Christopher’s Paris

best hostels in europe

St. Christophers Paris

I stayed at St. Christopher’s Paris well before I even thought of having a blog, back when I was just a regular backpacker will a small budget and big expectations. I wasn’t as in love with Paris then as I am now, and this hostel, thanks to its fantastic canal-side location, helped soothe my Paris wounds. Purpose-built in 2008, it’s one of the most modern hostels in Paris and comes fully equipped with the latest technology (pod beds, ample charging stations and tasteful decor).

Rates start at €85 for a private en-suite room for two with breakfast included.

Jaeger’s Hostel Munich

best hostels in europe

Jaegers Munich

I stayed at Jaegers during my Christmas Markets stint last December, and the private room provided exactly what I needed: ample covers, efficient heater and fast wifi! It was a wee bit cold outside during my visit (slight understatement, it was freezing cold) and I couldn’t have been more thankful for my warm abode next to München Hauptbahnhof. The rooms are far more modern than the common areas on the ground floor and come fully equipped with ample storage, cable TV, power shower and hairdryer.

Rates start at €45 for a single room with welcome drinks included.

Smart City Hostel, Edinburgh

best hostels in europe

Smart City Hostel Edinburgh

One of the main selling points of Smart City Hostel is its location - right off the bustling and historic Royal Mile, therefore within walking distance of pretty much all of Edinburgh’s attractions. While the rooms are quite basic, the bar/restaurant area is the main reason why I keep going back to this hostel. Indie music, large armchairs, free wifi and inexpensive cocktails make for an enjoyable place to spend a couple of hours, or, in my case, to get work done. The breakfasts are also quite legendary: nowhere else in Edinburgh can you get a fully cooked Scottish buffet breakfast (which includes sausages, eggs, potatoes and HAGGIS) for just £5.

Rates start at £87 for a private en-suite room for two with breakfast included.

Best Hostels in Europe: Other Recommendations

Honorable mentions to hostels I’ve never visited but that generally receive good reviews from fellow travelers:

  • Gallery Hostel, Porto
  • The Flying Pig, Amsterdam
  • SafeStay Hostel, London
  • Casa Gracia, Barcelona
  • U Hostels, Madrid
  • Kex Hostel, Reykjavik

Have you got a favorite hostel in Europe? What makes it so special? Do you like the concept of luxury hostelling?

Disclaimer: I have received free accommodation in some of those hostels, but rest assured that I only included the best of the best in this list. As always, all opinions are my own.

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76 Responses to “My Favourite Hostels in Europe”

  1. Susan (@VibrantIreland)

    28. Jan, 2014

    I’m bookmarking this list! I also love a great hostel, and as am often in Dublin I always stay in Generator. Good to know about these others- thanks!

    Reply to this comment
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres

      28. Jan, 2014

      Happy to help, Susan! These are great, good-value hostels.

      Reply to this comment
  2. Kirsten

    28. Jan, 2014

    Great list, Marie-Eve!

    Reply to this comment
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres

      28. Jan, 2014

      Thank you so much Kirsten! Have you stayed in any of them?

      Reply to this comment
  3. Kash

    30. Jan, 2014

    Great list and thanks for the shoutout! Singer 109 and Jaegars-have not heard of them and will have a peek at them. St Christophers have a new hostel in Gare Du Nord that I’ve heard good things about….

    Reply to this comment
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres

      30. Jan, 2014

      Yes, I’d been meaning to try it last spring, I’ve heard good things about it too. A nice addition to the area, IMO.

      Reply to this comment
    • Holly

      30. Jan, 2014

      I stayed at Singer 109 a couple of years and loved it! It was clean, pleasant and in a great area. I highly recommend it. Maybe next time I’ll try Plus Berlin but only because of the pool. That would be the only thing that could lure me away.

      Reply to this comment
      • Marie-Eve Vallieres

        02. Feb, 2014

        Happy to hear I’m not the only one to like Singer 109! Such a great hostel in a fabulous building.

        Reply to this comment
  4. Caitlyn

    30. Jan, 2014

    What a great list! I’ve stayed at a few of those - Plus, St Christopher’s and Jaeger’s - and definitely agree with you. At least you stayed in a private room at Jaeger’s - I roughed it in the 40-bed dorm! :P

    Reply to this comment
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres

      02. Feb, 2014

      40-bed dorm sounds HORRID. But I assure you the private rooms are awesome :)

      Reply to this comment
  5. Matt

    30. Jan, 2014

    Plus Florence Hostel was amazing. It has one of those pools that is filled all the way to the top so it looks all serene and had LEDs all around it. Bar on the main floor. Head upstairs to the roof and what do you find? Another pool!…and another bar. Such a cool place and was only $20 per night - and clean! I just checked the price and it’s even cheaper right now. Great experience.

    Reply to this comment
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres

      02. Feb, 2014

      Yes, PLUS are great hostels. Definitely good value and great fun!

      Reply to this comment
  6. Wallpapers

    03. Feb, 2014

    Good list, very useful

    Reply to this comment
  7. Andrea

    03. Feb, 2014

    I heard ROOM Hostel in Rotterdam is also pretty cool, have you tried it?

