Tranquilo Backpackers, San José

9 Reviews
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Tranquilo Backpackers Reviews

Great Hostel

This hostel was a great introduction for me into Costa Rica. Its reasonably prices and has a fun, laid back atmosphere. They have a bunch of computers available, as well as Wi-Fi, free breakfast,a communal kitchen, tv room, FREE international calls, and hot showers. The staff was fantastic, and the entire place was pretty clean. Very close to the center of town as well. I'd definitely recommend this place.


Tranquilo Backpackers is basic hostel accommodation in downtown San Jose.

The Location

It is situated in a side street a short walk from Avedina Central, the main street in central San Jose, and Parque Central. Taxis from the airport are the safest means of arriving at the hostel, although there is also easy access by bus. The street itself is quiet and the area generally safe during daylight hours but, as with most of the city, it is more threatening at night. The hostel does have a security door for the safety of guests inside.

Rooms and Bathrooms

Dorm rooms are dull and musty but with reasonably comfortable bunk beds. Rooms are lockable but other guests seldom bother to do so. Shower rooms with toilet are shared amongst too many guests for their capacity but are single sex and clean. The promise of hot showers is often broken and the electricity supply inconsistent with frequent power cuts. There is no space within the shower cubicles to change and this really has to be done outside the shower cubicle itself.

Common Spaces

The majority of the hostel is in a state of general but not terribly serious disrepair. Tranquilo has a dingy television room and an ill-equipped kitchen. It does have excellent internet access with four computers for free use. The main common area has plenty of tables and chairs. It proves an excellent place for meeting friendly fellow travelers but the area is always extremely smoky as smoking is permitted throughout. There is also a small patio with some well-worn hammocks.

The hostel will assist with tour booking but activities within Tranquilo itself, though they do exist, are infrequent and generally unexciting. The most exciting thing about the hostel is the daily free pancake breakfast which is delicious and consists of a large pancake and a couple of pieces of fresh local fruit. It is perhaps even worth overlooking Tranquilo's many faults for this alone.


Though it's not the nicest of places to stay in terms of appearance or atmosphere, Tranquilo's main draws are it's location, free internet access, and the breakfast. This does make it good value so is certainly worth considering -- just don't have too high expectations of the place.

Laura Ferguson

If you want bedbugs come here

Well, found this hostel in a guidebook for Costa Rica and it sounded cool so I went here after a long day of traveling. At first look it does look sweet and laidback, free internet, and quite good pancake breakfast included in the room price. I stayed in a dorm the first night and was fine, quite loud cause most of the dorms are directly by the common area. So then the next morning when I woke up though a couple in the same dorm room had bites all over their bodies. Turned out they had bedbugs in the room, cleaning staff just kinda shrugged their shoulders and was very slow getting people out of there. They didnt get their money back but got the laundry done. Nice! I unfortunately had to stay one more night and got moved to another dorm. Checked my mattress and bed there and found bugs again! Then they moved me to a single room which was fine but they didnt tell the people in the dorm right away and cleaning staff was hanging out watching TV. If you come here check the beds, the frames, and the walls. I know these bugs come easy but its so hard to get rid of them. Knock on wood that I dont have them from that not so tranquillo hostel.


Fancy paying $10 to sleep in a squat?

One night was more than enough at this hole. it has a weird atmosphere, flushing issues with the toilets, a very minimal kitchen, and decor reminiscent of a bombing raid. I think originally they were trying to create the undone effect, now it's just falling apart. There's very bad graffiti and those annoying stickers everywhere and is generally pretty grim. thumbs down from me!


It looked like a really cool hotel, but looks can be deceiving.

If you are nineteen or twenty and are looking to hook up and party, this is it. However, the staff were quite rude and not very helpful. Also, I found it to be quite dirty and very loud. If you want to get any sleeping done, maybe this is not the place.

Lucia Chavez

Whereas the place had the funky athmosphere, it was severely let down by the member of staff who was so dogmatic in her response to my request to move from a top bunk to a lower one in an otherwise empty dorm, that I was compelled to go elsewhere. Security is p*ss poor as a cursory exploration of their perimeter would reveal.


This is the best hostel in town!! It has a super friendly and helpful staff. We recommend it to everybody!

Suzie and Angela

This hostel is very clean with nice facilities. It's in a great location for a base when visiting San Jose. Hopefully you will have the taste and good sense to avoid the many transvestite hookers who infest this area.

Sam Howell

More reviews...

Tranquilo Backpackers Reviews from the Web

Cool atmosphere and a great breakfast included!!

Derek Dell

Realy frendly staff and on a very gool location on San Jose

Eduardo Junquera

Good breakfast and nice TV room with loads of comfy beds to chill out on and watch TV.

Elizabeth Farnworth

Good location with all the information and the services U need.Gets a bit noisy at times but that`s what we like.

Olivier Mollion

The guests.

Jennifer Carter

The atnosphere was chilled!!!!!

Customer review

all descriptions like in hostelbookers, so i was fine.

Customer review

the backpackers

Customer review

<good place to meet people. Didn´t even need to go out at night because there was plenty going on there.

sarah whadford

nice social area, but our room stank of smoke and had bed bugs. The kitchen (next to the room) closes early so you can sleep, but then the cleaners arrive at 5am and make a racket for no apparent reason. The "famous" pancake breakfast is DIY with no fillings apart from cheap nasty syrup -best avoided.

