From hot springs to full-service spas to specialized menus, these are the European wellness hostels to have on your radar.
No longer is the wellness break exclusively targeted at the monied or retired. There’s a new era of traveler who prioritizes wellness on an affordable budget. With health and self-care on everyone’s mind now more than ever before, the gap in the market has officially been filled as younger travelers are taking care of themselves, making time for restoration and rejuvenation.
Top Picks for You
Green Elephant Hostel & Spa
WHERE: Maastricht, The Netherlands
Winner of Hostelworld’s “Best New Hostel” award last year, Green Elephant Hostel & Spa is a place with a goal: to use hospitality to create an even fitter, greener, and healthier world. Theirs is more than just a hostel; it’s a state of being—from the healthy juice at check-in and their vegan-friendly restaurant Serendipity to the interior Urban Forest and meditation room, you’ll be hard-pressed not to feel extremely zen here. Inside their Vivacious Eco City Spa, you’ll find a 70-degree Centigrade (158-degree Fahrenheit) sauna, a 90-degree Centigrade (194-degree Fahrenheit) sauna, 60-degree Centigrade (140-degree Fahrenheit) Klima sauna, Hammam, Ice wall, Bucket shower, Infrared panels, and foot baths. Dorm beds start at 30 euro per night and private rooms from 50 euro.
Wellness Hostel 4000
WHERE: Saas-Fee, Switzerland
Wellness Hostel 4000 was the first of its kind in the world when it opened in 2014. This Hostelling International hostel in the glacier village of Saas-Fee shows swathes of ingenuity by combining low prices with luxurious modern wellness and fitness facilities. The sleek contemporary architecture matched with magnificent views of the mountains is beaten only by the 1,900 square-meter (20,450 square-foot) spa, featuring a Finnish sauna, bio-soft sauna, herbal steam bath, whirlpool, footbath, navel stone, hydromassage showers, and freezing fog. You’ll be fully catered to here with a fresh and regional menu at Bistro 4000, or lighter bites served in the hostel’s lavish lounge where you can enjoy some Alpine tapas and refreshing lassi around the open fire.
Wellness Hostel 3000
WHERE: Laax, Switzerland
Another incredible offering from Hostelling International, Wellness Hostel 3000 opened its doors in December 2020, ready to wow guests with views of majestic mountain peaks, with many rooms boasting a panorama of the 3,000-meter-high (9,840 foot-high) Alps. The spa area invites you to pamper yourself in the sauna, fire bath, herbal steam bath, adventure showers, sound room, and Kneipp pool. Skateboarders and snowboarders will be impressed by the largest halfpipe in the world found in the local ski area. Expect to pay 55 Swiss Francs ($60) a night for a dorm bed.
Woodah Boutique Hostel
WHERE: Copenhagen, Denmark
This gorgeous boutique hostel is a prime destination for lovers of Danish design, rejuvenating yoga, and healthy food, with hygge vibes on tap. Winning Kayak’s Hostel of the Year in 2020, the Woodah Boutique Hostel aims to become the Soho House of the hostel world, and they’re not far off. From decadent soft furnishings and dedicated, personalized service, you’ll soon see that their little hidden gem goes way beyond the idea of a traditional hostel. At 40 euros a night for a dorm bed, you’ll be loathed to stay anywhere else in town after.
Spa Hostel Kunnonpaikka
WHERE: Kuopio, Finland
Nowhere does wellness quite like Finland, a country with saunas in its DNA and an overarching love of nature. A great example of these values can be found at the Spa Hostel Kunnonpaikka in rural Kuopio, built on the banks of Siilinsalmi Lake, where a stay in one of the bright but cozy dorms gives you access to a gym, hot tubs, seven indoor pools, and a range of saunas. You can also rent bikes, canoes, and snowshoes to enjoy the terrain, whether it’s snow-covered or sun-drenched. Prices start at $102 for the whole four-bed dorm room.
INSIDER TIPThe wool hats worn by Finns prevent your head from getting too hot. Try it!
WHERE: Santorini, Greece
A boutique hostel with a wellness ethos, Caveland Karterados is a complex of cave houses and terraces where you can join the owners for yoga classes, healthy food, and relaxation by their gorgeous pool, which is one of the biggest on the island. The surrounding fragrant gardens have amazing views and scents with lemon, pomegranate, orange, pear, vanilla, and pistachio trees growing, while the homespun interiors are furnished with refurbished antique and local furniture, perfecting the boho shabby chic vibe. Caveland offers dorm beds, single beds, and private double rooms and is a five-minute drive from Fira town.
Wake Up Wellness Hostel
WHERE: Brno, Czech Republic
The Wake Up Wellness Hostel is a chic yet friendly property, just minutes from Brno’s central station and the charming old town. There’s one MO here; to soothe guests with a disarmingly serene stay in one of the thoughtfully designed, elegant dorm rooms with the comfiest beds and tastiest breakfast around. The adjoining spa offers authentic Thai massages that use aromatherapy oils to relax your mind, body, and soul. Your only complaint will be you couldn’t stay longer.
Aktion Ericeira Surf Hostel
A popular spot for surfers across the world, Ericeira is Europe’s number one hot spot for catching waves, so the town is awash with guesthouses and retreat centers that offer surf classes and restorative yoga sessions. Aktion Ericeira Surf Hostel boldly goes where others haven’t and offers a tip-top budget option that doesn’t miss a beat. Enjoy the swimming pool and skate ramps, or ask the hostel to hook you up with surf school and the yoga community. It’s a great alternative to the retreat centers, based just 500m from gorgeous Praia do Sul.
INSIDER TIPMake sure your wetsuit fits TIGHT, so the cold Atlantic waters don’t seep in.
Mountain Hostel Tarter
WHERE: Canillo, Andorra
Based in a cozy, rural Andorran home in the mountains, with over two centuries of history, Mountain Hostel Tarter has been restored with a comfortable and modern look, the perfect blend of old and new. The onsite ‘Swim Spa’ is a real draw, with full body massage on the menu in the outdoor heated hot tub and stunning views for miles in the glorious 38-degree Centigrade (100-degree Fahrenheit) heated pool surrounded by snowy mountains. This is the perfect place to stay after your day of biking, hiking, or skiing.
Selina Hostel Bad Gastien
WHERE: Bad Gastien, Austria
You’ll find Selina Bad Gastein in a lush 19th-century Alpine property in the spa town of Bad Gastien, overlooking the stunning Bad Gastein waterfall. Guests tend to stay here to enjoy the array of outdoor activities such as skiing, hiking, cycling, and archery—but there’s a spa onsite, too, as well as hot springs. This hostel offers a range of enriching retreats that have previously included yoga, meditation, breathwork, and ecstatic dance, so keep your eyes peeled for future events.
INSIDER TIPThere are hundreds of Selina hostels around the world, all of which offer exceptional quality, so it’s worth joining their loyalty program before you book, as members receive discounted offers.