The complete guide and overview to the 14 best hostels in Iceland, Europe for solo travellers and backpackersHalló, it’s time to feast your eyes on the best hostels in Iceland. It’s the one and only guide you’re going to need to navigate this unique land of ice and fire.

From the coolest hostels Reykjavik, the coastal capital, to Akureyri on the North coast. And everywhere in between!

This is the perfect guide to lead you to the top budget accommodations and hostels in Iceland.

Don’t let the difficult place names put you off. Have fun trying to pronounce them and breathe a sigh of relief when you realise Icelandic’s speak great English!

Are these the absolute best hostels in Iceland?

Já! Yes! There is no doubt about it.

We’ve scouted this beautiful land to find hidden gems, hostels worth remembering.

In fact, we even have a 5 star hostel in Reykjavik: KEX Hostel.

Sure, it’s a small guide compared to many destinations. That’s probably because there is only a population of around 339,000, one-third of which lives in Reykjavik!

Yet solo travellers, budget travellers and couples will not be disappointed.

To help you out further, we’ve included a big hostel map to pinpoint your chosen hostel(s).

Furthermore, we share with you our ultimate hostel packing list to prepare you before you go.

The destinations we cover that hold the best hostels in Iceland – heading in a clockwise direction – are:

Note: all of the destination, except for Reykjavik, only include one hostel recommendation. That’s because we couldn’t find any more worth mentioning that we would recommend to our readers, friends and family.

Best Hostels in Reykjavik

Our guide to the top Iceland hostels obviously starts with the capital.

No doubt you’ll begin your Icelandic adventure in Reykjavik. And honestly; it’s a wonderful city with many quirky attractions and hip vibes.

From here it’s easily accessible to the famous Blue Lagoon and the start point for the popular Iceland Golden Circle tourist route.

This is also the ONLY destination in Iceland where we have 3 super hostel recommendations:

  1. KEX Hostel – 5 Star Hostel
  2. Bus Hostel
  3. Galaxy Pod Hostel

Read: our complete guide to the best hostels in Reykjavik including useful travel information and activities.

1. KEX Hostel

Hands up if you like biscuits!

KEX is the Icelandic word for biscuit, and it just so happens to be our #1 super social hostel and only 5 star hostel in Iceland.

It has room for 215 people, so you can expect all rooms types on offer – dorms (female only, too), single, twin, double & family rooms.

The vintage industrial design includes a lovely bar and restaurant, large kitchen and outdoor patio (heated).

It’s a great place for meeting travellers and locals alike.

Book KEX Hostel here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com | Hostelworld | Full Review

KEX Hostel one of the Best Hostels in Reykjavik, Iceland

KEX Hostel

KEX Hostel one of the Best Hostels in Reykjavik, Iceland

2. Bus Hostel

The Bus Hostel is a smaller, more intimate creative hostel in a quiet neighbourhood. We’ve stayed here and loved it!

In the main lounge there is a cute cafe surrounded by vintage furniture. It’s the place for relaxing, meeting others and catching up with Wi-fi bits and bobs.

A range of dorms and privates are available, and it’s possible to walk to the centre of Reykjavik from here.

Book Bus Hostel here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com | Hostelworld

Stylish common area! Have a drink at the Bus Hostel Bar Sleep well! One of the cosy, warm dorms at Bus Hostel Reykjavik

3. Galaxy Pod Hostel

Galaxy Pod Hostel is exactly what you think – out of this world accommodation that seriously suits the alien landscape of Iceland.

Stay in your very own pod. Enjoy all necessities imaginable, plus the added luxury of a personal TV and headphones!

If you’re feeling sociable, head down to the lounge, moviedom and in-house bar.

Fun nightlife and great bars are just a 15-minute walk away.

Book Galaxy Pod Hostel here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com | Hostelworld

Galaxy Pod Hostel one of the Best Hostels in Reykjavik, Iceland Galaxy Pod Hostel one of the Best Hostels in Reykjavik, Iceland

Best Hostels in Borgarnes: B59 Hotel

Most people head to Borgarnes to prepare for a trip to Snaefellsnes National Park on the nearby peninsula. It’s a great midway point from Reykjavik.

Whilst you’re in Borgarnes, stay at B59 Hotel.

Actually, there is a luxurious hostel adjacent to the hotel.

It boasts 4 and 12-bed dorms with shared bathrooms. Each bed is like a pod, though without a privacy curtain.

There is also space to chill/work/chat in the room and big windows letting in plenty of light.

Although there is no kitchen on-site, breakfast is available on request.

Of course if you’re a couple or single traveller looking to splash out, you can opt for the hotel that boasts a buffet breakfast, spa and fitness centre.

Book B59 Hostel here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com

B59 Hotel Borgarnes is one of the best hostels in Iceland, Europe

Best Hostels in Hellissandur: The Freezer Hostel & Culture Center

Hellissandur is certainly the closest destination to stay when looking to explore Snæfellsjökull National Park. We highly recommend visiting the Kirkjufell Mountain, especially if you’re exploring by car.

