Kinlay House Hostel Cork, Cork

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Kinlay House Hostel Cork Reviews

Kinlay House Cork is a large, friendly hostel that offers beds for a reasonable price. It has great facilities, comfy beds, and the location is convenient to the city.

The Location

Kinlay House is located across the river from the city centre and is only about a ten-minute walk to the main shopping streets. It is up a hill, and down a cute but narrow alleyway. Although it is not the easiest area to find a park, those driving who are lucky enough may be fortunate to find a park right outside the hostel. Those who cannot will need to park a bit further up the street and pay for a parking coupon (the rate is per hour). For those who aren't driving, Kinlay House is a short, ten-minute walk from the central bus station and only twenty minutes from the train station.

Rooms and Bathrooms

Kinlay House offers guests a variety of room sizes, including single and private rooms to dorms that sleep between six and sixteen people. The rooms at Kinlay House are clean and spacious, and all of the dorm rooms come with their own en suite bathroom. The mattresses are adequately comfortable, though may be too firm for some, and each bed has access to a power point.

The en suite bathrooms are kept nice and clean. The showers are quite good, especially if you can work out how to get past the child-lock. Unlike most hostel showers in Ireland, the showers here are fortunately not on timers and the temperature can be adjusted.

Common Spaces

Kinlay House has excellent common areas. The fully equipped kitchen is an adequate size and also has space for longer-term residents to store their food. The layout is a bit frustrating but ok to use as long as there aren't too many cooks in the kitchen. The dining hall is large and, at a guess, would comfortably fit forty-plus people. This is also where the free continental breakfast of bread and spreads is served in the morning.

Kinlay House also has a separate, more comfortable-looking TV/hang out space with sofas and bean bags to use, in addition to an internet room for those wanting to catch up on emails or get some work done.


All in all, Kinlay House is a great hostel for one that is so large. It has friendly staff, plenty of good communal spaces, and is in a location convenient to the city.

Cat MacGregor
Street view of hostel Reception 10-bed dorm Beds in 10-bed dorm Ensuite bathroom Shower in ensuite bathroom Dining area Kitchen Internet room

Unhelpful staff (we booked an en-suite room but were given a standard room -- this was not rectified despite complaining to the staff) soured my traveling companion and me to the hostel from the get-go. My opinion of the hostel plummeted further upon realizing there was a kitchen curfew, which is ridiculous, not to mention profoundly inconvenient. To say nothing of the fact that our room was full of horseflies upon checking in. Other complaints -- the taps in our sink didn't work, the bedsheets smelled vile and appeared to be unwashed, there is no lift (rendering Kinlay House a poor choice for any traveler carrying luggage), there are/were too few bowls in the kitchen. To be fair, the Wi-Fi connection is good and the kitchen itself is very nice and spacious, though it's not like we got to see much of it with that stupid curfew in place. All in all, a waste of money.

Rupert Adler

It's ok when you will only sleep there

Positive -- Very central, Airport Busstop, beds are quite good and clean. Negative -- mildewed showers, some toilets were defect for days, broken windows and shutter, bad equipped kitchen (only one cooking place was working!), broken cupboards, in general a bit cold atmosphere.


Great city centre hostel, friendly staff, good value for your €

I really liked Kinlay House -- its location, the free breakfast, the staff were very helpful. Stayed in the Dorms and had no problems! Interesting decor too.


Very impressed by staff, cleanliness, kitchen facilities, and price.

I loved my top bunk next to the window with a view over Cork. I felt safe even though there were ten strangers in the room, but people were friendly and harmless. Good toilets. The free breakfast in the big bright dining/kitchen area is a nice touch considering I only paid 16 euro for the night when all other B&Bs were booked out. I liked the staff and the internet facilities and the television room were attractive. The only drawback on the Saturday night was that people came in all hours making a lot of noise -- not so much in the room but in the washing facilities next to it. I was extremely impressed I have to say with the whole experience as I haven't shared dorm with so many people for a long time and felt apprehensive about it. However the experience was so good that I would have no problem doing it again. SMS confirmation on booking nice touch too.

