Nómadas Youth Hostel (Calle 62 at Calle 51, tel. 999/924-5223, www.nomadastravel.com , US$6 pp camping, US$7–8 dorm, US$17.50 d with shared bath, US$22 d with private bath) is an excellent hostel six blocks north of the plaza. Dorms are clean and comfortable, especially the spacious women-only room. All bunks have an individual light, fan, and locker, and the bathrooms are spotless. Private rooms are medium-size and have fans—no air-conditioning. Bread, fruit, and coffee are available every morning, and guests can use the fully equipped kitchen (also very clean) at any time. The hostel offers free salsa classes and organizes trips to nearby sights for less than you’ll find elsewhere. All in all, a great place for backpackers.
Set in a renovated colonial mansion, Hobo Hostel (Calle 60 between Calles 47 and 49, tel. 999/928-0880, US$5.60 dorm) offers mixed and single-sex dorms in spacious rooms, some with gorgeous tile floors. Bunk beds have thick mattresses and each guest gets sheets, a pillow, and a large metal locker to store his or her stuff. The bathrooms are gleaming and huge with rows of hot-water showers and plenty of toilets—no waiting in line here. There’s no kitchen, unfortunately, but guests can store perishables in a communal fridge.
Hotel Mucuy (Calle 57 between Calles 56 and 58, tel. 999/928-5193, US$18.50 s with fan, US$20.50 d with fan, US$23 s with a/c, US$25 d with a/c) is one of the best deals in town. A motel-like building behind a colonial facade, rooms open onto a sunny courtyard with a tile pool that is fed by a splashing cascade. The units are small but spotless with hot-water bathrooms; most have twin beds with flower bedspreads and slated windows. The owner, Doña Ofelia, is a true delight and has earned many repeat guests since the hotel opened in 1974.