It was late when I arrived at Athens Backpackers Hostel feeling groggy and disorientated despite only have travelling from the near by island of Skiathos. After two days of awful accommodation I was looking forward to getting into a clean bed and having a proper shower. The hostel website provides brilliant directions from the airport using either the bus or metro so I managed to find it no problem. The location is also perfect for exploring as Athens Backpackers in right next to the Acropolis.
The dude behind reception greeted me in a much cheerier tone than my own and whizzed through the check in procedure. Informing me about free breakfast, the walking tour the following morning and what time the rooftop bar was open. I struggled to retain all of the information but did manage to find my room and have a lovely shower before crashing in bed, exhausted.
The hostel is so much bigger than I imagined with four floors of rooms and the rooftop. The room was clean and tidy with ample space between beds for those huge bags every backpacker carries. The rooms also had large lockers to help keep those valuables safe, just remember to bring your own padlock as the hostel don’t have any spare. There was a private bathroom for each dorm room with a shower and toilet, each floor then also had a bathroom with shower. I always prefer to have a bathroom in the room for when you have to get up in the middle of the night but much preferred the shower in the bathroom outside of the room as it was a little bit bigger. The floors tend to end up soaking after a shower so I would recommend bringing some flip flops to pop on afterwards. Also my dorm room had a balcony and air con which occasionally had to be re-turned on but worked brilliantly. The hostel provides bedding free of charge but if you need to borrow a towel you’ll have to pay.
There were several communal areas in the hostel, downstairs was the kitchen and courtyard, above was the luggage storage and sofa area and on the rooftop was the bar. The kitchen area served free breakfast of bread, eggs and tea/coffee every morning. There was certainly ample to go around and it was served late enough for those who had been out the night before. There were enough facilities in the kitchen to cook for yourself, however, I never saw a single person use the kitchen outside of breakfast times. There are so many cheap food options nearby there isn’t any real need to cook for yourself. The sofa area made for a great spot for those arriving before check in and needing a sleep, it was also a pretty safe spot to keep your bag after check out.
The rooftop bar is THE place to be at 7pm when happy hour starts, during that hour it seems everyone from the backpackers and sister company studios gathers here to take advance of €2 beers. Even if you aren’t after a heavy party night you should head here just to check out the view of the Acropolis and sunset. Once the rooftop bar closes at 11pm then you can head over to the site of the studios for the sports bar which will carry on serving you until much later.
The wifi in the hostel is provided everywhere and apart from at peak times works brilliantly. The staff also give you the password on arrival so you won’t have to go fishing for it. A laundrette is provided on the site of the studios and these guys also run the fish cafe but they only serve English food not Greek, so I never made it there.
Athens Backpackers also offer a €6 walking tour each morning, it starts at 10am from reception and lasts around three hours. The guides vary but we had the awesome Danny, a Greek man who spent some of this life living in Australia. He loved telling the history of Greece and providing some interesting facts as well as some mythical stories. The walk was a brilliant way to get my bearings on my first day in Athens and scout out places I wanted to go back and visiting during my time here.
I would highly recommend a stay at Athens Backpackers or Studios, the staff are friendly, the room was clean and safe and the location was perfect for exploring the city.
Dorm rooms start from £16 and can be booked directly through their website.
Disclaimer: I received a media discount while staying here but as always I only use companies I choose and all opinions are my own.