Tourists stay in hostels typically because they are cheap. Websites even advertise their "cheap" hostel rates knowing that this is exactly what tourists on a budget are looking for. At the same time, hostels can be remarkably elegant, almost like hotels, in spite of the low price for staying at them. There are even private and family rooms at some of the best hostels in Guatemala.
Even though you are travelling from Canada with a couple of youngsters in tow, you do not need to spend your nights in hotels. A lot of tourists think this is a necessary precaution to avoid:
The reality is that you can get dirt, crime, and weirdos in a hotel or motel just as easily as you can in a hostel. You just have to read the information about several places and make a wise decision.
Travellers do not have to do this alone, however. They get help from Canadians who have had their own experiences in Guatemala and posted them at Canuckabroad.com.
There are not a lot of hostels in Guatemala, at least not hostels posted online. There could be a few unofficial ones, but try to stay away from those. Most of the nicest ones are located in Antigua, along with several in Guatemala City. Panajachel and Flores are also home to a couple. This is still a reasonable number of choices. When they are laid out on a map, you can decide how convenient a location is. See below:
Typical things parents hope to see at a hostel when they are travelling with young children include a shared washer and dryer. There is no getting around it: toddlers wet themselves during long bus, car, or plane rides. Potty train them all you like but the excitement will show. Diapers also leak, especially when it is highly inconvenient.
In general, visitors are seeking:
Otherwise, cheap really is the watch word. Then again, in Guatemala you can pay for the most expensive room at a hostel and still save a heap of money. It is inexpensive to stay here no matter which hostel you choose.