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Manchester, the UK’s second urban area, is evolving at a rapid pace which makes it an exciting time to visit.
A typical agenda in the city will involve football, music and top northern cuisine. And thanks to this guide, hopefully an epic hostel stay as well.
The top 4 hostels in Manchester are:
- Best OVERALL Hostel: YHA Manchester
- Best PARTY Hostel: Hatters on Newtown Manchester
- Best BOUTIQUE Hostel: Selina NQ Manchester
- ALTERNATIVE Suggestion: Sleep Eat Love, Liverpool
What You Need to Know
Here are some essential things to keep in mind when staying in a hostel in Manchester:
Limited choice: The hostel scene is still up and coming so there are currently less than 5 hostels in Manchester and the quality is not satisfactory. I have stayed in some that aren’t listed here and wasn’t impressed so I’d advise sticking with these ones.
Don’t expect a lie in: Check in tends to be later and check out time tends to be earlier than what you might be used to.
Best Hostels in Manchester
Here are my full reviews of each recommendation above.
Best OVERALL Hostel: YHA Manchester
✔ Clean and modern facilities
✔ Large common area with sofas and work space
✔ Plenty of free parking space
✘ Could do with some social events
✘ Bathrooms are tiny
This is my go-to hostel whenever I’m visiting Manchester, so I was never in any doubt about crowning it my overall best hostel in Manchester.
The hostel is in a modern and clean building. Unlike most hostels in Manchester, the building was purpose built so the rooms are large and there’s plenty of light.
Downstairs is a big common area has plenty of relaxation space, the staff are super friendly and there’s a blackboard showing upcoming events in the city. As someone who works remotely, I was very pleased with lots of work areas and plus.
The hostel had great amenities including a huge, free car park (a luxury in Manchester), a restaurant, communal kitchen and TV lounge.
Best PARTY Hostel: Hatters on Newtown Manchester
✔ Best hostel for meeting fellow travellers
✔ Cheapest hostel in Manchester
✔ Bar downstairs is lively with reasonable priced drinks
✘ Building could do with a lick of paint
Set right in the heart of the Northern Quarter, this hostel is in a prime location for exploring the city and within striking distance of Piccadilly station.
The hostel itself is a bit ‘rough and ready’ so I would only recommend it if you’re on a tight budget.
However, once you look past the decor, the rooms are clean and you can get a good night’s sleep.
Hatters is one of the best hostels in Manchester for solo travellers as it’s the only one with a lively bar, perfect for meeting other travellers and locals.
The bar beneath the hostel holds regular activities including VR nights, stand-up comedy and a pub crawl.
Best BOUTIQUE Hostel: Selina NQ Manchester
✔ Modern and chic vibe
✔ Comfy beds with privacy curtain
✘ No kitchen
✘ Not a great social scene
Although it’s located in a Victorian building, Selina NQ has been refurbished to the highest standards giving it a very chic vibe.
This hostel has both private rooms and dorm rooms but due to limited availability it gets sold out quickly.
The dorm rooms are modern and spacious with a privacy curtain for each bed. Unfortunately, the hostel doesn’t have a bar or kitchen itself, but they do offer discount of the bar next door.
Alternative Suggestion: Sleep Eat Love, Liverpool
✔ Great facilities including gym and games room
✔ Welcoming and social atmosphere
✔ Reasonable price
✘ Hostel is in Liverpool – 35 mins by train to Manchester
Manchester doesn’t have much choice when it comes to hostels, but neighbouring city Liverpool has a little more on offer. If you’re struggling to get accommodation, why not stay in Liverpool and make a day trip to Manchester, this way you’ll get to visit two great cities in one.
Sleep Eat Love is your best option in Liverpool. This is a relatively new hostel but has quickly established a name for itself.
The social areas have a welcoming vibe, perfect for solo travellers, and the staff are super friendly.
The breakfast at this hostel will go down like a treat and it also has great facilities that include a games room, laundry and a gym.
Things To Do On Your Visit to Manchester
Here are some top things to do during your stay in Manchester:
- Music: One of the things Manchester is best known for is its music legacy which includes Joy Orbital, Oasis, and the Stone Roses. So, it’s no surprise that live music is a huge part of the culture here. Venues such as Albert Hall, The Ritz, Night and Day Cafe and the Deaf Institute offer choices across every genre imaginable.
- Bars and Restaurants: During the day, it’s worth visiting one of the numerous rooftop bars or afternoon tea spots in Manchester. For food, I highly recommend checking out Mackie Mayor, a food hall with a variety of cuisine from local vendors.
- Football: Whether you follow football or not, you’ll be familiar with the city’s two major teams, Manchester United and Manchester City. A stadium tour might be on the cards for avid fans or maybe a visit to the National Football Museum for those visiting Manchester on a tighter budget.
- Peak District: Personally, I enjoy getting out into the countryside, and with so many great things to do in the Peak District right on the doorstep, Manchester is an ideal place to base yourself whilst you embrace the nature of Northern England.
Kieren is the avid traveller behind the blog. His adventures have included Interrailing through Europe, road tripping the US and backpacking SE Asia.