When I sat down to write this post, I had no intention of writing the whole thing about one hostel. Like all my other destination posts, I wanted to share my experiences of a new place in the hopes of inspiring other solo travellers to go there.
And I still am aiming to do that.
My only problem is that my experiences of Budapest were shaped largely by the hostel that I stayed at – Retox Party Hostel – and so it would be silly to pretend otherwise!
So, just what is it about Retox Party Hostel that saw me extending my 4 night stay in Budapest to 10 days, and still not wanting to leave at the end of my stay?!
First off, I’m not even going to attempt to write you a chronological account of my time at Retox, as it was all a happy drunken blur, but here’s what I do rememember:
Retox’s mantra is “you may never be this free again,” and it just may be true. No matter what time of day it is, people will be doing shots of palinka, playing drinking games, looking homeless and probably being sick but nobody will be batting an eyelid. The staff (who are almost certainly more drunk than most of the guests), do a great job of making sure everyone has a great time and the bottom line is that everybody who checks into Retox Party Hostel is wanting to make friends, get wasted and have a great time.
I may have even got a matching tattoo with one of the girls I partied with there but that’s a whole other story…
Twice a week, Retox take their guests to huge boat Parties along the river Danube. One, Shipwrecked, costs 9000 HUF and comes with unlimited alcohol, and the other, River Rampage, is 7000 HUF and comes with a whole bottle of Champagne (however, there are cheaper options for those on a budget).
The boat parties are great because as well as getting to dance under the stars on a boat, you get to see all the beautiful buildings of Budapest lit up and looking even more beautiful than they do in the daytime. When the boat parties finish at around 1am, you get free entry into a nightclub to continue the party.
Not only that but some of the other great party hostels in Budapest also attend the boat trips so they’re a great way of meeting other travellers (the Retox crew are the craziest though).
Budapest is famous for its ruin bars, and not only is Retox Party Hostel a ruin bar in itself, but taking part in one of Retox’s FREE pub crawls allows you to see even more of the best ruin bars in Budapest such as Szimpla, Instant and Fogashaz.
Not for the faint hearted, the alcoholympics at Retox are a brutal competition comprised of various challenges, all involving copious amounts of alcohol. I honestly don’t know how anyone survives the Alcoholympics at Retox but somehow they do, and if you don’t fancy competing, then just grab some beers and enjoy the show because the bar is always packed and you wouldn’t want to be anywhere else.
Open Mic Night
The open mic night is held at Mika Tivador and is more chilled than the usual Retox nights, but still really fun. If you have any sort of musical talent then be sure to get up and perform because it’s always a good crowd.
Sparties, beer bikes and Jager trains…
Want to get drunk in some thermal baths, ride a bike around sunny Budapest while drinking unlimited beer or see jagerbombs fly like dominos? Well Retox is the place to arrange all of that! I never got to experience any of these weird and wonderful events in Budapest but I have heard very good things about all three and I highly recommend that you try at least one of these things if you find yourself in Retox (update: I’ve even heard of PARTY BUSES now – these weren’t a thing when I was at Retox but they sound like so much fun!).
When you check into Retox Party Hostel, the staff tell you that at any given moment, you may see some kind of bodily fluid and that if you’re not okay with that then you should go and stay elsewhere – this is really all you need to know when it comes to Retox. You WILL see bodily fluids. You WILL see a drunk guy peeing in the corner of the room, or ripping the doors off the lockers at 3am, or walking around naked in the middle of the afternoon.
You will see all of this, and more at Retox. I don’t say this to put you off, but more to prepare you that literally anything goes here and you WILL come away with some stories of your time at Retox Party Hostel!
Need any more persuasion?
Of course, as fun as Retox is, you’re going to want to see SOME of the sights of Budapest. All of the pictures taken below are in walking distance from Retox even when you’re hungover, as I was when these were all taken.
So, final thoughts?
Retox Party Hostel is not where you go for state of the art facilities (although there is really nothing wrong with the rooms at Retox, despite what some snobby reviews online will tell you), or a decent night’s sleep. It is where you go to meet people, get drunk and have a good time, and I can honestly say I did just that.
If you are travelling around Europe, or just fancy a long weekend in Budapest, then you can book your stay at Retox here.
I can also say that this is not a sponsored post, and although I have included a couple of affiliate links where I may make a little commission (at no cost to you), I wouldn’t write a 800 word article about a place unless I absolutely loved it and would genuinely recommend it to young backpackers, solo or otherwise.
Have you ever stayed at Retox Party Hostel in Budapest? What did you think? Let me know in the comments!
If you’re planning a trip to Budapest but are looking for something a bit more upmarket then check out the awesome guide over at You Could Travel!