We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“You will not sleep. ”

Best prices for -
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
Hostel Surfing Donkey
Reviewed March 23, 2014 via mobile

Beds are terrible, overpriced, and the homeless people sleeping outside your window will poop and go leaving you with an aromatic experience. The street the hostel is on is very loud and the chickens and birds around go all night. Do not stay here.

Stayed: March 2014, traveled with friends
Thank Jocelyne B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
The_Surfing_Donkey, Manager at Hostel Surfing Donkey, responded to this reviewResponded March 30, 2015

Hi Jocelyne, thanks for your review. We're sorry to hear you didn't have a good experience here at the hostel

Since then the hostel has changed management and made a ton of improvements, including:

- All new mattresses, among the thickest in town for a hostel
- New lockers, reinforced with an electric outlet inside each for charging securely
- We've finished the outside painting along with some more design work
- A strict no music before 10am or 10pm policy to allow guests to sleep

The beds are completely different and guests have said they sleep great on them. A small degree of noise is to be expected in any hostel here and unfortunately there's no way to block it out entirely. I personally bring a pair of earplugs when staying in hostels, just to insure a quieter sleep.

We're sorry you didn't enjoy your stay the first time and would like to assure you that the Surfing Donkey is now a very different hostel. Check us out on Facebook if you'd like to see some of our recent changes, otherwise we hope you'll come take a look next time you're in San Juan and give the Surfing Donkey another chance!

Mike
Surfing Donkey Hostel

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review
Reviews (133)
There are newer reviews for Hostel Surfing Donkey
See the most recent reviews
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
Language

91 - 97 of 133 reviews

Reviewed January 12, 2014

We came to San Juan del Sur right before new-years. Since we knew the city will be packed with tourists, we made a reservation in this hostel a week in advance. Although we received a confirmation mail from the staff, they pretended we didn't make any reservation at all. We ended up going to each hostel and hotel in town looking for a place, and only after a few hours of searching we found a vacant room. Beware and stay away from this place!

  • Stayed: January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Service
1  Thank Gili W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
The_Surfing_Donkey, Manager at Hostel Surfing Donkey, responded to this reviewResponded March 30, 2015

Hi Gili, thanks for your review. We're sorry to hear you didn't have a good with the hostel.

Since your review, the hostel management has changed and undergone significant changes. We now have use much more organized computer reservation system, soon to be integrated online, so customers won't have to worry at all about any booking issues.

Our hostel has also undergone many improvements and upgrades, including:

- All new mattresses
- New lockers with an electric outlet inside each
- Lots of new painting, furniture, and design work
- A strict no music before 10am or 10pm policy to allow guests to sleep

We're sorry you had a bad experience previously and can assure you the hostel is run much better now. Check us out on Facebook if you'd like to see some of our recent changes, otherwise we hope you'll come take a look next time you're in San Juan and give the Surfing Donkey another chance!

Mike
Surfing Donkey Hostel

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 11, 2013

We only realised in the morning that the private room we stayed in had a lot of evidence of bed bugs. I also had a lot of bites on my back in the morning. The place is disgusting. We decided to risk it and stay one night since the town was very full when we were there, but we wish we hadn't, having now found out it had bed bugs. The room was so so hot in the day & the fan hardly worked. Th swimming pool was disgusting, the hole outside area was a dump. There wasn't many people staying, the ones that were there were Latin American & weird! DO NOT stay at his hostel.

  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank shamrock89
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
The_Surfing_Donkey, Manager at Hostel Surfing Donkey, responded to this reviewResponded March 30, 2015

Hi Shamrock, thanks for your review.

Like every hostel, we take a claim of bed bugs very seriously.

We have had complaints about the thickness of our mattresses, but in 3 years of operation yours is the only complaint mentioning bed bugs. Given that the room has been rented out many times since this review and no one else has complained, we can say quite confidently that the bites did not come from this hostel.

In regards to the general issues, our management has changed and we have made many significant improvements since then, including:

- All new mattresses - much higher quality than before and less than a week old
- New lockers with an electric outlet inside each
- The pool is now completely clean, with a new pump and filter
- The fans have been fixed in several rooms
- Lots of new painting, furniture, and design work
And lots more...

We're sorry you had a bad experience your previous stay and can assure you that the Surfing Donkey is now a new hostel. Check us out on Facebook if you'd like to see some of our recent changes, otherwise we hope you'll take a look next time you're in San Juan and give the Surfing Donkey another chance!

