My friend and I stayed at Astoria City Hostel for one night during a weekend break in Budapest in January 2008.
We paid 24 GBP for a private twin room, with shared bathroom and kitchen facilities and with no breakfast included.
Astoria Hostel is located in the heart of downtown Pest.
The reception of Astoria Hostel is located at #4 Rakoczi (a main road running through Pest) and a number of dorm rooms are also located within that building.
However, the private rooms where we stayed are located a few minutes walk down the road at #18 Rakoczi. The private rooms, seven of them, are located in a building that appears from the outside to be a very unprepossessing residential apartment block, but is much nicer inside.
We arrived in Budapest on a train from the airport, alighting at Nyugati train station. From there, we were able to walk to Astoria Hostel (a journey of 2 or 3 kilometres) in a little over 20 minutes. However, if you prefer public transport, then the Astoria Metro station is practically right outside the hostel.
From Astoria Hostel, it takes about 10 minutes to walk to the main pedestrianised shopping street of Vaci utca, and about 15 minutes to walk to the banks of the Danube river and Elizabeth Bridge. There is a good selection of bars and restaurants in the Pest region of the city, many of which can be reached on foot in less than 10 minutes.
Keleti train station (the main international train station in Budapest, but with no trains to and from the airport as at January 2008) is about 15-20 minutes walk away.
Our twin room was very sparsely furnished with two beds, a wardrobe, a small wooden table and a couple of chairs.
The mattresses on the beds were exceptionally thin, but not as uncomfortable as I first feared.
The seven private rooms are located along a corridor on the second floor of an apartment block and share a kitchen area, two bath/shower rooms and a third small toilet room. As there were no other guests at the time of our visit, we had all the facilities to ourselves.
The kitchen area included a large fridge, a microwave, an oven, a sink, a dining table and a large range of cooking utensils, cutlery and crockery. Due to our short stay, we never needed any of these facilities, but for anybody staying longer and wanting to self cater it would be ideal.
The accommodation was much more homely inside than might be suggested by the building’s external appearance. The bathrooms and the kitchen were clean and tidy and the bedroom, while very basic, was comfortable. It was also well heated – a necessity in the cold winter months.
If you decide to book at Astoria Hostel, be sure to ascertain what type of accommodation you are booking; a bed in a dorm room in the main building or a private room located a short distance along the road.
The dorm rooms are perhaps more convenient, with the reception area (offering Internet access and luggage storage) just along the corridor, as well as a breakfast room. By contrast, staying in the private rooms meant that we had to first check in at reception, and then carry our bed sheets, duvets and towels (provided by the hostel and not particularly clean!) through the streets to our room. Upon leaving, we had to gather up our bedding and towels and return them to the reception.
Astoria Hostel offers very basic accommodation in a convenient, central location for a good value price. This accommodation is very much “no-frills” and is ideal for backpackers or budget travellers staying in Budapest for a short time.
A good value, centrally located budget accommodation – right in the heart of Pest. Recommended for travellers who just want a basic room in a good location at minimal cost!
Directions: Located on the major street of Rakoczi, in the Pest region of the city. Close to the Astoria Metro station.
This hostel is everyhing a hostel should be. It boasts a central location (just on the pest side of the Danube) efficient staff, and a great breakfast. The atmosphere is not cringeworthy and over-friendly as in some such establishments but there is usually someone around to have a fairly normal conversation with if you do feel the urge.
Unique Quality: The rooms are clean and functional. The whole place is indeed suprisingly clean. To my suprise I arose one morning to find one of the owners washing all the dishes that had already been washed by residents the night before,a nice touch.
Free internet also adds to the alure of this place.
Directions: Opposite Hotel Astoria, you cant miss it if you head for the chain bridge from the train station, a 15 minute walk from the station.
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