Albergue Juvenil Bustiello in Asturias – Spain Road Trip

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During our northern Spain road trip, we’ve stayed in a number of places. Perhaps our favorite was Albergue Juvenil Bustiello, a hostel in the Asturias region (albergue juvenil is “youth hostel” in Spanish). We really enjoyed our time there and want to recommend it to any travelers driving through northern Spain. We found it to be an exceptional choice for both single travelers and families.

A Youth Hostel for Families?

When we arrived at Albergue Juvenil Bustiello, we had already stayed in multiple Airbnb apartments (ToledoSalamancaLeon and Santiago de Compostela) and a hotel in Ourense. We searched for places around the Asturias region as well, especially in downtown Oviedo, but it was the high season and we hadn’t booked ahead. We had limited options.

In my 20’s, I stayed youth hostels a lot. There were no Airbnb or Couchsurfing alternatives back then — at least that I knew of. Youth hostels were pretty much the only option for frugal backpackers like myself.

When we travel as a family nowadays, we usually avoid hostels because they usually charge by the bed, with additional fees for bedding and towels. For a family of four, the price is often comparable to getting a halfway-decent AirBnB apartment with kitchen — or even a hotel room.

Albergue Juvenil Bustiello: Our Favorite Youth Hostel in the Asturias region Spain with Kids

By the time we started booking, however, most affordable apartments and hotel rooms were gone. Then we ran across Albergue Juvenil Bustiello. Their reviews were good, but I thought it was, after all, “just a hostel.” I’m happy to tell you that I completely underestimated this place.

We’ve enjoyed every part of Spain we’ve seen thus far, but the Asturias region of Spain made a significant impact on us. That’s partly due to its cooler temperatures and stunning nature, but it’s also because of the people we’ve met there. Two of those people were Dulce and Pruden, the couple who run Albergue Juvenil Bustiello, this youth hostel about 20 minutes south of Oviedo.

Spain Road Trip: Where to stay in Asturias — Albergue Juvenil Bustiello breakfast cafeteria dulce & pruden

No, this isn’t a sponsored post, and no, this isn’t some kind of fancy-pants flashpacker hipster hotel, either. No, Albergue Juvenil Bustiello is just a simple, well-run place that can be a great choice for family travelers.

Albergue Juvenil Bustiello in Asturias

Built in an old schoolhouse, Albergue Juvenil Bustiello is simple and clean. Breakfast is served in what was once a cafeteria, and bunkbeds have been placed into repurposed classrooms. Many of the rooms are lofts that sleep four to five people, which make them ideal for many families. Shaped more like a milk carton than a shoebox, our room had one bunkbed downstairs, while upstairs there were three beds: one bunkbed and one single bed. The kids loved it.

Albergue Juvenil Bustiello room: Where to stay in Asturias - Spain Road Trip

Clean Floors

Like in most western countries, people walk in the house with their shoes on in Spain. After so much time in Japan and elsewhere in Asia, we prefer to leave our shoes at the door. It feels good to walk around barefoot anyway when it’s hot.

My point is that the hostel rooms were clean enough for our bare feet. And it’s nicer to have a swept, wooden floor like this. As you can see in the picture below, we even made upstairs a shoe-free zone, too.

Sheets Provided

If you’ve ever stayed in a hostel, then you know that some places have only a mattress without sheets or bedding. You either have to bring your own sleeping bag or sheets. Albergue Juvenil Bustiello provided clean sheets and pillow cases. All you need to do is bring them to reception when you check out.

We had been staying in apartments where towels were provided. For here, we planned to just use hand towels and a sarong to dry off. It was enough, but when we asked if they had towels, they gave us four nice thick ones at no extra charge.

In the morning, we awoke to music coming over the old school intercom system. On the days we were there, the halls echoed with Pearl Jam, an 80’s Pop Hits compilation, and Pink Turtle, a French 7-piece cover band that plays jazzy versions of people like Lou Reed and AC/DC.

Simple Hostel, Personal Touch

To be clear, this is a youth hostel: the bathrooms are communal and the decor is minimal. What we liked, however, was the personal touch. For example, breakfast is included, and it’s a simple continental affair — bread, jam, fruit, cereal and coffee mostly. However, the pound cake, yogurt and apple marmalade were homemade and delicious. So is Dulce’s tomato spread, which is commonly eaten on toast in the mornings here.

There were also other little touches we liked. For example, on the first morning we noticed a fruit we were unfamiliar with. It turns out they were gooseberries. I had always thought they were simply decorative, but Dulce showed us how to peel them and we devoured them. For the next two mornings, we found extra gooseberries on our table for breakfast.

Dulce had also made balloon animals for the youngest guests and placed them at their seats before they arrived for breakfast. She was also perceptive and thoughtful enough to not give any balloons to our boy — now 13 — who wouldn’t have been pleased to be considered as a child like that. You’d be surprised at how many people haven’t figured that out.

 Helpful and Informative

We had some ideas about what we wanted to see and do while in Asturias, but we usually try to get local’s opinion saying whenever we can. For people like us, Dulce and Pruden are a goldmine of local information. They not only have lots of recommendations, but they also gave us small tips, such as which road is easier to drive and small restaurants worth checking out near places we wanted to go.  Below are some of the things they recommended to us.

All of this, thanks to Dulce and Pruden.

Conclusion: Albergue Juvenil Bustiello in Asturias

This is a simple hostel located away from the conveniences of a city. You will need to have a car to access. The next time we drive through Northern Spain, we will definitely stay at Albergue Juvenil Bustiello again.

Check the latest availability of Albergue Juvenil Bustiello at Booking.com.

Have you stayed at a youth hostel with kids? What was it like?

Our favorite Youth hostel in the Asturias region spain with kids
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. This means, at no extra cost to you,  we might receive a small commission if you make a purchase or book using those links. My opinions are my own and I only recommend places/services that I believe will genuinely help your travel.

Comments

  1. Hey Jason,
    Our family of 5 stayed at Youth Hostels while traveling the world. As you experienced, we found that they weren’t always cheaper or better located than Airbnb apartments. Happy to share our article, here: http://www.learnlivetravel.com/single-post/2015/10/19/Youth-Hostels-can-be-a-great-choice-for-families-heres-why

    Thanks for sharing your story!

    • Thanks Gretchen. Yeah, youth hostels are a toss up: sometimes the best option for a family, but often not. Apartment rentals are still our favorite, but the social aspect of hostels can be fun as well. A few of our friends (mom and son) are hiking the Camino right now and people they’ve met along the way have been an important aspect of their trip. And this place completely changed our experience in the area for the better — we wouldn’t have had that in many of the airbnb’s we’ve stayed.

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