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“Pool was paradise, the rest pretty good too” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Costa Rica Backpackers

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Costa Rica Backpackers
2.0 of 5 Hostel   |   Avenida 6, Calle 21/25 | De la iglesia Sagrado Corazon, 100 metros norte, 50 oeste., San Jose, Costa Rica   |  
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Hotel amenities
Turrialba, Cartago, Costa Rica
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
“Pool was paradise, the rest pretty good too”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 15, 2013

I have been all over Costa Rica work in coffee, which doesn't bring me anywhere near the beach or pools. I was passing through San Jose before catching a bus early in the morning and made the decision to stay at Backpackers rather last minute. When I walked in and saw the pool it was like manna in the wilderness. Even though it's not deep enough for diving, I spent a good hour just floating and then lay out in the sun on the lounge chairs in the grass. It was hard to believe I was still in San Jose.

The dorm bunks were average with tired sheets. I don't think they have towels? I had my own. The internet was going in and out, which was rather infuriating since I was there for work, but they did have a few desktops that worked pretty well.

I got a $2 beer on tap and chips and guac at the adjacent bar- all tasty and fairly priced. It seemed like a good place to party and hang- they looked like they were setting up for a band.

The showers had piping hot water, which is always a treat in Costa Rica.

Room Tip: Rooms that face the pool/patio will be louder because people are talking/playing music late.
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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187 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (25)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Colorado Springs, Colorado
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 10, 2013

I stayed here for four days at the beginning of my long stay in CR. It was very good for me because I am a chef and to have a really good big kitchen was fine to me. The staff here was great and I thought it was a clean place. I stayed in the dorm room by the front desk so if you want a nap in the day it may be a little noisy. However the other rooms can get loud because of the bar music at night. Stay by the front desk and you will get fine sleep. Alexandra was very nice to me and I had her sign my journal with the others. Stay here the people are very cool man!
PURA VIDA!

Paul

Room Tip: stay by the front desk to get awesome sleep for the evening.
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Toronto, Canada
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 28, 2012

Stayed at the end of my Costa Rican adventure in December and it was easily the best hostel I experienced during my whole journey in Costa Rica. Other travellers that I met recommended me this place and I just have to say that they were absolutely right!

Good and safe location (do not choose downtown hostels, it's too dangerous), close to everything you may need as supermarkets, restaurants, cinemas, museums, malls, bus stations etc... Costa Rica Backpackers is the most popular place in town!
Very clean, the staff was nice and helpful. I had a private room which was spacious and well decorated for only $32. Dorms looked nice too and much cheaper (from $11). There was a beautiful garden (a real one!) with a bean shaped pool, an outdoor and well equipped kitchen in case you dont wanna spend money in restaurants or travelling with kids. There is also a good but cheap bar-restaurant (I specially recommend the caribbean chicken!). I loved the outdoor bar where everybody use to gather from happy hour to midnight for cheap drinks.
The internet was good and wifi was available everywhere. There is a tour desk and you can buy with no stress your departure tax for $32, saving one hour line at the airport. The shuttle service to the airport was fine and cheaper than a normal cab.
During my three days stay I heard no complains from the people who stayed there. This hostel is a must if you go to San Jose.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Perth, Australia
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
24 hotel reviews
Reviews in 25 cities Reviews in 25 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 23, 2012

Stayed twice in Costa Rica backpackers and its an ok hostel. They have heaps of rooms so turning up early in the day you're almost guaranteed to get a bed. They have a big, well equipped kitchen for cooking your own food and large grounds with heaps of places for lounging around. The attached bar/restaurant has come cheap-ish food on offer. Location is fairly central and only a 5 min walk to city centre and 10 min walk to the market. Not much atmosphere here as everyone only stays for a night or two at the start/end of their trip so turnover is really high.

