Hostels often get a bad rap, but gone are the days when this type of accommodation meant rickety bunks, bedbugs, and gap year travelers. As the travel market has grown, so too have the number of stylish, well-designed offerings, proving that quality accommodation shouldn't have to come at a price. The benefits of staying at a hostel extend well beyond the savings, though.
Hostels tend to have great common areas, making them the perfect place to meet other travelers abroad. They're also usually staffed with locals or expats who now call the area home, so you're likely to hear about under-the-radar bars and attractions that a hotel concierge wouldn't be privy to. If we haven't convinced you, these images of the most stylish hostels in Europe will. You can quit saving—these chic digs make travel more affordable than ever.
Hello I'm a Local, Haarlem, Netherlands
Hello I'm a Local doesn't look or feel like a typical hostel. Each of the 12 rooms has been uniquely decorated with reclaimed wood doors, antique chairs, floral wallpaper, and colorful finds so that they have their own character. Located in Haalem, the Netherlands, it's an ideal spot to stay outside the hustle and bustle of Amsterdam. Private rooms start at $77 a night.
Valencia Lounge Hostel, Valencia, Spain
Valencia Lounge Hostel is anything but bland—the entire boutique hostel has been decorated with splashes of bright paint, wallpaper, and quirky décor. Our favorites include the Twin Room with surfboards mounted above the bed and the common area, which is adorned with hanging planters, pendant lights, and plush pastel furniture. Rates start at $47 per night.
Wallyard Concept Hostel, Berlin, Germany
Located in the heart of Berlin, Wallyard Concept Hostel is one of the most acclaimed in Germany. Boasting sleek, modern design, it has no shortage of spots to hang out and meet other travelers. The café, backyard, and bar are all popular spots. Rooms start at $87 a night.
Dream Hostel, Tampere, Finland
Trust the Finns to have an impeccably designed hostel. Located in Tampere, Dream Hostel embodies Scandinavian style: Picture blonde wood paneling, smart storage solutions, and IKEA-like modern furniture. Rooms start at $66 a night.
Living Lounge Hostel, Lisbon
This boutique-style Portuguese hostel continues to win Hostelworld's Hoscar awards, and we can see why: The downstairs lounge area is a standout. It's the perfect place to listen to live music and toast to your travels.
Cocomama, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Voted the best hostel in the Netherlands in 2011, Cocomama has tons of character. Each newly furnished room has a distinct Holland theme, with a crisp white and blue color palette. Rooms start at $50 per night.
The Independente Hostel, Lisbon, Portugal
Ideally located within Lisbon's historic center, The Independente Hostel is an ideal base to explore the city. The well-designed rooms and suites range from wood triple bunks to private suites and start at $46 a night.
King Kool, Amsterdam, Netherlands
King Kool has a large selection of private rooms, each decorated to a unique theme, spanning monochrome and minimal to camping-inspired wood cabins. It's located in the heart of The Hague and costs just $77 a night.
Les Piaules Hostel, Paris, France
Les Piaules' bar and restaurant area make this Parisian hostel a standout. With plush leather sofas, industrial bar stools, and huge chandeliers, it's a great place to hang out after a day of sightseeing. Prices start at $87 a night.
Swiss Cottage Hostel, London, UK
This award-winning boutique hostel is ideally located in central London and has a range of small to large dorms and private rooms. We're fans of this exposed brick bedroom, with a round stained glass window and plenty of floor space. Rooms start at $40 a night.
Thinking about splurging for a few nights? Check out the new hot hotel everyone is flocking to in Germany.