Amsterdam is known as much for its loose cannabis laws and red light district as it is for its canals and beautiful, centuries-old architecture. Culture and progressiveness go hand-in-hand in this European capital and it’s always a joy to explore.
But because of its status as a city of vices, there’s not really anywhere to stay other than crumbling, dive-y, backpacker hostels in the rougher areas of town… right…?
Wrong! This city features some of the coolest hostels in the world and we’ve sorted through them all so you don’t have to. We wanted to find the best hostels in Amsterdam – so here they are!
Whether you’re looking for something in a certain area of town, something cheap and cheerful, or if you want somewhere social, we’ve got you covered. Let’s take a look at the top hostels in Amsterdam…
Editor’s note – Ready to explore beyond the red lights? Check out our 15 best day trips from Amsterdam!
The Best Hostels in Amsterdam: Round-up
Best Overall Hostel in Amsterdam – ClinkNOORD
Best Party Hostel in Amsterdam – Flying Pig Downtown
Best Hostel for Solo Travellers in Amsterdam – Intersail
Best Hostel near Dam Square – The Bulldog
Best Hostel near Vondelpark – Stayokay Amsterdam Vondelpark
Best Hostel near Westerpark – Dutchies Hostel
Best Hostel near Amsterdam Airport Schipol – MEININGER Amsterdam City West
Best Hostel near Amsterdam Centraal Station – Youth Hostel Meetingpoint
Best High-end Hostel in Amsterdam – Generator Amsterdam
Best Budget Hostel in Amsterdam – Hans Brinker Hostel
Best Hostel with a Private Room in Amsterdam – Cocomama
Quick Summary: The Best Hostels In Amsterdam
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Flying Pig Downtown
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Stayokay Amsterdam Vondelpark
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MEININGER Amsterdam City West
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Youth Hostel Meetingpoint
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Hans Brinker Hostel
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20 Best Hostels in Amsterdam
#1 – ClinkNOORD
• Best Overall Hostel in Amsterdam •
Why we like ClinkNOORD…
Being the best overall hostel in Amsterdam ClinkNOORD obviously does a lot of things right. The location, north of central, feels far away enough from it all – but not too far; the staff are amazing; the nightly events (e.g. music bingo) are really fun. Basically we love it – the whole thing!
ClinkNOORD is perfect for…
If you’re a fan of a social with a buzzy atmosphere – and especially if you’re the sort of person who loves to get involved in planned activities and make friends – then ClinkNOORD is for you. Pssst… the best hostel in Amsterdam also hands out free earplugs. Isn’t that great?
#2 – Flying Pig Downtown
• Best Party Hostel in Amsterdam •
Why we like Flying Pig Downtown…
Besides being one of the top hostels in Amsterdam in general, Flying Pig Downtown is something of a backpacker institution and definitely the best party hostel in Amsterdam. It’s really quite a famous place for its fun atmosphere and party vibe. We love the bar here, which gets very lively, and the onsite smoking room really is a nice touch.
Flying Pig Downtown is perfect for…
Party animals! Ok, well, you don’t have to be a party animal to enjoy the vibe here, but if you’re not expecting the coolest hostel in Amsterdam and you’re looking for a vibrant bar and a secure place to smoke without venturing into the coffeeshop scene, this place is great. It’s all about fun here.
#3 – Intersail
• Best Hostel for Solo Travellers in Amsterdam •
Why we like Intersail…
Intersail is certainly a hostel with a difference and that’s why we love it: basically, it’s a boat. Yep, a hostel on a boat – or a ‘bostel’ as they like to call it here. It’s the best hostel for solo travellers because, well, the deck’s an awesome communal space and it’s easy to break the ice: ‘So… a boat, huh?’
Intersail is perfect for…
Fans of quirky accommodation will love staying on a boat, simply put. Whilst this might not necessarily make this the coolest hostel in everyone’s eyes, there is a real charm to this place that would be a shame to miss out on. It’s a boat!
