In New Mexico’s most populated city – Albuquerque – there’s only one hostel in town and it’s located along the old Route 66, one of the United States’ original highways.
Fittingly, it’s called Route 66 Hostel.
At a cost of $25/night for a dorm bed, it’s a budget-friendly accommodation that provides travelers with a bed to sleep while they wander the city during the day. (A private room with a shared bathroom is $30-$35/night, while a private room with a private bath is $45/night.)
The hostel was originally a four-bedroom, two-bathroom house that was built in the early 1900s and it’s over 100 years old! With that, there are some kinks in the building, including squeaky floorboards and leaks in the shower (this was the case when I stayed there). But if you’re only there for part of the day and on a budget and if you don’t mind the symptoms that come with the old age of a building, then it’s not a bad place to stay.
There’s free Wi-Fi at the hostel, as well as breakfast – every morning they provide eggs that you can cook and fresh fruits in a basket on the dining table.
If you’re driving, there’s parking located in the back of the building.
As far as beds go, I opted for a dorm room and got it to myself for all but one of the nights I stayed there. (#PerksOfTravelingDuringSlowSeason.) There were six beds and a toilet in the room.
Not gonna lie – the mattress on the bed wasn’t comfortable. I was sleeping on springs rather than a cushion, so I had to sleep on my side or risk waking up with a painful back. I’m not sure what beds in the private rooms are like, but they might be better.
On a side note, the private rooms are located upstairs, so they’re not accessible for those who might be concerned about that.
Another feature of the dorm room is a furnace located right in front of the window. However, because the building is old, it can either get really hot or not function at all. If the latter happens, hostel staff is happy to provide you with an extra blanket. So either way, visitors should be able to sleep in a comfortable temperature.
One big downside to my experience here, though, was seeing baby cockroaches in the women’s shared shower. I’m pretty sure that happened because it’s damp (due to the leak) and warm inside. Perfect climate for those little critters. Hostel staff apologized profusely for that, and said they’ve been trying to get rid of them by pouring bleach down the drain.
Sadly, I also saw some baby roaches in the kitchen :/ So, that’s something to keep in mind. It wasn’t problematic so it didn’t bother me that much, but there was one evening where I had to walk over to the men’s shared bathroom to brush my teeth so I could avoid the few baby roaches in the women’s shared shower. Fortunately, there was nobody staying in the men’s dorm so I didn’t have any issues with that.
Overall, I had a pleasant stay here and I wouldn’t mind coming back. I wasn’t really bothered by the small inconveniences because I literally just needed a place to sleep. The cockroach issue also wasn’t too problematic for me, mainly because I wasn’t there all the time and I’ve lived in houses where cockroaches would make appearances every so often. I just wanted to put that out there for those who might be considering this place but are completely repulsed by that kind of thing. If that’s the case, there are other accommodations in the area to consider.
Big thumbs up goes to the hostel staff who are super friendly, gave me recommendations on things to do, and were great to talk to. If I get the chance to come back to Albuquerque for the balloon fiesta, I’d book a bed here.
Despite the old building that Route 66 Hostel is, it also has a lot of character and is an enjoyable place to stay.