Mike
Surfing Donkey Hostel

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 23, 2013 via mobile

Surfing donkey was a bit weird . We were the only people staying there for he 2 nights apart from 2 or 3 complete wasters. Can imagine when there are other people staying there that there is a good atmosphere as it has a good pool and nice roof terrace to look out across San juan.

  • Stayed: May 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Jack F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 14, 2013

I stayed here for 3 nights in April with my boyfriend, people told me it was a "party hostel" so I was wary as I need my 8hrs of sleep. What a great place it turned out to be. The staff is so relaxed you think they are just travelers like you. You can swim in the pool, drink a $1.25 beer, read in the hammocks, watch TV... really easy to relax and meet people. Felt really safe since to get in you have to go through a gate and enter the courtyard before finding any rooms. We stayed in a private room, $20 w/ fan, bathroom, no AC. Thin hostel mattress but we slept fine. The hostel is tidy but not spik and span so if you're super anal go spend more money and stay in a hotel. It's a hostel- lots of young people or "young at heart" people. Very friendly. Fruit available in the morning. Music plays at night in the courtyard so why not go have a beer and meet some people around the pool. Highly recommend; hard to leave. We got hugs from the staff when we left.

Room Tip: Bring your own lock when traveling; you can lock up valuables in your room (private room).
  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank MargBr2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 5, 2013

I was a little apprehensive when I first learned of the size of the dorms here, but the old saying is true "Dont judge a book by its cover"! I was only going to spend two days in San Juan Del Sur but my stay here turned into a week due to me not wanting to leave. The staff are super friendly and helpful with any and all travel informations. They where eager to help with restaurant recommendations, setting up surf shuttles, and organizing nightly outings with fellow travelers and neighboring hostels. The hostel it's self is pretty basic but has EVERYTHING you may need. It was always clean and has nice lockers with outlets in some of them. Some of the highlights are the POOL/Garden, daily breakfast, in house BAR, and upstairs "lookout" lounge area. The beds had firm mattresses, it stayed nice and cool at night in the dorm, the mornings are a bit noisey due to the hostel being near the schools and church, but perfect for early risers.... I highly suggest taking your fruit and coffee up stairs in the mornings and watch the town come alive.

Extra tip, they also give you a pass to the local gym with your daily room fee.

So for $7.00 bucks a night you get WIFI, TV/Movie Lounge, Swimming POOL, Breakfast, Gym Membership, Friendly Staff, Comfortable Bed, and the basic amenities. :)

Room Tip: Make sure to find a locker with an outlet to charge your devices.
  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Onemindspinning
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 29, 2013

Surfing Donkey is a great place to stay on a surfers budget!

It has a great pool to cool off in, the staff are awesome and the bar serves up some of the cheapest beer in town!!!!!!

The rooms are adequate, as is the kitchen.

  • Stayed: August 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank TommasC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
Travelers also viewed these San Juan del Sur hotels
0.2 mi away
Rositas Hotel
Rositas Hotel
#8 of 27 in San Juan del Sur
163 reviews
0.2 mi away
Barrio Cafe Hotel
Barrio Cafe Hotel
#5 of 27 in San Juan del Sur
229 reviews
0.4 mi away
Hostel Pachamama
Hostel Pachamama
#27 of 69 in San Juan del Sur
158 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
47.1 mi away
Hostel Esperanza
Hostel Esperanza
#16 of 69 in San Juan del Sur
146 reviews
0.1 mi away
Pelican Eyes Resort & Spa
Pelican Eyes Resort & Spa
#7 of 27 in San Juan del Sur
746 reviews
0.7 mi away
HC Liri Hotel
HC Liri Hotel
#1 of 53 in San Juan del Sur
432 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Hostel Surfing Donkey? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Hostel Surfing Donkey

Address: One block south of Central Park and church, San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua
Location: Nicaragua > Rivas Department > San Juan del Sur
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #17 of 69 Specialty Lodging in San Juan del Sur
Price Range: $20 - $43 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 11
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Surfing Donkey is the best new social hostel in San Juan del Sur, only two blocks away from the city center with a large pool, cheap bar, full kitchen, yoga, and events like group BBQs and pool parties. We balance our social activities with a strict quiet policy before 9am and after 10pm, so guests can have fun and sleep well on the new premium mattresses. ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with HostelWorld so you can book your Hostel Surfing Donkey reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Hostel Surfing Donkey Nicaragua/San Juan Del Sur

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing