Bambu Hostel




The Review

Bambu Hostel is a great option for the stop off on the long ride between Panama City and San Jose. As it boasts spacious pool, an abundance of hammocks, and a well stocked bar, you could be excused for stopping just a little longer than planned in this tropical oasis.

The Location

The hostel is a short taxi ride from the bus station; taxi drivers seem familiar with the location. The city itself is small and the few sights are all within walking distance. Free, on-street parking is available.

Rooms and Bathrooms

Rooms are a mixture of six- and ten-bed, mixed dorms, with a couple of double private rooms. The six-bed and one of the double rooms feature en-suite facilities. There is also a small camping area at the back of the hostel. The dorm rooms come equipped with wooden bunk beds, with bed covers that have been inadequately fixed. This can lead to an uncomfortable night when they become detached. The lockers, located outside the dorms, are not big enough for a conventional backpack but perfectly adequate to house your daybag containing any valuables. Only the double rooms come with air conditioning, but the owners have placed movable fans in the dorm rooms that keep the air circulating. This just about suffices in the uncomfortably humid David climate. The communal toilets are perfectly adequate and relatively clean, albeit few in number. The intermittently warm showers are small and with only two to service the dorm and camping areas, you could be in for a wait in the mornings.

Common Spaces

The common spaces are main appeal of the hostel. Although located in the suburbs of the city, the abundance of trees shading the pool, seating areas, and bar almost transport you to your own jungle paradise. There is a computer located in reception with free internet access, along with a number of suggested activities for the local area and recommendations for hostels further afield. Behind reception there is a small TV room that adjoins the similarly small kitchen. There is even a decent sized gym in a shaded outside area at the front of the hostel.


With everything you could possibly need in one place, Bambu's only threat is David itself. With little to do in the city, most travelers don't have cause to stay for long, meaning that the hostel is either quiet due to low occupancy, or your opportunities to meet others are stunted by the constant rotation of travelers. Nevertheless, Bambu is a friendly retreat that is worthy of a couple of days' relaxation before continuing on the road.
by Elgrumpygringo Staff Reviewer
Photos taken by the reviewer — Genuine photos you can trust.


(Location is approximate. You may need to pan/move to find "Bambu Hostel" at Calle Virgincita.)


Calle Virgincita, San Mateo Abajo, David City, Panama
8.427312, -82.443863 (accuracy not guaranteed)
(507) 730-2961
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80% Guest Reviews

Hostel has al the facilities you'll need -- kitchen and bed is all I need -- but it also adds a swimming pool and computer. The outdoor house on stilts is very comfortable and has mosquito nets, but it is also very shaky. When someone comes up the stairs it shakes, basically it shakes with everything. So not for the light sleeper.
Perfect escape from the city
This place is everything you need in a hostel to regroup while using David City as a hub to pass through. It is clean, comfortable, and friendly. The pool is a massive bonus, especially due to the humidity. The garden is a lovely space to pass the time and the wifi is reliable. It is within easy walking distance of shops, a massive supermarket and a bank and the restaurant opposite has to be visited (best fish soup I have ever tried and very reasonably priced). The bar is a nice area and you can bring your own beer, although the beer at the bar is so reasonably priced it would be rude not to buy some. The staff are helpful and will do whatever they can to try and help a weary traveler. Highly recommend.
Fantastic place and a friendly staff
Great gardens, pool, small poolside bar, large garden with fruit trees and blooming flowers, near shopping and transportation, 9 dollars a night to sleep in the tree house which is cool and quiet, no complaints.
Paradise in David Panama
Lush tropical gardens, sparkling pool, tons of public spaces friendly staff and NO MOSQUITOES.
The place is cool, the people running it are sh*t.
Hostal Bambu has a great pool, always clean. The garden is nice, and cabana is a good spot for protection from the hot sun. The mural is cool. The fans all work, and they actually have warm water. The place was clean, and the coffee was ready. I could do without the dog waking me up throughout the morning. My problem with the place is the people running it. I think his name is Greg -- that guy is sketchy. I've never been to a hostal where you were not allowed to bring your own beer! Have you ever heard of a non-BYOB hostel before? It's f***ing hot in David and the beers across the street are .60. I understand about trying to make money, but when he told me I couldn't have my beer in the fridge, and then he gave me friction for drinking my own beers in the cabana, I was like dude seriously? He was serious alright, and the girl helping him instigated and just made the conversation seem like an irrational bitch-fest. It was like I was supposed to feel grateful to have access to the pool and because of that I should buy his beers. I was like, dude just charge $10 instead of $8! I would have given Bambu a four, but the dude sucks. Overall, David is hot. I'd say the best place is Bambu, but prepare to ignore the assholes working there.
Best Hostel in Central America with a Pool!
bambu hostel a backpackers paradise! Incredible place! deluxe pool and garden, free avocados growing poolside and flowers and other fruits free for the taking! clean and friendly, live music and musicians jamming at night, cheap beer and good kitchen, only complaint was a dog barking around midnight which stopped soon after but that is central america, price was 7 bucks for dorm beds and 22 for privates with AC. bambu hostel was so much fun we stayed for a week! and be sure to check out the incredible mural that a guest painted there.

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