The Great 'Hidden UK Hostel Gems' Hunt

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The Great 'Hidden UK Hostel Gems' Hunt

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MSE_JennyMSE_Jenny Senior WriterMSE Staff
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MSE Staff
The Great 'Hidden UK Hostel Gems' Hunt

Don’t think dodgy smelly dorms – some hostels are historic mansions such as Ilam Hall in Derbyshire. Most are clean, have private rooms available and breakfast.

If you're a hostel fan, we'd love to know your hidden UK hostel gems. Where did you stay, what did you like about it and roughly how much did it cost? Here are a few from Facebook to start you off:

“Black Sail, in Cumbria - remote and a haven of warmth & good food on a cold, wet, windy night. I enjoyed it so much (particularly the sticky toffee pudding).” Paul

"Grinton Lodge Youth Hostel near Richmond Yorkshire is very special! Fantastic for kids, walkers, cyclists. We had the family room which was actually a suite in the turret - amazing and very good value for money" Louise

"Four Courts Hostel in Dublin - fabulous, great people, lovely clean rooms, really handy for the pubs etc. As much breakfast as you can eat (and with the hangover I had, I needed all the toast and orange juice I could get!)" Jane

Also see the Great 'Worldwide Hostel gems' hunt.

Click reply below to share your faves. If you haven’t already, join the forum to reply. If you aren’t sure how it all works, watch our New to Forum? Intro Guide.

View all past Great Hunts.



  • ses99ses99 Forumite
    8 posts
    The Old School Hostel, Trefin, Wales
  • Smart city, Edinburgh. For 5 adults for 2 nights it worked out at £230. Had our own 6 person dorm with own lockable door, clean and right in the centre of tone and not far from transport links.

    Cheap bar also and served breakfast and food throughout the day. Would defiantly use them again.
    :beer:Member of Mortgage free in three. :beer:
    55. littlemonkeywolf. Reduce my mortgage
  • gawa75gawa75 Forumite
    193 posts
    Been hostelling for 6 years now. The very best ones I've experienced are...

    (in no particular order)

    Downhill Beach house Hostel, Castlerock, Northern Ireland
    Kinlay House Hostel, Galway City, Rep of Ireland
    Skyewalker Hostel, Portnalong, Isle of Skye
    River House Backpackers, Cardiff, Wales
  • 'Once Brewed', on Hadrian's Wall. Very friendly. Great location.
  • Always enjoyed staying at Dimmingsdale Youth Hostel, near Alton Towers. Lovely setting and good walking.

    Carbisdale Castle in Scotland was probably the grandest hostel I stayed in.

    The best bunkhouse has to be at Dolgoch. No electricity and in a remote area off the beaten track. Worth a visit.

    I think the worst hostel has to be St. Pauls (City of London) in London, with the nearby bells chiming every 15 minutes including the night! Nothing wrong with the hostel though, just lack of sleep.
  • The YHA in Bath, £50 for one night in a en suite twin. A cheap way to spend the night in an expensive city! It's a long uphill walk back from the centre if you don't have a car though.
  • All Scottish Independent Hostels are quality assured by Visit Scotland and of an excellent standard - just visit the website for a selection of 120 Hostels, all owner owned by people passionate about Hostelling
  • crawdiddly wrote: »
    All Scottish Independent Hostels are quality assured by Visit Scotland and of an excellent standard - just visit the website for a selection of 120 Hostels, all owner owned by people passionate about Hostelling
    A bland statement from the PR department of the Scottish Independent Hostel Association. Try reading the OP question first before posting.
  • JellySJellyS Forumite
    1 posts
    Stayed at St Briavels castle once and had an amazing time. They had a special 'castle night' on with authentic food and ghost stories, was really good fun.
    Also loved Wilderhope Manor, lovely building and good remote location (but lots with in a drivable distance.
  • edited 24 April 2014 at 11:43PM
    The_ICT_EngineerThe_ICT_Engineer Forumite
    617 posts
    edited 24 April 2014 at 11:43PM
    Many of the YHA hostels in England and Wales that were real gems have been closed and flog off to the highest bidder.

    These are just some of more than 80 that have been lost.
    Badby (Northhamptonshire)
    Bradenham (Bucks)
    Cranborne (North Dorset)
    Crockam Hill (Kent)
    Copt Oak (Leicestershire)
    Elton (Peaks)
    Kings Lynn (Norfolk)
    Meerbrook (Staff Moorlands)
    Overton (Hants)
    Portsmouth (Hants)
    Shinning Cliff (Peaks)
    Saffon Walden (Essex) ‎
    Winchester (Hants)
    Windsor (Berkshire)
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