The Best Hostels in Shanghai: Our 5 Favorites

This post may contain affiliate links (at no extra cost to you). Please read our disclosure for more information.

The post may contain affiliate links (at no extra cost to you). Please read our disclosure for more information.

Traveling in China is incredible and the Shanghai is no exception.  As one of the biggest cities in the world, Shanghai might embody the phrase “something for everyone” more than any other city we’ve been to – a claim that extends beyond the normal must-sees, must-eats, and must-dos into the must-stays.

The following places on this list are some of the best hostels in Shanghai: a title that is always up for grabs due to the sheer number of hostels and neverending competition between them.

No matter if you’re looking to save a few RMB’s or simply mingle with other travelers comfortably, we’ve got the best choice for you.

In a hurry?  Here are our top 3:

The Phoenix

You’ll get a discount on your room at the Phoenix if you bring books to donate to their travelers’ library. They also offer a variety of amenities including a culture lounge where you can study everything from Mandarin Chinese to brush painting and more and an on-site restaurant. There are plenty of other food options as well since South Yunnan Road, where the hostel is located, is known for its incredible restaurants. You’ll sleep in comfort at the Phoenix as well whether you choose a dormitory room, a double or a single since they all come with blackout curtains, air conditioning and double-glazed windows.

What We Like

  • The rooftop bar is good for meeting other travelers.

What We Don’t Like

  • No common area and some complained that the bar was expensive, so you may want to look elsewhere if you’re on a tight budget and want to meet fellow travelers.

Shanghai Blue Mountain

Just a few minutes’ walk from famed East Nanjing Road and the Bund, Shanghai Blue Mountain offers dorm rooms along with singles, doubles and triples and a comfortable rooftop terrace for hanging out. There’s a bar along with games, books and movies, and the hostel has wifi and air-conditioning throughout. Breakfast is available.

What We Like

  • Many people loved the terrace and other common areas

What We Don’t Like

  • Some people complained about bad smells in the rooms


Since Rock&Wood is easy to get to from both Hongqiao International Airport (SHA) and Pudong International Airport (PVG), it’s a great choice as your first place to stay after you touch down in Shanghai. This urban hostel is bright and modern, and it has a definite youth-ey vibe. From ample vending machines to pool tables, Rock&Wood provides everything that a solo traveler or a group could need to socialize and mingle after a long plane trip, and this hostel’s verdant garden can serve as a soothing oasis away from Shanghai’s hustle and bustle. Since Rock&Wood has a bar and a music lounge, it’s about as close to a party hostel as you’ll get in Shanghai, which is known for its low-key and Old World vibe.

What We Like

  • Welcoming and bright atmosphere
  • Easy to get to with public transportation
  • Air conditioning and Wi-Fi

What We Don’t Like

  • Some guests complain about cleanliness issues
  • Occasionally rushed and brusque staff

Mingtown Etour

Mingtown Etour might be the perfect place to stay with a group; it’s pretty unassuming, and it doesn’t stand out among the dozens of hostels that dot Central Shanghai’s city streets. This hostel’s quaint courtyard and quiet atmosphere might be just what you need to unwind with your friends and plan your next sightseeing expedition, and Mingtown Etour’s full-service restaurant and bar is a definite plus. Whether you want to enjoy an American breakfast before you head out for the day or sip a bottled European beer before bed, this hostel has what it takes to make you feel right at home. Best of all, Mingtown Etour is close to all of the sights of Central Shanghai, and popular attractions like the Shanghai People’s Square are within walking distance of this hostel.

What We Like

  • Close to the sights of Central Shanghai
  • Clean and quiet ambiance
  • Restaurant and bar on-site

What We Don’t Like

  • Most staff members don’t know English
  • Poor Wi-Fi signal
  • Some guests complain about the food


WeFlow looks like something out of a science fiction movie. This appearance is only furthered by the fact that this hostel looks like it was dropped into the inner ring of Shanghai by a spaceship; WeFlow’s bright white, rounded facade starkly contrasts with the cobbled streets and pastel-colored apartment buildings that surround it. Once you set foot inside WeFlow, you’ll find yourself surrounded by seemingly endless white curves and columns, and long, modern benches in this hostel’s lobby provide ideal places to socialize with other guests. The rooms in WeFlow are equipped with tiny bunks that are reminiscent of capsule hotels, and light-brown pine furniture simply reinforces the impression that you’ve stumbled onto the set of an IKEA commercial. While WeFlow isn’t necessarily luxurious, it’s sparkling clean, and it’s the perfect place to stop off for a night while you’re enjoying a solo trip through the Shanghai area.

What We Like

  • Ultra-modern decor with plenty of privacy
  • High-tech amenities

What We Don’t Like

  • Significantly distant from the nearest metro station