Home Sweet Home is a friendly and helpful hostel in Arequipa, Peru, just a few blocks from the main square, Plaza de Armas. Most of the sights of the city are within easy walking distance, as are restaurants, cafes and bars.
Staff are very friendly and helpful, and will help arrange activities while you`re in Arequipa, either in town or excursions to nearby sights like the Colca Canyon. They will also book your accommodation in Cusco if youre staying at their sister hostel there. You can buy bus tickets through the hostel for a small mark-up (easier than making the longish trek to the bus station and cheaper than paying exorbitant travel agency prices).
It is located about three kilometers from the bus stations (there are two, side by side) and a taxi ride to the hostel costs a bit in a safe official taxi. Alternatively, you can ask the driver to let you off at the Plaza de Armas and walk from there. The hostel is easy to find. Alternatively, hostel staff will pick you up from the bus station upon arrival if you book ahead and let them know where/when you're arriving.
Everything you might need is walking distance away -- post office, souvenir shops, restaurants, grocery stores, and travel agencies. Most of the major sights of Arequipa are also within a short walk, and its a pleasant and safe (in the daytime, anyway) city to stroll around.
Rooms and Bathrooms
This hostel offers both private rooms and dorm rooms -- a bonus for weary backpackers is that dorms don`t have bunk beds. There are no lockers in either type of room; however, keys are available to lock room doors. Mattresses are comfortable and enough warm blankets are provided to see you through often-chilly Arequipa nights.
Bathrooms are shared (private rooms do not have ensuites), and are clean and functional. Showers are spacious with hooks for your belongings, but youll need to have your own towel. Water pressure is fine and water is hot as long as you get your shower in early (it runs out after too many backpackers have been through).
Common areas are a mix of indoors and open-air, with some of the latter sheltered by a roof so you can still sit outside even if it rains. Breakfast is served outdoors (under cover) in a large dining area next to the small but adequate kitchen. There is a rooftop terrace that is a comfortable place to hang out.
The kitchen is small but functional; there isn`t a lot of storage space, but grocery selection can be limited in supermarkets and eating out is generally cheap, so you may decide self-catering isn`t worth the effort. There is a small charge if you want to use the oven. A filling breakfast is included in the hostel rate, and includes pancake, eggs, bread, butter, and jam, with your choice of coffee, tea, or mate de coca. Freshly squeezed juice is also provided.
There is free internet access (note, however, there is only one computer terminal, so youll be waiting your turn) and free Wi-Fi for the technologically-equipped backpacker. Wi-Fi can be slow and connections are sometimes hit or miss. The hostel is a friendly and sociable place, and its easy to meet other backpackers, so youll have no trouble finding friends to go out for drinks, or getting travel advice on other destinations youre considering.
Overall, this is a very safe, welcoming, and relaxed hostel that will make your stay in Arequipa a pleasant one.