Best Hostels in La Fortuna, Costa Rica

3 Best Hostels in La Fortuna, Costa Rica – Place for Nature Lovers and Thrill-Seekers

So, are you looking for the best hostels in La Fortuna? We are here to help you!

La Fortuna in Costa Rica is one of Central America’s greenest and most picturesque towns. While it is a small city, its beauty is mighty, encompassing the world-renowned Arenal Volcano – Costa Rica’s most active mountainous structure – and the many thermal hot springs it has created.

Travelers come to La Fortuna to experience the wilderness of its luscious green rainforest and dramatic natural landscapes, where green trees merge with well-commercialized structures and facilities.

Your Shortcut:

  1. Selina La Fortuna - best for Digital Nomads and Backpackers
  2. Palacios Arenal - best for Solo Travellers and Couples
  3. Rio Danta Hostel - best for Family and Group

Money-saving tip: Compare hostel prices with Hostelz.com. They compare prices from Hostelworld, Booking.com and others with 1 click.

If you’re looking for the best hostels in La Fortuna for your next epic trip, we’ve got you covered with some of the best accommodations in the area.

We put all accommodations on the map. You will find the map at the end of the article. You can also read our Best Hostels in Costa Rica guide. 

This guide is perfect for YOU, when you…

  • are tired of crappy hostels!
  • want a social Hostel to actually meet people
  • are happy to spend $1 to $2 more for a much better experience

For surf lovers we also have 17 Surf Hostels in Costa Rica. And if you are looking for some yoga retreats, you can look at Best Yoga Retreats in Costa Rica.

What we cover in this article?

You can find all 5 Star Hostels here with Hostelgeeks and all guides to “Best Hostels In” here.

Quick Introduction to La Fortuna

Average price for a bed: Hostels in La Fortuna cost 13€ – 37€ per night for a bed in a dorm. A private room starts from 24€ up to 119€ per night. This is a rough average just to give you an idea.

Prices always depend on season and holidays. Please always check exact rates on Hostelz.com or Hostelworld.com.

Check-In and Check Out: The average check-in time is from 15:00 (3pm), while the Check-Out time is before 11:00 (11am). Hostels usually offer luggage storage in case you arrive earlier or leave later. Make sure you check if luggage storage is free or if there is an extra cost.

Safety: Is La Fortuna safe? Yes, if you keep an eye on your possessions. So our advice is never leave your possessions unattended. Some common places where belongings are easily swiped include bus stations, beaches and airports.

Costa Rica Tourism Tax: The $15 tourism arrival tax is collected from everyone regardless of the nature of their travel.

La Fortuna Weather: The best time of year to visit La Fortuna for hot-weather activities is from early December to early March. 

How to Move in La Fortuna: Although an excellent public bus service can get you to and from La Fortuna daily, the local bus service is very infrequent and unreliable. While the town of La Fortuna isn’t massive, you’ll need some transportation options to partake in the many nature-oriented activities you can do nearby. Most visitors opt for taxi services such as Uber (which doesn’t operate in all of Costa Rica but is available in La Fortuna), local ones, or ones booked via their accommodation. Alternatively, more adventurous travelers can rent bicycles or scooters but be wary of the roads which aren’t paved when you get out of the main urban areas. You can also book activities via tour operators who will take care of your transportation.

How many days do you need in La Fortuna: Travelers often wonder how long they should spend in La Fortuna, and we think a minimum of 4 days is a good start. This way, you’ll be able to see the main attractions, which include: hiking up the Arenal Volcano and its nearby lava trails, checking out some of the natural hot springs and waterfalls, admiring the wildlife on a day or night walk, and visiting the Zip Lining and Hanging Bridges. The area has plenty more to offer, so don’t worry about spending more days there. You won’t run out of things to do in La Fortuna.

Some Fun Facts About La Fortuna: 

  • La Fortuna translates to ‘The Fortunate’ in Spanish. The town is said to have gotten this name because it escaped destruction from the volcano’s eruption in the 60s. Others say the name stems from the town’s fertile lands and noteworthy sights. Either way, you’ll feel fortunate when you visit.
  • The Arenal Volcano, located about 10 km from the town, is still active today! It’s also often listed as one of the top 20 most active volcanoes in the world. You’ll get to see an occasional spew of ash rising from its crater and slowly creeping lava crawling down—no need to worry, though, as its activity is closely monitored.

