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Hostel Specific Terms & Conditions

The remainder of the amount due will be charged to your credit card ???? Should numbers or room selection change, the per person deposit times the number of people who actually travelled will be deducted from the total accommodation charge levvied by the hostel.

The following group types are not accepted by this hostel: Holiday with Friends, Junior / Primary School, High / Secondary School, College / University, Business Trip, Stag/Hen/Bachelor Party, Sports Group, Cultural Group If you have misrepresented the type of group you are booking for, your booking may be cancelled by the hostel."

Any cancellations resulting from agreement to these terms and conditions under false pretences will result in loss of deposit.

1/26

HI Ottawa Jail Hostel

Book more than 7 days in advance for Free Cancellation.
  • Perfect Location
  • Superb Staff
  • Excellent Cleanliness
Read all reviews

Property Description

A one-of-a-kind jail hostel located in the heart of downtown Ottawa, steps away from Byward Market, Parliament Hill, Rideau Centre, University of Ottawa, pubs and restaurants.

Rated one of the top 10 spookiest buildings around the world by Lonely Planet!

Here's what you may do while staying with us :
- Use our FREE wireless internet or free internet terminals to plan, skype, book, check-in, post or tweet;
- Enjoy our FREE continental breakfast every morning;
- Join us on a FREE hostel orientation tour (offered daily to hostel guests only)
- Sleep in former jail cells that have been completely renovated and adapted to suit your comfort needs;
- Join us for a pub crawl, a movie night, a dance party and much more;
- Enjoy our great outdoor patio in the summer;
- Use our communal kitchen to show off your cooking skills;
- Ask our wonderful staff for suggestions of things to do in Ottawa;

We hope to see you soon - and remember - you don't have to commit a crime to do the time!

The hostel is part of Hostelling International (HI). Hostelling International is a not-for-profit organization on a mission to build a community of conscious travellers who share a greater understanding of people, places and cultures.

Please note that HI / YHA discounts are not available to members as part of this booking.

Online group bookings not accepted, you must contact the hostel directly if you would like to make a group booking View House Rules

Overview

If you're searching for an off-the-wall travel experience, book into the 150-year-old HI Ottawa Jail Hostel. You can sleep in a real-life solitary confinement cell (converted for comfort, of course!) – how's that for original? We go easy on your budget too. You'll get to eat free breakfasts with your fellow inmates (sorry, the other guests!) every morning and you'll get a tour of the place for no extra charge
– including Death Row. When it's time to relax, head to our awesome outdoor patio to catch some sunny rays and meet other travellers.

Location

We're in the middle of downtown Ottawa, a 7-minute walk from ByWard Market – a hotspot for Canadian delicacies like local cheese and maple-spiked chocolate. From Ottawa International Airport, get on bus 97 to the Rideau Shopping Centre, then jump off at the MacKenzie King Bridge stop after about half an hour. Walk east towards the stairs and you'll find our hostel at the base. From Ottawa Train Station, you'll need to grab bus 95 and follow the same walking directions as from the airport.

Rooms and Dorms

We've got private rooms or, for a more authentic prison experience, sleep alongside others in one of our mixed, male- or female-only dorms. You'll have your linen and towels included, and there's air con to keep you cool. Each bunk's got its own reading light, so you can stay up late with a book from the library.

Extras and activities

Join one of our movie nights (Shawshank Redemption, anyone?) in the TV lounge or come and have a drink or two at our regular parties. You can head off on one of our pub crawls if you're into the nightlife scene. There's a games room for downtime and we have 24-hour security to keep you and your stuff safe. You'll be able to use the free Wi-Fi (your Instagram notifications will start buzzing the moment you check into our unique location!) and make your own home-cooked meals in the kitchen.

