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Venice is a beautiful maze of canals and bridges in the northeast of Italy that’s become a staple destination for anyone visiting Europe.
The city may be small in size, but that doesn’t stop 20 million tourists from visiting every year. A trip to Venice will include stunning architecture, gondola rides, great Italian food and plenty of getting lost, no doubt.
When it comes to hostels in Venice, you can choose between staying in the historic central Venice or in Mestre on the mainland. In this guide I’ll help you choose where to stay and share the best hostels in Venice and Venice Mestre.
Best Hostels in Venice Mestre
Best Hostels in Central Venice
- Best OVERALL Hostel: Combo Venice
- Best PARTY Hostel: Generator Venice
- Best CHILLED Hostel: Ostello S. Fosca
- Best LOCATION: Youth Venice Palace
Where to Stay in Venice
When visiting Venice you have two options to consider about where to stay:
The main city of Venice is made up of 118 islands connected by canals and bridges. Staying in central Venice will put you right in the centre of this unique city with canal views and easy access to all of Venice’s attractions. However, central Venice is in high demand so the prices are a lot higher and there is only a limited choice of hostels to choose from.
Mestre is located on the mainland and is considered a suburb of the main city. You will have to pass through Venice Mestre in order to get to Central Venice as the liberty bridge from Venice Mestre is the only way trains and buses can get across the lagoon.
There’s a better choice of hostels in Venice Mestre and they are considerably cheaper than Central Venice, the downside is that you have to get a tram, train or bus whenever you want to visit the city. This isn’t too bad as the journey is only 11 minutes and service run very frequently (at least every 10 minutes) costing as low as €1.35.
Central Venice vs Venice Mestre
My personal preference is to stay in Venice Mestre, you’ll get better bang for your buck and the hostels are of a higher standard. I was happy making the journey in to the city each day which was cheap and convenient. Having said that, I’ll list the best hostels in Venice and Venice Mestre for solo travellers so that you can make up your own mind.
Best Hostels in Venice Mestre
Best OVERALL Hostel in Mestre: Wombats
Dorms from £20
Wombats is new to the hostel scene in Venice Mestre, but their other hostels in Europe have been delighting solo travellers for many years so they know a thing or two.
This hostel has big rooms with comfy beds and a nice common area where you’ll find cosy sofas perfect for chilling out.
If you’re in the mood for drinking, head to the bar where you can redeem your free drink ticket and meet other travellers.
There is a good social scene with:
- Games nights
- Pizza making classes
- bands playing in the bar
The staff here are very welcoming and will help solo travellers settle in.
Best FACILITIES in Mestre: Anda Hostel
Dorms from £15
With bright airy rooms and an industrial chic style, Anda is easily one of the best hostels in Venice Mestre and was awarded ‘Best X-Large Hostel’ in the HostelWorld 2019 awards.
It’s modern with new and clean facilities including a kitchen and a games room. There is plenty of communal areas including a huge bar which holds karaoke on Mondays and a pub crawl on Fridays, however outside of these events it can be a little difficult to mingle with other people due to the sheer size of the hostel.
Best Hostels in Central Venice
Best OVERALL Hostel: Combo Venice
Dorms from £44
Combo Venice is located in an old monastery with a canal view. There is a well equipped kitchen and a nice courtyard area with seating.
The hostel is in a nice neighbourhood and can be hard to locate initially but this is Venice. The hostel has an overall chilled vibe although the bar is more lively and perfect for enjoying a coffee in the day or is open until the early hours for beers and cocktails.
A dorm room here is actually a two person dorm which I’ve never encountered before so you’ll have plenty of space. The staff are fun-loving and very friendly especially the reception staff.
Combo is one of the best hostels in Venice but with limited rooms, it gets booked up during peak season so be sure to book ahead.
Best PARTY Hostel : Generator Venice
Dorms from £18
Generator Venice has been on the scene for a long time and is a firm favourite amongst solo travellers visiting the city.
It’s located on Guidecca which is a peaceful island separate from Central Venice. The island is only reached by boat, however this is convenient with frequent services from the nearby water taxi station that run all day and night (services less frequent after 11pm).
Generator Venice has a nice chillout common area and a busy bar that plays live music, attracting both travellers from the hostel and locals from the island. The rooms are modern with comfy beds and large lockers.
The price of this hostel is cheap for Central Venice, however you’ll need to purchase a waterbus pass which are:
- 1 day = €20
- 2 days = €30
- 3 days = €40
Overall, the cost of hostel + waterbus is about the same as other Central Venice prices.
Best CHILLED Hostel: Ostello S. Fosca
Dorms from £28
Located about 20 minutes walk from the main area of St Mark’s Square, this small hostel will give you a very big welcome. The hostel has a very relaxed vibe and is located down a quiet street which can be a little hard to find at first.
