Famed for its soul satisfying cuisine, mesmerising colour palette and heart-warming locals, India is a country that everyone should visit at least once in their lifetime. It’s a place where anything is possible and no day is the same. But, what does a trip to India look like? Well for a start you can be sure that your photography count will hit the roof, your tuk-tuk game will become unrivalled and you’ll head home with a colourful array of new garments. Sounds pretty sweet right?!
If you’re visiting the country where the tempo has been turned up, then you’ll need somewhere to rest your weary head. In years gone by, ﬁnding a hostel in India was no easy task, but nowadays hostelling is ubiquitous and you’ll see new joints popping up everywhere. In some cities you can bag yourself a colour popping, artsy hostel for less than €5 per night, making India a hotspot for backpackers on a low budget. Whether you want to explore the majestic temples of Rajasthan or sip fresh coconuts on a Goan beach, you can be safe in the knowledge that you won’t break the bank when it comes to ﬁnding somewhere to stay.
Here’s our pick of the best hostels in India…
Jump straight to:
- Best hostels in India for solo travellers
- Best hostels in India for couples
- Best party hostels in India
- Best hostels in India with private rooms
- Best of the rest hostels in India
Best hostels in India for solo travellers
Riding solo on your trip to India? Then look no further. Hostels are the ultimate way to match up with like-minded travellers along the road. You may start out as a lone wolf, but you won’t be alone for long – once you settle into these hostel common areas. Think bonding over beers, chats over chia and henna, with your newfound hostel pals.
For coﬀee lovers and conversation hunters – Hoztel Jaipur is the one for you! Privacy curtains, under bed lockers and powerful showers make this hostel a solo backpacker’s dream. The staﬀ will do their absolute best to make your experience in the city one to remember – from crafting you the perfect artisan espresso in the morning to taking you on tuk-tuk tours around the city. If that’s not enough, Hoztel’s rooftop comes alive at night with travellers from all over the world, making it the perfect place to unwind from a day of craziness in rollicking Jaipur.
- Upbeat, friendly stay
- Reliable and budget friendly tuktuk city tours
- Privacy curtains on the bunk beds
- Powerful showers
🏠 Address: D- 100, B2 Bihari Marg, Bani Park
🏘 Neighbourhood: Bani Park
🚍 Nearest Station: Jaipur Railway Station
Take in the majesty of the famous blue town with a tour organised by Moustache Hostel, and then rest up on the balcony with a bunch of newfound chums. This hostel oﬀers the perfect refuge for travellers in need of a casual and down to earth atmosphere. There’s an in-house theatre, countless board games and an on-site restaurant. Dorm beds start as cheap as €5 and if you’re feeling athletic then you can even hire bicycles to get out and explore the city on two wheels.
- In-house theatre
- Bicycles for hire
- Organised tours of the famous blue town
🏠 Address: Plot No. 1, Fort Road, Paota, Opposite Irani Masjid, Next to Balaji Temple, Near Ship Building, Jodhpur, Rajasthan 342001
🏘 Neighbourhood: Paota
🚍 Nearest Station: Mahamandir Railway Station
Best hostels in India for couples
There’s no need to compromise while travelling as a couple and you can still catch those communal vibes by staying in a hostel. India is a great place to travel as a duo – with towering temples, mirrored lakes and bewildering bazaars, it’s both romantic and adventurous in equal measure.
Pushkar is a sleepy city which beneﬁts from a slower pace of life compared to its Rajasthani neighbours. Zostel is the best place to soak up the mellow vibes – but be warned that you’ll probably end up extending your stay so that you can take it easy for just that little bit longer. The private rooms are spacious and the huge beds will ensure that there are no ﬁghts over space during the night. The staﬀ go above and beyond to make sure your stay is unforgettable – with organised tours, helpful advice and engaging conversation. Make sure you don’t forget your swimming cossie as this hostel has its own private pool!
- Swimming pool
- Pool table
- Supremely friendly staﬀ
- Organised tours
🏠 Address: Paradise Inn, Choti Basti, Panch Kund Road
🏘 Neighbourhood: Choti Basti
🚍 Nearest Station: Panch Kund Road (Bus Stop)
Udaipur is often referred to as the Venice of the east and if you’re looking for a romantic getaway you’d be hard pressed to ﬁnd a destination which ticks more boxes. The charming Bunkyard Hostel serves up serene views of the beautiful lake, sunsets accompanied by free chai and local, traditional cuisine. The location is hard to beat – with the city palace just a stone’s throw away and the lake front on your doorstep. Spend the day wandering streets full of rich history and make it back in time for sun-downers on the roof!
- Panoramic, sunset views from the rooftop
- A restaurant with top-notch cuisine
- Yoga sessions
- Free chai
🏠 Address: Near charcol restaurant, Jagdish Temple
🏘 Neighbourhood: Lal Ghat
🚍 Nearest Station: Udaipur City train station
Best party hostels in India
India might not be the ﬁrst destination which comes to mind when you think of partying late into the night. Although you won’t ﬁnd alcohol in certain parts of the country, other places take a more laid back approach. Goa is home to some of the most famous beach parties in the world and Mumbai has enough nightclubs to keep the biggest of party animals satisﬁed. Hostels are the best place to get your night started, so grab a bevvie and get involved!