Michaela Avlund

Would have stayed elsewhere if we could

Kinlay House is decent enough. My friend and I lived there for about a week and a half while looking for permanent accommodation in Cork. We moved from a ten-bed to a private twin. There is a weekly rate for those staying week long at 98 per person. The Hostel advertises free breakfast. Prepare yourself for toast and jam. Period. That's all. Not exactly the breakfast of champions. Internet is ridiculously expensive. Do not pay! Go to Wired to the World on either MacCurtain or North Main Street, or either of the other two internet places on North Main, and get your internet for only 1 an hour instead of 4 an hour. We had no problem with anyone stealing our food while we were there. Plus there is a "free food" shelf where people leave their leftovers (uncooked pasta, left over dressings) which we took advantage of. We had mold growing on our rooms roof and walls. Also, heating was sporadic. The room was not well ventilated (probably causing the mold) and we had to open the window every time we returned to air out the smell that comes from close living. Security is basically nonexistent. They give you security passes, but I was never asked to see mine. I'd go to the desk and ask for the key to my room, to someone who I had never seen before, and they gave it to me, no questions asked. However, we did enjoy being next to the Shandon Bells and their out of tune ringing. They were endearing, we loved them, and if you pay a fee, you can go up and ring them yourself. Overall, it could have been worse. But I would stay elsewhere over Kinlay if there are rooms available.


The Kinlay Deception

From management to personnel, from facilities to cleanliness, this hostel is utterly unacceptable. Personnel are rude and appear to be hyper vigilant about letting the "wrong" people in the hostel. There is no sense of being welcomed. After staying for a few days I asked a staff member if he wanted me to pay for the next night then or come back later as they appeared busy. The rude answer came -- "if you want the room, you'll pay now!" The rooms can range from acceptable to utterly filthy. The first room I stayed in didn't have proper ventilation. One window was sealed shut. When I entered it that evening I was almost knocked over by the stench! Another room had mold growing on the wall. The last room I moved to was reasonably ventilated, and with nicer beds. However, the bathroom floor was never cleaned by the staff. I had to do it myself. In this same room, there was a couple that was living there long term. On one occasion they were getting it on in the bathroom. On the last night that I stayed there the couple went out with another male guest, returned loudly in the early hours of the morning. When the male of the couple left for work, the women joined the second male in his single bunk and started noisily getting it on! When I asked the manager to address the issue I was told that I would be the one to move to and pay for a private room! When I indicated it was the couple that should be required to move to and pay for a private room, I was told I wouldn't be allowed to stay another night as this "wasn't my kind of place." He was right, and I happily checked out! The free Wi-Fi they advertise is not working. The second time I inquired about it the manager, not even looking at me, indicated it would not be fixed until next year. He then rudely closed the door in my face. The internet access they offer is at 4 Euros an hour. Four times the price of most internet cafs in city centre. There is a toilet just off the dining area with an open drainpipe from the men's urinal. You'll need to hold your breath if you intend to use it! The heat is only turned on for a few hours a day. There are only two small refrigerators and one freezer for this whole facility with nearly two hundred beds. The staff had not defrosted the freezer in so long that there was more frost and ice then room to put your groceries! In summary, the Kinlay House is poorly managed, the personnel are rude, the facilities are inadequate and filthy, the advertising is false, and how they manage to maintain their license to operate as a youth hostel is utterly beyond me. I am Irish, and this place is a disgrace to our people and traditions. From first hand experience, these photos do not tell the true story of this place.

J. P.

Great! Would stay there again!