Customer review

community atmosphere, great internet, clean usefull kitchen

Cory LaShell

Nice place to stay. We had a very nice time drinking beer with total strangers in the central reception area, so it is a nice place to meet people. Free pancakes for breakfast and free internet (also WiFi) are nice too!

Customer review

I liked the atmosphere and the quick laundry service. The staff was helpful and the pancake breakfast delicious.


Atmosphere and decor, friendly staff

Customer review

location, proximity to downtown for foot traffic

Customer review

nice atmosphere, big tv room, great pancakes and really friendly staff.

Jarlath Naughton

free coffee, near to the city, a kitchen and the free internet

Alicia Vazquez Aguion

relaxed atmosphere with nice communal areas. we appreciated it even more after trying a different hostel in san jose. free pancakes!

Customer review


Tranquilo Backpackers hostel, located in San Jose Costa Rica. Cheap accomodations (single, double, dorms, share popp rooms). Hot showers. Free Internet, Live music, sushi, pasta and curry nights. Free luggage storage. Laundry Service. Cable TV, book exchange and reading room. Live Music. No curfew.

We are located downtown San José in a safe neighbourhood. Banks, buses, restaurants, post office, internet cafes, museums and bars are at walkable distance. Meet people from around the world and make new friends.

Our friendly staff is 24 hours at your service. They are happy to help you find your way through San José and Costa Rica.

We offer male, female and mixed dorms. Single and double rooms are available. Our rooms are clean. We provide sheets, blankets and pillows.

Have a real HOT shower in our fancy bathrooms.

Use our communal kitchen to kick your own meal. If you are too lazy to cook enjoy our curry, sushi or pasta nights. For breakfast we offer free pancakes and free coffee and tea all day.

If you want to chill out you can kick back on our veranda or read a book in our reading corner. We have a fully equiped book exchange. TV junkies find Cable TV or you can bring your CD's and our staff will play them for you.

At the live music nights you can see our boss performing and different local bands. If you have an urge to express yourself we always have an open mike. Feel free to bring your own instruments or just party along with us. If you wanna go out for a big night we know where to go.

Hot Showers
Hot Food
Hot Music
Cool People!

Tranquilo Backpackers hostel, located in San Jose Costa Rica. Cheap accomodations (single, double, dorms, ). Hot showers. Live music, sushi, pasta and curry nights. Free luggage storage. Laundry Service. Cable TV, book exchange and reading room. Live Music. No curfew.


Venga y disfrute de nuestro hotel. Estamos localizados en el centro de San José en un barrio muy seguro. Los bancos, paradas de autobuses, restaurantes, oficina de correos, cybercafés, museos y bares estan a muy poca distancia. Conozca gente de alrededor del mundo y haga nuevos amigos.

Nuestro amistoso equipo de trabajo está las 24 horas del día a su servicio. Ellos estarán mas que felices en ayudarle a planear sus viajes en San José y Costa Rica.

Ofrecemos dormitorios masculinos, femeninos y mixtos. Cuartos privados y dobles también están disponibles. Nuestros cuartos son limpios. Proveemos las colchas, cobijas, almohadas y cubrecamas.

A su disponibilidad tenemos duchas calientas en nuestros atractivos baños.

Use la cocina compartida para preparar sus propias comidas. Si le da pereza cocinar puede disfrutar de nuestras noches de curry, sushi o pasta. Para el desayuno tenemos café, té y panquecas gratis.

Si quiere relajarse puede hacerlo en nuestra terraza o leer un libro en nuestra esquina de la lectura. Tenemos una biblioteca de intercambio de libros. Los aficionados a la televisión pueden disfrutar de televisión con cable. Traiga sus discos compactos y nuestra gente los pondrá por usted en nuestro tocadiscos.

En las noches de música puede ver a nuestro jefe cantando junto con bandas locales. Si a usted le gusta cantar siempre tenemos el micrófono abierto. Siéntase en la libertad de traer sus instrumentos musicales o simplemente festeje con nosotros. Si quiere salir para disfrutar de la vida nocturna, podemos indicarles cuales son los mejores lugares.

Duchas calientes
Comida caliente
Música alegre
Gente Agradable!

Location and Contact


• 250 meters north of parque Morazan, yellow house to the right. Calle 7, Avenida 9 y 11
• 250 metros norte del parque Morazan, casa amarilla a mano derecha. Calle 7 Avenida 9 y 11

Address: Calle 7, between Avenida 9 and 11, San José, San José Province, Costa Rica

Tranquilo Backpackers is listed on the following booking sites:

Not listed at Hostelworld


Website Tranquilo Backpackers San José
Phone Number: (506) 26400589 or (506) 88708705
To add or correct information for this listing, please use the Listing Correction Form.

Facilities and Amenities





Wi-Fi in Lobby/Commons

BBQ Grill


Clothes Dryer

Concierge/Info Desk




Lounge Area

Wheelchair Accessible

Credit Card Payments

Checkout: 12:00 (12 Noon)

Curfew: No Curfew

Lockout: No

Maximum Stay: Unlimited

Minimum Stay: 1 night

Reception Hours: 24 Hours


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