#4 – The Bulldog
• Best Hostel near Dam Square •
Why we like The Bulldog…
The best thing about The Bulldog is that it has been crafted with love by natives of Amsterdam who want visitors to have a great time. Like the perfect hosts they are, this top hostel in Amsterdam features an onsite coffeeshop, bar, staff who give great recommendations, and a fun, welcoming environment.
The Bulldog is perfect for…
Being the best hostel near Dam Square means you’ll be near to most of Amsterdam’s top attractions, including the oldest part of the city now turned Red Light District. If you love being at the centre of the action, which includes fun times as much as cultural days of sightseeing, then The Bulldog’s for you.
• Best Hostel near Vondelpark •
Why we like Stayokay Amsterdam Vondelpark…
This recommended hostel in Amsterdam also happens to be the best hostel near Vondelpark – and this is what we love about it the most. Vondelpark is Amsterdam’s largest public park, an expanse of green space where Amsterdammers come to recline with friends or in couples on a sunny day, drinking, smoking and generally chilling out. It’s a great place to be.
Stayokay Amsterdam Vondelpark is perfect for…
Obviously those who love a spot of park-side lounging will really like the location of Stayokay Amsterdam Vondelpark. There’s more to this Amsterdam backpackers hostel than just its location: it’s pretty damn (not a pun) cool inside, with industrial chic coursing through its veins with colour pops here and there. Lovely.
#6 – Dutchies Hostel
• Best Hostel near Westerpark •
Why we like Dutchies Hostel…
Although it’s out of Amsterdam’s centre, this compact city means you can be in the hustle and bustle of central within a 45-minute walk. If that doesn’t take your fancy: cycle! Everyone else does. And being the best hostel near Westerpark, this sprawling green space and cultural centre is a stone’s throw from here.
Dutchies Hostel is perfect for…
Those who love exploring a different side to the city that doesn’t necessarily involve all the usual tourist spots will love staying at this budget hostel in Amsterdam. What’s more, the staff are friendly and good for a chat, there’s bicycle rental and the kitchen facilities are literally excellent.
• Best Hostel near Amsterdam Airport Schipol •
Why we like MEININGER Amsterdam City West…
Never fans of a stressful journey to an airport to catch a flight, we absolutely love the ease in which you can get to the airport from this budget hostel in Amsterdam. We’d say it’s the best hostel near Amsterdam Airport Schipol for that reason – that and it’s not a bad location in itself!
MEININGER Amsterdam City West is perfect for…
If you like hostels immaculately clean, minimalist and functional without being basic and threadbare – basically if you like your hostels to be more like hotels, this branch of MEININGER is the ideal choice for you. And then it’s right next to a train station, which is just a 15-minute, stress-free ride to the airport.
• Best Hostel near Amsterdam Central Station •
Why we like Youth Hostel Meetingpoint…
The ethos of this youth hostel in Amsterdam is one that we can really get on board with. The 24-hour reception, lack of curfew, no-frills, simple decor and furnishings, plus amazing location of this top hostel in Amsterdam means an ideal and affordable base for urban travellers.
Youth Hostel Meetingpoint is perfect for…
If being literally a two-minute walk from Amsterdam’s main station sounds good, then this is the hostel for you. Complete with a bar, dedicated smokers’ room, sound staff and a cute cat wandering about the place, this is the best hostel near Amsterdam Centraal Station. It’s more than just a place to sleep.
MUST READ – Take a look at our guide to the best places to visit in Netherlands!
#9 – Generator Amsterdam
• Best High-end Hostel in Amsterdam •
Why we like Generator Amsterdam…
When it comes to the best high-end hostel in Amsterdam this branch of the infamous Generator hostel chain takes first place. It’s not exactly a budget hostel in Amsterdam, but it’s worth the money: this place feels like a boutique hotel with its effortlessly cool interior design. Just the sort of surroundings we look for in a cool hostel.
Generator Amsterdam is perfect for
Tend to stray towards luxury even if it seems a bit out of budget? This cool hostel in Amsterdam is for you. It represents a slice of affordable luxury and hip design in a city that can be a little bit pricey. So you’ll easily slip into these surroundings if you’re a lux-lover.