When we arrived receptionist was singing and very helpful -- great sense of humor! All the staff there were friendly and very helpful! Their smiles meant a lot. The rooms were clean and inviting (we stayed there on two different occasions). We stayed in a private twin room. They had metal bunk beds that were nice and firm for a good nights sleep. I found no problems with the showers (but in any hostel you have to check all the showers out to see which one is the best). They had separate washrooms/showers for guys and girls. Breakfast was tea and toast (got a lil sick of toast but gave us an opportunity to check out lil places to eat or we brought our own food in). The kitchen and eating area is huge. We really did enjoy our stay there. I look forward to staying there again!


More reviews...

Kinlay House Hostel Cork Reviews from the Web

Unfortunately I had to cancel the one night stay due to travel restrictions arising from the coronavirus, however I stayed there with my partner on previous occasions, and I consider it to be good value


This is based on another stay in this place. I couldn't stay this week due to Vivid 19. I was disappointed that I didn't get my deposit back even though I cancelled several weeks ago


nice place but too expensive. went to london for 13 euros only .....


Stayed in room 210. It was beside the lavatories and the room itself had a faint smell of pee. Additionally, it would be helpful if they added padding or buffers of some sort to their public doors like the shared bathroom doors. Because people are going in and out of them at all hours theyre constantly slamming and it wakes up the bedrooms especially close to them and the walls are very thin. I could hear every time someone used the toilets. Otherwise the rest of the place was nice.


Do not recommend a stay here. Hostel is very cold and dark with no atmosphere and odd rules (kitchen is closed in the morning, sitting room doesnt open until the afternoon, you must hand in your room key when you go out ??). Lacks basic necessities like lockers, basic kitchen supplies and even hand wash?! Other hostel guests are long term and make you feel uncomfortable and manager was not friendly either. Maybe it would be better in summer when there is more people but would not recommend now.


My boyfriend and I stayed in a deluxe twin room with an ensuite. The room was very cozy, a bit too hot though. We turned off the heating and had to open the window. But that was maybe the only "bad" thing about the room.

The staff was lovely, welcoming and helpful. The rest of the hostel also felt very cozy and warm. We really enjoyed our stay. 5*


Location and value were great. Wifi was fast and reliable. The breakfast was just toast and tea/coffee, but the kitchen was big and plenty of room in the fridge. It would have been helpful to be told about the code to open the door at night, but the staff was there to let me in.


I booked a single room which was located adjacent to main building, there was a strong smell of stagnant water/effluent in the stairwell, however, my room was odour free.

Room was cold as the heating never came on while I was there 20.00-08.00. I also discovered that there was NO hot water while standing freezing in the shower.

I didnt inform reception until my departure - I couldnt be bothered - they appeared shocked but didnt apologize. Kinlay Galway is excellent, but Cork is NOT!


I ended up staying in a room with bunk beds and no towels which is fair enough for a hostel but I could have stayed in a B and B for that 48 euro and got towels and a proper breakfast. Overpriced.


It's been 18 months since I last stayed at Kinlay House, Cork but I was greeted like an old friend by Andy, on reception and later by Tom.

My room was spotless, shower as hot as I wanted, breakfast perfect, the atmosphere was casual, friendly and welcoming as always.

I thoroughly recommend Kinlay House.


Really poor security here!! No lockers in the rooms, and the doors often were left unlocked. The front door was always ajar so even though they claimed there was a door passcode, I never once needed to use it because the door was always open. Really disappointing breakfast too. No social atmosphere whatsoever. Only one bathroom/shower in our room of 12??? The front desk workers were very helpful though in giving me recommendations for activities to do. Overall, I would not recommend whatsoever.


Kinlay is my go-to hostel when I'm Cork, but I would like to suggest two improvements: female dorms and lockers (not the ones you pay for in the kitchen area!)


The staff was very friendly and the rooms were warm. The bathrooms were a bit cold like the other reviews stated but it was not terrible just colder than the rooms.


Do not stay here. Its absolutely s**t! The beds are very uncomfortable, WiFi sucks, you have to pay 6 euros a day for a locker. Not with it at all! Do your self a favor and not stay here.


