One thing I love about Taiwan is that when it comes to accommodation, it’s easy to get decent budget hotel rooms or great hostels for the indie backpackers like me who want to enjoy that communal spirit. Now I appreciate good design and I’m past the age of toughing it out in cheapo hostels, so I thought I’d put together a list of my favourite luxury hostels in Taiwan – posher accommodation options that may not be dirt-cheap but are still relatively inexpensive and also feature great design and ambience.
My rec list of luxury hostels in Taiwan:
- Taipei: Taipei Star Hostel Main Station
- Yilan: Yilan Inspiration Hostel
- Taichung: MINI Hotels Taichung Train Station
- Tainan: Caoji Book Inn
- Other recommendations
I still remember my first hostel stay in Taiwan during my University days. Definitely cheap but it was a pretty squeezy stay in a place that looked liked someone’s old apartment, complete with a porta-toilet shower on the balcony and super hard beds. These places I’m recommending are definitely nicer!
Star Hostel Taipei Main Station
For those who like the Muji aesthetic and want a hostel with a super convenient location.
Address: 4th Floor, No. 50, Huayin Street, Datong District, Taipei 台北市大同區華陰街50號4樓 [google maps]
Taipei Star Hostel has an excellent location right next to Taipei Main Station, which makes it very convenient for those coming off the Airport MRT, as well as getting to the main bus, train and MRT stations. Q Square Mall and the underground Taipei City Mall are just 5 minutes away, so plenty of food and shopping options.
- Dormitories: 6-8pax/room at NTD 580-670 (S$25-30) per night
- Private rooms: 1-5pax/room at NTD 1,400-3,100 (S$67-136) per night
- Breakfast included
Check out Star Hostel Taipei Main Station on booking.com [affiliate link]
I stayed in a Single private for 1,450 NTD (S$67) per night that had an ensuite shower, toilet, air-conditioning and a TV mounted on the wall. I even had my own hairdryer and a free towel. The single room was very minimalist and not very large, but considering I was out most of the day, it was comfortable enough for me to rest in at night.
The dorm rooms beds actually look pretty comfortable and roomy from the pix, and at half the private room rate, they are an option I might consider on future trips back to Taipei.
The hostel actually occupies the 4th and 5th floors of the building it is in, and it is a lot bigger on the inside then it looks from the outside. You remove your shoes at the main entrance and use a keycard to access the hostel living area, and also to access your individual room.
The overall design is lots of clean white walls and wooden furnishings. The lounge area is the centrepiece of the hostel and is a stunning welcome with high ceilings and natural light. There are lots of cosy nooks to sit around in, and a kitchen as well. They had a craft beer pop up when I was there and I made some new friends over craft beer.
Breakfast in the morning is a rotating menu that is prepared and plated by the hostel staff, with freshly cooked food and fresh fruits, it’s worth waking up for.
Yilan Inspiration Hostel 霊感青年旅舎
For those who like hostels with character and don’t mind that it’s not very centrally located.
No. 29, Luozhuang North Street, Luodong Township, Yilan 265宜蘭縣羅東鎮羅莊北街29號 [Google Maps]
Yilan Inspiration Hostel is a 15-minute walk from the Luodong train and bus station and located in a residential area along a canal, though if you ride a scooter it’s just 5 minutes away. It’s a 20-minute walk to Luodong Night Market, but the owner does have bicycles that you can rent for free to save you the stroll.
- Dormitories only: 4-10pax/room at NTD 500-600 (S$22-26) per night
- Buffet breakfast included
Check out Yilan Inspiration Hostel on booking.com [affiliate link]
The dorm rooms each have their own concept – I picked the 6-bed dorm room with the tents because it looked the cutest, but just know that the mattress you sleep on inside the tent doesn’t have springs – not the most comfortable if you have a bad back.
I got to peek into the 4-bed dorm which has little wooden houses for each bed like mini log cabins. Pix of the 10-bed dorm with sturdy built-in beds stacked up in 3 layers make me think of a cat’s playground.
The bathrooms are shared and located outside of the rooms, with separate toilet and shower cubicles.
Overall the hostel has a quirky and homey feeling. The welcome area has a cheery counter and there is a nice wooden communal area right in the front room. They have a little retail area selling stuff made by local Taiwanese designers. The rooms are located on the 2nd and 3rd levels up a rather narrow staircase.
MINI Hotels Taichung Train Station
For those who like a great central location, fun quirky design and don’t mind a very snug space
MINI Hotels isn’t actually a hostel, but its private room prices are on par with some of the luxury hostel private room prices, which is why I included it in this list.
