The Coolest Hostels in Peru

Selina Huaraz blends traditional style with cool contemporary art
Selina Huaraz blends traditional style with cool contemporary art | Courtesy of Selina Huaraz / Expedia
Photo of Sorrel Moseley-Williams
Writer23 June 2021

Hip bases in the capital Lima, desert hideaways in Huacachina and cool casas in Cusco let you tick off the country’s bucket-list sights on a budget.

Peru is one of South America’s most exciting countries, with diverse landscapes that run from the Pacific Ocean and its surf-backed beaches to the foodie, fun-loving capital Lima and the arched Andes mountains – crowned by must-visit Machu Picchu. Where you save on accommodation, you can splash out on activities such as surfing lessons in Máncora or trekking the Inca Trail from Cusco. Here is our guide to the coolest hostels in Peru.

1900 Hostel

Hostel, Hotel
Map View
Courtesy of 1900 Hostel / Expedia
A charming grande dame of a 19th-century mansion, complete with French architectural flourishes, awaits at Lima’s 1900 Hostel. Perfectly placed in the Peruvian capital’s historic old town, both the Arte de Lima and Arte Italiano museums are a short walk away, as is Parque de la Exposicion. Besides making the most of the fabulous rooftop terrace, take advantage of free ceviche-making classes. Dorms sleep up to 18 or for more privacy, splash out on a single room.

Casablanca Hostel

Hostel, Hotel
Map View
Courtesy of Casablanca Hostel / Expedia
This might be the only time you feel as if you’re staying inside a volcano, given that the colonial-style Casablanca Hostel is constructed from sillar, a type of volcanic rock. Located in the heart of the Ciudad Blanca (white city) of Arequipa, a stone’s throw from the historic center’s Plaza de Armas and the Basilica Cathedral, many sights are just a short walk away. Despite the ‘hostel’ moniker, all the charming rooms are en-suite here, whilst there’s a peaceful cafeteria and a terrace with views of the Andes to blur the lines further still.

Banana's Adventure

Hostel, Hotel
Map View
Banana's Adventure
Courtesy of Banana's Adventure
Banana’s Adventure is located in the desert oasis of Huacachina, close to the conservation area that’s home to Huacachina Lake’s therapeutic waters. Cozy mixed dorms sleep up to six; why not upgrade to a private double with an en-suite bathroom. Hang out next to the swimming pool, summon drinks at the bar or snooze away the day in a hammock. Dune-buggy and sandboarding tours are on tap; as are barbecue dinners and social nights.

Loki

Hostel, $$$
Map View
Beach bums and kite surfers will love staying at party-loving hostel Loki, just one block from the waves in northern Peru’s bohemian beach town of Máncora. Recharge batteries by the swimming pool by day; come evening, the party gets started for hostel guests as well as other Máncora visitors. After a more relaxing stay? Upgrade to a double room with an ocean-view balcony. Yoga studios and dive shops are also within flip-flopping distance.

Dragonfly Hostel

Hostel, Hotel
Map View
Courtesy of Dragonfly Hostel / Expedia
This hostel has a fantastic location close to Lima’s Malecón boardwalk and is a five-minute walk from Makaha Beach in the trendy Miraflores neighborhood. Dorms accommodate up to eight whilst there’s also a women-only option with its own bathroom. Enjoy Peruvian dishes at the in-house restaurant; the friendly bar takes pride in serving a diverse selection of Peruvian craft beers. Where you save on accommodation, you can splash out on dining at award-winning Miraflores restaurant Maido – which specializes in Peru’s Japanese-influenced Nikkei cuisine.

Hostal Corihuasi

Hostel, Hotel
Map View
History lovers will relish a stay at the 18th-century colonial-era mansion Corihuasi in the Inca city of Cusco. Located in the heart of the old town, Corihuasi is just two blocks from Plaza de Armas and an array of historical gems. Let reception know your arrival details for a free pick-up to save on costs. Rooms decorated with antiques can sleep up to three; upgrade to a Panoramic room for unbeatable old town views.