If you are visiting Amsterdam you HAVE to check out our article about Amsterdam’s coolest neighborhoods to stay!
#10 – Hans Brinker Hostel
• Best Budget Hostel in Amsterdam •
Why we like Hans Brinker Hostel…
We love value for money so we are pretty much head over heels with Hans Brinker. A former hotel located in Amsterdam’s famous canal belt, this is the best budget hostel in Amsterdam not only for the good price, but for its prime setting, nice vibe and friendly staff. This sort of thing, you feel, should cost more!
Hans Brinker Hostel is perfect for…
Bargain-lovers. That’s right, this budget hostel in Amsterdam allows you stay in a picturesque part of the city whilst also remaining within walking distance of the bustling centre. You get the best of both worlds at great price – who wouldn’t like that? And to keep things cheap, they’ve got an affordable onsite bar and restaurant.
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#11 – Cocomama
• Best Hostel with a Private Room in Amsterdam •
Why we like Cocomama…
Being our choice for the best hostel in Amsterdam with a private room, you might have already guessed that we absolutely love the private rooms on offer here. A mix of minimalism and eclectic, modern and traditional, these rooms are boutique to the max and we were in love at first sight.
Cocomama is perfect for…
So, if you’re a fan of staying in private rooms when it comes to hostels, Cocomama is an ideal option for you. At the same time, if at the same time you don’t like to miss out on a fun, social vibe just cause you like a bit of privacy, you’re in luck at Cocomama. It’s got oodles of atmosphere.
More Best Hostels in Amsterdam
#12 – Shelter Jordan
Why we like Shelter Jordan…
The best thing about this youth hostel in Amsterdam is its location: being able to roll out of the door here and right into the charming area of Jordaan is perfect. Especially if you love shopping (we do). On top of this the staff are accommodating and very friendly, which makes all the difference.
Shelter Jordan is perfect for…
Fans of being in a cool area like Jordaan, with all of its boutiques and hip cafes, will love staying at this Amsterdam backpackers hostel. Jordan is set just far away enough from central Amsterdam that it can be comfortably walked in almost no time, too – another plus on that prime location. Bonus: breakfast is included.
#13 – Hostel Van Gogh
Why we like Hostel Van Gogh…
Though some might not exactly think that being around a lot of Van Gogh artwork is very interesting, we really like it. That and the private rooms at this budget hostel in Amsterdam are really much more like hotel rooms than anything else – great to flop on the bed after a tiring day exploring.
Hostel Van Gogh is perfect for…
If being in an area with plenty of cultural hotspots on offer, Hostel Van Gogh will definitely pique your interest. The Van Gogh Museum itself is just on the doorstep, but the Museum Quarter itself is just nearby – fans of gallery-hopping and museum-wandering will really love this location.
#14 – Lucky Lake Hostel
Why we like Young & Happy hostel…
Wow, well, we really enjoy the concept of this unique hostel. Whilst it may not be the coolest hostel in Amsterdam for interior design or anything like that, the amount of different rooms on offer, from cabins to re-purposed buses, makes it a different place to stay in a sea of somewhat similar hostels.
Young & Happy hostel is perfect for…
If you’re into the idea of staying somewhere a bit different, Lucky Lake Hostel is for you. Definitely. Though it’s pretty far out from town this is a great option for those who don’t mind not being in the city 24/7. The vibe is nice and it’s cool to be close to nature – especially when the weather’s good!
#15 – Durty Nelly’s Inn
Why we like Durty Nelly’s Inn…
Aside from the great atmosphere at this recommended hostel in Amsterdam, the vibrant and colourful decor, the absolutely prime location and the friendly, go-the-extra-mile staff – aside from all that, we really love the adjoining pub at Durty Nelly’s. Fun is an understatement: it’s a very cool place to drink and make friends.
Durty Nelly’s Inn is perfect for…
To put it simply: if you’re a fan of fun times, you should be looking at Durty Nelly’s. Whilst not necessarily a party hostel, the onsite pub is a great place to drink at night – and it serves up very tasty food (at a discount for guests) for when you’re hungover the next day. It’s an alternative party hostel in Amsterdam.