PRO's
- big well equipped kitchen that's clean
- spacious dorms with lockers
- nice pool for swimming
- close to town and San Pedro mall (has cinema)

CON's
- not much atmosphere
- bunks are really wobbly so your bunk buddy will wake you up as they move around
- no charging points in dorms

All in all a convenient place to spend the night in San Jose.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled solo
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Abilene, Texas
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 21, 2012

Nice place but price was pretty steep for a hostel. Three of us paid $65 for a room with bathroom. We were tired and needed a place to stay and really wanted to get some sun so we opted to stay because of the pool. The water was too cold to enjoy so we just enjoyed the pool from outside. Very friendly and helpful staff. Would stay again.

  • Stayed December 2012
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CRBackpackers, Owner at Costa Rica Backpackers, responded to this review, December 29, 2012
Hello dear customers,

Costa Rica Backpackers only charges $32 for a double, this comment is inappropriate, we encourage tripadviser to ckeck people commenting on accommations if they are true customers.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
1 of 5 stars Reviewed December 17, 2012

We have stayed here first one night and they were helpful with booking a trip for the next day. When we came back to this hostel we wanted to stay two nights and the reception told us we could only book for one night and if we wanted to stay another night we have to go to the reception the next morning to book another night. Very strange and not friendly at all. In the end they were happy to book 2 nights in a row.
After a few days we came back to this hostel again, and we had made booking with the reception the last time we left. When we arrived they didn't have a room for us, since we hadn't booked online. Even though we had booked it face to face. We were not happy and therefore we didn't want to stay and went across the road to a different hostel. (in this hostel the service was really good and there was breakfast included)

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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Dublin, Ireland
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 16, 2012

This hostel is fine, nothing special but nothing wrong with it either.
I stayed in a private room in the basement which was really spacious. It looked like it was the only room in the basement with a window to the outside. I'm not 100% sure about this though.
It was comfortable and had a double and a single bed in it.
I didn't find the people on reception particulary helpful. I was ignored for about 15 minutes while standing at reception just to ask where the local supermarket was!
The pool was pretty cold, I only managed to dip my toes in!
There is a train track right behind the hostel and when a train goes past, you have to stop conversing as it's too loud to hear the person you're chatting with!
There are 2 bars (I have no idea why as one had no one in it any time I went in!). One serves food which is pretty average. Nothing to write home about.
I found the bars to be pretty expensive. Not your usual hostel prices.
They sell chocolate bars and the like at reception and they are totally over priced!
They also sell departure tax at reception for $32. It's only $28 at the airport so I thought that was a bit cheeky!
I got my laundry done here. $2 per kg. A bit more expensive than other places but ok.
It's a decent location though and handy for a couple of days in San Jose. And a couple of days is more than enough!
Also, there is luggage storage which is great if you are carrying too much! I was as I had clothes for different climates and it was great to be able to leave them behind and pick them up again before my flight. Be warned though, if you don't stay there when you go back, they charge you $5 per night to store your luggage. That's fair enough but just make sure you're staying another night!
In general, I found that everything here was a bit more expensive than other hostels in Costa Rica. I felt like they were trying to rip travellers off a bit. That left a bit of a bitter taste in my mouth.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled solo
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Costa Rica Backpackers

Address: Avenida 6, Calle 21/25 | De la iglesia Sagrado Corazon, 100 metros norte, 50 oeste., San Jose, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Location: Costa Rica > Province of San Jose > San Jose Metro > San Jose
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #12 of 51 Specialty Lodging in San Jose
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:2 star — Costa Rica Backpackers 2*
Number of rooms: 4
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The #1 budget hostel and meeting spot for travelers in San Jose, Costa Rica and Lonely Planet readers' favorite since 2001. We have excellent reviews from guide books and on internet. Come and meet people from all around the world in our little slice of paradise, swap stories ! Catch the sun in our tropical garden, swim in the pool and don`t miss the happy hour at the "BAR-PACKERS" at 5pm!ALL FREE - internet (7 computers), wifi, coffee & tea; kitchen facilities (save money cook for yourself), parking, storage.TOP FACILITIES - Biggest pool & garden in San Jose, sunbathing, cable tv, international phone calls, hot showers, laundry service, tour desk, 24-hr security. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Costa Rica Backpackers Hotel San Jose
Costa Rica Backpackers San Jose

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