New to Hostels? Read our full hostel starter guide here. We especially recommend reading:

The 3 Best Hostels in La Fortuna are …

Let’s jump right into the coolest hostels in La Fortuna.

  1. Selina La Fortuna – best for Digital Nomads and Backpackers
  2. Palacios Arenal – best for Solo Travellers and Couples
  3. Rio Danta Hostel – best for Family and Group

We put all accommodations on the map, incl. our own tips for restaurants, things to see, and more.

Overview: Best Hostels by Traveler Type

🦸 Solo Traveler: Palacios Arenal
🙎‍♀️ best for Female Solo Traveler: Palacios Arenal
🥳 Party Hostel:Arenal Poshpacker
👩‍❤️‍👨Couple Hostel: Palacios Arenal
👨‍👩‍👦 Family Hostel: Rio Danta Hostel
👩‍💻 For Digital Nomads: Selina La Fortuna
🎒 For Backpackers: Selina La Fortuna

1. Selina La Fortuna

Selina La Fortuna Hostel offers direct views of the Arenal volcano, and the property is crossed by a naturally flowing river. This highly exotic atmosphere is enhanced by allowing travelers to sleep in teepee-style outdoor tents.

For those who prefer regular accommodations, you’ll have plenty of choices with different dorms and room styles to pick from. The variety of rooms attracts a variety of guests with different backgrounds, so we recommend checking out this hostel if you want to socialize with people of all ages and walks of life.

This hostel also emphasizes health and wellness, with facilities and activities dedicated to making travelers’ stay as relaxing and convenient as possible. As such, you’ll find an on-site restaurant, garden, bar, shared lounge, and a well-equipped kitchen to cook your meals.

Book Selina La Fortuna here

Check prices at:
Hostelworld | Booking.com | Hostelz.com

Selina La Fortuna Swimming Pool

Activities include daily yoga and meditation sessions for all levels and spa treatments like sound therapy and deep tissue massages. For those who prefer a bit more fun, you’ll also find your fair share of fun with the live music and happy hour events they host.

Location: In the center of La Fortuna, facing Parque de La Fortuna. The hostel is well connected to bus stops and is easily reached via car, taxi, or public transport. Nearby points of interest include the Parque Nacional Volcán Arenal and Reserva Ecológica Catarata Río Fortuna. It is also a short walk away from various restaurants and bars.

The best choice in La Fortuna for

  • Digital Nomads
  • Backpackers
Book Selina La Fortuna here

Check prices at:
Hostelworld | Booking.com | Hostelz.com

Selina La Fortuna Dorms

Selina La Fortuna Common Space

2. Palacios Arenal

Palacios Arenal is a family-owned hostel that offers visitors the chance to experience the perks of staying with a local family in a social atmosphere. The owners are fluent in Spanish and English and are known to be highly reliable and generous with their guests when it comes to offering local tips or helping out with anything they might need.

While you’ll be essentially staying on their property, this hostel has all the facilities and amenities needed to make for a convenient stay: private bathrooms, a fully-equipped kitchen, a small co-working space, a little gym, and a gaming area.

Book Palacios Arenal here

Check prices at:
Hostelworld | Hostelz.com

Palacios Arenal Room

The best part of this hostel in La Fortuna is the atmosphere, as visitors always note the warm treatment and care of the family and their adopted dogs. While the overall environment is highly social, it is still quite relaxing, allowing both introverts and extroverts to find comfortable spaces: whether it’s reading a book in a hammock or playing ping pong and table football with fellow visitors. Light sleepers will be happy to note that the sleeping area is separated from the common one, making for quieter nights than in most hostels in La Fortuna.

The family usually adds their visitors on a WhatsApp group to ensure they can help them with anything and provide them with information on local events and adventure opportunities, from official tours to free natural spots.

Location: Centrally located in a popular but uncrowded area of La Fortuna. You’ll find many nature trails and activities and a market across the street. This hostel is an easy walking distance of a few nearby restaurants and bars.