No. 69 Dayong Street, East District, Taichung City 401台中市東區大勇街69號 [Google Maps]
MINI Hotels Taichung Train Station is located 5-min walk from the Taichung Train Station, making it very convenient to get to and around Taichung and Taiwan. Taichung City’s attractions are more spread out, but you are within walking distance of the popular Miyahara Dessert place and the Painted Animation Lane.
- Private rooms only: 1-6 pax/room at NTD 1,230-4,280 (S$55-188) – price fluctuates depending on season/date
Check out MINI Hotels Taichung Train Station on booking.com [affiliate link]
I had a single loft room which as advertised, was very snug but it was surprisingly comfortable. A staircase by the entrance leads up to the loft bed which could fit 2 people. There are a slim table and chairs, fridge, luggage rack and TV, as well as your own attached bathroom. It’s honestly quite surprising how much they could fit into a small space.
The hotel design leans towards Instagrammable, with popular props like a fake telephone booth and even a car in the lobby. Each level has its own colourful mural design splashed across the corridor walls.
Breakfast takes place in the dining area just above the lobby area. If you want some fresh air, there is a rooftop area where you can look at downtown Taichung City from above.
艸祭 Caoji Book Inn
For the book lover and those who love a bit of nostalgia.
No. 71 Nanmen Road, Central West District, Tainan City 台南市中西區南門路71號 [Google Maps]
艸祭 Caoji Book Inn is very close to the Confucius Temple Shopping Street and the Koxinga Museum. It’s about 20 minutes walk or a short bus ride from the Tainan train station. It’s right next door to the famous Narrow Door Cafe.
- Smaller 2-6pax/room female-only and 4pax/room mixed dormitories at NTD 1,080-2,560 (S$47-112) per night
- Larger 10+pax dormitories at 1,080-1,280 NTD (S$48-57)
Check out Caoji Book Inn on booking.com [affiliate link]
The star feature in this hostel are the beds in the Mixed Dorms, little capsule beds built between and behind existing bookshelves. These beds cover 2 levels and aren’t segregated by separate rooms and doors – you just have a curtain for some privacy and earplugs to block out sound, and a large locker under your bed to put your things in. Each area of the mixed dorm has at least 10 beds in it.
There is a separate wing with its own entrance strictly for female guests that costs a little more – I stayed in that female dormitory which had at least 20 capsule beds in it, also with its own curtain and capsule and lots of books all around. The room wasn’t full that day so it felt pretty spacious and quiet.
They have smaller 2-6pax female only dorms as well for those who prefer more privacy.
The hostel is complete hipster heaven filled with random oddities and antiques in every corner. The ground floor and entrance is a quaint bookshop cum cafe with a nice quiet ambience perfect for reading with a cuppa. The back area has a reading room and a basement of sorts which doubles up as a gallery for mini exhibitions.
In the secured living areas, there is a lounge and breakfast space on the top level (Level 4 I think) with lots of table and chairs, and an outdoor patio as well.
Other Taiwan Accommodation Recs
I’ve stayed in plenty of hostels while exploring Taiwan, and while most of them were good stays, those featured in the list above really stood out for me. While my other stays might not warrant a detailed feature, I’ve compiled a list of budget hotels and cheaper accommodation that I would still recommend to my friends visiting Taiwan. [affiliate links]
- Datong – Taipei City Home: Located near the Star Hostel, it has a homey feel and a great chatty host, great for those who like a more personal touch
- Datong – Mudan House: Close to Dihua Street and the local favourite Yansan Night Market. Not the most central of MRT lines but still near enough the station and easy to get around.
- Da’an – First Hostel: Close to Shida Night Market, it’s not the most central but the hostel has a nice Scandinavian aesthetic and it offers FREE LAUNDRY.
- Hengchun – Rainbow Wave: I made a lot of friends in this hostel which offers surfing lessons. The owner and his partner were really friendly and lovely people, and the breakfast is hand-prepped every morning at the counter and of excellent quality.
- Lyudao / Green Island – Sanasai Inn: The location is great because it’s really close to the port. I like that you can rent e-scooters directly from them as well. Read more about exploring Lyudao here
- Kinmen – Beishan Old Western Style Hostel: It’s not the most centrally located in the northern Beimen district and there’s no food or shops around it, but it is located in a historical building and despite its traditional exterior, has really well designed and comfortable facilities and a friendly owner. Read more about exploring Kinmen here
Are you a luxury hostel lover? Tell me about your own recs for places to stay in Taiwan.