If you want to travel on a smaller budget, hostels are awesome. They’re somewhere between couch-surfing – the ultimate in free space to sleep – and hotels. You stay in a room with multiple people, make friends, and save money. I’m a fan.
I stayed in two hostels in Cusco, Peru – one before visiting Machu Picchu, and one after. My favorite was the second one – Inka Club Hostel. It’s located right near the main square, and I found myself without the common complaints I’ve had about other hostels. It was cheap (of course) and comfortable. Here are 10 reasons to stay there.
1. The owner is a super friendly guy. His name is Victor, and he runs this place with his lovely family. He speaks great English, and loves music – he actually ended up falling in love with my music and blasting it throughout the space. We shared stories and talked about language and life. He used to have a recording studio, and if I recall correctly, he’s up to work on a new one. Friendly owner, friendly staff – this makes everything a little easier.
2. It was clean and tidy. I found no major dustbunnies. I ended up with an entire room full of beds nearly all to myself – maybe because it was April, and peak tourist season is May. Fewer people naturally made tidiness less of a concern, but I found myself quite pleased with the cleanliness of the space in general. There was an outlet and a lamp near the beds too, thank goodness.
3. Yummy basic breakfast each morning. Take a look at the photo below. You can even ask for eggs if the cook is around. The VIEW from the upper floor where breakfast is made is also gorgeous.
4. Computer banks! Reliable wifi! Yay! Need I say more? Having 3 PC computers available made my work and life that much easier. The wifi in the place is also very steady, especially compared to the first hostel where I stayed. This makes it possible to handle wifi calls and online errands without issue. You can even stream things. Having stayed at hostels where wifi was unpredictable, this was a major perk.
5. Other amenities: Laundry service, lockers, and a media room. The laundry was expertly done by the owner’s father (although it was a bit more expensive than it might be elsewhere (25 soles or so for one medium-sized load, or around $8). The storage lockers are also a nice size – I used those on my last day, so I could be packed and ready while exploring in my final hours. And even though I didn’t end up using it, there was a nice room with a large television for relaxing with a movie.
6. Security. There’s a cheaper hostel within the same alley way, but its accessed by a large gate, and Inka Club keeps its doors locked, so guests must be buzzed in. This happens during the day and at night. The storage lockers are solid wood and tucked away in their own room too.
7. WARMTH! Cusco is like summer in the daytime and winter at night. My previous hostel was half indoors, half outdoors. This one was entirely indoors, and although I could feel the change in temperature, it was considerably warmer and more comfortable than the previous place.
8. No smoking in the common areas. This is never very comfortable for me – I really despise cigarette smoke. This added to the cleanliness and comfort of the whole place.
9. Outdoor space. The alley way that leads up to the hostel can actually double as a mini courtyard. And the kitchen / eating area is semi-outdoors – it’s accessed by going into the “driveway.” You’re not forced to be outdoors, but you can do it if you want to.
10. Music! The owner and staff played so many jams in the morning, plus Victor was bumpin my songs at night when I first arrived. The front desk computer system is hooked up to really good speakers.
I would definitely stay there again. It’s not a party place with a super social vibe, so if that’s your thing then stay elsewhere. But in general, it met my needs, the location was awesome (less than 10 minutes walk to the Plaza del Armas), and I found it very comfortable.
Do you do hostels? Let me know with a comment.