SunHouse Hostel, Karakol, Kyrgyzstan – the perfect base to explore the mountains
SunHouse Hostel, Karakol
The quality of a hostel can be measured in how many people come back to stay a second time, and SunHouse Hostel in Karakol is full of come-again travellers. It makes a great base for attempting the hikes around Karakol (especially the lovely hike up to Altyn Arashan) as well as Issky-kul lake and is the most relaxed western-style backpacking haunt anywhere in town.
What makes it great
The staff are young, friendly, English-speaking and infinitely knowledgeable about the local hikes, which is a extremely important thing given that most people come here to hike.
The dormitory rooms are spacious and light and the common room, and accompanying bean bags, is a great place to rest weary legs after a long hike.
The kitchen is well-stocked with utensils and there are ample facilities to cook up a tasty meal.
The crowd is mixed and people are encouraged to communicate by the ever willing staff.
It is extremely clean (guests are asked to remove their shoes before entering) and there is a spacious garden to sit out when the weather is good. Throw in a couple of friendly dogs and you know you are in safe hands.
All rooms are dormitory bunk beds and cost a very reasonable $15 per person, per night. There is a washing machine and lots of space to hang things outside (very important if you go for a hike and get soaked like we did). The showers are space age and hot water is guaranteed 24/7. Breakfast is included in the price which is a great benefit.
Another huge advantage is the staff’s willingness to let you leave stuff at the hostel when you go for a hike. In the winter, the hostel is extremely popular with the ski crowd and offers ski hire at reasonable rates. There is also the opportunity to hire bikes in the summer months.
WiFi is also free, although limited to the common room, and the reception is 24hr, so if you do find yourself out late, you know that you can always reach your bed.
How to get to the hostel
The hostel is located a little out of the centre of Karakol town (about 1.5km) but is walkable. If you don’t fancy that, the marshrutka #14 runs from very close to the hostel down to the centre, but be warned that it stops running a little after dark.
Map of SunHouse hostel and transport links
Name: SunHouse Hostel
Address: Novostroyka Kyocho 3, 722200 Karakol, Kyrgyzstan
Phone: +996 772 254 004
Price: Dorm Bed – $15
Facebook: SunHouse Hostel Karakol
Photos: courtesy of SunHouse Hostel