1. Community Hostel Baños
If you enjoyed your stay at Community Hostel in Quito, then the chain has another establishment here with the same great social vibe.
With a large communal table where they serve breakfast and dinner, it’s the perfect place to meet other travellers and make friends as everyone ends up eating and drinking in the same place.
The breakfast isn’t free, but at $3.50 it’s a bargain for the amount of food you receive, and it’s delicious. They also cook evening meals which are great value for money as well. They host activities every night including movie nights, burger evenings and $2 cocktail parties, making Community an excellent place for a party and to meet other travellers.
All their beds come with comfortable mattresses, plush pillows, a safe box for your belongings, an electrical outlet, and soft, warm blankets!
They also rent bikes and helmets for you to cycle the Ruta De Las Cascadas (Route of Waterfalls), one of the most popular attractions in Baños.
- Solo backpackers looking to make friends easily
- Group travellers who want to stay in a social hostel with lots of nightly activities on offer
Prices (per night)
- 4 bed dorm – £7.75 / $10
- 6 bed dorm – £6.97 / $9
- Privates (double with en-suite) – £22.47 / $29
2. Selina Baños
The design of Selina hostels are always incredible, with brightly painted murals in every space, and modern, open style communal areas filled with comfy sofas and chairs.
The chain in Baños has a bar, rooftop terrace, movie room, pool table and workspace for digital nomads.
The workspaces always have huge desks with a sufficient number of plug sockets, and the WIFI is usually the best in town. Selina is always a good shout if you need a strong connection to do some work or plan the next part of your trip.
They also offer extra circular activities such as yoga classes and their own tour agency, although it’s usually more expensive compared to organising something yourself. However, Selina hostels tend to lack a bit of atmosphere as they’re never full of backpackers (probably because they’re more expensive than others).
It’s not the best place to stay if you are looking to meet people, but perfect if you just want a chilled out and quiet vibe.
- Digital nomads who want great facilities and stable WIFI
- Group travellers looking for clean, modern rooms and the most comfortable hostel stay possible
Prices (per night)
- 4 bed dorm – £8.68 / $11.20 non-refundable or £10.85 / $14 free cancellation
- Standard privates (double with ensuite) – £30 / $39.20 non-refundable or £37.96 / $49 with free cancellation
3. Papachos Hostel
Try Papachos for simple, clean dorms and ample communal spaces. Their rootop terrace has a fantastic view of the mountains and waterfalls throughout the valley.
They have a ping pong table, TV area for film nights and lots of places to relax around the hostel. It’s also an excellent place for meeting other travellers with people always hanging out on the rooftop terrace enjoying the stunning views.
Papachos also rent bikes if you wish to cycle to the waterfalls or visit Pailon Del Diablo and the friendly staff will help you to book any other activities around town.
- Solo travellers looking to meet people
- Those of you looking to get the most bang for your buck. It’s cheap and breakfast is included making it great a all-rounder and value for money
Prices (per night)
- 4-bed dorm – £6.98 / $8.90
- 6-bed dorm – £5.77 / $7.45
- Standard privates (double with shared bathroom) – £17.82 / $23
OUR HOSTEL TOP PICK IN BAÑOS
We would go with Community Hostel for being the best all-round hostel. You get the best of both worlds with a great social vibe, whilst also offering a comfortable and clean stay.
The second choice would be Selina. We certainly prefer our flashpacker hostels, and the cleanliness of the rooms and style of the hostel is taken to the next level. They just lose out on the top spot due to the lack of atmosphere and price.
OTHER STAYS IN BAÑOS
If you take a quick look on Hostel World, you will see that most of the other ‘hostels’ are hotels or family homes turned in to rooms.
If you want to stay in a backpacker hostel with other travellers, then the three options above are your best bet.
You also have Erupcion Art Hostel and Erupcion Backpackers. We very rarely go out of our way to say bad things about a hostel, but our stay at Erupcion Backpackers wasn’t great.
Whilst the accommodation was fine, Koum had his hoodie stolen out of the washing one day. When asking the hostel staff about it, they said they didn’t know what happened. Koum had to pester them constantly until it magically turned up the morning we were about to leave. Turns out one of the staff had taken it for his own.
The atmosphere wasn’t great, and the hostel was more focused on the staff than the guests so avoid it if you can.
BEST AREA TO STAY IN BAÑOS
The great thing about the town of Baños is that it is tiny and probably spans about 20 blocks in total.
Everything is in walking distance, so you don’t need to worry about picking a hostel close to things.
Papachos is on one side of town and Selina/Community on the other. All the restaurants and bars, and the bus station are situated in the middle of town, all within a 10-minute walk of each other.
To help plan your time in Baños, head here for our top things to do, including a tried and tested 4-day itinerary.
And for the best places to eat from breakfast spots and cafes, to cheap eats and quality restaurants, check out our list here.
One of the best activities to do whilst in Banos is cycling the Route of Waterfalls. Our full guide on renting bikes and how to navigate it can be found here. And we also have a separate guide on visiting Ecuador’s tallest waterfall, Pailon Del Diablo here if you want to skip the bikes.
To see how to fit Baños into a longer Ecuador trip, along with the best destinations to visit afterwards, check out our month long itinerary.