Home of the famous Bund waterfront, modern Chinese culture and gorgeous design hostels.
Believe it or not, Shanghai’s population exceeds that of Beijing by over 3 million people!
Yet there is also peace and quiet to be found in such a crazy busy part of the world.
The hostels here are surprisingly modern, cosy and offer homely amenities. Keep scrolling to discover the best in Shanghai!
- Ruijin Garden Apartment – top pick for female solo travelers
- Blue Mountain Youth Hostel Luwan – great for solo travelers
- Shanghai Meego Qingwen Hotel – perfect for couples
As you’ll notice; names of Shanghai hostels are rather long – it suits the size of this city well.
Get ready for cheap hostels, backpackers hostels, top place for solo travellers and couples.
This guide is perfect for YOU, when …
- tired of bad and crappy hostels
- want to avoid the “young party kids”
- happy to spend 1-2€ for a better experience
We’ve included an extra section with a collection of great Shanghai youth hostels, too.
No trip to China is complete without visiting the best hostels in Beijing – an insider guide.
Why not also check out the 27 best hostels in Taiwan whilst you’re at it.
What we cover in this article?
- 3 best hostels in detail
- cheapest hostels in Shanghai
- best hostels in Shanghai for solo travellers
- youth hostels in Shanghai
- more hostels worth a mention
- discounts and promo codes
- How to book?
- all hostel and sights on a map
Quick Introduction to Shanghai
Average price for a bed: Hostels in Shanghai cost 6€ – 10€ per night for a bed in a dorm. A private room starts from 24€ up to 40€ per night. This is a rough average just to give you an idea.
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.
Chinese-Only Hostels: Be aware that some hostels in Shanghai only allow Chinese citizens to stay. It’s not always obvious, so make sure you read the description before booking. Dengba Hostel Shanghai is a good example and does not allow foreigners to stay.
Shanghai Party Hostels? This is not really a thing in Shanghai. Yet, there are always good bars and clubs to go to for a good time. Skip to Shanghai Le Tour Traveler’s Rest Youth Hostel – a good hostel with a bar, close to nightlife.
Blue Mountain Youth Hostel has a hostel bar that is open 7 days a week, though it isn’t strictly a party hostel.
Nanjing Hostels: Don’t get confused – Nanjing Road is in Shanghai, yet Nanjing is a seperate city around 3.5 hours from Shanghai.
Single-Sex Dorms: One super cool thing about Shanghai is that most hostels offer female-only AND male-only dorms. All of our top 3 hostels offer this.
New to Hostels? Read our full hostel starter guide here. We especially recommend to read:
- how to book hostels (and websites to use)
- 23 items for the hostel packing list
- Are hostels safe? 13 safety tips for hostels
The 3 Best Hostels in Shanghai
Let’s jump right into the boutique hostels in Shanghai.
We put all three accommodation on the map, you will find the map at the end of the article.
1. Ruijin Garden Apartment
First up is a beautiful modern hostel ideal for female solo travellers.
Ruijin Garden Apartment is exactly that; an apartment.
The lovely Sherry lives here, and will welcome you with open arms to a well-thought out space for travellers from around the world.
It truly feels like a home-away-from-home, probably because it actually is someone’s home!
Instead of big, crowded rooms, there are smaller dorm options here including:
- 4-bed male dorm
- 4-bed female dorm
- 4-bed mixed dorm
And they’re so spacious!
Air conditioning and a small desk is in each room, plus a plug socket by each bed. For security, store your things in one of the big lockers.
Other than that, you’ll find some beautiful chilled shared spaces in the apartment.
The kitchen and living room are connected, creating a big and bright area.
It’s ideal if you fancy chilling with a coffee and book. Or getting to know new friends!
Tucked away is a cosy workspace slash reading corner – our favourite part of the entire place.
Otherwise, kick off your shoes and watch TV in the lounge or in your room. No one will judge you.
Location: Just 700m from Tian Zi Fang and very close to a handy metro station. The metro can take you to all major places in the city, fast!
This is one of the best hostels in Shanghai for
- Female solo travellers
- Adults / Older travellers
Compare prices and read reviews at: Booking.com
2. Blue Mountain Youth Hostel – Luwan
Blue Mountain LuWan Youth Hostel, as it is also known, is the ideal hostel for immersing in local culture.
That’s because it stands to be in a great location worth exploring on foot.
All you have to do is walk out the door and remember you’re in China!
