Whistler has five backpackers hostels, unfortunately none of them are located in the Village. Depending on what you are doing in Whistler and if you have a car will generally dictate where you stay. Another deciding factor on where you stay is of course who you are travelling with and whether you are hoping to find a social and lively hostel or a more relaxing, hotel-like hostel. Some stay at hostels to meet and socialize, others stay at hostels for the good value, fun and friendly atmospheres that you don't get at hotels. Often you can get more of the good and less of the bad at some hostels.
The Alpine Lodge Backpackers Hostel is located 4k north of Whistler Village. The Alpine Lodge is open year-round and offers amenities fitting a world-class ski resort. The beautiful, giant wood beam construction has a great ski lodge feel. There are amazing mountain views, wood burning fireplace, massive 18 seat dining table, sauna and steam bath, jetted Jacuzzi. There is a massive kitchen to use as well as free morning coffee/juice/muffin/toast/yogurt/fruit. Free wifi throughout the lodge as well as an excellent array of books, DVD's and CD's available to use. If you don't have a vehicle with you that is no problem, the excellent Whistler transit, bus stop is just steps away and picks up often and goes directly to Whistler Village. Dorm rooms are $40 per person, private room for two with private bath is $100 summer-$125 winter, room for three with private bath is $125 summer-$150 winter, and suite with kitchen and bath is $145 summer-$170 winter. The dorm style rooms have bunk beds, 4 people per room and shared bathroom. Amenities in the area include a nice coffee shop and convenience store nearby as well as the large Meadow Park Recreation Centre. The Valley Trail, paved trail system in Whistler is just steps away and is an excellent biking and walking trail that runs for several kilometres throughout Whistler and past several lakes and attractions. The Alpine Lodge is just a short, 10 minute drive to the trailhead to Wedgemount Lake, which is the northern gateway to the amazing hiking in Garibaldi Park.
Why should you should stay at the Alpine Lodge?
The Alpine Lodge Backpackers Hostel is a luxury hostel with tremendous service. The cost for a dorm room is, on first look, more expensive than the others in Whistler. This price difference is misleading, however. If you count in all the included extras provided such as free breakfast items and free bedding and of course the luxury feel and amenities to the Alpine Lodge, you are actually getting a tremendous value for your money. The Alpine Lodge is also exceptionally well praised.. "Incredible" "Great staff" "Great Price" "Great Place to stay if you are on a budget" "Best value in Whistler" "Incredible place to stay in Whistler". Finally, the location. Though not in Whistler Village as unfortunately no Whistler hostels are, travelling to the Village is quick, cheap and easy. The bus is close and direct and just $2.50. Also, taxis are unexpectedly inexpensive from the Alpine Lodge to the Village at just $11 one way. The location of the Alpine Lodge Backpackers Hostel is somewhat convenient to Whistler Village as compared to other Whistler Hostels.
The recently built, HI Whistler Hostel is massive and very well equipped. Located 8k south of Whistler Village in Cheakamus Crossing, the HI Whistler is just steps away from the amazing hiking and biking trails that lead to Cheakamus Lake in Garibaldi Park. In the winter there is snowshoeing in the area. The HI Whistler is large with a very stylish coffee shop in the lobby where you can get great coffee or even beer or wine. There are communal decks with fantastic views as well as a games room with a pool table and a media room with a 52" TV. A very nice communal kitchen and BBQ. A library, bike storage/rental, lockers, laundry and free WIFI throughout the building. The prices are fairly high at the HI Whistler at $40.15/night for a dorm during the ski season and $36.30/night in the summer (HI members: $36.50/night winter and $33.00 summer) .
The location is quite inconvenient for most activities (except hiking and biking). There are no shops or restaurants for several kilometres, however, the bus from Whistler runs very late - 3:30am and starts early 5:30am.
Why should you should stay at the HI Whistler Hostel?
The HI Whistler Hostel is nice and new and looks like a designer hotel. It is very large and always lots of people to meet and hang out with. The common areas are very stylish and modern and wonderful to relax in. Cheakamus Crossing, the residential neighbourhood where the HI Whistler Hostel is located is cute and well positioned for hiking and biking trails is lacking stores and restaurants. The very nice coffee shop in the HI makes up for this deficiency, at least partly. It is a fun, well designed building albeit in a secluded neighbourhood far from Whistler. The bus to Whistler runs often, usually 2-3 times per hour and costs $2.50 to Whistler Village.
