How to find the best hostels in Hawaii for your trip
Okay, there’s no two ways about it – Hawaii can be an expensive destination. But does this mean it’s inaccessible? Absolutely not. We at Hostelworld are a savvy bunch of travellers who know a thing or two about experiencing the world’s most luxurious destinations on a modest budget. It’s time to stop seeing Hawaii as the territory of honeymooners and swanky resorts and get ready to join the other backpackers embracing the tropical islands on a shoestring.
Why should Hawaii be on your travel radar? For a start it’s got some of the best beaches in the world, and with eight islands to explore you’ll never be short of a coastline to cruise. There’s also deliciously fresh food (hello, poke), diverse wildlife and incredible hiking trails taking in volcanoes and waterfalls. Not to mention some of the friendliest people around – although we’d be pretty happy if we got to spend all of our time there too!
So, how do you start making savings on your Hawaii trip? By booking into one of these fantastic hostels first of all! The cost will be a tiny fraction of what you’d pay elsewhere and there are heaps of other bonus savings like communal dinners and discount tours. Throw in buzzing social spaces and unbeatable locations, and well, why would you stay anywhere else?
Read on to discover how to find the best hostels in Hawaii!
Jump straight to:
- Best hostels on Hawaii Main Island
- Best hostels in Oahu
- Best hostels in Maui
- Best party hostels in Hawaii
- Best surf hostels in Hawaii
- Best of the rest Hawaii hostels
Best hostels on Hawaii Main Island
The Main Island, Hawaii Island or The Big Island (depending on who you talk to) is home to accommodation hotspots Hilo and Kailua-Kona. It’s also got some of Hawaii’s most diverse landscapes, from pristine sandy beaches to lush rainforest and even active volcanoes! Better pack those hiking boots…
My Hawaii Hostel – Kailua-Kona
A great option for solo backpackers heading to Kailua-Kona, with lively common areas and female-only dorm options. Guests can enjoy drinks under the Hawaiian sun in the outdoor social lounge and impress friends with their cooking skills on the self-service BBQ. The location is perfect for beach access, with several to choose from just a short walk away. It’s in a quiet corner away from busy roads, so expect pure island bliss. But don’t worry, there are plenty of delicious local restaurants and quaint coffee shops just a stone’s throw away.
- Surfboard, snorkel and bike rental
- Sun-soaked patio
- Modern guest kitchen
Address: 76-6241 Ali’i Drive #5, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740
Neighbourhood: Kailua-KonaBook your stay at My Hawaii Hostel
If you’re travelling to the charming town of Hilo, you’ll find everything you need for a cosy stay in this adorable boutique hostel. They take comfort very seriously, with memory foam mattresses and high-quality linen on all their beds and AC in every room. They’ve got a common room for chilling out and meeting other guests, a library to make sure you’re never bored on the beach and an ‘international clothes swap closet’, because we all know keeping your style fresh from a backpack is no easy feat!
- Free tea, coffee and filtered water
- Board games
- Wonderful staff
Address: 804A Kilauea Ave, Hilo, HI 96720
Neighbourhood: HiloBook your stay at The Big Island Boutique Hostel
Best hostels in Oahu
Hawaii usually conjures up images of white sand and turquoise waters, but don’t overlook its exciting capital Honolulu. Located on the island of Oahu, this unique city is a fusion of cosmopolitan glamour and aloha spirit. Explore Oahu further to discover laid-back surfing towns, historical gems and the state’s best nightlife.
The Beach Waikiki Boutique Hostel – Waikiki
You know that thing we mentioned about hostels being great for your budget? Well the savings keep coming at The Beach hostel, with free tours, free breakfast and free pizza nights! It’s conveniently located in Hawaii’s most famous neighbourhood, among beautiful beaches, restaurants and shops – all of which you can admire with a cocktail in hand from the hostel’s rooftop lounge. The crowd here is fun and solo travellers won’t have a problem making friends to explore the island with.
- Surfboard, snorkel and bike rental
- Amazing hosts
- Close to waterfalls and hiking trails
Address: 2569 Cartwright Rd, Honolulu, HI 96815
Neighbourhood: WaikikiBook your stay at The Beach Waikiki Boutique Hostel
Kalana Hawaii Private Lodging – Haleiwa
Kalana Private Lodging is a dreamy option for couples, or any traveller seeking resort-style accommodation without the hefty price tag! Kalana has a range of private rooms, located on a quiet, pristine beach that sees some of the island’s best surfing waves. Guests can listen to the ocean and breathe in its fresh air from the outdoor patio, as well as take yoga classes amid the most breath-taking surroundings.
