Looking for the best hostels in Chiang Mai? Well, I have compared the price, facilities, amenities, and location- so come find out the top backpackers for all types of travelers in this ultimate guide and have the perfect stay!
If I could live long term in any city, it would be Chiang Mai in Thailand. I think I leave a piece of my heart behind each time I visit. It’s an interesting mix of a chill town and a lively city. The food is cheap, the people are friendly and there seem to be endless things to do. Throughout the years I have visited Chiang Mai multiple times and stayed in numerous hostels. From the cheapest online to some of the more luxurious options, I like to think of myself as a bit of a hostel expert in Chiang Mai.
When traveling it is important to find a good place to rest your head. Whether you want to spend all night partying or find a quiet spot I will explain where exactly you should stay in Chiang Mai.
The largest city of Northern Thailand is a must on your Thailand itinerary. As you can imagine Chiang Mai is actually a rather vast area, though the majority of tourists stay in the Old Town. As a result, the majority of hostels in this guide will be in the Old Town. This keeps you close to the Sunday Night Market, the best food, and some great things to do. It is easy to full 4 days in Chiang Mai with plenty of activities. Though, when it comes to hostels in Chiang Mai it can be a bit more of a difficult decision, as I will explain below.
That is why I created this guide on the best hostels in Chiang Mai!
With the help of this list, you’ll be able to see what to look for when booking a hostel in Chiang Mai! Making sure you can book a bed confidently, in a decent location, and for a good price.
List Of The Best Hostels In Chiang Mai
- Overall Best Hostel in Chiang Mai: The Common Hostel
- Best Hostel in Chiang Mai for Solo Travelers: Bodega Chiang Mai On Chill
- The Best Cheap Hostel in Chiang Mai: Thai Thai Hostel
- Best Hostel for Females in Chiang Mai: Muan Hostel
- Best Cheap Private Room in Chiang Mai: Baan Ploy In
How I Book Cheap Transport In Thailand: 12Go Asia
How To Choose The Best Hostels In Chiang Mai
There is absolutely a huge array of bests to choose from in Chiang Mai. Though sometimes when faced with so many options it can be hard to decide which one would be best for you. I travel with a more of a glampacker style and I am spoilt for chooses in Chiang Mai. I mean you can’t go wrong with sturdy wooden bunk beds that have pullover curtains. Though in saying that I have also stayed in the cheapest hostel available during one time I visited this city. That was certainly a stay I wouldn’t recommend unless you’re a fan of a mattress with broken springs.
Nonetheless, there are cheaper options available which have a great social atmosphere, comfortable beds, and clean bathrooms. So you don’t need to worry too much, nor do you have to look far.
So when choosing the best hostels in Chiang Mai, some things I took into account are:
Prices for hostels in Chiang Mai can be super cheap! Though if you’re looking for something a bit more glampacker stay you will be paying for it. A bed in a hostel dorm room can cost anywhere from $3.00 for the most basic to $20.00. You may think you can sleep anywhere for $3.00 as long as you have a mattress. Though trust me, I have been there and found out the hard way that isn’t always true.
For a private room, you can pay anywhere from $8.00 to hundreds depending on the level of comfort you desire.
If you are traveling in Chiang Mai for a short period you will want to stay in the Old Town. This is a square-shaped area surrounded by a brick wall and a moat. When you stay here you will be amongst all the action and never far from a delicious meal and a cheap beer. There are plenty of night markets both within the old city and on the outskirts.
If you are a digital nomads or simply are staying in Chiang Mai for a long period as you enjoy the slower pace you will wnat to stay in the Nimman area. Here are where you will find the majoirty of long term travelers living in Chiang Mai. There are some amazing coworking spaces here as well as plenty more hostels to choose from.
There is such a wide variety of hostels in Chiang Mai, it’ll be pretty hard to find one which doesn’t fit all your needs. Booking a hostel with free breakfast and water will help save a little bit extra each day. Some hostels even include free coffee and tea!
