Colombia is the land of tropical landscapes, rich, velvety coffee and all-night parties in buzzy, design-centric cities making it the perfect destination for wide-eye and curious travellers. Even the hardcore party-goers and thrill-seeker adventurers need somewhere to rest their weary heads; relax in an ex-cartel colonial mansion, atop jungle canopies or in castaway beach huts on your exploration of South America’s vibrant Colombia. Practice your salsa dancing, dive into epic pool parties and take empanada cooking classes at the best hostels in Colombia.
Fernweh Photography Hostel
Started by two avid travellers who wanted to share the two things most backpackers have in common – a love of travel and photography. Through their shared passions Fernweh Photography Hostel was born. Equipped with a gallery (Instagram, who?), outdoor firepit (Bogata can get very cold at night) and first-class, feather beds (not a threadbare blanket in sight) this laid back hostel is walking distance from most of La Candelaria’s cultural attractions. Tear yourself away from the comfort of the reading room hammocks and head out on a graffiti tour, some of the most impressive street murals are just outside Fernweh Photography Hostel’s doorstep.
Address: Cra. 2, 9-46, Bogotá, Cundinamarca
Republica Hostel Bogota
Nestled in the heart of the gastronomic centre of Bogota, with the lively lure of Colombia’s infamous nightlife just a few streets away, Republica Hostel boasts a dreamy, tropical courtyard with pastel mosaics, a bar serving slick cocktails and regular yoga sessions to start your morning the right way. Or, to help rid yourself of your impending ‘Firewater’ (a strong anise and sugar cane Colombian drink) hangover. Try it if you dare!
Address: Cra. 12, 68-28, Bogotá
Just minutes from the blonde sands of Rodadero Playa, a charming local beach, is the sprawling Calle 11 villa that was once owned by a notorious cartel, before being abandoned. Now it’s been transformed into one of the most luxurious hostels in South America, catered to satisfying even the most outlandish diva demands with a poolside massage and glass of wine. Spend lazy days soaking up the rays by the glistening pool, then feast at the communal BBQ with a few beers from the fairy-lit bar. Kick back and enjoy the old school movies that play out from a projector, paired with a backdrop of uninterrupted views across the lush gardens of El Rodadero. Is this the best hostel in Colombia?
Address: Cl. 11, Gaira, Santa Marta, Magdalena
Hostel Masaya Santa Marta
We’re so crazy about the vibrant, colonial architecture of Masaya Santa Marta that we’re considering moving in! Chilled vibes rule during the week, so lounge about not one, but two swimming pools or take part in the hostels empandas cooking class – a way better souvenir than a novelty shot glass. Sunday’s are a great way to show off your salsa dancing (don’t panic the hostel also offers lessons) as an energetic DJ descends on the rooftop to keep the party alive until the sun comes up, as the view from the top is not to be missed.
Address: Distrito Turístico Cultural E Histórico, Cl. 14, 4 – 80, Santa Marta
La Brisa Tranquila
Cast yourself away to the tropical shores of La Brisa Tranquila. Located just out the Tayrona National Park, along the edge of Colombia’s beautiful Caribbean coast, are a collection of gorgeous beach huts and private, treetop rooms. Hidden in the jungle, enjoy the slow-paced, beach lifestyle or take a dip in the gushing waters of Mendihuaca and Valencia falls, which are just moments away.
Address: 0000, Guachaca, Magdalena
Finca Carpe Diem
Green is the new black and this ecohotel proves that sustainable travel is both responsible and effortlessly beautiful. Feel like you’re on top of the world in one of the relaxing hammocks, the perfect place to enjoy a chilled, sundowner; visit the neighbouring coffee and cacao farms, or cool off in one of dozens of swimming pools and impressive waterfalls. Finca Carpe Diem is committed to protecting our incredible planet and have recently launched a tree-planting project. The a la carte restaurant also only dishes up locally-sourced dinners or food straight from their farm, responsible tourism never looked so good.