Here are some things to enjoy during your stay:
- Hostel bar (7 days a week)
- Cosy fireplace
- Common area w/ books, darts, movies
- Free WiFi
- Pool table
Arriving super late or early? Don’t fret; they offer 24 hour check in here!
As for rooms, we were quite surprised at the amount of choice.
There are dorms with 4, 6 and 8-beds.
The twist is that both men and women are separated in to single-sex rooms, unless of course you book a private room.
Though the rooms are simple, there are curtains in some of the dorms.
Note: there is a kitchen, though basic.
Private rooms include standard twin, double, triple and a family room for up to 5 people.
It’s no surprise that the staff are friendly and knowledgeable – Chinese culture is so accommodating and helpful.
Location: Across the street from Luban Road metro and surrounded by plenty of street food vendors and shops. There is also a lovely riverside park nearby.
This is one of the best hostels in Shanghai for
- Solo travellers
- Small groups
3. Shanghai Meego Qingwen Hotel
The staff at Meego Youth Hotel love to
“Share freedom with causal simplicity within an affordable accommodation.”
Make sure the name itself doesn’t confuse or put you off – it is hotel design, with hostel rooms and shared spaces.
In fact, the rooms are certainly the highlight of this place.
There are many options including:
- 4-6 bed female dorms
- 4-bed male dorm
- 3-4 bed family rooms (with bathroom)
- Single, twin & double private
- Deluxe suite (4 people)
This is where the hotel style and modern touch really stand out.
All of the bunks come with a shelf and locker right next to the bed – fancy!
There’s also a TV, sofa, individual curtains and air-conditioning in each room so that you have plenty of opportunity to spread out and enjoy some privacy.
Great: check in is available 24 hours a day!
Downstairs there is a lounge area with plenty of seating and a drinks fridge and free water dispenser.
It’s a good spot for doing some work and having a chat with staff or other travellers.
Location: In the downtown area of Jing’an, not far from East Nanjing metro. There are some great food and coffee places a minute walk away, as well as shopping malls and theatres.
This is one of the best hostels in Shanghai for
What about cheapest hostels in Shanghai?
Of course, there are always cheap hostels – forget hotels.
Yet we think, it’s not worth it to go with the cheapest hostel out there or get too obsessed with a cheap Shanghai attitude.
The difference is usually 1-2€ ($1-2) per night, and a lot of amenities are not included. This can be breakfast or linen.
However, if you are traveling on a shoe-string budget and you wanna save every penny, there are ways to find the cheapest places in Shanghai.
- Open Hostelworld with full list of budget places to stay in Shanghai
- Order the listing by price
Simple as that.
Make sure you use then the other filters and rank per price.
Also keep a close eye on the ratings, especially the “extreme ratings”. Meaning, the best and worst. These ratings can give great insight on what to expect.
Best Hostels in Shanghai for Solo Travellers?
What is seriously the best hostel in Shanghai for solo-travellers?
Your answer to solo travel Shanghai lay within the following two hostels.
For the adventurous ladies travelling solo, we recommend booking your stay at Ruijin Garden Apartment. The female dorms are cosy and the apartment is run by a lovely woman named Sherry who can help settle you in to the city.
For sociable solo travellers, Blue Mountain International Youth Hostel (let’s call it blue backpackers hostel for short) is a good choice. There is a bar, pool table and other shared spaces ideal for meeting new people.
More Hostels Worth a Mention
Still not satisfied? Here are a few more cool hostels we want to show you.
Shanghai Le Tour Traveler’s Rest Youth Hostel
This is a top choice for Shanghai backpackers in the city centre, close to Nanjing Road.
Shanghai Le Tour Traveler’s Rest offers a true traveller atmosphere, with a cosy and safe environment.
Get chatting up on the rooftop – there’s a snack and drinks bar up there, too!
FYI: there is a bar/club next door which can get noisy at weekends. Great if you’re looking at partying in Shanghai.
Enjoy 24/7 reception, bike hire, pool table, garden and shared kitchen.
When it’s time to sleep, step in to single-sex dorms, or private options include double, twin and studio apartments.
The Phoenix Hostel Shanghai
How about privacy curtains, a rooftop terrace and fun social activities to tickle your fancy?
The Phoenix Hostel is the one for you, in that case!
Join a Chinese tea tasting event or learn to make dumplings. There’s also a walking and cycling tour to get involved in.
Best bit? No doubt the privacy bunks – solid, spacious, sorted.
Staff here are out-of-this-world friendly and have lots of local tips to share.
Make sure you fill up on the FREE breakfast and make use of the book shelf and amazing nearby street food.
