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Reviewed on 29 Mar 2020
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Reviewed on 6 Apr 2020
From the buzzing Chang Beer bars of Khaosan Road, through the bustling bazaars of Banglamphu and up to the chic rooftop lounges of Bang Rak, hostels in Bangkok cover all quarters of this bucket-list destination. They are known around the globe for being edgy and elegant, hedonistic and truly hip. They come with local artworks and a cosmopolitan vibe, often mixing bar spaces with airy lobbies and al fresco terraces. They are perfect spots to break the ice with other backpackers before heading out for a night of hurtling around town in tuk-tuks and munching peanut-infused pad Thai. What's more, hostels in Bangkok stay true to the genre by touting some of the lowest rates of any accommodation in the electrifying metropolis.
The so-called "poshtel" might just have been born in the Thai capital, which is why there's such a wealth of luxury hostels in Bangkok beckoning flashpackers. They have lobbies clad in metro tiles, with exposed-brick walls, Scandi-chic furniture and dorms packed with pod-style beds that promise to crank up the privacy. Also in the mix are low-key urban escapes offering little courtyard gardens and double rooms with walk-in showers and flat-screen TVs – just in case you wanted somewhere with extra opportunities for relaxation. You can unearth historic hostels in Bangkok, too. They can be found looming above slow-moving canals or in tight-knit blocks, steeped in colonial architecture and dressed with wood-faced exteriors.
On-site coffee shops and bars are the norm in hostels in Bangkok. So, get ready to start the day sipping a single-origin cappuccino brewed by the barista and end it with a cold Singha beer in the company of other globetrotters. There are dormitories of all shapes and sizes, ranging from eight-bed mixed quarters to twin rooms for travelling duos. You should also be able to plan your trip with help from reception – it's normal for hostel workers to offer in-the-know tips on Bangkok's best bars, eateries, street markets and the like. And there are plenty of organised pub crawls, temple excursions and Thai cooking classes to embrace to boot.
The Born Free Hostel of Banglamphu promises to put you right in the beating heart of Bangkok. Its palm-strewn courtyard patio and dimly lit interiors are just a whisker from the neon haze and sleepless DJ bars of Khaosan Road – the place to be after dark. To trade cold beers and hot clubs for gold-tipped Buddhist shrines and mystical stupas, the uber-cool Printing House Poshtel might be a better option. It's a pleasant walk down the canal from the Golden Mountain Temple, where waterfalls and incense-scented prayer rooms coalesce above the cityscape. Want to glimpse modern Bangkok at its most energetic? The colourful iSanook Hostel can oblige. Find it tucked between the skyscrapers of Bang Rak, an area that packs in soaring sky bars, elegant spa retreats and the enthralling Chinatown district.