A great choice for

  • Solo Travellers
  • Couples
Book Palacios Arenal here

Check prices at:
Hostelworld | Hostelz.com

Palacios Arenal Common Space

Palacios Arenal Kitchen

3. Rio Danta Hostel

Sloths are native to Costa Rica, and although they usually prefer to keep to their natural habitats, they have been known to visit Rio Danta Hostel.

 Rio Danta hostel in La Fortuna. It may be because of the natural setting of this accommodation which a small river runs through, and its proximity to the rainforest. Regardless of what it is, you’ll almost be certain to spot a couple of visiting sloths or different bird species, like hummingbirds, on their property.

Fortunately, while they are ‘one with nature,’ their facilities still provide all the modern convenience you’d expect with spacious, cozy rooms, a fully-equipped kitchen, and clean bathrooms with hot water. The outdoor space includes a terrace with play equipment for kids, a small gym, table tennis, and board games. There’s even a dedicated yoga area facing the river!

Book Rio Danta Hostel here

Check prices at:
Hostelworld | Booking.com | Hostelz.com

Rio Danta Hostel Common Spaces

This is another La Fortuna Hostel that uses WhatsApp groups to keep their guests socially connected and informed about outings and activities they organize.

Location: While this hostel is located in a wilder and more natural side of La Fortuna, the town’s relatively small size makes it so that the city center is only a 5-minute walk away. Nearby points of interest include the Arenal Sanctuary Reserve and the Sendero Las Mariolas nature preserve. Although bars and restaurants are further down the road, you’ll find nearby small supermarkets for groceries.

This is one of the best hostels in La Fortuna for

  • Family
  • Groups
Book Rio Danta Hostel here

Check prices at:
Hostelworld | Booking.com | Hostelz.com

Rio Danta Hostel Room

Rio Danta Hostel Common Space

Best Hostels in La Fortuna for Solo Travellers? 

What is seriously the best hostel in La Fortuna for solo-travellers?

The best hostel for solo-travellers in La Fortuna is our second hostel – Palacios Arenal. This hostel has all the facilities and amenities needed to make for a convenient stay: private bathrooms, a fully-equipped kitchen, a small co-working space, a little gym, and a gaming area.

Book Palacios Arenal here

Check prices at:
Hostelworld | Hostelz.com

Palacios Arenal Single Room

Party Hostels in La Fortuna 

Well, we will point you in the direction of Arenal Poshpacker. Maybe it is not really a party hostel, but this is a very nice, good social hostel. It can also be party-ish since they have wonderful swimming pool and bar. 

Arenal Poshpacker

As the name suggests, this is a ‘posh’ hostel in La Fortuna that provides travelers with higher-end amenities and facilities. While their dorm rooms are clean and simple, the rest of the common areas are beautiful and include luscious gardens with hammocks, a swimming pool with a swim-up bar, and an on-site restaurant that offers food all day long at very reasonable prices.

Like other hostels in La Fortuna, you’ll also find a shared kitchen on-site. One thing to note for digital nomads, though: you might want to pick another hostel in our list since the wifi isn’t very reliable in this property. Otherwise, this is a great choice if you’re looking for the opportunity to disconnect from your phone and laptop!

Location: Centrally located near waterfalls and the Cero Chato water volcano. This hostel is situated on the main street of La Fortuna, next to parks, bars, restaurants and grocery shops, and markets.

Book Arenal Poshpacker here

Check prices: Booking.com | Hostelworld | Hostelz.com

Arenal Poshpacker Swimming Pool

Arenal Poshpacker Outside SPACE

More Hostels worth a mention

Eager for more or still unsure which hostel in La Fortuna to choose?

No worries, we’ve got your covered. Here is a few more hostels worth taking a look at before you make that tough decision.

  • Santafe Hostel
  • Arenal Hostel Resort
  • Arenal Backpackers Resort

Santafe Hostel

Santafe is another excellent hostel in La Fortuna with a great communal feel. This accommodation makes meeting and socializing with fellow travelers easy thanks to its cozy open courtyard (a small structure you can lounge in) and its big kitchen space that allows multiple people to cook together. Staff is known to be very friendly, keep the facilities clean and organized, and facilitate their guest’s traveling and overall experience.

Location: In the city center, next to the main bus terminal. You’ll find many popular natural points of interest nearby, like the La Fortuna Waterfall and Kalambu Hot Springs. There are also plenty of restaurants and bars within walking distance.

Book Santafe Hostel here

Compare prices at: Booking.com | Hostelworld | Hostelz.com

Santafe Common Space

Santafe Kitchen

Arenal Hostel Resort

Arenal Hostel Resort is located in the heart of La Fortuna, with views of the Arenal Volcano. Very close to the hostel you will find pharmacies, supermarkets, clinics, banks and other basic needs for your convenience. Bus service and local transportation are only a block away so from here you have the best access to anywhere.

The hostel offers an outdoor pool and a garden with hammocks and loungers. The air-conditioning rooms at the Arenal feature cable TV and free Wi-Fi. Most also have a private bathroom. Guests have access to a shared kitchen with a hob, microwave and coffee maker. There is also a bar where you can enjoy a drink in the sun.

Book Arenal Hostel Resort here

Compare prices and read reviews atBooking.com | Hostelworld | Hostelz.com

Arenal Hostel Resort Swimming Pool

Arenal Hostel Resort Room

Arenal Backpackers Resort

Arenal Backpackers Resort is located 3.6 km from the slopes of the Arenal Volcano. This hostel offers its guests complimentary WiFi access, luggage storage, and a snack bar. The property also has an outdoor pool. There is a large social area and hostel is in a great location, 5 mins walk from everything.

Visitors can choose from dorms, private rooms, tents and cylindrical rooms. Arenal has an on-site restaurant that serves local dishes, plus there is also a bar. 

Book Arenal Backpackers Resort here

Compare prices and read reviews atBooking.com | Hostelworld | Hostelz.com

Arenal Backpackers Resort Swimming Pool

Arenal Backpackers Resort Cylindrical Rooms

What about the cheapest hostels in La Fortuna?

Of course, there are always cheap hostels. But how do you actually find them? When you are traveling on a shoe-string budget and you want to save every dollar, there are ways to find the cheapest places in La Fortuna.

  1. Open Hostelz.com with a full list of all hostels in La Fortuna
  2. add your dates
  3. Order the listings by price

Simple as that.

Hostelz.com is a price comparison site for hostels. They list every single one in the world and tells you exactly which website is cheaper to use.

Another smart Tip: Check what is actually included, and what is excluded. Take a closer look at the location, too. A further location might mean more costs in transport.

Any Discounts?

You can find all our hostel discounts worldwide here. Subscribe to our newsletter to receive the freshest hostel discounts directly in your inbox. There are even special discount codes that we only share in our newsletter.

It is completely free to join!

How to book?

The most popular booking platforms are Booking.com and Hostelworld.com. On both platforms, your credit card is 100% protected and the booking 100% confirmed.

We included some handy links to each of the recommended hostel. Just click on the hostel name. The link will lead you to check prices and availability.

Read: step-by-step guide on how to book with Hostelworld

We recommend booking your hostel as early as possible! All of La Fortuna best hostels are popular; especially in high-season. To make sure you end up in those stylish and good hostels, secure your room/ bed as soon as you have your travel dates fix.

The coolest Hostel App you need comes as well from Hostelworld. It gives you super cool features like you can contact your hostel mates beforehand and make plans together. Find more details in our review of the app

Download the Hostelworld App here

QR Code to Download your Hostelworld app with one scan
Scan the QR Code with your Smartphone to download the Hostelworld App from the App Store - like a real Hostel Geek!

The best way to find hostels: Hostelgeeks website and Hostelworld App

All Top Hostels put on a map + sights

Let us have a look at the map. Below, we list all three best La Fortuna hostels on a map.

Personally, we love to plan our trips with a map having all sights and potential hostels on it. We thought this map will help you with planning your trip too.

In La Fortuna we absolutely enjoyed:

  • Místico Arenal Hanging Bridges
  • La Fortuna Waterfall
  • Rio Celeste Waterfall
  • Kalambu Hot springs
  • Tabacon Hot Springs
  • Arenal Volcano National Park
  • Chato Volcano
  • Venado Caves
  • Parque de La Fortuna

An Extra Tip for You Costa Rica Travels!

As you might have figured out from reading some of the details of the La Fortuna hostels we’re recommending, Whatsapp is a big thing in Costa Rica (and the rest of Central and South America).

