Review: Tokyo Central Youth Hostel

sunset from tokyo central yh

I am usually one to plan well in advance for trips, but one of my travel buddies is the totally opposite (probably just because my worrying entertains him). So when he finally bought his tickets to Japan, I jumped onto finding a place to stay in Tokyo. The challenge was that it was two weeks before the trip and it was scheduled during the popular cherry blossom season. Every hotel or nice hostel was booked, but luckily the Tokyo Central Youth Hostel had some open space!

We had a weird situation in which we would need a room for a night, then be gone for a week to Okinawa and then come back for three nights before going back home to Seattle. Most hostels and hotels offered either space for the first leg or second, but not both. I wanted to stay at the same location for both stays so we could keep some of our luggage there while we were in Okinawa. Tokyo Central YH was able to get us rooms on both legs and free luggage storage! The only downside was that we had to stay in separate dorm rooms for the second leg because all of the group rooms were booked. I was okay with that as long as most of our needs were taken care of.

main area of tokyo central yh

The Tokyo Central YH is located in a central and awesome district of Tokyo, but finding it is a challenge. The hostel is in a big business building near the Iidabashi train station, where you must weave through shopping stalls and grocery markets to get from the station to the hostel. I was lost right away but my travel buddies were already there and were able to find me at Iidabashi train station. Once you get there though, you are greeted with the most beautiful skyline view of Tokyo! There is no need to waste money to go up the Tokyo Skytree or Tokyo Tower for a great viewpoint! I particularly loved sitting on the ledge in my dorm room to watch the red Japanese sun setting over one of my favorite metropolitan cities. Here are my pros and cons about staying at the Tokyo Central Youth Hostel…

tokyo central yh dorm

– Beautiful skyline view of Tokyo from most rooms
– Clean and organized dorm rooms
– Each dorm bed has curtains to shut out light and maintain privacy
– Lots of brochures and helpful staff for information on things to do in Tokyo
– Centrally located in big city
– Ofuros (Japanese soaking baths) are clean and good cultural experience for foreign tourists

tokyo central yh dorm bed

– Difficult to find the hostel (There needs to be signs guiding tourists from the train station)
– Had strict entrance curfews (we had to pull an all-nighter at a karaoke bar because we missed curfew. Long story…) and when we could use the ofuros
– Have to give room key to the front desk every time you leave

I must give a shout-out to the staff at the Tokyo Central Youth Hostel because one staff member got there an hour early before he was supposed to workto sign us out and lead us out of the building so we could make our early morning flight. Incredible customer service!

Dorm beds at the Tokyo Central Youth Hostel run at around $35 per night.