Posted: 7/29/20 | July 29th, 2020
Panama City is known as the shipping and financial hub of central America — but there’s much a lot more to it than that.
Panama City is a bustling, lively city with a lively nightlife, tons of history, and delicious food. It’s a good hub to base yourself in for a few days while you plan your next steps.
Since it’s not as low-cost as other cities in the region, you’ll want to save money by booking yourself a hostel while you’re here. They’re the most economical (and fun) way to take pleasure in the city.
However, there are a lot of things to consider when selecting a hostel. The top four in Panama City are:
Location – Panama City is huge, and it can take some time to get around. pick a place that is central to the sites you want to see and nightlife you want to enjoy. (All the hostels provided here are in central locations.)
Price – In Panama City, you really get what you pay for, so if you opt for a really low-cost place, you’re probably going to get a hostel that is small and cramped and doesn’t offer terrific service.
Amenities – Every hostel in town uses complimentary Wi-Fi, and a lot of have a complimentary breakfast, but if you want a lot more than that, be sure to do your research to find the one that best meets your needs!
Staff – All the hostels provided here have incredible staff who are incredibly friendly and knowledgeable. even if you don’t end up staying at one of the places provided below, be sure to look up reviews to make sure that you end up somewhere where the staff is valuable and friendly. They can make or break a hostel!
To help you plan your trip, here is my list of the hostels in Panama City that I like the most. If you don’t want to read the longer list below, the following hostels are the best in each category:
Best Hostel for budget Travelers: Hostal Casa Areka
Best Hostel for Families: Magnolia Inn Casa Viejo
Best Hostel for Solo female Travelers: El Machio
Best Hostel for digital Nomads: Selina Casco Viejo
Best Hostel for Partying: Hostal Casa Areka
Best overall Hostel: Luna’s Castle Hostel
Want a lot more specifics for each hostel? Here’s my detailed list of the best hostels in Panama City:
Price legend (per night)
$ = Under $15 USD
$$ = $15-20 USD
$$$ = Over $20 USD
1. Magnolia Inn Casco Viejo
This boutique hostel is located in Casco Viejo, the city’s stunning Old Town. It’s clean and quiet, making it a good choice for families or travelers trying to find some downtime. The hostel is an old French colonial mansion and balances historic charm with modern amenities (like AC, Wi-Fi, and hot showers). The beds are basic and don’t have curtains, but the mattresses are thick and comfy. There are also a few common areas where you can kick back and hang out or enjoy TV. considering that it’s quiet, I’d suggest staying here if you want to get a good night’s sleep. There are several social hostels nearby where you can get hold of a drink and hang out, so you can take pleasure in being social before returning to your quiet hostel.
Magnolia Inn Casco Viejo at a glance:
Central location in the Old Town
Clean and quiet
Beds from $16 USD a night, rooms from $116 USD.
Book Magnolia Inn Casco Viejo here!
2. Hostal Casa Areka
This energetic hostel has a pool, outdoor Wi-Fi, space to barbecue, and a spacious kitchen for cooking your own meals. It’s also surrounded by bars and restaurants, making it a good choice for those who want to party. There are lots of common areas to kick back in. The beds are pretty basic (no curtains for privacy) but are comfortable enough. The dorms also only have eight beds (or fewer), so you’re never crammed in with other people, and there are female-only dorms too. only some of the showers have hot water, however, but it is the least expensive hostel in town.
Hostal Casa Areka at a glance:
ארוחת בוקר חינם
Beds from $9 USD a night, rooms from $35 USD.
Book Hostal Casa Areka here!
3. El Machio
This is a social hostel where it’s really easy to meet people, considering that they have a pool and a small bar, play motion pictures outside, and organize tons of excursions (including inexpensive trips to the San Blas Islands). The beds aren’t the best, but the dorms have lockers to keep your items safe and there’s hot water in the showers. They also have female-only dorms. breakfast is included, there’s a spacious kitchen for cooking, and the surrounding neighborhood is quite safe too.
El Machio at a glance:
אווירה חברתית מקלה על פגישה עם אנשים
Female-only dorms for added privacy and security
Beds from $13 USD a night, rooms from $50 USD.
Book El Machio here!
