This flophouse-turned-hostel right off of Central Park is generally a good bet, with clean dorms sporting four to 12 bunks in co-ed and single-sex configurations. This is a great place to meet other travelers, with free nightly activities (comedy and movie nights, pub crawls, summer barbecues). The downstairs lounge, aka 'the dungeon', has a pool table, couches and big-screen TV.

There's also an area for eating, an accessible rooftop and several small terraces.