For the majority of students, hostels are a great way to save a few pennies while off on globetrotting adventures. However, the breeze-blocked walls, dingy, stained carpets and uniform blandness which characterise most budget accommodation have become a thing of the past.
A visit to one of the world’s most unusual hostels is as fun as the trip itself and will barely leave a dent in the wallet.
Bayram’s Tree Houses, Turkey
Remember that tree house you used to imagine as a kid, the one that always seemed to be better decked out than your house? Well, imagine no more. Bayram’s tree houses near Turkey’s National Park, Olympos are the perfect way to live out those childhood dreams of sleeping among the branches. Secluded and surrounded by crumbling ruins and beautiful coastline, they are a sure fire way to have an unforgettable trip. They sleep up to five people and come with all the usual hostel facilities.
Radeka Downunder, Australia
Intrepid travellers to Coober Pedy can bed down in a former opal mine, burrowed in the heart of Australia’s outback. Novelty value aside, these underground hideaways provide respite from the sun’s burning midday heat, or the winter chill. Over two thirds of people live underground here among churches, museums and shops – it’s a complete sub-terrainian community! Try your luck at fossicking for opals, or if you feel you need to take a breath above ground, catch a film under the star-saturated night sky at the local drive-in cinema. There’s nothing like Coober Pedy.
Anak Range, Mongolia
Yurts are the accommodation of the moment. Eco-friendly and undeniably trendy, it’s an experience no one should forego in favour of something a little less “earthy”. Yurts, or gers, are the traditional homes of the nomadic Mongolians designed to be dismantled and hauled round on the back of a yak. A few nights in one are highly recommended for those after something a little different. Indulge in the wilderness and join the nomads for home-grown food and potent Mongolian vodka after a long day’s riding in the untamed steppe.
Das Park Hotel, Austria
It’s pretty safe to bet few people wouldn’t chose to spend the night in a drain pipe. But what if they were fully decked out with a mattress, electricity and windows? Well, Das Park Hotel, near Essen, has done just that. Jazzed up concrete drain pipes offer an alternative for anyone fed up with spending windswept nights in a flimsy, freezing tent. Of course, the space is minimal, but they’re cosy, comfortable, and above all, warm. The best bit? A night here will cost you as much as you can afford or are willing to pay.
Jumbo Stay, Stockholm
Join the jet set and spend a night in a converted jumbo jet, right next to Stockholm’s Arlanda airport. The one and only time you’ll ever get to lie down and get a decent night’s sleep in economy class; this is not an opportunity to pass up. Complete with a “cockpit suite” and café, there are plans to convert the old jet engine bays into bedrooms and build a bar on one of the wings. A sure fire way to join the mile high club, this is one hostel that’s hard to forget.