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A Backpacker’s Guide to The Best Hostels In London | London Hostels

The best hostels in London based on amenities, price, location, and overall quality.


London is truly one of Europe’s best cities for hostels. In fact, there are more than 100 hostels in London and they range from cheap and grungy to high-end and expensive. In this guide, we’ve assembled a list of the best hostels in London that have the perfect combination of great location, good amenities, and fair prices.

The Average London Hostel Prices

Hostels in London can be fairly expensive thanks to the exchange rate and the fact that London is an expensive city all around.

Well-rated hostels will be around £35-£60/night (which is about $42-$75/night) but you might be able to find a few that are around £25/night. Ultra-budget travelers can find something closer to £20 but don’t expect much quality. Prices do tend to be a bit more expensive on Friday and Saturday nights.

Check Hostelworld to get exact prices for your dates.

Quick Facts About London Hostels

London Hostels

Here are a few things to think about when looking for your hostel:

Book Early For the Best Prices/Selection

The cheapest beds in London’s best hostels fill up pretty quickly (especially in the summer) so it pays to book early if you want to snag a good deal in a good hostel.

Weekend Rates

Many hostels in London raise their prices on Friday and Saturday so expect to pay 20%-40% more than during the week.

Age Restrictions

There are a number of hostels that cater to families and school groups — so book an 18+ hostel if you don’t want to be surrounded by a bunch of middle school kids. Also, family-friendly hostels tend to attract an older crowd so you probably won’t find the typical “backpacker” experience.

Neighborhoods and Location

There are hostels in just about every area of London. The very dead center of London doesn’t have as many because of the crazy real estate prices but you shouldn’t have any problem finding a place in a neighborhood you like.

Check-In Times and Cleaning Times

Many London hostels have late check-in times (around 2 pm-4 pm) but nearly all will let you store your bags if you arrive before check-in. Some will also close in the early afternoon so the cleaning crews can do their thing.

New To Hostels? Check out our Hostels 101 Guide to learn everything you need to know about finding the perfect hostel.

Our Top Picks For The Best Hostels In London

Best London Hostels


  • Overall Quality: We take a holistic look at the hostel to see the positives and negatives. Our goal is to find amazing hostels that are still affordable.
  • Location: Most hostels we list will be centrally located.
  • Price: We try to filter out the super-expensive hostels to help find the best price-to-quality ratio.
  • Vibe/Atmosphere: Every hostel has a personality. Some are party hostels and some are quiet. We try to note the atmosphere so you can find a place to stay that matches your travel style.
  • Past Guest Reviews: Every guest has a different experience so we look at the good and the bad. We suggest you take a few minutes to read prior reviews.

We encourage you to check out Hostelworld to do a bit of searching for yourself.

NOTE: All prices listed below are the cheapest option available during the busy (i.e. expensive) season. Prices will often be 20%+ cheaper during the slower seasons.

Barmy Badger Backpackers Hostel

Best Hostels in London - Barmy

Barmy Badger Backpackers is one of the highest-rated hostels in London because it has free WiFi, free breakfast and it has a full kitchen. It also gets high ratings for comfy beds and it is next to a subway station so you’re in the very center of town in about 10 minutes.

Wombats City Hostel London

best london hostels - wombats

Wombats City Hostel London is another amazing hostel that opened in 2014 so everything is up-to-date. Plus, the Wombats chain of hostels receives solid ratings all around — so you can’t really go wrong at any of their properties. It is fairly close to many of the popular sights.

Wombats City Hostel London has a bar on-site so this is a good option if you want to party/socialize and it has a kitchen. The only small negative is the lack of free breakfast.

Astor Hyde Park London Hostel

Best london hostels - Astor Hyde Park

Astor Hyde Park is located in the heart of London but it’s just far enough away from the tourist trail to feel like you’re in an authentic area. It’s also right next to Hyde Park and a handful of great museums.

Astor Hyde Park gets solid reviews all around and it has a self-catering kitchen but no free breakfast (although it’s super cheap if you want to buy it).

Hostel One Notting Hill London

Hostel One is one of the best hostel chains in Europe and their London Notting Hill hostel is another great hostel. The staff goes out of their way to make sure everyone feels welcome. Hostel One is also known for being a social hostel because they offer free daily tours, family dinners, drinking games, and nightly group outings. 

Hostel One Notting Hill also has a fully equipped kitchen with 24/7 access, a cool terrace area, and common areas designed for different moods.

Astor Queensway London Hostel

Best London Hostels - Astor Queensway

Astor Queensway is another Astor hostel (any Astor Hostel will be a quality hostel) and the Queensway is a great option if you want to be in a quieter, upscale location. 

MEININGER London Hyde Park Hostel

MEININGER London Hostel

MEININGER London Hyde Park has an excellent location near Hyde Park so it’s near most of London’s sights without being overrun with tourists. Overall the hostel receives pretty good reviews and the prices are about average.

Like all MEININGER properties, this hostel is large and modern, so it’s nice but sometimes it lacks that “backpacker” atmosphere — they have a bit of a hotel feel. It might not be the best place for solo travelers.

Palmers Lodge London – Swiss Cottage Hostel

Best hostels in London - palmers

UPDATE: Palmers Lodge announced its closing but they said they might reopen in the future.

Palmers Lodge – Swiss Cottage is located inside a Victorian mansion — so that’s pretty awesome. It is a bit outside the heart of London but it’s well-connected via the Underground. It’s also one of the cheaper hostels in the city if you’re on a tight budget. Furthermore, it has a bar and a lively common area so the hostel has a great atmosphere. 

Astor Museum Inn Hostel

best london hostels - astor london

Astor Museum Inn is located in the very heart of the city so it’s probably the best-located hostel on our list. Breakfast isn’t free but it is cheap. Astor Museum Inn is a solid hostel overall with a great vibe, friendly staff, and high scores for being clean. Some people complained about the small showers but it’s a minor inconvenience.

Clink261 Hostel

London hostels - Clink78

Clink261 has a reputation for being a party hostel thanks to its on-site bar. But people do complain that it can be loud at night and it has small rooms, so it’s not a great option for light sleepers.

It’s located near St Pancras International station (the Eurostar station) and King’s Cross underground station so that’s convenient if you’re coming into London at those stations.

More Great London Hostels

London continues to add new hostels so here are a few more that get excellent ratings from past guests.

hostel photo credit: Barmy Badger Backpackers, Wombats City Hostel London, Astor Hyde Park, Astor Queensway, MEININGER London Hyde Park, Palmers Lodge – Swiss Cottage, Astor Museum Inn, Clink

Hostel Packing Advice

Staying in hostels poses a few unique packing challenges so I’m here to help by recommending a few of my must-have items. Check out my Hostel Packing List for the full list but below are the absolute necessities:

More Budget Europe Travel Advice From The Savvy Backpacker

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