10 top budget hostels in the UK and Ireland
Away in a manger - Winter walks on the doorstep, wood-burning stoves and all for under £20. Kevin Rushby on the affordable way to enjoy the great outdoors
There are around 340 independent hostels around Britain offering an enormous variety of accommodation: some provide private en suite rooms and well-equipped kitchens, others have only a barn loft without electricity. What unites them is a desire to provide affordable accommodation with shared communal facilities to people who love outdoor activities. And now, conveniently, they have been compiled in a book, called the Independent Hostel Guide, published by Backpacker Press. The following list gives a flavour of what's available.
5. Deepdale Backpackers, Norfolk
Deepdale, on the north Norfolk coast, is a big operation in every sense. At the heart of it is a smart well-equipped hostel with both private rooms and shared dormitories. On top of that, however, there are some top-notch tipis, camper-vans, nearby shops, barbeque area and lots more. The hostel has a strong green policy with solar power, compost toilets and rainwater harvesting. There are many miles of coastal path, sandy beaches and small harbours to explore and the place is popular with walkers doing the 47-mile North Norfolk Coastal route.
• Deepdale Farm, Burnham Deepdale, deepdalebackpackers.co.uk, +44 (0)1485 210256. From £9.50 per person per night. Rooms: sleeps up to 50 in various rooms
The Guardian - Journalist: Kevin Rushby