    Reply to this comment
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres

      03. Feb, 2014

      I have, actually, and while the hostel’s dog won me over I wasn’t so enthused by the inexistant sound proofing and the 4 floors without elevator…

      Reply to this comment
  8. Krista

    03. Feb, 2014

    I just found your site and it seems very informative! You have a great list!

    Reply to this comment
  9. Laura

    04. Feb, 2014

    I stayed at The Loft Hostel in Budapest and it was great! Pretty average amenities (they had wifi, a kitchen available with tea, 10 people rooms, etc) but the staff is amazing! They gave us great advice for stuff to do in Budapest, awesome city maps and a map of the surrounding blocks with restaurants, bars, breakfast joints, etc. One of the best experiences I had in a hostel. I would highly highly recommend them.

    Reply to this comment
  10. Richard

    07. Feb, 2014

    Palmer’s Lodge Swiss Cottage in London was really great. I also enjoyed St. Christopher’s Inn in Edinburgh.

    Reply to this comment
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres

      08. Feb, 2014

      I heard good things about both hostels, too! I tried the Palmers Lodge in Willesden but wasn’t a big fan.

      Reply to this comment
  11. Tess

    07. Feb, 2014

    You’re list looks nice! I prefer the smaller, independent hostels. Room Rotterdam is one of the best I think. I definitely agree with Singer 109. Keep up the good work!

    Reply to this comment
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres

      08. Feb, 2014

      Thanks Tess! I really liked Singer 109 as well.

      Reply to this comment
  12. Sekai

    08. Feb, 2014

    O wow thank you so much for this list. Want to visit europe for a month with my family and was looking for good places to stay in. Want to visit different countries and your list just makes it so easy for us.

    Reply to this comment
  13. Erin

    12. Feb, 2014

    Some of these look lovely! If anybody is looking for a hostel in Paris I would recommend NOT the Jules-Ferry Hi Hostel. Unless you like your valuables being stolen by staff, bed bugs, no security or privacy, and getting screamed at by the cleaner.

    Reply to this comment
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres

      13. Feb, 2014

      Wow, that sounds like a horrid experience! Indeed, the St Christophers Paris (either one of them) sound like a much better option.

      Reply to this comment
  14. Samantha

    13. Feb, 2014

    Do you know of any other hostels in Edinburgh that have a girls only dorm? Also, great list. I look forward to trying some of them!

    Reply to this comment
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres

      14. Feb, 2014

      Hey Samantha, I’m not sure as I’ve never booked a girls-only dorm but you can use a hostel search engine (Hostelworld.com and Hostelbookers.com for example) and select “Girls Only Dorm” in your research. That should help!

      Reply to this comment
  15. Brittany

    20. Feb, 2014

    Hey,
    These all look great but I’ve stayed at Casa Gracia and it left a lot to be desired. We were put in a closet basically to sleep and it had no air flow and it was stinky. Just so people know :)

    Reply to this comment
  16. Angela Travels

    20. Feb, 2014

    Great list of places to stay!

    Reply to this comment
  17. PJANSSENS

    21. Feb, 2014

    Does anyone know a nice hostel in Moscow and/or Saint Petersburg ?
    Thx !

    Reply to this comment
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres

      23. Feb, 2014

      Haven’t been to either of these cities so I’m afraid I can’t help! Best of luck!

      Reply to this comment
  18. Steve

    24. Feb, 2014

    i can see why they’re your favourites, they’re all quite luxe! to be fair though, i did stay at the generator hamburg and it was really nice, modern and comfy. and surprisingly one of the cheaper options in town.

    Reply to this comment
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres

      24. Feb, 2014

      The proof that luxury and value don’t have to be expensive :)

      Reply to this comment
  19. Esther

    06. Mar, 2014

    Great list! Funky Hostel in Granada (Spain) was also pretty good. They had a great roof terrace and the hostel was built against the mountain back of where the Alhambra is built… so you can imagine the pretty views :-)

    Mama Shelter is Paris is also really gorgious and I loved BaxPax downtown in Berlin.

    Esther.

    Reply to this comment
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres

      06. Mar, 2014

      Thank you so much for the suggestions. I heard good things about Funky Hostel too!

      Reply to this comment
  20. Jafar

    20. Mar, 2014

    If you plan to visit Tajikistan, a central asian country with beautiful mountains, you are welcome to stay at Yeti Hostel.

    Reply to this comment
  21. MightyTravels

    26. Mar, 2014

    OMG - these are some good looking hostels!

    Btw just followed you on Twitter as well - like your site! Looking forward to connect!

    Reply to this comment
  22. lydia

    04. Apr, 2014

    My favorite is The pink palace in Corfu, Greece ! Great staff, tons of activities, parties all the time, beautiful beach and VERY cheap private room for 2 with breakfast AND diner for 20 euros per person ! :)

    Reply to this comment
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres

      06. Apr, 2014

      Good to know, thanks for sharing such a good tip! Will bookmark this info :-)

      Reply to this comment
  23. Danielle

    05. Apr, 2014

    To note, there is also now St. Christopher’s Gare du Nord in Paris (new as of July 2013) which was fantastic (free breakfast!).