It’s an ideal hostel for sociable solo travellers.
More Youth Hostels in Shanghai
For some reason, Shanghai loves youth hostels. The two words are often added to the end of the hostel name.
Yet it doesn’t always mean they are good only for young people. Be aware of that.
It’s always worth having a proper look before you discard it as being a hostel full of crazy party kids.
Check out the collection below and find your preferred youth hostel Shanghai offers:
- Shanghai Hidden Garden International Youth Hostel
- Shanghai Rock & Wood International Youth Hostel
- Shanghai Blue Mountain Bund Youth Hostel
- Mingtown Nanjing Road Youth Hostel – Shanghai People’s Square hostel
How to book?
We recommend using Booking.com or Hostelworld for your reservations and to check availability.
Hostelworld is the most popular website when it comes to hostel bookings.
Read: step-by-step guide on how to book with Hostelworld
On both platforms your credit card is 100% protected and the booking 100% confirmed.
We included the handy links to each of the recommended hostel. Just click on the hostel name. The link will lead you to check prices and availability.
Here is the overview:
- Ruijin Garden Apartment: Booking.com
- Shanghai Blue Mountain Youth Hostel Luwan: Booking.com | Hostelworld
- Shanghai Meego Qingwen Hotel: Booking.com | Hostelworld
We recommend booking your hostel as early as possible!
All of Shanghai best hostels are popular; especially in high-season. To make sure you end up in those stylish hostels, secure your room or bed as soon as you have your travel dates fix.
Currently, we have no special hostel discounts in Shanghai I know, it’s a pity. You can subscribe to our newsletter to receive our newest hostel discounts always to your inbox.
You can find all our hostel discounts worldwide here.
All 3 Hostels put on a Map + Sights
This is your complete guide to the best of Shanghai.
Let us have a look on the map. Below we list all three best Shanghai 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.
Are you asking yourself what are the best places to visit in Shanghai?
We also included the main tourist attractions you’ve to know in this list:
- The Bund
- Yu Garden
- Oriental Pearl TV Tower
- Nanjing Road
- People’s Square
Flights to Shanghai?
This new website has super cool features like a so-called radius search. Just draw a circle over Asia and find the cheapest rates for the area.
Here is our review of Kiwi.
What are the best neighborhoods in Shanghai?
The Bund is the obvious choice, with awesome views and close proximity to the Huangpu river.
Otherwise, Century Park, Jing’an and the Old Town are good areas to stay.
What is the best hostel in Shanghai China?
Skip back to the beginning and discover why we think Ruijin Garden Apartment is the BEST hostel in all of Shanghai.
What are the best places to stay in Shanghai?
We’re going to say Shanghai hostels – is that too obvious? There are 3 top hostels in this guide to explore.
Otheriwse, you could consider staying at an Airbnb. Entire apartments are seriously cheap! Here’s an Airbnb €35 coupon code just for you.
Where is the best hidden bar in Shanghai?
Why stop at one option? Here’s 9 Hidden Bars in Shanghai worth visiting, written by a cool Shanghai blogger!
Which district in Shanghai is the best place to stay for your first trip to the area?
Definitely go with staying as close as possible to The Bund. It’s the main attraction and from here it’s easy to reach all other areas of the city using the metro service – cheap, reliable and certainly an adventure.
What should I do in Shanghai?
Good question! Hop back to our handy map and discover the top things to do in the city.
Alright, this is your answer to where to stay in Shanghai.
We did the leg work for you and bring you more hostel guides to destinations:
- best hostels in Seoul, South Korea
- 58 best hostels in Japan + 5 Star Hostels
- best hostels in Hong Kong
- best hostels in Kathmandu, Nepal
You can find all our new and updates articles for Best Hostels in here.
Over to you
Was this useful? Do you have any questions, doubts?
Then please please leave us a comment. This list of awesome Shanghai hostels should be as informative and useful as possible.
Your question will help me to understand what I have missed to mention.
Therefore, drop us a comment, we are keen to help you!
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 ONLY recommend places we know you will enjoy, no matter what.
We will never recommend you any place we haven’t evaluated or are not convinced by. We only share with you places we also recommend to our best friends and family!
Enjoy this fine hostel selection and all 5 Star Hostels.
Have fun and safe travels!
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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:
- eye mask
- key chain flashlight
- the right backpack, the Nomatic (our review of Nomatic here) or Lowe Alpine Lightflite 45 Pack
- packing cubes
- generic padlock (fitting all locker types)
- quick-dry travel towel
- universal power adapter
- travel-sized toiletries