Hostel Review: Green Tortoise, Seattle

The award-winning Green Tortoise in Seattle is the best hostel I have ever stayed in for a number of reasons.

Firstly, the beds were amazing…

They were designed in the style of old railway cabins and featured curtains, which was certainly a novelty, a reading light, fan and four plug sockets.

Each bed had a spacious cupboard underneath, which could be secured with your own padlock as is standard in most hostels.

My favourite feature of the Green Tortoise was the fantastic bathrooms.

While they are shared, each room had an individual shower, sink and toilet.

Far from the basic, crammed facilities you come to expect from hostels, these showers were huge and luxuriously tiled.

The hostel can be found in the perfect location – a stone’s throw away from the bustling Pike Place Market.

There is free breakfast every morning. You can make yourself some toast or there are eggs and pancake mix if you feel like cooking yourself something more substantial.

Fruit and juice are provided and coffee and tea are on tap all day.

Free dinner is even served three evenings a week – alternating between tacos and spaghetti.

You can really save a lot of money by taking advantage of all of the freebies.

If you are not travelling with your laptop, free internet terminals are available.

There is free WiFi, but you will be unlikely to get a signal in your room and will have to come downstairs to browse the internet.

But plenty of comfortable seating is provided and there is free WiFi at the Starbucks across the road if you fancy a change of scene.

This was a lovely colourful hostel with a great communal feel.

So, overall, this is a top hostel that I would not hesitate to recommend.

The only negative aspect for me was that all of the dormitories are mixed and there were a few couples in the room that I was staying in.

This threw me at first, but I just adapted and it was okay.

While having the curtains was a blessing overall, there were times when they actually prevented you from getting to know the people in the room.

In effect, each of the beds are separate rooms.

This was both a luxury and a hindrance at the same time, depending on how you look at it.

But there were plenty of opportunities to make friends, with hostel activities such as pub crawls and food tours and plenty of people to meet by hanging around in the communal areas.

Book this hostel if you want a fun and friendly place to stay in a great location, with lots of free meals and cheap activities.

Tip: If you are a light sleeper, you might be disturbed by the street noise. I would advise you to bring ear plugs or purchase some from the reception.

I managed to sleep through the noise, but I know others in my room had to wear ear plugs.




  1. June 19, 2012 / 20:08

    I stayed at the Green Tortoise hostel in San Francisco, and it was amazing. The free food is a bonus. They also offer adventure travel bus trips. I took one from NYC to SF a few years back and had an incredible time. Something you may like to consider if you get the chance
    Michelle Blake recently posted..A bit of reflectionMy Profile

    • June 21, 2012 / 00:18

      I heard about the one in San Fran as well, would definitely stay there if ever visit there. That’s a massive trip you took coast to coast, did you stop off a lot on the way?
      Alison recently posted..Hostel Review: Green Tortoise, SeattleMy Profile

      • June 21, 2012 / 01:07

        I did the Southern Crossing trip. It was 14 days with lots of stops and things to see and do. The buses are set up so you sleep at night and the drivers keep on driving, then the next morning you wake up in a brand new place and have the day to explore. If you want to see alot of the US in a short space of time, then i recommend. They also have trips through south america.
        Michelle Blake recently posted..The people that you meetMy Profile

        • June 22, 2012 / 00:57

          It sounds interesting!

  2. June 20, 2012 / 05:06

    Bookmarked this place, it looks great! Thanks for the tip :-)

    • June 21, 2012 / 00:09

      If you’re in Seattle, it’s a great place to stay. I heard great things about the food tour at the hostel, although didn’t have the chance to do it. I think it’s 20 dollars and you go on a five hour tour of the city, trying lots of food samples along the way.

  3. June 20, 2012 / 07:40

    I lived in Seattle for nearly ten years and worked just blocks from that location for almost four years…and I never even knew it was there! It looks really cute, and what an AWESOME location. Glad you liked it, hope you loved Seattle! :)
    Andrea recently posted..Korea’s War Museum: Using History to Understand Modern-Day KoreaMy Profile

    • July 1, 2012 / 03:29

      Hey Andrea, just found your comment in my spam folder sorry! That must have been fab living there for a decade! The hostel is quite hidden if you don’t know it’s there, but the location couldn’t be better. I’ve just written a post on how much I loved Seattle :-)
      Alison recently posted..Annoying People In Hostels: The InconsideratesMy Profile