- Communal BBQ
- On-site café
- Postcard-perfect setting
Address: 59-222 B Kamehameha Highway, Haleiwa, HI 96712
Neighbourhood: Haleiwa, North ShoreBook your stay at Kalana Hawaii Private Lodging
Best hostels in Maui
Also known as ‘The Valley Isle’, Maui is famous for having some of Hawaii’s most beautiful landscapes. Nature lovers flock here for lush national parks, world-class sunsets and to spot migrating humpback whales in the winter months. It’s one of the most popular holiday destinations on earth, but avoid the expensive hotels and opt for one of these awesome hostels instead!
Another hostel that’s fab for travelling couples, with private rooms and a stunning beachfront location on the famous ‘break wall’ surf spot. Guests can top up their tans on the sun deck, or in the Insta-friendly botanical garden full of flowers, trees and plants. There are heaps of activities available from this hotspot – surf lessons, whale watching and traditional Hawaiian luaus on the beach. Grass skirts at the ready!
- Amazing surf
- Female-only dorms
- Kitchen facilities
Address: 545 Front Street B, Lahaina, HI 96761
Neighbourhood: LahainaBook your stay at The Lahaina Beach House
The name says it all! This hostel offers the perfect balance between fun and chill, but the buzzing nightlife of Lahaina’s Front Street is right outside the door when you’re ready to let loose. Back in the hostel though, you’ll find board games, books and cosy common areas, including an ocean-view garden that backs out straight on to the beach. Speaking of which, that’s where most of the hostel’s action happens. Think surfing, kayaking, volleyball and campfire singalongs – hakuna matata indeed!
- Free breakfast
- Female-only dorms
- On-site café
Address: 545 Front St A, Lahaina, HI 96761
Neighbourhood: LahainaBook your stay at Hakuna Matata
Best party hostels in Hawaii
From beach luaus beneath the sunset to the swanky clubs of Honolulu, there’s no shortage of parties in Hawaii. Stay in one of these hostels for buzzing social vibes, a fun crowd of backpackers and guaranteed good times.
Banana Bungalow – Maui
This hostel has all the key ingredients for a wild party – hot tub, ping-pong, pool tables, you name it. On Mondays there’s a (very) happy hour to kick off the week, and on Friday nights beer-loving guests can enjoy a free keg party! It’s not all about boozing though, the guys at Banana Bungalow love helping travellers on a budget to get to know the island in depth. That’s why they offer free tours, from volcano and rainforest hikes to snorkelling with turtles and even whale watching!
- Amazing atmosphere
- Free pancake breakfast
- Hostel BBQs
Address: 310 N Market St, Wailuku, HI 96793
Neighbourhood: WailukuBook your stay at Banana Bungalow
Tiki Beach – Maui
This hostel is built around a tiki garden where the music doesn’t stop! One of our guests says it all: “It was exactly what I pictured a fun hostel to be. Friendly and social, fun atmosphere, quirky backyard area and close to the beach… it was as clean as could be”! Oh, and if you’re not sold yet, it’s also located directly on Front Street – so all of Lahaina’s nightlife options are just a step away.
- Fresh Maui coffee every morning
- Work-out equipment
- Open-air showers
Address: 1191, 545 Front St E, F, Lahaina, HI 96761
Neighbourhood: LahainaBook your stay at Tiki Beach Maui
Best surf hostels in Hawaii
One thing (of many) that draws tourists to Hawaii from all over the world is the incredible surfing on offer. There are dozens of places all over the islands that are perfect for catching those waves, but read on if you’re looking for a specialist hostel in a prime surfing spot!
Aloha Surf Hostel – Maui
It’s impossible to miss the brightly coloured surfboards that adorn the outside of this Maui hostel. Located on the iconic North Shore between two of its most famous spots, this is the place to stay if you’re heading to Hawaii to hone your board skills. When you’re not in the sea, relax in the hostel’s hot tub or challenge your hostel buddies to a game of pool or foosball. And don’t forget to take advantage of the communal BBQs and free pancake breakfast every morning – surfing is hungry work!
- Open-air terrace
- Book exchange
- Free Maui tours
Address: 221 Baldwin Ave, Paia, HI 96779
Neighbourhood: Maui’s North ShoreBook your stay at Aloha Surf Hostel
Best of the rest Hawaii hostels
Seaside Hawaiian Hostel – Oahu
We couldn’t leave out this ever-popular Honolulu hostel with over 3,000 glowing guest reviews! It’s in the middle of Waikiki’s electric nightlife scene and just minutes from the beach. Hide away from the hustle and bustle of the city in the secluded courtyard that transforms into an open-air restaurant at night. You can fill up on their free breakfast before you hit the Waikiki waves on a boogie board – also free, btw!
- Iconic location
- Book exchange
Address: 419 Seaside Ave, Honolulu, HI 96815
Neighbourhood: WaikikiBook your stay at Seaside Hawaiian Hostel
Already hostelled in Hawaii? Where did you stay?
If you’re ready to hit the beach, check out the rest of our Hawaii hostels now!