The only place worth staying is The Freezer Hostel & Culture Center.

It’s a multi-award winning hostel that was once a fish factory, now a cultural and social hub that travellers love.

Enjoy regular activities including theatre, stand up comedy, pub quizzes and live music.

What else?

  • Huge lounge
  • Tikibar w/ happy hour 18:00-20:00hrs
  • Book exchange
  • Plenty of board games

The 4 dorms can host a total of 22 guests. What a lovely size!

Book The Freezer Hostel & Culture Center here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com | Hostelworld

The Freezer Hostel & Culture Center Hellisandur is one of the best hostels in Iceland, Europe

Best Hostels in Akureyri: Hafnarstræti Hostel

After a long stretch on the Route 1 road, you’ll come across Akureyri, a surprisingly lovely city at the base of Eyjafjörður Fjord.

A new, modern hostel option in Akureyri is Hafnarstræti Hostel.

It’s perfect if you enjoy a completely private pod capsule bed. They happen to come in single and double size!

Breakfast is included, and there is a handy kitchen for saving coins and cooking up a yummy dinner.

It really is the best of both worlds with a big lounge and pool table to encourage socialising between travellers.

Located in the centre of town, restaurants, coffee houses and shops are all within walking distance.

Book Hafnarstraeti Hostel here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com | Hostelworld

Hafnarstraeti Hostel Akureyri is one of the best hostels in Iceland, Europe

Best Hostels in Húsavík: Husavik Hostel

If you have time to spare, it would be silly not to head further north to the Whale Capital of Iceland.

Yep, this is where you can discover the awesome Húsavík Whale Museum and jump aboard a boat to head out and (hopefully) see humpback whales in their natural habitat.

The beautiful Húsavíkurkirkja, a wooden church built in 1907, is also a must see.

As for where to stay? It has to be Husavik Hostel.

It’s located in central Húsavík, a mere 200m from the whale watching piers.

There are plenty of rooms, including single, twin, double, quad and shared dorms.

Staff is friendly and there is a handy kitchen on-site. There is also a decent library in the common area.

Book Husavik Hostel here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com

Husavik Hostel is one of the best hostels in Iceland, Europe

Best Hostels in Egilsstaðir: Tehúsið Hostel

If you love natural hot springs, outstanding natural beauty and a pleasant climate, you’ll love Egilsstaðir.

Tehúsið Hostel is the best accommodation in town, offering great value and comfort.

First of all, the rooms are straight forward yet cosy. The dorms include male, female and mixed and there are two family sized rooms for 2-6 people.

Coming soon is a great cafe and bar. Until then, feel free to make use of the communal kitchen.

Book Tehúsið Hostel here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com

Tehusid Hostel is one of the best hostels in Iceland, Europe

Best Hostels in Vík: The Barn

Way down on the south coast of Iceland is a beautiful remote seaside village. It’s the gateway for black sand beaches, Mýrdalsjökull glacier and Katla volcano.

If you’re lucky, you may spot puffins in the area!

The Barn, though it conjures up images of wooden design and small spaces, is actually a modern, minimalistic hostel.

Every space is stylish and large. The dark decor will certainly help you relax and feel safe from the outside elements.

Meet others and have a chat in the bar or kitchen, and shut the world away with a simple slide of your privacy curtain.

The black sand beach is a short walk away – a unique sight to behold.

Book The Barn here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com

The Barn in Vik is one of the best hostels in Iceland, Europe The Barn in Vik is one of the best hostels in Iceland, Europe

Best Hostels in Seljaland: Nicehostel Seljaland

No doubt you’ve heard of Seljalandsfoss?

It’s the famous waterfall in Iceland, and it’s possible to walk right behind it! Truly beautiful and great fun. As long as you don’t mind getting a bit wet.

Not far from here is the quaint Nicehostel Seljaland. It is one of the best hostels in Iceland for sure!

It’s clean, tidy, simple and has a great location. Due to lack of light pollution, it’s also a great place to spot the northern lights!

We recommend it for couples, friends and small families. This is due to the room choices. There is also a basic dorm available.

There’s a garden, terrace and shared kitchen to use.

Book Nicehostel Seljaland here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com

Nicehostel Seljaland is one of the best hostels in Iceland, Europe Nicehostel Seljaland is one of the best hostels in Iceland, Europe

Best Hostels in Heimaey, Vestmannaeyjar: Aska Hostel

Formed by volcanic eruptions, the stunning archipelago of Vestmannaeyjar sits off the south coast of Iceland. Certainly worth the trip!

There are two volcanoes to see. One of which erupted in 1973. That’s both exciting and scary, right?!

Set on the island of Heimaey is the pretty Aska Hostel with a local feel.

Aska means ‘ash’ which is quite fitting as it sits just 10-minutes from a cool volcano museum.

There is an 8-bed mixed dorm, but we think the private options are the best. Just wait until you see the huge windows and views.

Super cool: guests receive one ticket per day for free entry to a nearby swimming pool.