Room gave impression of beeing in jail. But didn't mind it much. Was cheap and overall clean. Relates alot to a student dormitory.


A good place to go with friends or family, close to the city clean and quiet :)


The property was old and the beds are old. There were no charging points near the bed. Breakfast was the bare minimum of only bread.


Kitchen staff were a bit annoying; the kitchen closed at 10:00, but we felt we were being rushed out of there on Christmas Day before then. Bathroom was freezing, so showering would likely not be very nice. Room was great; loved the church bells nearby!


Rooms were good, neat, clean, spacious and smelled good. We had a lovely view overlooking grassy patches next door. Bathrooms was always clean and hot water avl.

No tea/coffee facilities during day, only breakfast.

Bathrooms are ice cold in winter - especially at night and mornings.

Room heat was unpredictable, heaters would turn on and off - so can get cold at night.

Kitchen needs upgrade as it was cold and pots and tea cups are dirty - fridge smelled bad, no basic cooking condiments.


Liked: Friendly staff. Cozy room. Didn't like: Breakfast was okay, other hostels offer more!



City centre hostel right under the famous bells of Shandon...This popular place has solid security as well as a good-time vibe thanks to its friendly staff and absence of lock-outs or curfews - Comfy common areas include a timber-floored TV room with brocade lounges to sink into, a big L-shaped dining room and self-catering kitchen, a split-level courtyard and an Internet room. Kinlay House is at the heart of the village-like Shandon quarter ... "Lonely Planet

Location and Contact


• From the Airport A Taxi from the Airport direct to KHC costs €15 & takes about 20 minutes. There is also a Public Bus Service to the Bus Station & we are a 10 minute walk from there. From The Train Station Turn left out of the bus station onto Merchants Quay. Follow the River along pass the first Bridge & cross over the river at the second bridge and turn left onto Pope's Quay. Then turn right up the hill on to John Redmond Street. Continue up the hill round the Corner to the Traffic Lights. There are steps up to the Hostel at the Lights. 10 minute walk.
• From The Bus Station Turn left out of the bus station onto Merchants Quay. Cross the river at the second bridge and turn left onto Pope's Quay. Then turn right up the hill on to John Redmond Street. Continue up the hill round the Corner to the Traffic Lights. There are steps up to the Hostel at the Lights. 10 minute walk. From Dublin by Car You will arrive into Cork on the Dublin Road (Glanmire Road). Turn left to follow the one way system, keeping the River Lee to your left. After the fourth bridge turn right up the hill onto John Redmond Street. When you get up around the corner take the second - at the Shandon Court Hotel - onto Dominic Street. Go to the top of the street and turn right & right again. Kinlay House Cork is just behind the Shandon Bells (St. Anne's Church).



Address: Bob and Joan's Walk (off Upper John Street), Shandon, Cork, County Cork, Ireland

Kinlay House Hostel Cork is listed on the following booking sites:

Not listed at Hostelworld


Website Kinlay House Hostel Cork Cork
Phone Number: +353 21 4508 966
To add or correct information for this listing, please use the Listing Correction Form.

Facilities and Amenities

Solo Traveller



Luggage Storage

Wi-Fi in Lobby/Commons

City Tours

Lockers in Lobby


24 Hour Security

BBQ Grill

Book Collection/Exchange

Cable TV

Clothes Dryer

Concierge/Info Desk

Credit Card Payments

Currency Exchange

Entirely Non-Smoking

Hair Dryers

Hot Showers



Lounge Area

Movie Library/Rental

Swimming Pool


Wheelchair Accessible

Service Animals

Checkout: 10:00 (10 AM)

Curfew: No Curfew

Lockout: No

Maximum Stay: Unlimited

Minimum Stay: 1 night

Open Dates: All Year

Reception Hours: 24 Hours

Size: Very Large (100+ beds)


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