This selection of hostels are a dream come true for adventure travelers… activity hostels are tailor-made for those who like their travel experiences a bit more ‘on the edge’ than a weekend city break!
Surf’s Up at Rio Surf n’ Stay
With its incredible location, a short stroll from the famous beaches of Recreio and Macumba, Rio Surf n’ Stay was founded with one purpose in mind: to be a surfer's paradise. And with lessons, board hire, and even a surf mobile to chase the best waves up and down the coast, they really lay it all on.
But as well as the great surfing, the hostel’s also got plenty of other things going for it. As you’d expect from a surf hostel, it’s got a pretty chilled out sort of vibe, while there are some amazing nature reserves to explore nearby… Not to mention the pulsating nightlife of Rio de Janeiro itself!
A guest writes: ”Great spot close to premo surf beaches. Off the main tourist drag. Friendly locals and relaxing atmosphere we loved this place. Kat & Mauro have a nice homely hostel and the food is good too. I’ll be going back, thanks again guys!” (Posted on 13th September)
Check prices at Rio Surf n’ Stay- Backpackers
Snowbunny’s: Opening the door for backpackers to some of the best skiing in the world
From the tropical paradise of Rio, to the snow-capped peaks of Austria… But like Rio Surf n’ Stay, Snowbunny’s are absolutely fanatical about what they do - offering backpackers some of the best skiing in the world!
The hostel itself has just the sort of cozy, chalet feel welcome after a hard day on the slopes. It’s also, conveniently, just a weary stagger through the snowy streets to some great apres ski… Kitzbuhel may not be the biggest place, but its nightlife really packs a punch!
A guest writes: ”Great kitchen and cooking facilities, great showers, very near to the slopes. Double rooms are the best options. Definitely best rate in town.” (Posted on 8th February)
Check prices at Snowbunny’s Backpackers
Come for the hostel… stay for the views!
Australia’s not exactly short of natural wonder or two. But even by these high standards, the Grampians stand out. A vast collection of dramatic rock formations, jutting out from mile after mile of practically untouched wilderness a couple of hundred kilometers from Melbourne, the area is pretty special.
In the middle of all this stunning scenery (a mecca for climbers and other adventure sports fans) sits Asses Ears Wilderness Hostel. There’s no better (or cheaper) way to take in these truly remarkable mountain ranges, than by setting off on a hiking expedition.
A guest writes: ”In the middle of nowhere on a farm with kangaroos… Great atmosphere!” (Posted on 25th April)
Check prices at Asses Ears Wilderness Lodge
Rough terrain in Rotorua
With its truly amazing landscape, New Zealand is arguably the outdoors activity capital of the world. There are enough bungee-jumping, heli-skiing and whitewater rafting opportunities to keep even the wildest of adrenaline junkies happy.
And Lyons Lakestay is no exception. In addition to their mountain bike hire service, this fantastic eco-friendly hostel also offer the chance to take a kayak out on the lake. And if it all gets a little exhausting, a trip to the set of ‘Hobbiton’ (from the Lord of the Rings films) can be easily arranged.
A guest writes: ”Beautiful position, wonderful hostess, clean, comfortable and fantastic value for money. Highly recommend it!” (Posted on 15th October)
Check prices at Lyons Lakestay
Wet and wild in Voss
One country that may challenge New Zealand when it comes to their passion for outdoor activities is Norway. Every year, in the last week of June, the town of Voss gears itself up for its Extreme Sports Week, an orgy of skydiving, base jumping and other high octane thrills.
The extreme sports ideology is very much embraced at Voss Hostel. Canoeing is just one of the many activities that this place offers its guests. With the start of the ski season (in December) just around the corner, if the waters are a bit chilly, there’s excellent alpine skiing close at hand.
A guest writes: ”This was one of the best hostels we visited on our 5 week holiday. The room was very clean & tidy – a bit of a trick to using the shower! The staff were extremely friendly and very helpful. After we had checked out we were able to stay and use the facilities until we caught our train later in the afternoon. We had a beautiful organic breakfast. We would definitely recommend this hostel and would stay again.” (Posted on 23rd September)
Check prices at Voss Hostel
Not a penguin in sight, just lots of fish!
During winter in Europe, the mild climes of North Africa seem increasingly enticing. Even more attractive, though, are the astonishing reefs of the Gulf of Aquaba in the Red Sea that are almost within touching distant of Penguin Village.
And for those who thought that scuba-diving was the preserve of five star hotel customers… think again! With beds at this amazing diving hostel starting at 3 Euros, it provides a genuinely luxury service at cheap backpacking prices.
A guest writes: ”The best place to stay in Dahab. Great atmosphere with superb staff (Adel, Haleem, Osama & the boys will sort out anything you need). Excellent place to chill in between dives with their very professional dive centre. Big up Mohammed (the master of dive masters). Book now!” (Posted on 14th January)
Check prices at Penguin Village
Explore the Dominican Republic on horseback at Rancho Wendy
Like Penguin Village, there’s unlikely to be much cold weather anywhere in the Dominican Republic. Temperatures on the sparkling white beaches of this picturesque Caribbean island are deliciously warm all year round.
Inland, though, Rancho Wendy – a horse riding hostel that boasts various other outdoor activities – is in one of the most idyllic settings imaginable. The lush green hills and jungle that surround the hostel are riddled with rivers, streams and hidden waterfalls, making for absolutely spectacular trekking.
This property is new to the site and is yet to receive a guest review.
Check prices at Rancho Wendy Adventure
Rock climbing on the roof of the world
With several sheer faces nearby, Shreeban Rock Climbing Nature Camp provides a stern test for even the most experienced climbers. For more incredible views of the mighty Himalayas, you can even go hang-gliding!
One of the most remote activity hostels in the world, it’s a 2-3 hour hike from where the bus drops travelers off to get to the place. Accommodation varies from bunkhouses to safari-style tents, to house the budding adventure traveler.
This property is new to the site and is yet to receive a guest review.
Check prices at Shreeban Rock Climbing Nature Camp
Taking off in Essaouira
Licked by the winds of the Atlantic, and with a large curving sandy bay, the Moroccan town of Essaouira is a top destination for boarders of all description. During the winter months, however, the wind really gets up and some of the waves hitting the town can be huge!
The riad of Les Matin Bleus is a wonderfully romantic bed for the night. Owned by a couple of passionate windsurfers (who’ll be more than happy to provide you with some valuable local knowledge!) it’s the perfect place to really make the most of these fabulous natural conditions.
A guest writes: ”If you’re staying in Essaouira, BOOK THIS RIAD. It’s absolutely beautiful, in a perfect location, and has the greatest staff I have encountered so far in my travels. The riad’s chef even went out to get us her favorite argan oil to take back with us. The breakfast is incredible and the rooms are great. There is nothing more I could have asked for.” (Posted on 21st March)
Check prices at Les Matins Bleus
Have you stayed in any awesome activity hostels that we didn’t mention? Let us know.