The Best Hostels in Colorado

From Denver to Fort Collins and beyond, Colorado is home to some great budget-friendly hostels
From Denver to Fort Collins and beyond, Colorado is home to some great budget-friendly hostels | © Prisma by Dukas Presseagentur GmbH / Alamy Stock Photo
Photo of Siobhan Grogan
12 October 2020

Rather spend your cash on adventures than a bed for the night? Colorado’s excellent hostels offer budget-friendly stays. Whether they’re close to Denver’s busy center or within easy reach of the state’s ski resorts, mining towns and mountain activities, they offer clean, comfortable rooms and dorms with surprising perks, such as outdoor firepits, free city tours, complimentary coffee and sociable spaces for meeting like-minded travelers.

Hostel Fish

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Courtesy of Hostel Fish / Expedia

Less of a hostel and more of an experience, Hostel Fish is far more than a place to sleep. The historic Airedale Building used to be a brothel but is now the only hostel in downtown Denver, with mixed and female-only shared rooms, an around-the-clock concierge, personal lockers, a kitchen and an outdoor patio. Early nights are not an option, though, as it’s home to a vibrant but noisy speakeasy-style bar and restaurant downstairs that hosts regular live music.


11th Avenue Hostel

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Courtesy of 11th Avenue Hostel / Expedia

If it’s your first time visiting Denver and you’re looking for a great location, helpful staff and spacious shared or private rooms, the 11th Avenue Hostel is an excellent option. Within walking distance of downtown attractions, this historic hostel offers free city maps, tours and bike parking, along with homey amenities, such as a laundry room, basic kitchen facilities, secure lockers and a fairy-lit outdoor terrace for chatting with fellow travelers.

Ember Hostel

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Courtesy of Ember Hostel / Expedia

Ember Hostel is the plushest hostel you will ever stay at. Voted the best hostel in the USA in 2020, this 9,000sqft (836sqm) historic mansion in Denver’s bohemian Capitol Hill features mixed and all-female dorms with train-car-style bunks with privacy curtains. Outstanding amenities include complimentary coffee and tea, free city tours, a guest kitchen, luggage storage and an outdoor terrace with a firepit and large Jacuzzi.

Fernweh Inn and Hostel

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Courtesy of Fernweh Inn and Hostel / Expedia

This five-room hostel in Fort Collins feels like a private retreat with all the trimmings and makes a great base to explore the hiking, biking and kayaking opportunities in the area. Rooms sleep between two and four, and some come with ensuite bathrooms, a balcony or a kitchenette. The Fernweh Inn and Hostel offers free tea, coffee and snacks, a well-stocked kitchen, outdoor gear storage, bikes and a fenced back yard with a firepit, games, hammocks and an outdoor barbecue grill. The resident hostel dog, Cash, provides cuddles on demand, too.


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  • The Mountaineer Hostel

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    Courtesy of The Mountaineer Hostel / Expedia

    Skiers on a budget will be bowled over by the Mountaineer Hostel, a cozy five-bedroom, five-bathroom lodge in a sleepy Silverthorne neighborhood. The house is a 20-minute drive from Colorado’s top ski resorts and two blocks from two Summit Stage bus stops. Rooms sleep between two and four, with a bunk room available for solo travelers, and all include a continental breakfast. After a day on the mountains, you can relax in the renovated kitchen, two lounge areas with a pool table or on the tranquil wraparound deck with Gore Range views.

    ColoRADo Adventure Hostel

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    Courtesy of ColoRADo Adventure Hostel / Expedia

    Expect impromptu jam sessions, communal backyard drinks and enthusiastic staff at this lively hostel in the shadow of Pikes Peak and close to the Garden of the Gods. The ColoRADo Adventure Hostel offers both mixed and single-sex dorms and private rooms. In a home-like environment, you can enjoy free tea and coffee, a modern kitchen, a lounge filled with books and a grassy backyard furnished with hammocks, a picnic table and permanent good vibes.

    The Bunkhouse

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    Courtesy of The Bunkhouse / Expedia

    A peaceful mountain hideaway in Minturn, this laid-back 38-bed hostel lies between Vail and Beaver Creek, allowing you to hit the slopes without paying ski resort prices. It offers private rooms or handcrafted, soundproofed bunk beds with privacy curtains, bag storage and USB charging points, and its facilities include a communal kitchen, a lounge with a craft-beer bar and a front deck. This quiet mining town is also home to restaurants, bars and a must-visit record store, Eagle Valley Music & Comics.

    These recommendations were updated on October 12, 2020 to keep your travel plans fresh.

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