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Wrangell Hostel

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Hostelz.com's Review
Despite its otherwise strict rules, Wrangell Hostel has no daytime lockout, which must be a godsend for visitors who need somewhere to hang out on a rainy day in Wrangell. Guests are expected to do a daily chore, although this is not explicitly insisted upon, but if guests volunteer to carry out a chore such as collecting the garbage from the various hostel rooms, this is greatly appreciated.

The Location

This hostel is located in the First Presbyterian Church on Church Street, which is easy to find, because it is a continuation of Second Street leading directly from the ferry terminal, a few minutes' walk away. The post office and library are even closer, and the two grocery stores and various bars and restaurants are downtown and are similarly within walking distance. The airport is a fairly brief taxi ride away. Church Street contains three other churches of various denominations as well as the high school, but is also in a pleasant residential district. There is twenty-four-hour street parking on Church Street, and several cars can be accommodated on the church parking lot.

Rooms and Bathrooms

The two single-sex dorms and family room are on the second floor and each has around eight air mattresses on the floor. Guests can either use their own sleeping bags and towels or rent towels and bedding from the hostel. The volunteer in charge of the hostel is sympathetic to allowing couples to sleep in the same room, but unless they have reserved the family room and if several people of both sexes are staying in the hostel, they are expected to sleep in separate dorms.

The dorms are never locked, nor are lockers provided, and the front door of the hostel remains unlocked all day until 11 p.m. Guests with especially valuable items are advised to discuss with the volunteer the possibility of having them locked in the church office or in the pastor's house next door. The separate men's and women's showers are located in the basement, and in addition there are separate men's and women's restrooms on the first floor. The showers function very well, and there is adequate space to change/hang up clothes.

Common Spaces

The sitting area is a conference room on the first floor with a large table and chairs in the middle, which may be used for dining/socializing, and a well equipped, clean kitchen at one end with unlimited free coffee. There is a television, various books and leaflets about Alaska, but no book exchange. There is no computer, but the computers at the nearby public library have a good Internet connection, and visitors are allowed one hour per day of computer time during library opening hours. On fine days, guests can sit on the church steps or on the lawn. It is not a "fun party hostel," but the volunteer in charge is very friendly and helpful, and there is a friendly, sociable backpacker atmosphere. It is suitable for people of all age groups who like a quiet environment. Smoking and consumption of alcohol are prohibited on the premises.

Summary

Many people may consider sleeping on an air mattress on the floor of a crowded dorm for $20 a night poor value for money, but it is by far the cheapest deal in town and is recommended to anybody who wishes to enjoy Wrangell and the surrounding area for a minimal outlay.

Exclusive Hostelz.com Review
July 2009

Photos taken by the Hostelz.com reviewer — Genuine photos you can trust.
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Hostelz.com Guest Reviews
3   It is advertised as unlimited stay -- that is not true I have not stayed at the hostel, but as a volunteer with a local service agency, I have met with a family to assist them in getting their paperwork in order so that they could acquire housing -- their promised housing had fallen through. When they had been there 2 nights they were told they had to leave in 4 days because the hostel is not meant for long-term residence. The "nice" lady, Nancy, said it was none of her concern that they were a family of 5, parents and 3 little boys, 3, 2 and 7 mos, that would have to sleep in their car or find a place in the park.  , USA-Wrangell resident ()
5   My two night stay here was great! I stayed here for two nights in July 2012 while on my Inside Passage kayaking adventure. Nancy, the lady who runs the hostel, was very nice and accommodating and did everything possible to make my stay here enjoyable. The sleeping, bathroom, laundry, kitchen, and common areas were all nice and clean and well maintained. The building is within easy walking distance to the downtown area and all services. I came and went as I pleased over the two days that I stayed here which was very convenient. I have stayed at four hostels in Southeast Alaska and this was the best value.  , US ()
5   2 night stay at Wrangell in early June 2012 ALOHA. I would like to thank Nancy, hostel manager, for providing a great stay in Wrangell. The church service and lunch and the picnic were great experiences. ALOHA and Mahalo to the First Presbyterian Church for providing the use of their facility for a great hostel experience. I sincerely appreciate this.  , USA ()
4   The most affordabe hostel running under a causal mood This hostel is running under a causal mood, houses in the second floor of a local church with sharing the kitchen, restroom, and bathroom. If you arrive late by the mid-night ferry, you are welcome to have a replenish sleep upper floor before you enter your name. Although you have to sleep on ground with air-mat, this hostel is clean and tidy. It also houses a large and well-equipped kitchen for those who love cooking. Free coffee and tea are always ready to serve in the kitchen. If you cook your dinner, you prepare to have it serving with a bit of music as the church's pianist practicing her skills some times. Nancy, the helpful and casual minded lady runner of the hostel, will offer you her secret recipe for how to turn a lifeless noodle into a delicious big meal. That is a quit warm tips when all the grocery shops are closed on Sunday. Her dog Angel will bark you at your first arrival, but it becomes a lovely silly thing around your feet when you are watching the TV the next night. I will recommend this hostel to you if you are looking for a casual and affordable hostel in Wrangell.  , Hong Kong ()
1   Not very nice. We stayed at this hostel in August, 2008. It's nice to be able to leave luggage when arriving early, especially on a rainy day. That's the best I can say about this facility. Rooms have stained, dirty, blow up mattresses. Even inexpensive sheets to cover the stains would be nice. The sleeping rooms are on second floor, toilets on first floor, and showers in basement. Uncomfortable for some to wander around as needed in middle of night. When church activities are going on it becomes awkward. There should be more separation between church facilities and what is provided for paying hostel guests. Anyone allergic to dogs should not stay here. Overall rather disappointing and not a good representation of or for Wrangell.  , USA ()
3  We stayed at this hostel in July of 2004. The woman who runs it is casual, so there is no lock out in the day or night, and it's a pretty safe town. The hostel is very centrally located. The only bummer is that you're sleeping on air mattresses on the floor, sometimes with 4 people in a very small Sunday school room. Otherwise, it was cool. There is a dog there.  ()

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