HI Hostels Blog

HI hostels are taking part in Earth Hour, are you?

On 29 March at 8.30pm, millions of people around the world will be celebrating Earth Hour, a global movement that calls on the world to raise awareness about climate change by switching off light and all electricity for an hour. Many HI hostels from all corners of the world are taking part in this moment by staying in cosy darkness for an hour and by introducing a variety of sustainable activities.

Join the Mexican wave of worldwide blackout and challenge your friends and family to go beyond the hour. Think of actions that could reduce your environmental footprint as together we can make a change and create a brighter future for our planet.

Here are just a few of the things that are happening around the world in support of Earth Hour 2014:


Everything gets a little spookier in the dark, especially if you’re spending the night in former jail, HI-Ottawa Jail hostel. Along with HI-Niagara Falls and HI-Montréal, the hostel will be lit with candles and lanterns and the electricity will be reduced to a minimum. HI-Mont-Tremblant hostel will do a board game night at the hostel bar which will also be all lit up with candles.

HI Ottawa Jail Hostel Entrance


Come and enjoy a quiet, pleasant candlelight moment in Danhostel Ribe, Denmark, the only environmentally certified accommodation in the Wadden Sea National Park. Free homemade cookies, Wadden Sea tea and organic coffee will be served at the hostel. For those wanting to experience a truly magical night, join the Wadden Sea Centre’s guided ‘Black Sun – Starling magic’ tour at sunset and see the migration of starlings and their fantastic air dances before they go to sleep in the reeds.

Black sun and birds Danhostel Ribe


Many of our French hostels are taking part in Earth Hour as well – Boulogne-sur-Mer hostel is going to have a shared late dinner made from local, organic produce around the candlelit table. Paris Yves Robert hostel will hold a light painting workshop in the garden and afterwards there will be a discussion over drinks at the bar and an exhibition of the created paintings.


Guests can get together and socialise in Aventura Boutique hostel’s kitchen which will be lit up by candlelight. They’re also planning to go beyond the hour and have made a resolution for this year to install sensors in the toilets and bathrooms to avoid lights being left on unnecessarily.

Two hostel guests sitting on sofa Aventura Boutique Hostel


HI hostels throughout Iceland will be taking part, so be prepared for lights to be off between 8.30 and 9.30pm. There will be a programme for guests to join in, such as candle workshops, reading ghost stories, playing cards and performing unplugged music by candlelight. Enjoy a nice moment and chat to your fellow guests in the common area of the hostel – just be sure to walk carefully in the dark!


Chameleon Backpackers Hostel is going to have a ‘Happy Earth Hour’ with specials on drinks and some cocktails. Money raised from happy hour sales will be donated to a big charity project which aims to replace a bathroom and install a solar geyser at the Dolam Children’s Home. So come and have a drink and help the hostel raise £2,800.

People relaxing at the pool at Chameleon Backpackers hostel


Come and play sustainable games in Bergen Montana hostel – the admission fee for locals is to bring a piece of wood to keep the open fireplace burning when the electricity is turned off.

Bergen Montana Hostel outside terrace

Are you taking part in Earth Hour? Will you go beyond the hour? Share it with us in the comments box below and inspire others to do the same.

Here at HI head office, we’ve made our pledges in support of Earth Hour as well. Find out more here.

Mikael Pledge

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