The Best Non- Party Hostels in South America – Where to Stay For Budget and the Best Experience
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As a solo and budget traveler to South America, staying in hostels is the best way to go. I have stayed in countless hostels in South America, some are not impressive, and others can be forgotten, but there are hostels that not only would I love to stay there again, but also recommend to my fellow travelers.
Below is a list of the best hostels I have stayed in South America, separated by the cities and countries. Find out what the best hostels are in Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Chile, and Argentina. The facilities in these hostels do not have a huge difference over any other hostels and most of them include free breakfast, but it is the people and the experience there that made my stay unforgettable.
The Best Hostel in South America from My Personal Experience
El Pit Hostel, Bogota, Colombia
I wanted to start this list with my first hostel experience in South America. It was not a perfect hostel but it was the place that helped me to overcome my fear and worry of long-term solo travel on an unfamiliar continent.
I remember being a bit nervous as I entered El Pit Hostel, and I had been a bit concerned about my safety on the airplane to Bogota. However, I was greeted with a smile and a warm welcome from the receptionist, who opened the door for me, helped me with my suitcases, led me to my room, and introduced me to some great restaurants nearby for me to get dinner.
My very last night at El Pit, all the guests decided to have a party in the common area (which is usually not allowed) because most of us were leaving on the next day or the day after. We played games, shared food and drinks, and got to know each other so, by the time I was about to leave, I had known everyone at the hostel and had a wonderful time with people from all over the world, and my nerves were completely settled by then.
Casa Blanca Hostel, Cali, Colombia
Casa Blanca is located in the sector Santa Monica and I stayed in a shared room for a week. The hostel has free salsa classes every night and it is a pleasant walk to the new city center and Los Gatos, but it is a slightly longer walk to San Antonio.
The hostel has a kitchen and a shared fridge where most guests put their food and drinks. One day, I brought grapes from the market and left some in the fridge. The following day, I could not find them and it turned out the hostel workers had accidentally thrown out my grapes when they cleaned up the fridge.
The owner asked me to wait and that she would figure it out for me. A few minutes later, she asked me to check the fridge again. Then I saw a pack of grapes she had just ordered for me and it was twice the amount I had left in the fridge. The rest of my stay, the owner and the staff were like family to me. They woke up early to make my breakfast and did everything to make sure I had a safe and great time in Cali. To this day, I still remember their hospitality and could not be more grateful to them.
Casa Carpedm, Quito Ecuador
It was 8 pm in Quito and I had just arrived after a six-hour bus trip from Colombia. The owner Paul met me at the front desk for check-in and started flipping every page of my passport out of curiosity.
Suddenly, he found my Canadian visa and started asking me questions like where do I live in Canada. It turned out he lived in Toronto as well and we immediately started talking non-stop as if we were catching up with an old friend.
After settled into my room, Paul offered to walk me to a Chinese restaurant so I could get some food close to home. I always met travelers who either skipped Ecuador or were not impressed by the people there, and before then, I had no clue about what this country had to offer, but I was welcomed by a caring and hospitable owner who would go out of their way to make sure their guests had a wonderful experience.
My other favorite part of this hostel was the lovely location of the kitchen and the breakfast: with the sunlight peeking in and the panoramic view of the city. During nighttime, you can see the historical area light up from the window and it is a gorgeous sight. This hostel is also quiet, the guest room is clean, and the price is affordable.
Nanasqa Hostel, Nazca City, Peru
Nanasqa Hostel has some of my most memorable moments in Peru because it was more than just a few nights’ stay and visiting the Nazca Lines. The owner and the volunteers there were extremely helpful and offered me recommendations and tips on visiting Nazca before I arrived.
I had already booked the sandboarding tour for my third afternoon. Knowing the tour was canceled, the owner took me and three guests to a magnetic field on his jeep for free, and we got a taste of the sand safari on our way. We stayed in the magnetic field during the sunset and had a chance to walk on the mountains next to the field to see the graveyard.
Most people go to Nazca only for a short flight over the Nazca Lines, but a few also know the vista from the magnetic field is absolutely incredible during the sunset and you get to see part of Nazca City in the middle of the sand dunes and surrounded by the desert plain. It was deserted, peaceful, and had a majestic atmosphere at the same time, and we had the whole place to ourselves. It was absolutely a surreal moment and you need to experience it yourself.
Casa Vieja Hostel and Camping, Puerto Varas Chile
I have spent every birthday abroad for ten years, and, each time, my friends made sure I was celebrated, but on my32nd birthday, I was traveling solo in Puerto Varas. As I was alone in a new place, I thought of skipping the celebration.
However, Caroline, the owner of Vieja Hostel and Camping, decided to help me celebrating it. I spent the day exploring the region and the night at the hostel having dinner with new friends. Caroline made a highlight by getting the snacks ready and surprising me with a birthday cake. The rest of the night was spent with all the guests partying and drinking wine. No family, no familiar faces, just Caroline and 13 travelers from around the world celebrating my day in my dream place, Patagonia.
And to fully satisfy my penchant for wine, every guest agreed to bring me a bottle of wine as my birthday gift. That night ended with thirteen people emptying eight bottles of wine plus beer and champagne, and I still could not get over that we all felt tipsy over the next few days.
Endless Sky Hostel, Punta Arenas, Chile
It is a habit of mine to return to the same hostel on my return visit because it is familiar, but I returned to the Endless Sky Hostel after a week’s trip in Puerto Williams, not just because I stayed there before but because I wanted to relax in a place that felt home to me. Here are examples of why:
For my trip to Puerto Williams, I was supposed to arrive at Tres Puentes at 5 pm to finish the pre-departure process. The owner Herman called the cab for me at 4:30 pm and I was told the cab would not be arriving for another hour. I was worried about missing the boat because it takes a while for the cab to reach Tres Puentes.
I then decided to walk to the city center and take the collectivo to try my luck. After I told Herman my plan, Herman instantly grabbed my suitcase and asked me to come with him. We walked outside to the other side of the hostel where his car was parked. He put my suitcase in the trunk and asked me to get into his car.
I spent a few days there after returning from Puerto Williams. Every day, Herman, the other guests, and I had fun chatting, playing games, and sharing meals and wine. I originally planned to visit Torres Del Paine from Puerto Natales, but I ended up stuck in that hostel and booked a day trip from Punta Arenas.
Hostel La Terraza del Centro, Cordova, Argentina
This hostel is my favorite in Argentina because it was so great to spend time with people that were caring and loved sharing. I arrived at this hostel at 8 am after taking the night bus from Mendoza and before I checked in, I was offered complimentary breakfast.
It was extremely hot in Cordova and the other guests and I spent most of our time in the hostel’s common area to escape the scorching heat outside. The staff there knew that we were uncomfortable to go out so they kept the air conditioner on, set up movies, purchased ice cream, and made frozen yerba mate and fresh bread for us to enjoy our day. The owner even took us to his cottage next to a lake for a BBQ. The view was gorgeous and we had part of the lake to ourselves and had cold beer in the water.
So, here you have it, the best hostels in South America. Of course, you may say I was lucky to meet so many great people and great hostel owners, but if you check the reviews of any of these hostels, they are all excellent and some are even rated close to 10 out of 10 on booking.com and hostelworld.com. So, when you plan your South America trip, make sure to check out these hostels for some memorable experiences.
Have you stayed in any of the hostels above? Share your experience below!
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