HI - San Francisco, Fisherman's Wharf Hostel




The Hostelz.com Review

When you wake up in the morning at HI - San Francisco, Fisherman's Wharf Hostel, you can walk out to the backyard and see a stunning view of Alcatraz. This is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of what this hostel has to offer. For being in a city that attracts visitors from all over the world, this hostel has some unique features!

The Location

This hostel is very easy to get to -- it is located in Fort Mason, a former military base, and that sense of security still exists today. While public transportation doesn't stop inside the fort, it is only a short walk from the main streets. For cyclists, the hostel offers a bike rack right outside the door, as well as secure bicycle storage. Something that sets this hostel apart from the other hostels in San Francisco is that they offer free parking! The parking area is a short distance away, still within the fort. The staff warns that cars have been broken into before, but they do keep a file of all the vehicles and recommend that you keep your belongings inside the hostel. If you're driving into the city, the cost of parking anywhere else is almost as much as the cost of a night at this hostel, so you certainly get your money's worth.

Rooms and Bathrooms

There is a wide range of types of rooms, from private rooms to twenty-four-bed dorms! In between those two extremes, there are options for smaller dorm rooms and coed or gender-specific choices. The amenities you end up receiving for your room and bathroom are not uniform at all, and really depend on what room you end up getting assigned. For example, most dorm rooms have large lockers under the beds and public-style bathrooms. However, those assigned to the annex building will only get lockers for small items in their living room, but have private bathrooms. All of the bathrooms do seem to have adequate changing space as well as hooks for hanging clothes and shelves for toiletries.

Common Spaces

San Francisco, Fisherman's Wharf Hostel offers a lobby, a common room, a large kitchen, an outdoor seating area, a movie room, and a restaurant. If you come early, leave late, or just need a space for extra baggage, you can use their secure luggage storage. Quality Wi-Fi is available throughout the hostel. In addition, there are events going on almost every day, from meals to city tours. While most San Francisco hostels are downtown, this one is located within the national park site that lines the bay, so it's ideal for outdoor enthusiasts.

The buildings of Fort Mason are some of the oldest buildings in San Francisco. As such, measures are kept to preserve the hostel's historical integrity, but that can sometimes make the hostel feel slightly dilapidated or missing things. If you talk to the front desk, they will try to offer alternatives. One common problem guests experience is that there are almost no outlets to charge electronics. The staff has responded to this by lending out portable charging packs.


There are a lot of hostels and other accommodations in San Francisco. HI - San Francisco, Fisherman's Wharf Hostel stands out from the rest, with plenty of value for your money and a prime location with great views of the Bay's famous icons!
by Jessica Lippe
Hostelz.com Staff Reviewer
Photos taken by the Hostelz.com reviewer — Genuine photos you can trust.
Movie room
20-bed dorm


(Location is approximate. You may need to pan/move to find "HI - San Francisco, Fisherman's Wharf Hostel" at Building 240.)


Building 240, Marina District, San Francisco, California, USA
37.807038, -122.428315 (accuracy not guaranteed)
+1 (415) 771-7277
+1 (415) 771-1468
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How is HI - San Francisco, Fisherman's Wharf Hostel rated on other websites?

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Hostelz.com Guest Reviews

Like a home
Great place!
Age 33, Italian
Nice location close by Fishermen's wharf
Excellent location with free parking. I enjoyed my staying there because the hostel has a exceptional ocean view and also you get to see Golden Gate Bridge from its backyard. Although the shower rooms are not kept as clean as I expected it would be, with its affordable price, the hostel is fair enough to stay for a night or two during travel.
Worst customer service ever received
A group of friends an I arrived at the hostel around 8pm to check in. We were all joking around and smiling until the guy behind the reception completely killed our mood. I've never, in ten years and over a hundred hostels stayed in, encountered somebody so rude. We asked where was good to go in the city, he mentioned an area and we said we might drive. His reply was 'good luck finding parking in the city'. I said 'I'm sure we'll find something, no worries', to which the other girl on reception replied extremely sarcastically 'oh well done, a bit of optimism ... I like it. You should probably be a little bit realistic'. How lovely. After laughing a little more, the guy behind reception said 'if you carry on laughing I won't check you in and you can leave'. Wow. So, after paying $40 for an unclean hostel (the showers were disgusting) with rude staff we promptly headed out. Breakfast in the morning consisted of a cheap microwave waffle as the 'breakfast included' option and we then had to take our own sheets off and separate them into baskets before checking out. I wasn't very impressed. $40 is twice as expensive than the motel we stayed at the night before and we didn't have our mood killed by a rude boy who kept being distracted by 'hot girls' as we were trying to pass over our money. Would never recommend.
Location good, cheap, clean
The restroom is spacious, I love that. The location is good, I can see beautiful view from the window. Cheap price. Breakfast is okay because of the limitation, but it is enough for me.
(Hong Kong)
Ok but too many rules
Cons: So many rules. 30+ people in a dorm room. That is too many people. Little girls and old dudes all together. This is not specifically geared towards young travelers (which is what I was looking for) but tends to attract lots of quiet slightly weird older people who like to go to sleep at 9pm. Not that there's anything wrong with that. Anyways, the kitchen closes at 1130. If you want to eat the food that you bought you are out of luck. They cut my lock because it was dark and I put my bag in the wrong underbed storage. My underbed storage was free for the other person to use, but remained unused. Then they made me buy a new lock. The guy insisted on following me into the luggage storage room and waiting there until I finished. I took an extra long time out of spite. But he stayed there the whole time. They were prickly. They insist that you bring your receipt with you when you return late at night and there are big problems if you forget it. It is in the middle of nowhere! And if you go "into the city" you face an unbelievably long trek home. I felt that i was being stifled at every turn by small minded people who needed to follow their long list of rules just so they could cling to them as a life raft. And I'm not some whacked out hippy who just needs to be free. That being said, Pros are the views of the bay are amazing. (out the back and down the hill.) it's nice and quiet. there are no neighbours and it is completely free of city noise. it's in nature and sh*t. Close to the park. I did meet a cute girlie who was very fun to smooch.
Beautiful location though it is difficult to get to the rest of the city. Since it is so big, it doesn't have that hostel feel. No one talks to each other. I wouldn't recommend it to any of my traveler friends, but I suppose some people are into that kind of thing.
(Colorado, USA)
Excellent area, clean, comfortable, helpful staff
I only stayed at this hostel for 1 night but I had a great time. Fisherman's Wharf hostel had a great view of the Golden Gate bridge and Alcatraz, was relaxing and was only a short bus trip to the city centre. The rooms were clean and had a locker under the bed where you could store bags (bring your own lock). The bathrooms always felt like they had been freshly cleaned. There is a nice complimentary breakfast. The hostel also offers tours of the city which I didn't do but they looked good. I would recommend all HI hostels to anybody.
I stayed here in 2006, for a full week. It was my first time in a hostel and I didn't know what to expect. The location was excellent and the vibe was great. When I arrived it was late but there was staff on hand and they were friendly and helpful. Watch out for the family of skunks that lived underneath it. The rooms were standard hostel fare, it was clearly a shorter stay hostel so there were people coming and going all week which was fine. I did find that the people in this hostel were prone to turning on the lights at all hours of the night. The restaurant was really good, healthy food at a really reasonable price. There was internet and a big kitchen (that I didn't use). I would totally stay here again.

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