Wednesday, October 10, 2012


When traveling around Europe during the "abroad year" typically international students vote hostels over hotels. Hostels are predominantly more cheaper than hotels and will have lots of other internationals staying there who have done there own travels to meet and mingle with. I've been to two so far and have had different experiences in each.

Bru Radharn NA Mara Hostel in Inisheer, Ireland

Located on the smallest of the Aran Islands, Bru Radharn NA Mara Hostel was a perfect location for a hostel. My class stayed together when we visited and we had no problems with the place. The kitchen was nice, there were plenty of appliences, we were given cozy sheets and duvets, and the lounge was inviting for all of us to read folktales during the night. There was also a pub next door that was barely heard from the room. This place felt like a home, but had only the appearance of a hostel.

Globe Trott Inns in London, England

Well, the second hostel was not quite the same. This hostel was located in London, more specifically, the east end of London right near the West Ham stadium. Meaning we weren't in the best neighborhood and we had to follow a man into an alleyway in order to get to the hostel. Honestly, Karyn and I thought we were being lead to our death as we climbed up the cramped stairs. When we got there we found out that we could not be put in a room together since we booked separately. Lesson learned, but then the bed I was assigned to was stolen by some girl and subsequently so was my duvet. So I slept in a random bed with only a fitted sheet. 

There was also the promise of a continental breakfast. It was toast. I however enjoy toast and did not mind, but I do believe that is false advertising. I mean the sketchy Econo Lodge of New York/ Connecticut that we went to for the Maury show at least had options.

Then the last night we come back and the West Ham team had just won the game. All the fans were going crazy and were loud all through the night. And what's worse was that the bed I had found after my first bed was stolen, had been stolen again. Honestly, the place was completely disorganized, but for the price of 7 pounds a night I should not complain.

So next time I have a few rules I'll be putting into place:

1. Book your hostel with your travel buddy. Don't get separated.
2. Google map the place you're staying at because it may not be what you're thinking.
3. You get what you pay for.
4. Look up what is going on in the area before hand to check for noise or traffic.

I don't believe I have a concrete idea of my relationship with hostels formed yet. If any of you guys out there have done your own traveling I'd like to hear about your experiences with hostels in Europe.


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