#16 – The White Tulip
Why we like Le Village Montmatre hostel…
The pub isn’t necessarily what we like the most about this budget hostel in Amsterdam, but it certainly helps with our decision to include it as one of the best hostels in Amsterdam. Elsewhere, the clean, minimalist design warms our hearts and the central location genuinely excites us, what can we say?
Le Village Montmatre hostel is perfect for…
Nightlife-seekers. The prime spot for having a good time when night falls in Amsterdam, right at the start to the Red Light District, is just on the doorstep of this top hostel in Amsterdam, so if that sounds good to you, well, we can’t recommend this place enough. The pub is also fun!
#17 – CityHub Amsterdam
Why we like CityHub Amsterdam…
We adore the concept of mixing everything good about a hotel – you know, privacy, comfort, cleanliness – with all the best points of a hostel – sociability, engaging staff, a cool vibe; so CityHub is a cool hostel in Amsterdam that really caught our attention. The cherry on top for us is the ace design aesthetic going on here.
CityHub Amsterdam is perfect for…
If, like us, you like the sound of somewhere that serves up a cocktail of hotel security and hostel fun then you need look no further than CityHub. Technology-lovers will love the ‘hub’ bracelet, allowing you to do stuff like buy drinks and food without having to shed any cash (that is until they tot up your bill at the end).
#18 – Hostelle
Why we like Hostelle…
Hostelle is a female-only hostel and that is basically what we love about this place. We’re surprised there aren’t more, to be honest. On top of the whole concept, the place is really clean, it looks amazing – with plenty of cool and cute decor splashed around – and the atmosphere is chilled and friendly.
Hostelle is perfect for…
Though the location is somewhat out of Amsterdam’s centre, those who like to wander around a more local-feeling area than the bustling and somewhat touristy central areas of the city will love staying here. Also females who want to stay at a hostel minus males will naturally love this place.
Why we like St Christopher’s at the Winston…
Part of the famous St Christopher chain of hostels, we love this Amsterdam backpackers hostel for being a particularly fun, hostel-esque place to stay. Beer garden, smoking room, daily walking tours, free ear plugs, a buzzing bar and a general fun atmosphere that’s great to be. Sounds about right for us.
St Christopher’s at the Winston is perfect for…
If you are a fan of having everything you need in one place then you’ll love this budget hostel in Amsterdam. The bar is really fun, the staff help cultivate a great sociable vibe – you feel as if you don’t need to leave! Ever! That said, the Red Light District is just around the corner for lively nightlife.
Why we like Stayokay Amsterdam Stadsdoelen…
It’s really difficult not to love the scene as soon as you step out of the front door at this recommended hostel in Amsterdam: it’s exactly the city we wanted to see, honestly. Canals, pretty townhouses, streets full of character. Yep, this is exactly what we expected and we absolutely love it.
Stayokay Amsterdam Stadsdoelen is perfect for…
If seeing tourist hotspots isn’t high on your list of priorities when you’re staying in a city, and you’d rather just wander around and see what’s going on in a nevertheless charming area of town, Stayokay Amsterdam Stadsdoelen is an ideal choice for you. It’s just too pretty to not love this location!
Final thoughts on the the best hostels in Amsterdam
So that, as they say, is that. Amsterdam’s best hostels rounded up into handy categories, to help you come to the best decision and get a hostel that maximises your time – and your budget – in this cool city.
If you like to party, we know party hostels, and our EPIC guide to the 11 best party hostels in Amsterdam will show you everything you need to have a blast- Netherlands style!
There’s plenty to see and do in Amsterdam, which is all the more reason why an affordable hostel is a great choice. If you need to stay close to the Airport, this list of the 17 best hostels near Amsterdam Airport will show you the BEST hostels so you can travel like a boss :)
From high-end hostels set in heritage buildings, to newer places that ooze functional yet chic design, there’s a whole host of hostels in Amsterdam to choose from, all of which are well located in interesting areas of the city.
But if you can’t make up your mind, our choice for the best overall hostel in Amsterdam is ClinkNOORD – don’t forget. Now have fun (and stay safe)!
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