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Hostels are a HUGE part of the journey. It’s where you meet people who could easily become your next travel partner for the next however many months. It’s where you get to party the night away or chill in the tv rooms or get a cosy early night before a long productive day.

It’s where you find out most of the ‘need to knows’ and ‘where to go’s’ for the destination you’re staying in from the friendly reception staff. It’s also probably one of the best places to book day trips and activities and hours through your hostel, you usually get a good deal!
Being a non drinker and not a huge party go’er I tend to look for a hostel that is social but not crazy. Somewhere usually quirky with a chilled, funky vibe.

Here’s a handful of my favourite Aussie hostels I’ve had the pleasure of staying at.
Starting with number five…

5. Base | Sydney

– Being the first hostel I stayed at in Australia I obviously thought it was cool straight away. Mainly because id just come from travelling for the last 48 hours and I was in much need of a shower and a nap. The lobby had these colourful vintage chairs and sofas and it was just a comfy place to chill out. They had a club next door that was part of the hostel called The Scary Canary which put something on every night from wet T-shirt competitions to quizzes. They also did really cheap yummy meals, perfect for the broke backpacker!
Throughout the week they put on city tours and BBQ’s at Bondi Beach for the backpackers. Staying here is a little on the pricey side but what do you expect for in the middle of Sydney and really a close walk to darling harbour, but their duvets are really cosy and their toilets and showers are decent!


4. Pippies Beach House | Rainbow Beach

– We stayed at Pippies because it was included in our Fraser Island tour. It was really nicely spread out. It was like walking into a home but it was really welcoming. We got in mega early after a night bus and couldn’t check in for a few hours but they had a movie room with Crash Bandicoot on the play station so I was already sold just by that. Who doesn’t love Crash!
The staff were friendly and always there to answer anything about the Fraser tour. The rooms were pretty basic with not many plug sockets but it didn’t really affect our stay.
I’d definitely go with Pippies for a Fraser Island tour! Incredible!


3. Tropic Days | Cairns

– If you’re looking for somewhere to completely zone out and relax then this is the hostel for you. It’s sister hostel is called Travellers Oasis which is again just beautiful from what you can see walking passed. If hammocks, Buddha ornaments and a hippie, homely vibe is your thing, head there. Being slightly out of town it’s an ideal place for the not so party go’ers. If you want a party head to Gilligan’s.



2. The Pickled Frog | Hobart

– In the heart of Tasmania’s capital, the pickled frog is a hostel not to miss, purely because it’s bright green so you literally cannot miss it!
It used to be an old pub and the owners have converted it into something completely out-of-this world-crazy.

The hall ways and rooms are decorated with different themes like doctor who and Alice in wonderland etc. With some toilet wall inspirational graffiti and corridors that get smaller as you walk down then, you can’t miss out staying here if you’re in Hobart. And for all you animal lovers they have a beautiful malamute husky dog which is just adorable and roams the communal areas.
If that hasn’t sold it purely on the fantastic dog then there’s something wrong with you. Jokes.

And finally… My absolute favourite!

1. Arts Factory | Byron Bay

– We’ve all seen the Inbetweeners second movie when they come on a wild and messy trip to Australia (mainly aimed at the Brits) before our own trip down under. Think back to the scene they were around the camp fire with the dreadlocked dude and the guitar and that’s where this is. It’s hippie heaven and the most magical, alive place I’ve ever been to. I stayed here on my birthday and booked to stay in the big Tipi with a big log fire in the middle which was such a lovely touch to our stay. I could’ve lived there forever. Everyone was so down to earth, bubbly and interesting and there was ALWAYS something going on. They had a small cafe and smoothie bar onsite and just over the car park there is a great venue called The Buddha Bar Brewery where they have the best open mic nights.
You can stay in so many different types of rooms like the tipis, private cabins, wacky painted dorms, tents, you name it.
Get stuck in with the yoga sessions and bracelet making and nature walk workshops and enjoy the swimming pool in the hot summer days. You can always book loads of tours through their own travel desk.
I can’t praise this place enough so if camp fires, hippies, hammocks, yoga and genuinely nice and happy people is your thing, you NEED to stay here.

Happy travels 🙂

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Laurie McColgin /

Hi, I'm Laurie. I'm just another young adult escaping the scary grown up world by travelling, working, and experiencing some pretty rad things. I've been working and travelling the vast corners of the planet on and off for the last 7 years and I've had a fair amount of mostly ups, a few downs and incredible experiences. I'm currently in Australia for the good part of two years and here are some of my Aussie stories and thoughts from one backpacker to another. Happy travels, Laurie :)

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