There’s a 24 hour kitchen with plenty of free ingredients such as pasta, spices, tea and coffee.
There are cute tables outside to enjoy your food and a beer however with it being such a quiet hostel the social scene could be hit or missing depending upon who is around.
The profits from the hostel go towards supporting university accommodation and the local community which is great.
Best LOCATION: Youth Venice Palace
Dorms from £39
This hostel is more of a converted apartment with an extremely friendly owner who will treat you like family whilst you’re there.
Although the facilities of this hostel aren’t particularly great, it’s the staff and the fellow guests that make the experience, it attracts mostly solo travellers.
The location of the hostel is incredible, right near San Marco Square, and the view from the balcony in the mornings is beautiful. The dorm beds are all single beds so you don’t need to worry about getting the top bunk like you normally would in a hostel.
Unfortunately, the cooking facilities are very limited here but there is a microwave or alternatively a lovely takeout pasta place next door where you’ll find something nice.
Check the latest prices and book now: Booking.com
Best Hostels in Venice for Solo Travellers
If you’re travelling solo in Venice then it’s important to find a hostel that has a good social atmosphere.
I would suggest the following hostels for solo travellers:
Best Hostel in Venice Mestre for Solo Travellers – Wombats
If it wasn’t obvious from my review above, Wombats is an excellent hostel in Venice Mestre.
The events they put on make it ideal for solo travellers. If you’re still friends after doing karaoke together then you’ll be friends for a long time.
There are lots of great social areas including huge sofas where you can mingle.
Best Hostel in Venice for Solo Travellers – Combo Venice
This hostel has great common areas which are perfect for making new friends.
The dorm rooms are 2-person dorms so you get quite a lot of privacy.
It’s quite a chilled vibe, if you’re a solo traveller who prefers a party vibe then carry on reading.
Best Party Hostels in Venice
Some travellers will be looking for an upbeat atmosphere with lots of drinking. The party hostels in Venice aren’t as wild as other cities in Europe, but there’s still some good choices for a lively night:
Best Party Hostel in Venice Mestre – Wombats
It’s a triple crown for Womats which I awarded as the best hostel in Venice Mestre, ideal for solo travellers and now, the best party hostel in Venice Mestre.
They have a buzzing bar (known as the Wom-Bar) which has live bands and mingling activities.
However, on Friday nights, Anda hostel, which is just around the corner, hold a pub crawl which anyone can attend, regardless of where you’re staying there, so you may want to check this out.
Best Party Hostel in Central Venice – Generator Venice
If you’ve stayed at a Generator hostel before you’ll know that it’s a lively place.
The downstairs bar has great drinks prices with a daily happy hour and the party goes on until 1am with a DJ and upbeat music.
They also have daily events including karaoke.
If you don’t like to party then this probably won’t be for you.
Nightlife in Venice
Venice is known for it’s bridges and canals, but not it’s nightlife so don’t expect too much. Having said that, there are some good spots.
Nightlife in Central Venice mainly consist of sophisticated wine bars or cocktail bars, many of which play live music:
- Venice Jazz Club – Hosts local jazz artists 5 nights a week, entry usually around €20
- Il Santo Bevitore (The Holy Drinker) – Wide selection of beers on tap including trappiest beers and live music
There is only one nightclub in Central Venice:
- Piccolo Mondo (Small World) – The only club in Venice and best place to dance until the early hours with pop, Latino and electronic music.
Those staying at Generator Venice on Guidecca island can also make use of Skyline rooftop bar for drinks with a view.
If you want more upbeat nightclubs, then head to Venice Mestre:
- Molocinque – large club with several floors playing an array of pop, 70s, 80s, and Latin dance.
- Tag Club – Small club usually hosting DJ’s palying electronic music, close to Venice Mestre station.
Is Venice Safe?
Venice is generally considered a safe city to visit, even for solo travellers.
However, with it being one of the most visited destinations in Europe, you’ll need to watch out for pick pockets and there are increasingly scammers with fake petitions.
Exercise all the usual precautions you would when visiting a city:
- Don’t carry to many valuables when possible
- Try to avoid being alone at night, or ensure you know exactly where your hostel is
- Be cautious of anyone asking you to sign something or giving you something for free
Venice is increasingly experiencing Acqua Alta which is when rising tides cause the city to flood. You shouldn’t be worried about this as the city has learnt to cope with it but if it happens during your stay, here are some tips:
- Purchase some waterproof boots or shoe covers as soon as possible, these will be widely available
- Don’t go bare foot in the Acqua Alta, it is ridden with bacteria
- Stick to the main parts of Venice and avoid islands like Murano
- Follow what the locals do, such as walking on wooden planks, and you’ll get through.