During the summer months (May-August) a simple breakfast is on offer.

Book Aska Hostel here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com

Aska Hostel in Vestmannaeyjar is one of the best hostels in Iceland, Europe

Best Hostels in Hvolsvöllur: Midgard Base Camp

On the way back up to Reykjavik, around 100km east, is the small town of Hvolsvöllur. As it’s just of the Route 1 road, it’s a handy spot for a planned or spontaneous stop over.

Yet honestly, the main attraction has to be Midgard Base Camp.

Hostel. Restaurant. Adventure tours. Bar. What else do you need?

This is a local family business that has gone to great effort to create a social, friendly place in a great location.

Choose between shared dorms and private rooms. Dump your bags and mosey on over to the…

  • Rooftop hot tub and sauna
  • On-site restaurant & bar
  • Free tea & coffee station

Speak to the awesome staff to learn about and sign up for one or many great tours in the area.

Book Midgard Base Camp here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com | Hostelworld

Midgard Base Camp in Hvolsvollur is one of the best hostels in Iceland, Europe Midgard Base Camp in Hvolsvollur is one of the best hostels in Iceland, Europe

Best Hostels in Haukadalur: Geysir Hestar

Haukadalur is in fact the name of a valley. Not just any valley, but one that’s home to erupting hot springs, also known as geysers!

This geothermal area will leave you feeling like you’ve left earth and landed on some crazy abandoned planet. Watch your step – the water flowing around these parts exceeds 100 degrees celsius – eep!

Oh and another thing; one of the coolest hostels in Iceland happens to be situated here.

Welcome to Geysir Hestar, where home and horses meet.

The family own over 100 horses and wish to share their passion with you. If you love riding or want to try, get booking.

There’s a main guesthouse with rooms for 2-4 persons, and private cottages for larger groups.

Feel at home thanks to cosy design in the midst of typical Icelandic nature and landscape.

Book Geysir Hestar here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com

Geysir Hestar in Haukadalur is one of the best hostels in Iceland, Europe Geysir Hestar in Haukadalur is one of the best hostels in Iceland, Europe

Best Hostels in Hafnarfjördur: Vibrant Iceland Hostel

This is where the largest settlements of elves, dwarves and other mystical beings live. No, truly!

It also happens to be the third most populous city in Iceland. So I guess you can expect a fair few humans, too.

For those passing through that would like a nice place to stay, we recommend Vibrant Iceland Hostel.

This is a quiet hostel with wonderful enclosed bunks, a shared kitchen and lounge.

It has been newly renovated to include hardwood floors and modern appliances.

Everything you need is just around the corner. Yet if you fancy going downtown, a local bus will pick you up right next door.

Are you considering travelling around Iceland with a van or car? Then Hafnarfjördur will be and must be on your list. And 2nd, check out this handy guide on exploring Iceland with a campervan.

Book Vibrant Iceland Hostel here

Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com | Hostelworld

Vibrant Iceland Hostel in Hafnarfjordur is one of the best hostels in Iceland, Europe

Vibrant Iceland Hostel in Hafnarfjordur is one of the best hostels in Iceland, Europe

All Best Hostels in Iceland put on a Map

Below we have put ALL of the greatest hostels in Iceland mentioned in this article on a map.

That’s because we want to make your planning as hassle free and straight forward as possible!

We’ve marked them as follows:

  • Design Hostels: Blue
  • Backpacker-Type Hostel: Orange
  • Other recommendations: Purple

(View full sized map here)

More Hostels in Europe

There are many, many awesome hostels in Europe to be discovered and enjoyed, including out-of-this-world 5 star hostels.

Easy: find all of the best hostels in Europe here.

We’ve gone one step further and created these awesome guides to nearby Nordic destinations to Iceland:

Destination not listed?

Besides the listed accommodation, we also put together the best hostels in the world; the 5 Star Hostels.

We stayed in a former winery in Santorini, in a former jail-now 5 Star Hostel and many more. And we share all of these unique budget accommodations with you.

Make sure you check out our guides “best hostels in“. Here we cover many more destinations.

Update: We now cover as well curated ‘3 best hostels’ guides to cities with no 5 Star Hostels such as Paris, Tokyo and Sydney.

Summary

By now you should have the answer to your question where to stay in Iceland. Which of the best hostels in Iceland have you fallen in love with? Let us know!

This guide is your shortcut to your hostel-picks, saving you lots of time in your accommodation research.

And for sure, it gives you the security of a top-hostel choice without any bad surprises.

Any questions?

Then please please leave a comment below. We would be thrilled to hear from you and to help a fellow backpacker.

Have fun & Safe travels!
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The complete guide and overview to the 14 best hostels in Iceland, Europe for solo travellers and backpackers

Your Smart Packing List

It is time to see what you should pack in your backpack or suitcase. Make sure you always pick a quality hostel, it totally reduces the things you need to pack. Here is our ultimate hostel packing list. It features 23 items you should really throw in your backpack.

The most important things to pack are: Read the full packing list here. Download Hostel Packing List