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Amsterdam Cheap Hostels in Red Light District

by Maja Świątnicka

Oude Kerk, The Madame Tussauds, the Rembrandt House and the famous windows – Amsterdam’s Red Light District is probably one of the most popular tourist destinations in the whole world. However, where to stay while spending the time of your life in the city that never sleeps? If you want to explore the most exciting district of Amsterdam but also you’re travelling on a budget, here’s a handy hand – a useful list of 10 hostels in the Red Light District. These are my picks for those who are solo travelers, backpackers or groups of a friend willing to have some fun. You’ll find all the hostels on booking.com.

Stayokay Amsterdam Stadsdoelen

???? Prices start at 24 Euro per bed
???? Kloveniersburgwal 97, Amsterdam City Centre, 1011 KB Amsterdam
Phone: +31 20 624 6832
???? 7.9

Photo Courtesy of Stayokay Amsterdam Stadsdoelen

The hostel is a part of a monumental building in the very center of the city. However, it’s situated in a quiet street, right next to the Red Light District. Most of the rooms overlook the canal and the view is just stunning. In total there are 176 beds in 8, 16 and 20-bed rooms. There are also two private twin rooms. All dorms have bunk beds and access to shared bathroom in the hallway. They are all comfortable and quite clean. There’s an option to buy towels and padlocks. However, the price for each is 4.50 Euro. Stayokay Amsterdam Stadsdoelen offers discounted tickets to various tourist attractions in the city (museums, canal tours, Heineken Experience etc.) which is really cool. At Stayokay Amsterdam Stadsdoelen there’s a restaurant – Grab&Go serving 3 items for 5.50 Euro. There is also bicycle storage and a common area with a pool table.

What’s Nearby

The hostel is located next to Dam Square and Central Station. The Royal Palace and Waterlooplein are within walking distance, same with Rembrandtplein. You can reach Schiphol Airport in around 20 minutes (driving). Stayokay Amsterdam Stadsdoelen is one of the best starting points if you’re planning to do some serious city exploration. It’s in the middle of the city center but at the same time it’s a bit away from Amsterdam’s craziness.

St Christophers Inn at The Winston

???? Prices start at 44 Euro per bed
???? Warmoesstraat 129, Amsterdam City Centre, 1012 JA Amsterdam 
Phone: +31 206 231 380
???? 8.1

Photo Courtesy of St Christophers Inn at The Winston

St Christophers at The Winston is one of the most famous (and award-winning) hostels in the Red Light District. There are 60 guestrooms, mixed and female-only. Dorms are individually decorated. They are 100% non-smoking. All have own shower and toilette. Towels and bed lining are included. At the hostel there’s also a restaurant and a bar/lounge (Belushi’s where hotel guests get a 25% discount) and, what’s a bit surprising, its own nightclub. Guests can also enjoy some relaxing time in the garden. There are many coffee shops literally a stone’s throw away.

What’s Nearby

St Christophers Inn at The Winston is situated in the very center of the city. Oude Kerk (The Old Church) is within a 2-minute walk and Madame Tussauds and Royal Palace – a 5-minute walk. Central Station is around 10 minutes by foot. Anne Frank House and Rembrandt Square are within a 15-minute walk. If you take a tram (the Dam Square stop is a 4-minute walk) you can reach Museumplein and Leidseplein in 20 minutes. If you want to explore the outskirts of the city, you can walk to the metro station (Amsterdam Central) – it takes around 7 minutes to get there by foot. The Canal Cruises launch is almost on the hotel’s doorstep.

Durty Nelly’s Inn  

???? Prices start at 40 Euro per bed
???? 115 Warmoesstraat, Amsterdam City Centre, 1012 JA Amsterdam
Phone: +31 20 638 0125
???? 8.1

Photo Courtesy of Durty Nelly’s Inn  

The hostel was named after the famous Irish legend who was known for generosity and hospitality. It was opened over 20 years ago. The 12 rooms at Durty Nelly’s Inn are clean and basic but cozy at the same time. Bed linen, hairdryers and adapters are free to use. Recently, new Sleeptite beds have been installed. They are equipped with underbed lockers, usb chargers and reading lights and power sockets. Cool, huh? Hostel guests can also enjoy a cocktail at the bar on the ground floor. In the bar, on top of a wide range of bottle and tap beers, spirits and whiskey, you’ll find a pool table and live DJ music at the weekends.  The hostel staff is extremely nice, always happy to help you organize your day tour, canal cruise, bike rental or museum tickets.

What’s Nearby

Located in the Middle of Red Light District, in the heart of the historical city center, the hostel is only a 1-minute walk from Dam Square. Madame Tussauds is 4 minutes away and Royal Palace – 6 minutes away. You can reach Rembrandt Square in around 14 minutes. Durty Nelly’s Inn is situated a 7-minute walk from Central Station.