    I’ve been to over 15 hostels and only one has been bad but it would take too long to list them all!

    Reply to this comment
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres

      06. Apr, 2014

      Yes I’ve heard such good things about it! Will have to try it next time I’m in Paris.

      Reply to this comment
  24. Brittany

    12. Apr, 2014

    Wow, thanks so much for this list! I’m currently planning a 5 week trip backpacking Europe and was having trouble finding a place to say in Paris. Thanks for all the great hostel suggestions, this is so helpful!

    Reply to this comment
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres

      15. Apr, 2014

      The two St Christophers in Paris are the best solution for budget-strapped travelers. Apartment rentals are also an interesting budget option if you plan on staying several days. Enjoy Paris!

      Reply to this comment
  25. Simon

    01. May, 2014

    Geez, some of those hostels look a wee bit out of my price range! They must put the ‘flash’ into ‘flashpacking’. They look amazing, though. Much nicer than the hostels I stayed in in SE Asia

    Reply to this comment
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres

      05. May, 2014

      Quality hostel always cost a bit more than regular bunks, but they really aren’t that expensive considering what you get for the price.

      Reply to this comment
  26. Brad Bernard

    02. May, 2014

    Holy crap, those are hostels!? They have come a long way from the cramped bunkers of old. I should include this in my Summer Travel Experiences.

    Reply to this comment
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres

      05. May, 2014

      Yes, all hostels! Luxury hostels are a thing, and it’s FABULOUS.

      Reply to this comment
  27. Nomad Revelations

    27. May, 2014

    Lovely page.I love to travel and certainly hostels are one of my favorite places for accommodation. I’m going to check your advice on Berlin since it looks amazing. Berlin has very nice hostels, Lisbon in Portugal also. OK thank you and greetings from Rio de Janeiro.

    Reply to this comment
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres

      28. May, 2014

      Thanks for the comment! Berlin is a great destination for budget travellers with expensive taste!

      Reply to this comment
  28. Siddhartha Joshi

    13. Jun, 2014

    Wow! they all look great…

    Reply to this comment
  29. Jennifer

    18. Jun, 2014

    The Sorrento Hostel 7 was amazing as well!

    Reply to this comment
  30. Amanda

    18. Jun, 2014

    Any suggestions for a hostel in Split and Hvar? Thanks

    Reply to this comment
  31. Ruth Macias

    27. Jun, 2014

    How bad is the gare du nord area in terms of security? It’s my first time in Paris and I am very scared because I’ve heard that it’s common that tourist get robbed on the streets and I read that you shouldn’t be wandering around gare du nord or montmartre at night. This is the only thing Im not liking about st Christopher’s so how bad is it really?

    Reply to this comment
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres

      07. Jul, 2014

      Pickpocketing won’t be an issue if your handbag is zipped. Gare du Nord, as most train stations in Europe, gets a bit rowdy but it’s nothing city smarts can beat (don’t exhibit expensive phones/cameras/jewelry, don’t show your money, don’t linger in dark alleys). Nothing to worry about!

      Reply to this comment
  32. Boris

    10. Jul, 2014

    Paying the price of a hotel for a hostel? I don’t know. But in Berlin I can recommend the Circus Hostel - don’t let the name fool you, it’s the top rated hostel in Berlin according to herbegen.com, hostelworld.com, etc. It’s located in the middle of Berlin, has free and great working WiFi and costs only 26 Euro (dorm).

    Reply to this comment
  33. Ian

    01. Aug, 2014

    I have to suggest Villa St. Exupery in Nice and Doug’s Mountain Getaway in Fulpmes (near Innsbruck)

    Reply to this comment
  34. Carolin

    21. Aug, 2014

    Just in the planning stages of my first backpacking adventure at age 50. Can you tell me if staying at the hostels one night or more is there a place to lock up your bag while you go sight seeing?
    thanks
    Carolin

    Reply to this comment
  35. Nicole

    12. Nov, 2014

    Hey, what great places! Would you also recommend a luxury hostel for families? Looking to go to Zagreb, Zadar and Ljubljana soon.

    Reply to this comment
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres

      18. Nov, 2014

      Hello Nicole, I’m not familiar with family-friendly hostels in Europe but most luxury hotels have private room for up to 4 people, so this might be a good start.

      Reply to this comment
  36. Max

    19. Nov, 2014

    What about King Kong Hostel Rotterdam ? According to Lonely Planet one of the five reasons to visit Rotterdam…

    Reply to this comment
  37. Tamara

    27. Dec, 2014

    Maybe not ‘luxury’, but I absolutely loved staying at Charles Bridge Economic hostel in Prague. Located in an old recession style house, at the doorstep of Charles Bridge, besides lovely interior, it offers free towels, coffee, water, padlocks, laundry wash, wifi and desktop - plus they have a cat!!

    Reply to this comment
  38. Sabine

    28. Dec, 2014

    Thank you ! Your tips helped me so much :)

    Reply to this comment
  39. Vivian

    24. Jan, 2015

    Hope to see you also at Vivian Studios in sunny Rhodes island, Greece! Cheers!

    Reply to this comment

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