True travel moments at Akureyri Backpackers Hostel

I have a confession to make: I always feel like I’m cheating on my old friends at HI hostels when I venture out of their little chain and try something new. Like Akureyri Backpackers that welcomed us during our road trip back in May. If any of my HI friends are reading this, please close your eyes and listen to a pretty song right about now because I’m not sure you are going to like this.

Akureyri Backpackers Hostel

The things I liked

In short, I loved Akureyri Backpackers. It had a cool funky vibe, nice staff, decent burgers and the best breakfast coffee of the whole trip. The hostel is located in the heart of Akureyri, next to the famous Bláa Kannan café, in a newly renovated house in what us Icelanders call “Göngugatan” (The pedestrian street). I love how it’s decorated and everything was very clean and well maintained.

We got a double room on the top floor so I can’t really comment on what their dorm rooms look like but our room was nice and bright and had everything you can ask for from a hostel room. The fact that there is no elevator may have played a bigger role in my decision making process than it should have, decisions whether or not I should make the trip up and down the stair that is, so I only brought the most necessary stuff with me from the car and showered with all my luggage before heading to the room to save on energy. The showers are in the basement by the way. It was not a big deal but lets just say I made sure I really had everything when I left the room.

Lovely Akureyri

We were there for the Eurovision semi-final and there were some (very few and almost only Icelandic) people gathered in the reception/bar area for this musical monstrosity that we obviously didn’t want to miss. Iceland’s entry this year was a guy from the neighboring town Dalvík and one of his village people happened to be there and screamed and applauded both when he performed and when he made it out of the semi-final. As this was a Thursday, also known as mini-Friday in Reykjavík, the bar area became more busy the later it got and at some point one of the staff members rigged up a violin and started playing.

And then they all started playing

What followed was one of my best memories of this trip and although I’ve looked back at this video and not quite understood why Helga and I liked this SO much it still doesn’t take away what I felt  when it happened. This is life, I thought to myself, the reason why I travel. Moments like these.

The back story is that the bar had closed and these guys, who had never played together before and some of them apparently never met, started playing this song using only the violin and the objects around them. The rapper was making up the lyrics on the spot and it was just awesome.

It was not so much the music itself but the fact that it happened out of nowhere, impromptu jam session in a hostel in Iceland, and it was ours alone. And now yours too, I guess.

Things I didn’t like

There were things I didn’t like about this hostel:

  • The fact I ripped my favorite tights on one of the wooden benches in the reception area. Watch out if you are skirt-girl like myself. 
  • Walking up the stairs to the fourth floor after drinking a few beers. I was just so tired. And kind of sick. 
  • That’s it.

The details


Prices at Akureyri Backpackers start at around 2940 per person in the off-season in dorm rooms and the double room in May would have gone for around 3800 ISK per person. Prices obviously go up during high season. You can see prices for individual dates on the Rates and Reservations section of their website.

The hostel is located in Hafnarstræti, the pedestrian main street in the middle of the town, and there was plenty of parking close by. You can buy breakfast as an add on and the bar serves food all day. The burger I had was OK and nothing special but it was pretty cheap too so I didn’t mind. I follow them on Facebook and their daily menu update always makes my mouth water so I’m willing to give them another chance.

All in all a highly recommendable hostel.
[google-map-v3 width=”640″ height=”350″ zoom=”12″ maptype=”roadmap” mapalign=”center” directionhint=”false” language=”default” poweredby=”false” maptypecontrol=”true” pancontrol=”true” zoomcontrol=”true” scalecontrol=”true” streetviewcontrol=”true” scrollwheelcontrol=”false” draggable=”true” tiltfourtyfive=”false” addmarkermashupbubble=”false” addmarkermashupbubble=”false” addmarkerlist=”65.68232,-18.089689{}bed_breakfast1-2.png{}Stay at Akureyri Backpackers” bubbleautopan=”true” showbike=”false” showtraffic=”false” showpanoramio=”false”]

Spread the word


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.