It is the go-to social communication app there, so we recommend you download it before your trip in case you don’t already have it on your phone.

FAQs

Here we share with you the most asked question:

What are the best hostels in La Fortuna, Costa Rica?

The best hostels in La Fortuna, Costa Rica are:

What is the best hostel for solo travellers in La Fortuna?

The best hostel for solo travellers in La Fortuna is Palacios Arenal.

What is La Fortuna best known for?

Here are the La Fortuna main tourist attractions:

  • Místico Arenal Hanging Bridges
  • La Fortuna Waterfall
  • Rio Celeste Waterfall
  • Kalambu Hot springs
  • Tabacon Hot Springs
  • Arenal Volcano National Park
  • Chato Volcano
  • Venado Caves
  • Parque de La Fortuna

Are hostels in La Fortuna safe?

Not all hostels in La Fortuna are necessarily safe, especially the one that offers the cheapest price in sketchy areas. It might be an illegal hostel, without proper license to run and safety measures.

So in all fairness, it is best to check out Hostelgeeks.com because we feature safe hostels in La Fortuna. You can find backpacker hostel with top ratings! Keep a close eye on the overall ratings on booking platforms!

If you are not secure, you can also send us an email and ask us!

How much are hostels in La Fortuna?

Hostels in La Fortuna cost 13€ – 37€ per night for a bed in a dorm. A private room starts from 24€ up to 119€ per night. This is a rough average just to give you an idea.

Prices always depend on season and holidays. Please always check exact rates on Hostelz.com or Hostelworld.com.

What are the best sites for finding hostels?

Of course, the best site to find hostels is Hostelgeeks.com

We are doing our best to deliver the best hostels to you. Check out the best hostels in the world guides; from Paris to Tokyo.

You can also have a look at Hostelworld.

Staying at one of these hostels? ❤️

Share your photo and tag us @hostelgeeks on Instagram.

Flights to La Fortuna?

If you’re traveling by air, you won’t have to worry which airport to choose. La Fortuna has just one – La Fortuna (FON-Arenal). And the airport is not too far from the city center.

You’ll find it 1 mi from downtown La Fortuna. But, you’ll most likely arrive at SJO (45 mi from downtown).  A large number of flights to La Fortuna take off from Tambor, Puerto Jiménez and Panama City airports. There are 25 air carriers connecting La Fortuna with 41 airports across the world. 

We use Skyscanner and Omio.com to find cheap flights and good connections all over the globe.

Skyscanner has a bunch of cool features like Multi-City Trip. Instead of doing this research step-by-step, Skyscanner offers this flight planning tool.

Our Step-by-Step Guide to Skyscanner

review of Skyscanner flight searches

Alright, we now covered La Fortuna. Yet, there are more epic destinations Costa Rica and Central America. We did the leg work for you and bring you more hostel guides to great destinations:

Over to you

Do you have any questions left, maybe doubts? Then please leave it in the comment below. We are very keen to help you - and actually you would even do us a favor!

Your question will help us to improve this La Fortuna guide.

Last note: Our commitment

This is a genuine article to help you travel a bit smarter, and find the best place on a budget! We will never recommend you any place we haven’t evaluated or are not convinced by. We are constantly updating all our guides to keep them as fresh and accurate as possible.

Safe travels,
The Hostelgeeks

Best Travel Websites we recommend ❤️
(Fresh Update 2023)

Booking Hostels and Discounts 👏👏👏

As a user of Hostelgeeks, you also have access to exclusive hostel discounts. For booking hostels, we use:

We recommend installing the Hostelworld App. It is very useful!

How to find cheaper Flights ✈️

The first websites we always check are Skyscanner and Google Flights.

Find our step-by-step process in our review about Skyscanner.

Travel Insurance made easy 🤒

We are currently using Safetywing and Hey Mondo. We wrote detailed guides about these insurances:

Smartest Travel Tools you need to know 🤓

Find all our recommended travel tools and websites here.

Get your Smart Packing List (Free Printable)

Knowing what to pack and what not to pack is key. As an example, you need a one-fits-all padlock.

We put together the ultimate list of smart items to bring.

Download your Free PDF Packing List

Best Hostel Packing List