Address: Minca, Santa Marta, Magdalena
El Viajero Cartagena Hostel
Find your own rhythm and dance the night away at the friendliest hostel in Colombia. Priding itself on its easy-going nature, El Viajero Cartagena celebrates Colombia’s love of salsa every Saturday with a live music throw down. Keep those dancing shoes on, as each Sunday the hostel hosts its famous beach party. Beach, beer and beats, what a great way to vibe with new friends!
Address: 39, Calle 38, 10-45, Cartagena, Bolívar
Nicknamed the ‘Queen of the Caribbean coast’, Cartagena is an explosion of bougainvillea-creeping balconies, sun-drenched plazas and impressive churches. Hostel Republica Cartagena is just as magical with its old colonial architecture, creeping palms and brightly-coloured, spacious private rooms. Of course wandering the colourful walls of Cartagena is thirsty work, so head back to the plant-filled courtyard and crack open a cold beer or sip on a fruity cocktail.
Address: Calle Segunda de Badillo # 36 -45, Cartagena, Bolívar
Geared up to bringing people together, there’s an ever-changing roster of events held at the hostel from rooftop dance classes to relaxing movie nights and two super, social bars (one of which provides panoramic views of Medellin) to meet like-minded travellers at. Los Patios brings the tropical valleys of Medellin inside with the chill-out areas, rooftop bar and balconies decorated with lush plants and palm trees. Each floor is named after some of Colombia’s most popular destinations giving the curious travellers something to think about. Who needs a guide book when the hostel walls are brimming will cool tips?
Address: Cra. 43e, 11 – 40, Medellín, Antioquia
Hands up who wants to wake up to the smells of freshly-roasted coffees and handmade pies? The delicious café at Hostel Ondas dishes up an array of golden-baked goodies…and a stellar breakfast. Stuffing our faces aside, it’s arguably the best-looking hostel in South America – we think that the street murals are worthy of a spot in the Louvre!
Address: Cra. 81, 45- 52, Medellín, Antioquia
Suiting everyone from hipsters to hippies, Selina Medellin is a hostel where you can work hard AND play hard. Get sh*t done in their vibrant co-working space, kick back and let your creative juices flow in their graffiti-clad common room or get boozy at the bar. Coffee connoisseurs can take part in their coffee masterclasses before indulging in a good brew at their brunch events, whilst slower-paced travellers will be keen to attend their yoga classes.
Casa Encuentro Hostel
Art-filled and avant-garde, it’s easy to find your zen at the tranquil Casa Encuentro Hostel. Better yet, there’s no need to fight over the last hammock as there’s plenty of places to curl up in, take in the incredible view and gently drift of.
Address: Vereda Quebrada Arriba, Guatapé, Antioquia
If you’re headed to the Pereira region, renowned for its Arabica coffee bean growing then opt to make Kolibri hostel your base. The knowledgeable staff are on hand 24/7 to organise discounted tours across the region, including the sensational Santa Rosa de Cabal thermal hot springs (which are also the nicest-smelling in Colombia). Alternatively, pick up a bike from reception and roam free across Colombia’s famous coffee region.
Address: Cl. 4, 16-35, Pereira, Risaralda
Coffee Tree Boutique Hostel
Standing proudly atop a majestic hillside, Coffee Tree Boutique hostel is blissfully peaceful, yet is still close enough to the heart of the action in Salento. Giving explorers the chance to browse the bustling town centre (just six blocks away), dine on a selection of local delicacies at the food markets and unwind next to stretching mountain vistas; it’s definitely a hostel that nails it all!
Address: Cra. 9, 96, Salento, Quindío
La Macarena (Caño Crystales)
Hostel San Nicolas
Welcoming you with open arms, the family-run Hostel San Nicolas is your gateway to exploring the Caño Crystales, or ‘liquid rainbow river’ as it’s affectionately known. A must-see on any Colombia itinerary, the beauty of the Sierra de da la Macarena region is truly mesmerising. One of the best located hostels in Colombia, Hostel San Nicolas is conveniently positioned to give avid adventurers the chance to freely explore.
Address: Calle 9, 5 – 54 Los cristales, Caño Cristales