La Casa de Bamboo

Hostel, Guesthouse, Hotel
3.5/5 (36 Reviews)
Casa de Bamboo
Courtesy of Casa de Bamboo
Bamboo by name, bamboo by nature: this quirky casa in the desert oasis of Huacachina has a reception, restaurant and tiki-style bar all made out of a panda’s favorite produce. It’s family-run, so expect to feel at home in no time. Veggies will love the plant-based menu; it’s also the only place to serve proper organic Peruvian coffee in town.
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  • The Luxe Cusco Hostel

    Hostel
    Courtesy of The Luxe Cusco Hostel / Expedia
    Perfectly positioned in the thick of Cusco’s historical old town, Luxe Cusco Hostel is within easy walking distance of many must-see sights, such as Plaza de Armas, the cathedral and churches including the Basilica Menor de la Merced. Cozy rooms sport Inca-era architecture, such as wedge-thick stone walls and modern-day Peruvian textiles, whilst only some share a bathroom. After a long day’s sightseeing, chill out at the bar with a Pisco Sour before dining in the restaurant and pursuing the scrawled chalkboard of next-day adventures, including trips to Machu Picchu and the Valle Sagrado, plus longer multi-day jaunts to the psychedelic Montaña de Siete Colores (Mountain of the Seven Colors).
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    Milhouse Hostel Cusco

    Hostel
    4/5 (67 Reviews)
    Courtesy of Milhouse Hostel Cusco / Expedia
    With a fantastic location in the heart of Cusco’s historical old town just two blocks from Plaza de Armas, Millhouse is also a short walk from Plaza San Francisco and the Qoricancha (centerpiece temple of the Inca Empire). Built around a traditional courtyard that’s great for socializing, well-illuminated rooms and dorms have a contemporary decor with everything from doubles up to 12-person digs. Enjoy a hearty breakfast including tropical fruit and scrambled eggs before heading out.
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    Magicpacker Hostel

    Hostel
    Courtesy of Magicpacker Hostel / Expedia
    Located in Cusco’s fantastic old town, Magicpacker is a stone’s throw from the city’s best sights including the Qoricancha temple of the Inca Empire and the Convento de San Francisco de Asís; it’s also two blocks from San Pedro train station and the food market of the same name. It’s built in the traditional style with interior wooden balconies, and all the action happens in the sociable central courtyard. Magicpacker also counts a café, bar and restaurant among its quarters.
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    El Jacal Backpacker

    Hostel
    6c48598d
    Courtesy of El Jacal Backpacker / Expedia
    Off the beaten track in the town of Huaraz, high up in the Andes at 3,000m (9,842ft) above sea level, El Jacal has well-kept rooms that are simply decorated but spic and span. There’s a big-windowed bar and restaurant with views of the snow-capped mountains, whilst a communal kitchen helps keep food costs down. Let reception know your arrival details for a free pick-up from the bus terminal. Once there, trekking adventures await in the High Andes hinterland.
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    Selina Huaraz

    Hostel
    Courtesy of Selina Huaraz / Expedia
    Hikers, adventurers and digital nomads will love staying at the Huaraz outpost of luxury hostel Selina, tucked away Andean countryside at 3,400m (11,154ft) above sea level. The perfect rural base for outdoor adventures, there are 700 glaciers, 500 lagoons, 25 trekking routes and 102 climbing spots within Selina’s entorns. Dorms can accommodate up to 14 but the loft for two is a wonderfully indulgent stay for a little extra. There’s also a wellness area offering complimentary yoga classes, plus co-working hot desks if you feel the need to work.
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    Selina Miraflores Lima

    Hostel
    4/5 (279 Reviews)
    Courtesy of Selina Miraflores Lima / Expedia
    Co-working spaces and hip communal areas are part of the package at this luxury Latin American hostel chain and the Miraflores outpost in the Peruvian capital Lima stands true to form. With a wide range of living quarters to suit all budgets, from apartments to 12-person dorms, the ambiance is more hip hotel than hostel. Vibrant decor resonates across shared spaces including the restaurant, cocktail bar, playground and those signature hot desks.
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    Brandon Dupre contributed additional reporting to this article.

    These recommendations were updated on June 23, 2021 to keep your travel plans fresh.

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