Nomading Film Festival announces NY venue

If you’re a New Yorker, a film enthusiast, a traveler that loves good storytelling, or combination of all three; clear your calendar for June 18th and set your sights on the West Village’s massive Hostelling International-New York.

The Brooklyn-based Nomading Film Festival has announced that they’ll be holding their big night of screenings in the biggest hostel in North America – an environment that falls right in line with their overall theme. The idea behind the Nomading Film Festival is simple. The fest’s creators “believe that stories caught on film, while traveling, are some of the most entertaining, educating, beautiful, and authentic. These are stories which should be shared, acknowledged, and awarded.

Don’t have any video experience? Not to worry – NoFF encourages people of all experience levels with video to submit so long as it’s under 15 minutes, non-fiction, and uploaded before April 30th (upload here). The festival has changed their grand prize from a trip to Egypt, to a 10-day trip to India, courtesy of Intrepid Travel. So grab your camera, phone, or webcam and hit the road!

Head on over to the Nomading Film Festival homepage for more information.

The best hostels in the world gain “Hoscar” recognition from

Gaining a Hoscar might not sound like a big feat – unless, of course, you know what a Hoscar is. The award, now nine years in the running, is the top honor granted to hostels worldwide. Given by, the “Oscars of the Hostel World” chooses the best properties from among 25,000 hostels in more than 180 countries.

Hoscar winners are chosen based on their overall score in six categories – fun, cleanliness, staff, security, location and character – and were voted for by more than one million customers who booked their accommodation online and stayed in the properties in 2010.

The awards recognize the top hostels in a number of categories including the best hostels in each of the seven continents, the most improved and the top hostel chains. Several new categories were introduced this year including the top 10 Best Large and Small Hostels along with Best Seasonal Hostel, Best Hostel for Groups, New to Hostelworld and a Special Contribution and Lifetime Achievement Award.

While we at Gadling can’t personally vouch for these properties, we can say that an industry award based on user reviews seems to be a rousing positive. Next time you visit one of these properties, do remember to leave us your feedback in the comments section!

The winners include:

Best Hostels Worldwide
1. Travellers House – Lisbon
2. Lisbon Lounge Hostel – Lisbon
3. Living Lounge Hostel – Lisbon

Best USA Hostels
1. USA Hostels San Francisco – San Francisco
2. USA Hostels Hollywood – Los Angeles
3. HI Chicago – Chicago
4. Miami Beach International Hostel – Miami
5. Adelaide Hostel and Hotel – San Francisco
6. HI Washington DC – Washington DC
7. HI Boston Downtown – Boston
8. The New York Loft Hostel – New York
9. India House Backpackers Hostel – New Orleans
10. HI New York – New York

Best Hostels in North America
1. Montreal Central, Montreal
2. ACBB Hostel Niagara, Niagara Falls
3. USA Hostels San Francisco, San Francisco

Best Large Hostels Worldwide
1. Travellers House – Lisbon
2. Living Lounge Hostel – Lisbon
3. Yes! Lisbon Hostel – Lisbon
4. Hostel Mostel – Sofia
5. Friendly Fun Franks Backpackers Hostel – Riga
6. Montreal Central – Montreal
7. Han Tang Inn Youth Hostel – Xi’an
8. Home – Lisbon
9. EastSeven Berlin Hostel – Berlin
10. Castle Rock Hostel – Edinburgh

Best Small Hostels Worldwide
1. Lisbon Lounge Hostel – Lisbon
2. Rossio Hostel – Lisbon
3. Greg & Tom Hostel – Krakow
4. Academy Hostel – Florence
5. Rivoli Cinema Hostel – Porto
6. Hostel of the Sun – Naples
7. Oporto Poets Hostel – Porto
8. Oasis Backpackers Hostel Granada – Granada
9. BackHome Kuala Lumpar – Kuala Lumpur
10. Sant Jordi Diagonal Hostel – Barcelona

GadlingTV’s Travel Talk – Thailand Part 2: Khao San Road

Gadling TV’s Travel Talk, episode 32 – Click above to watch video after the jump

Travel Talk is back! After our fall hiatus we are excited to bring you our greatest adventure yet: Thailand.

From the vibrant heart of Bangkok to the remote countryside, we traveled by foot, car, boat, motorbike, ox cart and elephant to savor the the splendor of ancient temples, the energy of the muay thai ring, the serenity of rural life, and every single spicy bite of Thai cuisine. We’ll be bringing it all to you in the coming weeks as part of our special 12-part feature: Travel Talk Thailand.

In this second episode, our hunger for Bangkok night life overcomes our exhaustion and we and hit the streets, or roads… Come with us to explore Southeast Asia’s most notorious strip and meet the wild cast of characters who spend their nights wandering the infamous Khoa San Road.

If you have any questions or comments about Travel Talk, you can email us at talk AT gadling DOT com.