Quite a few of the hostels on this list organize events and have an excellent social scene. Perfect if you’re wanting to meet other travelers! One thing to be aware of is often cheaper hostels dorm rooms won’t have air conditioning. Rather they will have a fan, I have stayed in both a fan does a decent job of cooling you down. This is especially so if each bed has its own fan, it’ll be too hot to share. The last thing I think is important to note is quite a few hostels around Chiang Mai turn off the air conditioning during the day. I guess this forces you to go out and explore, though I will leave it up to you whether you book one of these hostels.
The 12 Best Hostels In Chiang Mai, Thailand
Overall Best Hostel In Chiang Mai– The Common Hostel
The clean and comfortable Common Hostel is the best hostel to stay in Chiang Mai. Located in the Old Town you will be amongst all the action. They have some awesome dorm rooms here that are pod-style with pullover curtains. That means you will only pay dorm prices for a bit of privacy. The shared bathrooms here also have hairdryers and free toiletries, not something you find often in a hostel.
There are laundry facilities for you to use and they also have an excellent common area. There you will find a mixture of tables and chairs as well as bean bags to relax on. You can even meet some new friends over a round of table tennis!
- 24-hour front desk
- Free breakfast
- Free coffee and water
- 550 meters from the Sunday Night Market
Honorable Mention Best Hostel In Chiang Mai – @Box Hostel
If you are wanting a stay at another excellent hostel but perhaps are looking for something a bit cheaper @Box Hostel is for you. Be aware, it is located slightly out of the Old Town. Though it is still an easy walk to Uber away from everywhere you would want to go. Even better they even provide a free bicycle for you to get around with!
The dorm rooms are inside of renovated shipping containers giving the place a funky look. Enjoy free water, coffee, and biscuits during your stay. There are also plenty of places to make some new friends such as hanging by the pool or around the pool table.
- Free Water
- Small Pool
- Social Areas
- 1400 meters from the Sunday Night Market
Best Hostel in Chiang Mai for Solo Travelers –Bodega Chiang Mai On Chill Thapae
If you love a good party scene, but also appreciate a good nights sleep this is the place for you. My top choice for the best hostel in Chiang Mai for solo travelers, Bodega Chiang Mai Chill Hostel is the perfect mix of social and lowkey. Even though there is a pool onsight the majority of the parting is done as their sister property Bodega Chiang Mai Party Hostel which is a short walk away. They also organize a pub crawl to take you to some of the best bars in the city.
They offer a mixture of private and dorm rooms. That way if you want the privacy of a private room you can still join in with the hostel events. The beds here are super comfortable, providing the perfect place to recover after a big night out!
- Motorbike Rental
- Onsite Bar
- 1600 meters from the Sunday Night Market
Welcome to Hostel Lullaby, one of the best hostels in Chiang Mai for solo travelers. With plenty of events on it provides the perfect opportunities to mingle with new people. Partake in yoga and complementary cooking classes to meet like-minded travelers. Be aware though this isn’t a party hostel. So if that’s your scene this is not the stay for you.
They put on a free delicious buffet breakfast for hungry travelers. The team there is also super friendly and will be more than willing to answer any questions. They also have some excellent recommendations on what to do and can book you on various tours. Some of the dorm rooms can be on the smaller side. Though you will have a privacy curtain, power socket, and personal reading light.
- Breakfast Included
- Garden To Relax In
- 600 meters from Night Market
Best Cheap Hostel in Chiang Mai– Thai Thai Hostel
Unfortunately cheap and in a nearby location to all the action are not things which always goes hand in hand. Unfortunately, that is the case with Thai Thai Hostel. Though certainly don’t let that put you off! Ubers around here make it super cheap to get around, it also isn’t really that far from the Old Town being just 1 kilometer to the nearest gate to cross over the moat.
In the dorm rooms, you will find lockers, privacy curtains on the bed as well as a personal reading light and socket. They also offer dry cleaning facilities as well as a tour desk where the team will be more than happy to help you out. There is also a coworking space. Perfect if you are a digital nomad or perhaps just wanting to update your social media online and need some fast WiFi.
- Free Coffe, Water & Fruit
- TV With Netflix
- Privacy Curtain
- 2000 meters from the Sunday Night Market
Another one of the cheapest hostels in Chiang Mai is The Islander Chiang Mai. Located nearby to the Saturday Night Market you will never be far from a cheap eat in Chiang Mai. The owners, Alex and Kate, are known for their passion for the city. Their rooms are always clean and they even give the guests control of the air conditioning! Usually in Southeast Asia in dorm rooms, air conditioning is only kept on overnight.
