Accommodation Review – China


Howdy all. This week I continue on my accommodation reviews looking at China. I stayed in three different cities/towns whenst I was there – Yangshuo, Shanghai and Xi’an. All in all I was actually really happy with all my budget digs in China. I managed to get a single room for myself all under 200 yuan (that’s less than $30US, although I think at the time the exchange rate was even better).


Yangshuo – Yangshuo Culture House


This wonderful little place in the town of Yanshuo, a couple of hours from Guilin, was wonderful. At 200 Yuan a night it was my most expensive room in China, however it did include ALL meals! So, how could you go wrong? A wonderfully kind and generous host as well, the room was spacious and comfortable, and it had air-conditioning. There were computers there to use for checking emails, although I concede that at the time they weren’t superfast. I did manage to book a flight though so couldn’t have been too terrible.

yanshuo-mahjongg dinner-yanshuo

The food was simple, but good. I have a peanut allergy but this wasn’t an issue. The range of advice, the ability to book things for you, the ability to meet other travelers and to have a connection with the local people made this my favourite place I stayed in China. Spent an afternoon inside due to heavy rain playing Mahjongg with the owner. What more can I say?

Andrew’s Ratings:

Value for Money: 3/5

Friendliness: 5/5

Cleanliness: 3/5

Noise: 3.5/5

Location: 3.5/5

Total: 18/25 (72/100)


Shanghai – Blue Mountain Hostel Luwan

Guests at the hostel.
Guests at the hostel.

This place is very well located in terms of transport, just opposite a metro station. I initially had a tiny single room with shared bathroom to save money. I remember the first night. The room was right by the entrance and all I could hear was people talking and singing on the entrance steps. At around 11pm or 12pm I gave up and asked for another room. They only had a double with en suite so I took that, for 170 Yuan, around $27US. It was SO worth it.

It had a strange musty smell before the air con was turned on but it was a decent size and there were no noise issues. Very comfortable double (or maybe queen) bed. The internet was as variable as most places in China, but the common area was great and I got to meet a number of people whilst I was there and get tips on Shanghai and elsewhere in China.


Andrew’s Ratings:

Value for Money: 3.5/5

Friendliness: 3.5/5

Cleanliness: 2/5

Noise: 2.5/5

Location: 3.5/5

Total: 15/25 (60/100)


Xi’an – Bell Tower Hostel

The bell tower which was out of my window. Except this is from street level. I did NOT stay in the HOTEL across the road.
The bell tower which was out of my window. Except this is from street level. I did NOT stay in the HOTEL across the road.

This place was pretty nice too, well the room was. The building was concrete but interesting with all sorts of types of rooms from doubles and singles to dorms. Really interesting bunch of people staying there and a great view from my room of the bell tower opposite, just inside one of the main city walls.

Xi'an from the city walls.
Xi’an from the city walls.

At 150 Yuan it was the cheapest room I had in China. It had a TV along with air conditioning and a bathroom. Got a number of English language channels. Reasonably clean, not so friendly because of its size. The reception is small and was a fair walk from my room, there were two computers at the time for the entire hostel I think.

The restaurant/bar underneath the hostel is very popular and the food was quite decent. Just be prepared for the smoke! Does a job on one’s eyes. Mix of travelers and young Chinese used the bar.


Andrew’s Ratings:

Value for Money: 4/5

Friendliness: 2.5/5

Cleanliness: 2/5

Noise: 1.5/5

Location: 4.5/5

Total: 14.5/25 (58/100)

So. Have you stayed in any of these? Have you been to China and found a great budget place to stay? Please comment and as always, May the Journey Never End!

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