4. Luna’s Castle Hostel
This is my favorite hostel in Panama City. Housed in an old colonial mansion overlooking the ocean, it’s a amazing backpacker hostel with a laid-back vibe. complimentary breakfast isincluded, there’s a bar on-site for having fun, the showers have hot water, and the staff go above and beyond: they organize walking excursions and other fun activities to make sure that you have an incredible check out and meet amazing people during your שָׁהוּת. There are only large dorms (10 or 12 beds), but the beds have curtains and the mattresses are comfy. It’s lively, social, and an institution on the Gringo trail through central America.
Luna’s Castle Hostel at a glance:
ארוחת בוקר חינם
Easy to meet people
Beautiful location by the ocean
Beds from $16 USD a night.
Book Luna’s Castle Hostel here!
5. Zebulo Hostel
Zebulo has lots of complimentary perks, including complimentary breakfast, complimentary coffee and tea, and a jacuzzi on-site. While the dorm beds are basic (squeaky metal bunks with no curtains), they’re comfortable enough and not crowded (capped at nine beds). It also has the least expensive private rooms in the city; however, there’s no hot water. The staff also organize tons of tours, such as trips to Colombia and the San Blas Islands. They also host lots of weekly events (like BBQ nights). It’s a laid-back hostel that makes it easy to meet people and take pleasure in all the city has to offer.
Zebulo Hostel at a glance:
Affordable private rooms
Lots of complimentary perks
Tons of excursions and activities
Beds from $10 USD a night, rooms from $22 USD.
Book Zebulo Hostel here!
6. Selina Casco Viejo
Located in the picturesque Old town (in yet another historic colonial building), Selina is new hostel. It’s a chic, upscale spot that’s popular with solo travelers and digital nomads. There’s a spacious outdoor patio for hanging out and lots of bars nearby. The beds are comfy, and the showers have hot water (which is a great perk, considering that lots of more affordable hostels in the city don’t have hot water). There’s AC to keep you cool, a co-working space, a pool table, and lots of common areas for chilling out.
Selina Casco Viejo at a glance:
Lots of common areas to hangout in
Central location in the Old Town
Beds from $14 USD a night, $36 USD.
Book Selina Casco Viejo here!
Whether you’re seeking to party or just want to kick back and take pleasure in your trip alone, you’ll be able to find an inexpensive hostel in Panama City that won’t disappoint you!
Book Your trip to Panama: Logistical ideas and Tricks
הזמן את הטיסה שלך
Use Skyscanner or Momondo to find a low-cost flight. They are my two favorite search engines because they search web sites and airlines around the globe so you always know no stone is left unturned. start with Skyscanner first though because they have the greatest reach!
הזמן את הלינה שלך
You can book your hostel with Hostelworld as they have the greatest inventory and best deals. If you want to stay somewhere other than a hostel, use Booking.com as they consistently return the least expensive rates for guesthouses and low-cost hotels.
אל תשכח ביטוח נסיעות
ביטוח נסיעות יבטיח אותך מפני מחלה, פציעה, גניבה וביטולים. זו הגנה מפורטת למקרה שמשהו ישתבש. אני אף פעם לא יוצא לטיול בלעדיו כיוון שהייתי צריך להשתמש בו הרבה פעמים בעבר. החברות האהובות עלי שמציעות את השירות והערך הטוב ביותר הן:
אגף בטיחות (לכולם מתחת 70)
להבטיח את הטיול שלי (לאלה מעל גיל 70)
Medjet (for additional repatriation coverage)
מחפש את החברות הטובות ביותר לחסוך איתן כסף?
עיין בדף המשאבים שלי לקבלת החברות הטובות ביותר להשתמש בו כשאתה נוסע. אני מפרט את כל אלה שאני משתמש בהם כדי לחסוך כסף כשאני בדרך. הם יחסוך לך כסף כשתטייל גם כן.
Want a lot more information on Panama?
Be sure to check out our robust destination guide on Panama for even a lot more planning tips!
Photo credits: 2 – Magnolia Inn Casco Viejo, 3 – Hostal Casa Areka, 4 – El Machio, 5 – Luna’s Castle Hostel, 6 – Zebulo Hostel, 7 – Selina Casco Viejo