The beautiful Central American nation of Panama’s capital city blends the old and the new. Modern architecture rubs shoulders with the colonial buildings and cobblestone streets to create a wonderful atmosphere. Head to the Miraflores Locks to catch a glimpse of huge ships on their journey along the famous canal!
With everything going on in Panama City, it can be tricky deciding on the best place to stay. As it’s a capital city, things can get expensive, so hostels are a great idea. They’re also a fantastic spot to meet like-minded travellers.
To help you out, we’ve put together a list of the best hostels in Panama City – thinking about your itinerary, travel style, and above all – budget!
Thankfully, there’s lots to choose from including some great backpackers’ hostels, plenty with a lovely refreshing pool, and even some inside old colonial buildings. So, let’s dive straight into the best hostels Panama City has to offer!
The Best Hostels in Panama City: Round-up
Best overall hostel in Panama City: Magnolia Inn
Best party hostel in Panama City: Los Mostros Hostel
Best hostel for solo travellers in Panama City: Hostal Casa Areka
Best hostel for digital nomads in Panama City: Selina Casco Viejo Panama City
Best hostel near Panamá Viejo: Nomade Hostel
Best hostel near Amador Causeway: Hospedaje Casco Viejo
Best hostel near Metropolitan Natural Park: Panama House Bed and Breakfast
Best hostel near Panama Canal Museum: Casa Antigua Hostel Panama
Best hostel near Tocumen International Airport: HC10 Hospedajes
Best hostel near Corozal Passenger Station: Luna’s Castle Hostel
Best hostel near Gran Terminal Nacional De Transporte: Mamallena Backpackers
Best high-end hostel in Panama City: Hostal Carolina Princess Marbella
Best budget hostel in Panama City: Zebulo Hostel
Best hostel with private rooms in Panama City: Sophias Hostel PTY
Best hostel with a pool in Panama City: El Machico Hostel
15 Best Hostels in Panama City
#1 – Magnolia Inn
• Best overall hostel in Panama City •
Why we like Magnolia Inn…
This charming hostel is right in the middle of Panama City’s Casco Viejo, so it’s a wonderful place to enjoy the colonial atmosphere and cobblestone streets. It’s located in a restored French mansion, so you’re bound to feel like the lord or lady of the manor! You’re guaranteed a good night’s sleep too as the hostel offers orthopaedic mattresses.
Magnolia Inn is perfect for…
If you want to stay in a large, friendly, and fun hostel right in the city’s Casco Viejo, then look no further than Magnolia Inn. There are plenty of stylish spots where you can chill out and chat to other guests, and you’re also close to the nightlife so if you really hit it off with said guests, you can go for dinner or drinks at many of the cool places on your doorstep!
#2 – Los Mostros Hostel
• Best party hostel in Panama City •
Why we like Los Mostros Hostel…
This fun and friendly hostel has a fabulous common area which is used for all sorts of events, including get-togethers – so it’s the best party hostel in Panama City. It’s got everything you could need for a laidback and chilled out party hostel – a pool, pool table, ping pong, and of course, a terrace!
Los Mostros Hostel is perfect for…
Okay, it’s not the place for a wild all-night rave, but for a few beers and games of pool or ping pong before hitting the town, there’s nowhere better than Los Mostros Hostel. If you’re not up for partying, there’s no need to look elsewhere! You can happily curl up in the relaxed common room with something from the hostel’s book exchange.
#3 – Hostal Casa Areka
• Best hostel for solo travellers in Panama City •
Why we like Hostal Casa Areka…
This beachfront hospital is in a nice neighbourhood. More importantly though, there’s a pool with a BBQ area outside or a common area with a pool table inside – take your pick solo travellers! This is the best place for you. We also love that breakfast is included here!
Hostal Casa Areka is perfect for…
If you’re travelling solo and you’re anxious about meeting people and making friends, you’ll quickly forget about that when staying at Hostal Casa Areka. The set-up of the hostel means it’s super easy to get chatting. There are a number of restaurants and bars just a hop, skip, and a jump from the hostel too!
• Best hostel for digital nomads in Panama City •
Why we like Selina Casco Viejo Panama City…
This reliable chain has hostels all over Latin America, and it’s hard to say whether it’s the super-fast Free WiFi, the energetic environment, or the co-working spaces that make it the best hostel for digital nomads in Panama City. When you’ve finished work for the day, why not try out one of Selina’s daily classes that vary in intensity?!
