Hobo tourism/Overnight stays in long intercontinental journeys/In an abandoned building

Sleeping in an abandoned building is one of the many ways for a traveler to get a night's rest using the hobo tourism methods.
Place for accommodation — empty buildings intended for demolition, with dismantled window and door blocks — if desired, you can find in any country of the world.

Russian traveller Viktor Pinchuk in a dilapidated apartment near a nature reserve Lambir Hills, Sarawak, Malaysia.
(Photo from book "Six months by islands... and countries", p. 30)

Pros and cons


Sometimes such objects (due to the fact that the residents have been evicted for a long time and the structure is not protected from the destructive effects of precipitation) are in an emergency condition, there may be a pungent smell of dampness inside. At the same time, despite the above disadvantages, this method has its positive sides. For example, unlike overnight accommodation at an existing construction site, where the working day begins in the morning, there is no need to get up with the first crowing of the roosters. It is easy to find a hiding place in the ruins where you can hide backpack (keeping your valuables with you), allowing you to wander around lightly during the day.



When using the method, the same standard set of equipment is used as for overnight stays in the open air and in cemeteries:

  • Roll mat & polyethylene oilcloth twice the size (so that the lower plane of the mat does not get dirty),
  • inflatable pillow,
  • Bedspread or blanket.

A practical example

  • Events of 2019, Port Vila, Vanuatu (see "Gallery, photo 1")

"On the main street — empty government building with a sign at the entrance. It's not hard to get in, there are no guards, but there are a lot of people around: can't do it without being noticed. A second option — an abandoned house on the outskirts of town — proved unfit for the night: there were puddles in the rooms (a consequence of heavy rain and a roof that had been blown off). "Bad luck, will have return to Pango," — thought, when a heavy downpour came. Ran towards the bus stop. The door of building was ajar in one of the alleys, darkness behind it. I went in, took out a torch. A room with a high ceiling looked like an assembly hall. Meanwhile, the rain outside had intensified, drumming furiously on the slate roof. Chose place to sleep in the far corner, where an extra, back door was covered by roller shutters. The room had not been used for a long time, so there was almost no chance of anyone coming in. To avoid attracting attention, left the front door unlocked, and hung my wet clothes on the nails I had hammered in [1].


Illustrations from the books::
Pinchuk Viktor "Two months of wandering and 14 days behind bars". — Simferopol: Brovko, 2020. —116 p. — ISBN 978-5-9909912-5-5 (photo #2)
Pinchuk Viktor "Six months by islands... and countries. — Simferopol: Brovko, 2016. — 216 p. — ISBN 978-5-9908234-0-2 (photo #3,5)


  1. Pinchuk, Viktor. Two months of wandering and 14 days behind bars (in Russian). Russia: Brovko. p. 63-64. ISBN 978-5-9909912-5-5.