The White Tulip Hostel

???? Prices start at 32 Euro per bed
???? Warmoesstraat 87, Amsterdam City Centre, 1012 HZ Amsterdam
Phone: +31 20 625 5974
???? 7.3

Photo Courtesy of The White Tulip Hostel

One of the best places for those who want to experience the real buzz of Amsterdam. Most of the rooms have own toilets and showers. Keep in mind that smoking is forbidden. However, there’s a smoking terrace at the backside of the bar. There are 81 beds in total and dorms can hold up to 10 people. If you want to make some new friendships while staying at the White Tulip Hostel, make sure you check the hostel’s ground floor Irish pub – ‘Irish Pub Slainte’. Hotel guests are entitled to get 20% discount on all food and drinks in the bar. There’s even a happy hour with two-for-one Heineken. The bar is open until 3:00 am during weekends. While at the White Tulip Hostel you can join a ‘free tour’ through Amsterdam. The tour is organizes by Sandemans New Amsterdam. Hostel guests also get a 2-euro discount for the ‘ultimate party pub-crawl’. The White Tulip Hostel also have some bikes to hire. Pedaling alongside the canals is definitely one of the best activities in the city.

What’s Nearby

The hostel is located in the Red Light District, on one of the busiest streets (Warmoesstraat), which offers a direct access to the most bustling quarters of the city (1 minute from Dam Square). There are many bars and coffee shops nearby. You can get to Central Station in 5 minutes on foot. Oude Kerk is around 2 minutes away and De Wallen – 5 minutes away. The nearest tram stop is at Dam Square.

Hostel The Globe

???? Prices start at 30 Euro per bed
???? Oude Zijds Voorburgwal 3, Amsterdam City Centre, 1012 EH Amsterdam
Phone: +31 20 421 7424
???? 6.7

Photo Courtesy of Hostel The Globe

There are 20 guestrooms, each of them has a bathroom and shower. There are triple, quadruple and up-to-eight rooms. In some cases, some of the rooms can be even suitable for up to 10 persons. Smoking is not allowed at Hostel The Globe.  At Hostel The Globe you’ll find a restaurant and a sports bar. The bar, the biggest in the Red Light District, also offers darts and billiards. There are also 2 large screens broadcasting major sport events and nine TVs. The bar is open until 3 am. Hostel guests are entitled to get a 20% discount on the food menu. Also, do not forget to enjoy the bar’s happy hours between Sunday and Thursday.

What’s Nearby

The hostel is located on the northern edge of the Red Light District, 400 meters from Central Station, it’s a great place to navigate around the city center. It overlooks two historic canals. Most of major tourist attraction points are within a 10-minute walk. Those are, among the others, Dam Square, Flower Market, Rembrandt Square. A great thing is that Hostel The Globe is located some distance away from the major traffic which means it’s relatively quiet. In the neighborhood you’ll easily find canal tours operators, coffee shops and many exhibits.

Shelter City Christian Hostel

???? Prices start at 70 Euro per bed
???? Barndesteeg 21, Amsterdam City Centre, 1012 BV Amsterdam
Phone: +31 20 625 3230
???? 8.3

Photo Courtesy of Shelter City Christian Hostel
Photo Courtesy of Shelter City Christian Hostel

Shelter City Christian Hostel is a national monument recognized by the World Heritage List. It’s run by a Christian non-profit organization. The building is old, very Dutch in style, with impressive high ceilings that create an open feeling. In total there are almost 180 beds in 2, 4, 6, 8, 10 and 16-bed rooms. The largest ones, 16-people dorms, have dividing walls. All dormitories are single-sex, they are very simple and a bit outdated. In addition to regular dormitories, there are also 4-bed family rooms with private bathrooms. Guests are entitled to get discounts for various museums and canal cruises. What’s extremely cool, Shelter City Christian Hotel serves a good (and free!) breakfast. I also love the hostel’s peaceful courtyard with amazing fish pond. Interesting fact: the building used to be a primary school long time ago. Vincent Van Gogh spent 12 months there as a teacher.

What’s Nearby

The hostel is situated n a very narrow street between the Red Light District an Nieuwmarkt. Basilica of St. Nicholas is not even 1 kilometer away. Central Station is within a 10-minute walk. Rembrandt House, Dutch National Opera and Flower Market are approximately 2.5 kilometers away. The neighborhood is lively, there are many restaurants, shops and historical buildings.

Amsterdam Central Bed and Breakfast

???? Prices start at 120 Euro per bed
???? Oudebrugsteeg 6-II, Amsterdam City Centre, 1012 JP Amsterdam
Phone: +31 6 38589825
???? 9.4

Photo Courtesy of Amsterdam Central Bed and Breakfast
Photo Courtesy of Amsterdam Central Bed and Breakfast

The hotel is located in one of the oldest houses (it was built in 1530) in this part of the city. This makes you can literally experience the real Amsterdam feel right from the start. A very steep staircase is just amazing. The rooms are fully equipped, they all have private bathrooms with shower and a hairdryer. Each room is suitable for max 2 persons.  Guests often say that the rooms at Amsterdam Central Bed and Breakfast are spacious and comfortable. There’s a great breakfast option – it’s actually self-made. Most of the things and ingredients are available and you can choose out of them to prepare your favorite morning meal. The only minus of the hostel is that sometimes you can hear some street noise but it’s just the Red Light District after all.