Selina Casco Viejo Panama City is perfect for…
Designed with the working traveller in mind, there’s nowhere better for digital nomads in Panama City than Selina Casco Viejo! You can pick between the comfortable common room or the rooftop terrace for setting up your laptop – and when you’ve finished working for the day it’s just a short stroll to some of the city’s best restaurants and bars!
#5 – Nomade Hostel
• Best hostel near Panamá Viejo •
Why we like Nomade Hostel…
The UNESCO World Heritage site of Panamá Viejo is a must-see on many tourists’ itineraries to the capital, and this green and natural hostel is the best place to stay nearby. It offers a mix of reasonably priced dorms and private rooms, so it’s suitable for travellers of all budgets who want to spend time chilling out!
Nomade Hostel is perfect for…
If you want to be close to Panamá Viejo, there’s nowhere better than Nomade Hostel! It’s also a great place to stay if you’re travelling with your own transport or your pets – as the hostel offers free parking and is pet-friendly too! All bathrooms come with toiletries too – something a lot of travellers often forget to pack. What a relief!
• Best hostel near Amador Causeway •
Why we like Hospedaje Casco Viejo…
Amador Causeway is a lovely land bridge is a popular boardwalk for walkers and cyclists, and it should definitely be on your to-do list. This restored colonial mansion is one of the nearest properties to the boardwalk, so it’s the best hostel near Amador Causeway! We love the views of the Old Quarter from the roof terrace!
Hospedaje Casco Viejo is perfect for…
If you want to be within a hop, skip, and a jump of one of the nicest walks in the whole of Panama City, then get Hospedaje Casco Viejo down on your list. It’s also a good spot for learning about the history of the Old Town, onward travel from the city’s bus or train stations, or just viewing the impressive Panama Canal!
• Best hostel near Metropolitan Natural Park •
Why we like Panama House Bed and Breakfast…
This casual and practical bed and breakfast is one of the closest spots you’ll find to the city’s large green space, Metropolitan Natural Park, so it’s the best place to stay if you want to spend an afternoon relaxing with a picnic! We love the traditional and friendly Panamanian hospitality here!
Panama House Bed and Breakfast is perfect for…
If you want to enjoy the Metropolitan Natural Park in Panama City, then there’s no better place to stay than this lovely B and B. There’s a tasty breakfast included in the price too! You’re bound to have a great night’s sleep in the comfy and colourful beds, refreshed and ready to explore the city!
• Best hostel near Panama Canal Museum •
Why we like Casa Antigua Hostel Panama…
This luxurious and fancy hostel offers not only dorms but apartment style rooms too. It’s right in the Casco Viejo, which makes it the best hostel for visiting the Panama Canal Museum. We love Storx 360 – the rooftop bar which provides excellent views of the city until the early hours of the morning!
Casa Antigua Hostel Panama is perfect for…
If you want to learn about the history of the Panama Canal at one of the most important museums in Panama City, then consider booking Casa Antigua Hostel. Not only is it a great place for visiting the Canal Museum, but it’s also a fantastic place if you fancy treating yourself to a nice high-end hostel!
#9 – HC10 Hospedajes
• Best hostel near Tocumen International Airport •
Why we like HC10 Hospedajes…
There aren’t a lot of hostels near the airport that serves Panama City as it’s quite far out of the centre. However, this pleasant homestay is just 10 minutes away by private shuttle and is, therefore, the best place to stay near Tocumen International Airport. There’s still a shared lounge where you can relax and meet other guests!
HC10 Hospedajes is perfect for…
Travellers who have a flight at an unsociable hour and don’t want to make the long and stressful journey to or from the airport at silly o’clock will be delighted to find a great friendly budget accommodation within easy reach of Tocumen International Airport. Each room comes with a flat screen TV too so you won’t be bored!
#10 – Luna’s Castle Hostel
• Best hostel near Corozal Passenger Station •
Why we like Luna’s Castle Hostel…
This is where you need to board the train if you want to take the Panama Canal Railway. You won’t get much closer than Luna’s Castle – the best hostel near Corozal Passenger Station! This cool and laidback hostel is also considered as one of the best party hostels in Panama City, thanks to its rooftop bar, great fiestas, and cool cocktails!