Subscribe via iTunes:
[iTunes] Subscribe to the Show directly in iTunes (M4V).
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Hosts: Stephen Greenwood & Aaron Murphy-Crews
Special guest: Late night hooligans.
Produced, Edited, and Directed by: Stephen Greenwood & Aaron Murphy-Crews
Special thanks: Tourism Authority of Thailand, Thai Air, Conrad Bangkok

Travel Talk took Thailand by storm on invitation from the Tourism Authority of Thailand. No editorial content was guaranteed and Aaron & Stephen were free to openly share all adventures that they embarked upon.

Top ten hostels in Europe

Staying in a hostel in Europe is a rite of passage for budget-conscious travelers making their way around the continent. This is particularly the case for budget-conscious younger travelers. Here are ten hostels across Europe that either receive particularly high user-review grades or are notorious enough in one or another way to be noteworthy.

St. Christopher’s at the Winston, Amsterdam, Netherlands. The Winston presents itself as “an interactive museum of modern art.” However it refers to itself, it is without question one of the most dynamic budget hotels in Europe, with a few hostel-style dormitory rooms on offer. It’s got a restaurant on the premises and a nearby nightclub, and is aesthetically far more exciting that your average hostel.

Långholmen, Stockholm, Sweden. Ever wanted to spend the night in a prison? OK, a former prison? Långholmen is a rehabbed prison located just a stone’s throw from Stockholm’s supercool Södermalm nabe. Fantastic, and not as austere as you might expect.

Good Bye Lenin, Krakow, Poland. Tucked away in a corner of Krakow’s history-rich Kazimierz neighborhood, Good Bye Lenin replays the aesthetics of Polish socialism in a cheery, friendly space. Very atmospheric and fun.

Balmers, Interlaken, Switzerland. In operation for over a century now, family-run Balmers is Switzerland’s oldest hostel. Balmers offers dormitory rooms, private rooms, and tent accommodations. And lots of fresh air, obviously.

Meininger, London, United Kingdom. The Meininger chain of hostels can be found mostly in big cities across Germany and Austria. The London outpost, though not particularly British in spirit, is a welcome, well-scrubbed addition to London’s dreary hostel scene.Oops! Hostel, Paris, France. Far more stylish than your average hostel, Oops! injects a blast of fun energy in Paris’ Latin Quarter. Hotel interiors wizard Philippe Maidenberg is responsible for Oops!’s fresh interior design.

Hostel Archi Rossi, Florence, Italy. One of the best loved hostels in Florence, Hostel Archi Rossi offers free wi-fi, free breakfast, and complimentary walking tours of Florence. Archi Rossi is very close to the Santa Maria Novella train station, too.

Kadir’s Tree Houses, Olympos, Turkey. Near Antalya on Turkey’s Mediterranean coast, Kadir’s Tree Houses is a sprawling complex of bungalows, cabins, dormitory rooms, and campground. Kadir’s provides a great range of services (laundry and a travel agency, to name but two) and also includes both breakfast and dinner in its nightly rate.

The Pink Palace, Corfu, Greece. One of Europe’s most notorious party hostels, the Pink Palace is a garish temple of hedonism, just possibly the best place in the world to play spin the bottle in five languages. Woohoo!

Hotel 4 Youth, Berlin, Germany. There are two Hotels 4 Youth in Berlin. The branch on Schönhauser Allee gets especially high marks. 133 beds, conical pillows, and a few nice extras (seminar rooms, a pool room) make this a top Berlin hostel. Location in hip, bohemian Prenzlauer Berg is also a big plus.

(Image: foilman / Flickr)

Inside Sweden’s Jumbo Hostel

Your eyes do not deceive you, that’s a bed in the cockpit of a commercial airliner. Or former commercial airliner, I should say. What you’re looking at is the top front room of Stockholm’s Jumbo Hostel, a converted Boeing 747 jumbo jet that’s been remodeled to form one of the most unique hostels in the entire planet.

Parked just off of the tarmac outside of Stockholm’s Arlanda airport, the Jumbo Hostel features a series of bunked rooms on either side of the “aisle” moving from the center to the back of the aircraft. A few rooms, including that pictured above and the one in the tail cone come with ensuite bathrooms, but in true hostel style, there are scattered, shared bathrooms throughout the craft.

At the nose of the airplane and in the aft of the second floor, the Jumbo Hostel features two common areas, the latter of which is adorned with actual seats from the first class cabin of an airliner. The common area in front also doubles as a place to sit down, grab a few snacks, have a drink and swap a few stories with the other bewildered residents.

As far as comfort, our room in the tail cone featured two narrow beds positioned near each other, a bed stand and a small television mounted to the wall – not lavish by any standards, but quite common and almost cozy for a hostel.

Rooms at the Jumbo start at about $60USD per night. Be forewarned that there aren’t a ton of food options near the property except for the local snacks and the Radisson Blu across the street, so if you’re going to need a meal then plan ahead. You can reach the hostel from Arlanda by taking the 14 bus from the public transit area.


Note, some logistical help in executing this trip came from the Sweden tourism board. Itineraries and adventures were our own creation.