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What Hostels Would You Suggest to a Friend?

Our Admissions Counselors and Site Specialists are a well-traveled lot. They've backpacked Europe, studied abroad in many of the cities you're considering now, and slept on trains, park benches – even under the Eiffel Tower. So rather than entrust yourself to a hostel reviewed by some (ahem) unemployed writer, why not hear what CEA's very own road warriors have to say based on their first-hand experience?

1. Gothic Pointe in Barcelona, Spain – Affordable, breakfast included and lockers available (please note they are not large so limit your bags). You will have to share a room with other travelers so if you are uncomfortable with this, don’t stay here. If you’re adventurous, you will find yourself meeting travelers from all over the globe.

2. Jacob's Inn in Dublin, Ireland – Very clean and spacious, great social environment! The people working there were super friendly and it's a great location in the city in close proximity to all of the area's attractions. Also offers free Wi-Fi to guests.

3. Villa Francescatti Hostel in Verona, Italy – It’s housed in a 16th century villa that boasts a huge lawn with gorgeous views of Verona. The rooms and facilities aren’t deluxe, but it’s worth it to stay in a villa with those views! It was great fun to stretch out on the lawn and talk to people. Just a short walk to the bus stop down the hill, which students can take to the train station or central Verona, where they can visit the Romeo and Juliet balcony or the Roman arena to see the opera.

4. Young & Happy (Y&H) in Paris, France – Great location in the Latin Quarter and within easy walking distance to Notre Dame!

5. Yoho International Youth Hostel in Salzburg, Austria – Super clean and facilities were very nice. A little more expensive, but is well organized and gives off a definite feeling of security and comfort. Group rooms with clean bunk beds make your stay easy to get to know other student travelers. They also help you figure out your Sound of Music Tour and play the movie daily for guests! (This appeals to the true sappy person in all of us.)

6. Villa Rosa Guesthouse in Santorini, Greece – Quaint, but super nice for a hostel! Clean and private, if you are looking for a break from the group rooms in most other hostels in Europe. Also, pretty close to beaches and walking distance from town. This option is more like a hotel in accommodations, but like a hostel when it comes to price so it is definitely worth the money!

7. Camping Jolly in Venice, Italy – Located outside of the city, but a fun and totally different kind of experience. Very wide, open area – plenty of room to roam around and meet other backpackers while relaxing at the pool or eating at the restaurant. It can be a bit warm in the summer months, but it’s definitely the true Venice experience!

8. Stayokay Amsterdam Vondelpark– Quieter location in the middle of Amsterdam's Vondelpark, within walking distance to the Van Gogh Museum and the central square. Good if you want to see a different part of Amsterdam and like to explore cities on foot.

9. Cabinas Vista al Golfo in Monteverde, Costa Rica – Awesome and great price! This hostel has fabulous canopy views and an equipped kitchen so that you can make your own meals. Private rooms are readily available and there is also staff on site ready to help you book your night tour in the cloud forest so you can truly appreciate all parts of the wildlife and plant life in Monteverde. (Glowing tarantulas, snakes and sloths, oh my!)

10. Rocking J's in Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica – Amazing hammocks and cheap! Cool, laid-back vibe if you are okay with sleeping outside. Super great atmosphere and really represents the “pura vida,” which makes Costa Rica, well, Costa Rica! You can also walk right out to the beach, which is a definite plus. (FABULOUS sunrises!)

Not what you're looking for? Here are some resources to help you plan your own backpacking adventure:

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