View House Rules

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Reviews & Ratings

  • Value For Money 8.5

  • Security 9.1

  • Location 9.7

  • Staff 9.3

  • Atmosphere 8.6

  • Cleanliness 8.3

  • Facilities 8.3


Latest Reviews

  • 10.0

    Superb

    29 Jun 2019
    A great hostel in a great location....great breakfast too
    Canada, Male, 41+
  • 10.0

    Superb

    29 Jun 2019
    Very cool hostel with rooms in former prison cells! Though small, the cells were surprisingly comfortable, and the place was very clean. Location was perfect and just a few blocks from the ByWard market.
    USA, Male, 31-40
  • 9.7

    Superb

    08 Jul 2019
    A very cool experience! I stayed in one of the single jail cells and definitely recommend it as a must try! Still a great night sleep with clean sheets and a fairly comfortable bed (even if I did keep one of the lights on 😬👻). Location was great- right near Byward Market and a major bus station. However, it is right beside an overpass so was worried about walking by myself at night.
    Canada, Female, 18-24
  • 9.4

    Superb

    15 Jul 2019
    This is a great hostel. Good location, friendly staff, clean facilities, and a great location (right around the corner from Byward Market and just a short walk to the downtown core). The breakfast was also good. My only complaint is the dorm room was SO HOT at night, it was impossible to sleep... There is an aircon unit in the window, but it is a small one meant for small rooms. Other than that I was really happy with my stay. IT is pretty cool to walk around an old jail too :)
    USA, Male, 25-30
  • 9.4

    Superb

    29 Jun 2019
    Great location!
    Australia, Female, 25-30
  • 9.4

    Superb

    28 Jun 2019
    Had an awesome stay at the jail hostel!! (4 nights) The location was AMAZING and definitely the best feature. The 6 bed female dorm I stayed in was spacious and clean, the AC was good. The bathroom on my floor wasn’t great, the showers were just wayyyy too small but I just used the bathrooms on the floor below which was much better. Staff were friendly. Free breakfast was AWESOME. Great value for money. Would recommend this place to ANY traveller!!!!
    Australia, Female, 18-24
  • 8.9

    Fabulous

    14 Jul 2019
    Really cool hostel, I stayed in a private room which is one of the old jail cells. I would not recommend it if you are claustrophobic as the room was very tiny with no window. Otherwise it was a great experience with friendly staff and it’s located in a central location!
    Canada, Couple, 25-30
  • 8.9

    Fabulous

    06 Jul 2019
    Great hostel in an awesome location close to the downtown areas of Ottawa. The history of the building makes it much cooler, and the jail tour was as excellent as it was horrifying. Everything was perfectly clean and comfortable, although my bed did squeak heavily. There are also a lack of working individual lights/plugs on some of the beds. The biggest problem though was the lack of bar! This killed off some of the hostel vibe and made it harder to meet other travellers, although bfast helped.
    France, Male, 25-30
  • 7.1

    Very Good

    10 Jul 2019
    10/10 for being a unique experience. I would recommend it for that alone. Cool experience. Not a fun, lively, atmosphere, from what I saw. Breakfast was good. The private single rooms really are even smaller than they look in photos, but are part of the jail cell experience.
    Canada, Male, 31-40
  • 4.6

    Rating

    05 Jul 2019
    While I thought I was going to enjoy my weekend, I didn't. Perhaps this place would be best in the fall but It was cooking in my room. It was so hot and a person down the hall had a never ending conference call up until 4 am undecided to just leave. I did not sleep here at all. While I thought this was a great value for money it wasn't, as I had to leave in order to get any sleep, this pay for another place somewhere else. Money poorly wasted that weekend.
    Canada, Male, 25-30
Read all reviews

Facilities

Free
  • Free Breakfast
  • Free City Maps
  • Free Internet Access
  • Free WiFi
  • Linen Included
  • Towels Included
General
  • Air Conditioning
  • BBQ
  • Bicycle Parking
  • Book Exchange
  • Cable TV
  • Card Phones
  • Common Room
  • Hair Dryers
  • Hair Dryers For Hire
  • Hot Showers
  • Outdoor Terrace
  • Parking
  • Reading Light
  • Security Lockers
  • Self-Catering Facilities
  • Washing Machine
Services
  • 24 Hour Reception
  • 24 Hour Security
  • ATM
  • Bicycle Hire
  • Fax Service
  • Housekeeping
  • Internet Access
  • Late check-out
  • Laundry Facilities
  • Luggage Storage
  • Postal Service
  • Reception (limited hours)
  • Tours/Travel Desk
  • Towels for hire
Food & Drink
  • Cafe
  • Tea & Coffee Making Facilities
  • Vending Machines
Entertainment
  • Board Games
  • DVD's
  • Games Room
  • Nightclub


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