Bizarre & British: alternative places to stay in the UK
British hostelling isn’t all about country houses (gorgeous as they are) and purpose-built traditional hostels – YHA accommodation can include everything from recycled shipping containers to 800 year old castles! Here is our top pick of weird and wonderful places to stay in England and Wales, each with their own unique personality and quirky surprises. Don’t worry; you’ll still get the authentic hostel experience and all the facilities you’ve come to expect from YHA. Book a stay and experience Britain at its exciting and eccentric best!
YHA Boggle Hole
Ahoy there! A glorious fave for families and kids at heart, YHA Boggle Hole sits in a smuggler’s cove and is everything a dream seaside holiday is made of. From the fun pirate-themed décor (a rum in The Brigg dining room anyone?) to the treasure trails and dressing-up boxes, buccaneers of all ages find it easy to lose themselves here. Spend the day building sandcastles or fossil hunting on the beach on your doorstep, or relaxing in the old mill building’s Quarterdeck Cafe. The renovated hostel is looking more shipshape than ever, incorporating a new Crow’s Nest annexe – an environmentally friendly timber building with stunning sea views.
YHA Eden Project
With the iconic Eden Project biomes just minutes away, this on-site Snoozebox hostel is perfectly in tune with its sustainable and eco-friendly surroundings. Its modern en-suite bedrooms are made from recycled shipping containers, each with their own TV and facilities – the little village of Snoozeboxes is as unique as the Eden Project itself! Explore the indoor rainforest of the famous Cornwall attraction then relax in the bohemian heated marquee lounge. With Eden Sessions concerts all this summer, how about booking a festival-inspired bell tent? These luxurious tepee-like tents are perfect for glamping at the heart of nature.
YHA St Briavels
Want a taste of real British history? Expect a welcome fit for a King or Queen at YHA St Briavels – an 800 year old castle! The building is remarkably well preserved, with many fascinating historical features intact from its rich heritage (ask for a tour of the hostel and prepare to be amazed). You can sleep in an old prison, complete with 16th century graffiti from convicts, or uncover the spooky secret dungeon under the Oubliette room. Or join guests for a medieval feast in the candlelit banqueting hall and fall in love with the atmosphere of the past. And did we mention it’s supposedly one of the most haunted buildings in England?
YHA Snowdon Pen-Y-Pass
If getting away from it all is your number one requirement, you can’t get much more remote and rural than YHA Snowdon Pen-Y-Pass. An idyllic, award-winning eco-friendly lodge nestled in the foothills of mount Snowdon, spend a night at the base camp which has been the haunt of climbers through the centuries, before making your ascent up the nearby waymarked trails. A unique rural gem, this hostel is 1000 ft. above sea level and won the HI Sustainability Fund in 2013, seeing a huge and impressive renovation with the unspoiled local environment at the forefront of its conscience.