What’s Nearby

The hostel is situated 500 meters from Basilica of St. Nicholas. This is a perfect place to be if you’re planning to make the most out of Amsterdam’s nightlife. There are various restaurants, shops and bars in the neighborhood. Canal boat tours are a minute away. You can reach Central Station, the Queen’s Palace or Madame Tussauds in 5 minutes. Jordaan Area, Flower Market and Anne Frank House are only 10 minutes away.

Hostel The Veteran

???? Prices start at 98 Euro per bed
???? Herengracht 561, Amsterdam City Centre, 1017 BW Amsterdam
Phone: +31 20 620 2673
???? 6.7

Photo courtesy of Hostel The Veteran
Photo courtesy of Hostel The Veteran

There are 12 dorms at Hostel De Veteran. All the rooms overlook the Herengracht Canal. They are basic, practically furnished, some of them come with a private shower and a toilet. As in many Amsterdam’s hostels, expect a Dutch steep staircase. The entire Hostel De Veteran is non-smoking. Even if the hostel officially has no stars, guests are usually very satisfied with the standard and the service in general.  Keep in mind that minimum stay is 2 nights (and 3 nights at weekends). Moreover, just next door there is a good coffee shop.

What’s Nearby

The hostel is situated on Rembrandt Square, right next to the Red Light District. Reaching the Flower Market will literally take you 5 minutes.  Dam Square is 10 minutes away. In 10 minutes (on foot) you can also reach a famous Kalverstraat with its shops and major high street brands. Make sure you also spend a while in the ‘9 straatjes’ area! The Royal Palace and Madame Tussauds are located around 15 minutes away from the hostel. If you want to explore other parts of the city, there are several buses and trams from Rembrandtplein. There are connections to all directions.

Travel Hotel Amsterdam

???? Prices start at 108 Euro per bed
???? Beursstraat 23, Amsterdam City Centre, 1012 JV Amsterdam
Phone: +31 20 626 6532
???? 6.5

Photo Courtesy of Travel Hotel Amsterdam

Travel Hotel Amsterdam is both a hostel and a budget hotel situated in a historical building. At Travel Hotel Amsterdam there are 16 smoke-free rooms: single, double, triple and quadruple. There is also one family room with 5 single beds. None of the rooms look the same. Dormitories have either private or shared bathroom facilities. All rooms have portable fans and flat-screen TVs. The hostel offers the guests a bar with Heineken on draft, spirits, soft drinks and various bottled beers. Guests can play billiards at the hostel. The bar kitchen serves quite good ham/cheese toasts. There’s also a nice book-crossing corner. It’s a perfect place for groups of friends, solo travelers and backpackers who want to experience the very center of the city but save some money at the same time. If you like sightseeing, nightlife activities and walking, this is a place for you.

What’s Nearby

The hostel is situated not even 100 meters from Beurs van Berlage. Oude Kerk is only 2 minutes away. You can get to Dam Square, Madame Tussauds or Royal Palace in 5 minutes. Begijnhof, Amsterdam Museum and Anne Frank House are approximately 10-13 minutes away. The Schiphol airport is 12 kilometers from the property.

Budget Hostel Heart of Amsterdam

???? Prices start at 135 Euro per bed
???? Oudezijds Achterburgwal 118/120, Amsterdam City Centre, 1012 DT Amsterdam
Phone: +31 20 624 8879
???? 7.2

Budget Hostel Heart of Amsterdam is something between a hostel and a hotel. It was completely renovated in 2004. 24 rooms vary in size – they are suitable for a couple of people or an entire group. The interiors are clean and… the rooms are themed, they look very Hollywood-ish. Each room has a movie name, pictures and a story. Among the others, there are Star Wars-, American Beauty-, Pulp Fiction-, the Apocalypse Now- and Godfather –themed rooms. Each room has a bathroom. Towels and bed linen are free. Don’t forget that most of hostels in Amsterdam don’t have elevators, so get prepared for traditional Amsterdam stairs. Oh, I’d forget – prices are very reasonable. The hostel offers a good continental breakfast. There are also various Chinese, Indonesian and Thai restaurants around the corner. The staff is very friendly and speaks a number of languages.

What’s Nearby

The hostel is located at the very edge of the Red Light District, surrounded by almost all of Amsterdam’s attractions. Dam Square is literally a stone’s throw away, same as Central Station. Nieuwmarkt and Waterlooplein are also within a walking distance. Anne Frank House is within a 15-minute walk and Rijksmuseum is 20 minutes away.

The final word

Have you chosen your hostel out of the list above? In my opinion, they are all worth consideration while in Amsterdam. They are cheap, clean and simply furnished. However, when it comes to hostels within the Red Light District, nothing is more important than location. Location is absolutely key in this case. The Red Light District is literally one of the best spots for further city exploration. If you’re able to accept some noise at night, you will have a great access to all main tourist attractions of the city, as well to public transportation. So, who would care about a little bit of noise? It’s Amsterdam, after all!

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