HI - Xi'an - Qixian (7 sages) YH Hostel is the best hostel in Xi'an, and offers a friendly, welcoming vibe that can be lacking from other hostels within the city walls. The setting is gorgeous, based within a traditional Chinese courtyard, and provides peace and tranquility away from the carnage that lies outside the front gate.
Xi'an is an easy city to navigate around once within the city walls; with the underground now up and running, you can travel up and down the main street with ease for pennies. The hostel is on the north side of the town, around a twenty-minute walk from both the bus and the train station. Most people come to Xi'an for a trip to see the Warriors, and the hostel offers all kind of tours; however China is so cheap, and the bus station is so close, it is advisable to make your own way there (take the Green Bus 306. The stop is located between the bus and train station).
Rooms and Bathrooms
The rooms are on the cold side, as you would expect from a building that is hundreds of years old, and going to the bathroom at night can be a freezing experience, as you have to go out onto the courtyard to reach them. Once there though the bathrooms are clean, and offer a choice of Western or traditional facilities, and the showers are so warm you will never want to come out. The laundry is affordable. The bunk beds are a little on the old side, but still provide a comfortable night's sleep
The hostel has a very smartly decorated bar/restaurant, with a smoking sunroom. The food on offer is tasty, but on the pricy side for China, and there is a whole host of eateries on the doorstep (once you get over the fear of no one understanding you, and going into the tiny cafes, the food and experience is wonderful, and you can eat like a king for a tiny amount).
There is also an internet room, which is coin operated, but is not very reliable (as is the case with the internet in China in general). The Wi-Fi is good and free, however it only works in the common areas, and does not quite stretch to the rooms. The outside courtyard is full of character, including a couple of dogs and cats, who are both very welcoming. Bottles of beer for a small amount are also well received by the guests.
If you want a hostel that has character, for a good price, in an ok location, then 7 Sages is the place to stay.