Just 3k south of Whistler Village you will find the Whistler Lodge Hostel , (previously the UBC Lodge) in the Whistler neighbourhood of Nordic. The Whistler Lodge Hostel is another nice, ski lodge feeling hostel with a very relaxed and fun atmosphere. The main area of the hostel is a massive and very comfortable living room complete with a pool table, vending machines, a kitchen, two lounging areas and free internet access. There is also a big hot tub and sauna available. The accommodation consists mainly of dormitory style beds. There are 40 dormitory beds and just one private room that sleeps 2 people. If you are looking for quiet this hostel is not the best, however if you are looking for fun and friends in a wonderfully social atmosphere then the Whistler Lodge Hostel is hard to beat. If you don't have a car, this hostel is a bit inconvenient as the bus stop is about 8 minutes away on foot. The rates for dorm style beds are $30 in the summer and $35 in the Winter. The private room is $90 summer, and $100 winter. If you don't bring your own bedding there is another $4 charge. Not a bad location, taxis run about $12 to the Village and the convenient bus is $2.50. One drawback is that there are such as no food in the rooms, kitchen inaccessible after 8pm and areas such as the sundeck area locked at certain hours.
Why should you should stay at the Whistler Lodge Hostel?
The fantastic design of the living room/common area of the Whistler Lodge Hostel makes for a wonderful, comfortable and social atmosphere. There are plenty of comfortably seats everywhere you look. You can immerse yourself in the action of people playing pool or in the hot tub, or sneak away to a quiet corner with a book. The Whistler Lodge Hostel is certainly a social, party place and the dorm rooms are small and a bit crowded and the bathroom and shower facilities are reminiscent old gym showers. In short, the Whistler Lodge Hostel is a great place to socialize and have fun. A great ski lodge adventure and nice amenities such as the hot tub and pool table.
Also 3k south of Whistler and just down the road from the UBC Hostel is the Fireside Lodge Backpackers Hostel. The Fireside advertises itself as a family oriented, clean, quiet, non-smoking lodge. Similar to the UBC Lodge, the Fireside has a large living room with a pool table as well as a Foosball table, darts and a ping pong table. There is free wifi as well as a large kitchen. There are several dormitory rooms as well as private rooms with single or queen sized beds. The Fireside Lodge can accommodate up to 58 guests. There is also a sauna and barbecue available. The bus stop is just 5 minutes away on foot. The rates for dorm beds range from $23-$28 and private rooms are $56 for two adults. There is an extra charge for bedding.
Why should you should stay at the Fireside Lodge Hostel?
The fireside has good amenities and a fun, social common area, lots of games, books, pool table, etc. There are several different types of rooms which can accomodate several types of groups of guests. Good prices and the location is not bad with the bus stop a short walk away, $2.50 to the Village and taxis are about $12 to the Village to or from the Fireside Lodge Hostel.
The Southside Lodge is 6 room, hotel-feel hostel. The rooms all have a bathroom/shower, TV and fridge and lockers. Full, well equipped, communal kitchen. The rooms all have bunks and sleep either four or six people. This place is great in the winter when you want to go skiing or riding Whistler as it is located just 200 metres from the Creekside Gondola. In terms of skiing convenience this is the best hostel in Whistler. There are also many amenities in the Creekside area all just steps away from The Southside Lodge. Creekside is a sort of mini version of Whistler Village. There are pubs and restaurants. Grocery stores, liquor stores, fast food and ski shops everywhere. There is also the greyhound bus station close by as well as the train station a five minute walk away. In the summer time, the beautiful Valley Trail is close by as well as several lakes to swim and fish and mountains to hike. The Southside Lodge is very friendly and you are never bothered with annoying rules. As their motto says, "Ride More - Spend Less", referring to their goal to cater to the snowboarder/skier crowd. And they do this very well. Good prices and good atmosphere. Free internet and communal computer to use. There are nightly, weekly and monthly rates of, $30/$175/$600.
Why should you should stay at the Southside Lodge Hostel?
The Southside Lodge is amazingly convenient for walking to the Creekside Gondola. The rooms are well equipped and designed. Good, basic and affordable. No inconveniences, no rules, fun atmosphere. The only hostel in Whistler that feels close to the action by being in Whistler's "other village". Very friendly, local feel to The Southside Lodge.