This hostel is also on the smaller side so has an excellent family vibe. It isn’t long before everyone knows each other and is sharing stories over a beer.
- Tour Desk
- Family Atomsphere
- 1200 meters from the Sunday Night Market
Best Hostel for Females in Chiang Mai– Muan Hostel
The beautifully designed Muan Hostel is the perfect stay for backpackers in Chiang Mai. It is literally across the river from the Old Town providing you with the perfect location to be amongst the action. Though if you don’t feel like going out you don’t have to. Onsite is a local Thai restaurant and a hammock cafe. What more could you want! Sometimes as a female traveler, you would rather eat in than venture out in the dark (Chiang Mai is a rather safe city either way).
They have pod-style dormitories providing you with some privacy. There is also a light and power sockets inside each one. In the bathrooms, you will find free shampoo, soap, and hairdryers to use. They also have a comfortable social area with board games and books where you can meet other travelers.
- Free Water
- Female Only Dorms
- Restaurant & Cafe Onsite
- 700 meters from the Sunday Night Market
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Located where I usually stay, About A Bed Hostel is the perfect hostel in Chiang Mai for female travelers. You will never be far from a good restaurant, including my personal favorite Taste From Heaven. They provide clean, modern, and spacious hostel dorm rooms. Inside are pod-style sleeping arrangement with each having its own privacy curtain, light, power socket, and small shelf. They provide electronic key access into the rooms, and into the entire building overnight so you can feel safe and secure. Just be aware this isn’t a party hostel and is usually a place travelers come to having a relaxing and more peaceful stay.
- Free Breakfast
- 1200 meters from the Sunday Night Market
Best Cheap Private Room in Chiang Mai – Baan Ploy In
If you are wanting a place in Chiang Mai, but perhaps maybe a hostel isn’t your thing then Baan Ploy In has some of the cheap private rooms. They have modern and clean rooms which are very spacious. They are also in an awesome location right in the heart of the Old Town. Nearby are some great street food spots as well as some yummy lowkey eateries featured on my cheap eats in Chiang Mai list.
- Basic Breakfast Included
- Clean And Modern Design
- 850 meters from the Sunday Night Market
If you are wanting a private room which is a little more luxurious, but now paying hundreds, De Lanna Hotel is the one for you. They have an amazing pool on site which is the perfect way to cool down after a day in the hot Thailand sun. There is quite a beautiful garden which has been well maintained by the staff.
The rooms themselves have quite a relaxed vibe with small ponds around. They are designed in the authentic Lanna style which is often seen in Thailand. There is also a restaurant on site if you are feeling peckish and don’t feel like venturing out onto the streets.
- Buffet Breakfast Included
- 300 Meters from the Sunday Night Market
More Best Hostels In Chiang Mai
If you’re looking for something a bit more resort-like check out Eco Resort Chiang Mai. Located a bit further away from the city you can relax in peace next to the pool or in one of the gardens. They have an assortment of dorm rooms on site. If you have a scooter this could be your perfect place to stay in Chiang Mai.
- Huge Pool
- Clean & Modern Rooms
- 3300 meters from the Night Market
Our last, but definitely not least choice for the best hostels in Chiang Mai is Stay With Hug Poshtel. They have nice and clean dorm rooms. The beds are pod-style are come with a privacy curtain, personal reading light, and power socket. One of the best things about this hostel is the location. It is smack bang the middle of the Old Town. This will give you easy access to plenty of tour operators, things to do, and delicious restaurants.
- Clean & Modern Rooms
- 200 meters from the Night Market
So Where To Stay in Chiang Mai?
If you are traveling to Thailand heading north to Chiang Mai is a must. It’s a more laidback way of life than Bangkok and it just has a completely different vibe there than elsewhere in the country. It’s vegetarian and vegan heaven where I would happily move to. There is a little bit of everything here, whether you are looking to party or relax. So with the help of this list of the best hostels in Chiang Mai, you will know exactly where to stay.
Do you own or work for a hostel and want to be featured? Let us know over at [email protected]
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