Over the last few years I’ve stayed in quite a number of hostels (I think it was over 50 last year alone!) – most of which are fairly standard and simply serve the purpose of having somewhere to crash.
Occasionally though I find myself in hostel that really make my stay in a place and I recommend them to backpackers the world over.
Raglan Backpackers is one of those hostels.
Situated in the sleepy hippy surf town of Raglan, RBP is more like a house than a hostel and it has the care free, communal living vibe I’d expect from couch surfing or a guest house more than a hostel.
Everyone I met during my stay was super chilled out and friendly. The staff and owners (who are on site alot) are more than happy to chat, recommend things to do and help you out if you need anything.
The rooms throughout are pretty small but comfy and you’ll sleep well here without a doubt. The size of the rooms is perfect to be honest – as the 2 big communal lounges are the focus of relaxing and socialising here and I spent very little time in my room as a result.
One of the major upside of RBP are the facilities on offer. Hot tub, sauna, kayaks, hammocks, bikes, fishing rods and even a sailing boat are all available through the hostel….and the best bit?!
They’re completely FREE!
Now that’s some backpacker awesomeness right there!
…the only slight let down is the lack of wifi. There is however paid PC internet on site and you can get free wifi at the library which is less than 30seconds walk away!
There’s also not one, but 2 fully equipped kitchens which I think for cleanliness, space and equipment would be hard to beat. There’s more than enough pots, pans, cutlery and kitchenware for most of the hostel to use at the same time…and best of all it all works too!
There’s nothing worse than trying to make a meal after a hard day in the surf than to find broken kitchen facilities!
Location wise it’s right on the waterfront and a 1 minute stroll into town for pubs, supermarkets and cafes. When it comes to the surfing beaches it is about a 10minute drive to the ocean – however they run 2 beach shuttles a day (at the bargain price of $2 return) or you can easily hitch hike.
If you don’t already have surf kit with you you can rent a board and a wetsuit for $25 – which is insanely cheap for NZ!
If you’re looking for somewhere to base yourself to recharge your batteries, hit the surf or simply kick back and relax in true Kiwi style then I strongly recommend you book yourself into Raglan Backpackers, from $24NZ per night for a shared dorm and $66NZ for a private twin it’s great value too.
…and it’s firmly in my top hostels worldwide!
Value – 4/5
Facilities – 4.5/5 (it does lack wifi afterall!)
Cleanliness – 5/5
Atmosphere – 4/5
Overall – 4.5/5
**please note – I received a free stay at Raglan Backpackers, but rest assured all opinions are honest and my own**