Luna’s Castle Hostel is perfect for…
Travellers who want to be close to Corozal Passenger Station will find that this spot in the Casco Viejo is an excellent place to stay. If you like historical buildings it’s a great spot too – the colonial mansion is complete with lofty ceilings, wooden beams, and art throughout. There are plenty of hammocks and sofas for chilling too!
#11 – Mamallena Backpackers
• Best hostel near Gran Terminal Nacional De Transporte •
Why we like Mamallena Backpackers…
This hostel has a relaxed and chilled out environment, and it’s also one of the closest places to Panama city’s central bus station, so it’s definitely the best hostel near Gran Terminal Nacional de Transporte. We love spending the afternoon around the pool either tanning or taking a dip!
Mamallena Backpackers is perfect for…
Travellers who are arriving or leaving Panama City by bus will be delighted to find a hostel with such easy access to the bus station! There’s a free pancake breakfast too which comes with rolled oats and fresh bananas, so there’s plenty to fuel up on before a day of sightseeing or a long bus journey!
• Best high-end hostel in Panama City •
Why we like Hostal Carolina Princess Marbella…
This calm and peaceful hostel has lots of lovely private rooms that come with air conditioning, Wi-Fi, and a television, so it’s the best high-end hostel in Panama City. Away from the room, there’s plenty to love too – including a large swimming pool which you can race across on inflatable flamingos!
Hostal Carolina Princess Marbella is perfect for…
If you don’t mind splashing out a little more for a luxurious and plush experience, then listen up! It’s a great place if you’re travelling as a couple, a small group of friends, or a family as you’ll have your own space but at hostel prices! It’s in the city centre and close to lots of bars, restaurants, and nightlife so you’ll never be bored.
#13 – Zebulo Hostel
• Best budget hostel in Panama City •
Why we like Zebulo Hostel…
This cool and sociable backpackers’ hostel offers some of the lowest prices in town, so it’s the best budget hostel in Panama City! Just because it’s cheap doesn’t mean that you have to compromise on facilities – there’s a free jacuzzi, breakfast, games, and a book exchange! Dog lovers will be pretty happy here as the hostel is named after a puppy that lives on site!
Zebulo Hostel is perfect for…
Travellers who are doing Central America or Panama on a shoestring will find that Zebulo Hostel suits them perfectly. The free breakfast is just one more thing that you don’t have to shell out on in town so you can put it towards real travel experiences, like tours of the San Blas Islands or boats to Colombia which you can book at the hostel!
#14 – Sophias Hostel PTY
• Best hostel with private rooms in Panama City •
Why we like Sophias Hostel PTY…
This sociable travellers’ hostel offers single, double and 4-bed rooms that you don’t have to share with a single soul, so it’s the best hostel with a private room in Panama City. We love the free breakfast you can get a Sophia’s Hostel, which comes with fresh fruit and eggs!
Sophias Hostel PTY is perfect for…
Single travellers who feel they need a break from the hectic dorm lifestyle, couples who want their own space and privacy, and even small families and groups of friends will love the range of private dorms on offer at Sophias Hostel. You can still enjoy the hostel atmosphere in the cool common areas while sleeping undisturbed!
#15 – El Machico Hostel
• Best hostel with a pool in Panama City •
Why we like El Machico Hostel…
This friendly and fun hostel has a great pool with an open-air cinema, so those two elements combined make it the best hostel in Panama City with a pool! That’s not all the hostel has to boast – there’s a free pancake breakfast, pool table, and even parking – perfect if you’re here with your own transport!
El Machico Hostel is perfect for…
There are plenty of hostels with pools in Panama City, so how do you pick the perfect one? Well, of course it’s the one that you lie in while watching a movie on the big screen! This place is also a perfect destination for solo travellers, as there are several spots where you can easily get chatting to fellow guests!
So, that’s everything from us! We’ve deeply explored the best hostels in Panama City and we’re sure that there’s something on our extensive list that will suit you perfectly – and keep your bank account happy!
After all, you don’t want to miss out on Central America’s coolest capitals, do you?!
Hostels are a great way to travel, not only because they save you cash, but because they help you make friends for life! We hope with the money you save; you can explore the rest of Panama and more of Central America!
And don’t forget our top hostel in Panama City – Magnolia Inn. We hope whichever cool hostel you settle on; you have a fantastic trip!
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