Chill during the day with yoga, walking tours and hammocks galore, party the night away in their huge outdoor bar. With bar games and live music happening all night long, see if you can join the winners circle of their Bucket List Beer Challenge. There are events planned EVERY DAY. Think community dinners, Beer Pong Nights and pool partys spilling out on the beach. Their aim? To highlight the local booze and make you experience Goa in an authentic (if not very hungover) way.
- Daily tours and activities
- Lively bar and events
🏠 Address: 562/1, Next to Baskin Robbins, Coutinho Vaddo, Vagator, Goa
🏘 Neighbourhood: Vagator
🚍 Nearest Station: Vagator
With events happening nearly every night of the week and staﬀ who will go out of their way to help, you’ll ﬁnd yourself navigating Mumbai like a pro in no-time if you stay at this hostel. Bond with other backpackers at a live music event and retire back to a hostel brimming with home comforts and comfy beds. The focus for the owners (who incidentally are seasoned travellers themselves) was to create a community vibe and a safe space for passers-by – we reckon they’ve pretty much nailed it!
- Tea and coﬀee freebies in the room
- Free use of towels
- Great staﬀ who organise social nights out
🏠 Address: 43 Chapel Road, 1st Floor, Ranwar, Bandra West, Mumbai
🏘 Neighbourhood: Bandra West
🚍 Nearest Station: Parijat
Best of the rest hostels in India
If you’re not living life out of a backpack, then are you really living life at all?! Backpacking is the bee’s knees and these hostels oﬀer everything you could dream of when you’re on the road. Need more help with planning your trip? Check out our complete guide to backpacking India.
Dive into Pushkar by staying at a hostel with a self-proclaimed obsession for community, friendship and stories. Madpackers have got it all covered when it comes to backpackers – spotless bathrooms, free breakfast, round-the-clock WiFi and a range of heritage and food tours. It’s located away from the hustle and bustle of the city centre and it’s been said that sitting up on the hostel’s rooftop with other globe trotters has life aﬃrming powers. Don’t believe it? Go and check it out for yourself!
- Free breakfast
- Organised food and heritage tours
- Rooftop adorned with fairy lights
🏠 Address: Choti Basti, Panch Kund Road, Pushkar, India
🏘 Neighbourhood: Panch Kund Road
🚍 Nearest Station: Pushkar
The Zostel chain makes an appearance for the second time in this round-up, but who can blame us when the hostel is this beautiful?! Set amidst panoramic Himalayan mountains and apple orchards, the views which are on display are a true treat for the eyes. Chow down on some authentic Himachali food with travellers from across the world and start planning the group hikes which are accessible from the hostel’s front door. Free WiFi, travel assistance and hot showers are all oﬀered as standard here.
- Authentic Himachali food served in-house
- Adventure activity booking service
- Free travel assistance
🏠 Address: Manu Temple Road, Old Manali, Manali, Himachal Pradesh
🏘 Neighbourhood: Old Manali
🚍 Nearest Station: Manali Bus Station
Best Hostels in India with private rooms
Bunking up is great fun but sometimes you just need a little space to yourself. Let’s face it – there’s no better feeling than sprawling out the entire contents of your bag in your own secluded room! Private rooms in hostels oﬀer the best of both worlds – you get the sociability of a hostel and the privacy of a home!
If watching the sunset from a panoramic rooftop with an ice cold beer is your idea of heaven then Banjara Hostel is THE place. Pristine white rooms, an epic free buﬀet breakfast and divinely hot showers are all on oﬀer here. If you can muster up the energy to leave the relaxing private bedrooms then the location is unrivalled – close to the winding alleys of the old town, multinational restaurants and the Pichola lake. If staying in is more your thing, you won’t go hungry with the impressive array of traditional and western dishes up for grabs – the chilli chips and dahl are not to be missed!
- 360 degree views from the rooftop
- Free buﬀet breakfast
- On-site bar and restaurant
🏠 Address: 83, Gangaur Ghat Marg, Near Jagdish Temple, Lake Pichola
🏘 Neighbourhood: Lake Pichola
🚍 Nearest Station: Udaipur City Train Station
In India’s holiest and most chaotic city, ITH Cantt Hostel will be your tranquil haven. Private rooms start at under €20 per night and if you like sleeping a little closer to the stars, you can even opt to stay in a private tent. Vegan and vegetarian food is prepared fresh each day and plant-based toiletries are provided in the bedrooms. You can almost touch the serenity as you lounge on the green grass, drinking chai that’s ﬁt for a god. Recharge and get ready to explore Varanasi – this city is like nothing you’ll have ever seen before!
- Amazing, great value vegetarian and vegan food
- Cheap laundry service
- Beautiful green garden
🏠 Address: C-32/4, Vidyapeeth Road, Landmark: Gate #2 of Vidyapeeth University
🏘 Neighbourhood: Vidyapeeth Road
🚍 Nearest Station: Varanasi Junction Train Station
Best of the rest hostels in India
It’s always cool to stand out from the crowd. These hostels warrant a mention for their quirky interiors, fun vibes and impressive features. They’re the best of the rest, so if you happen to be passing through, make sure you don’t miss out on a visit!
About the author:
Jen Gale is currently travelling in India and Nepal. You can follow her journey on Instagram @jenkg05. Expect critiques of curries, swoons over the colourful clothes and a generous helping of photographs.