Cape Byron YHA – 8.7/10
Corner of Byron Street and Middleton Street
|Length of Stay||3 nights|
|Room Type||Double bed in 6 person maisonette dorm|
|Cost||$43 pp (YHA e-pack used for first 2 nights)|
The whole hostel was really chilled, and the polar opposite of Nomads Byron Bay, where we’d stayed the previous two nights. It was family friendly, so there were a few kids running around and on occasion, we could hear children crying. There were signs around the hostel, advising guests to stop making noise from 10pm, but the pool area had to be vacated at 9pm. If you want to relax rather than party, this is the place to come. The pool was always full of people, and the hammocks in use – a bit of music would have made it perfect!
The hostel was kept really clean and tidy. Our room, in particular, was spotless, but this was due to one of the guests being a massive clean freak (he had everyone take their shoes off and leave them outside before coming in, and had you make your bed in the morning…). Our upstairs area was clean and surprisingly sand free, considering how close to the beach it was. Sheets smelt and looked fresh, and the bed itself was very comfy. The bathrooms were cleaned to a decent standard a few times a day, and bins were dotted around to ensure guests had no reason to leave rubbish behind. The pool had the odd bits of leaves and bugs in there, but that was expected with trees surrounding it.
Cape Byron YHA’s saltwater pool was exactly what we needed on a hot day! There were 3 poolside hammocks and around 10 sun loungers, so always somewhere available to chill. The pool area closed at 9pm though, which was a tad earlier than we’d have liked. You could hire a surfboard or bikes for a small charge, or a free body-board from the front desk. Fully equipped kitchen (fridges, shelf space, kettles etc). Opposite reception and the pool, there was an indoor lounge area with a TV, bookshelf, sofas and storage room for luggage. As it didn’t seem to close, some people would even sleep in there. Bathrooms were on each level, with 3x toilet and 3x shower cubicles, always something vacant.
Not quite as central as Nomads Byron Bay, but still very good location! It was only a short walk down to the high street (Jonson St), and less than 5 minutes to the beach (perfect if you want to do the Cape Byron Lighthouse walk). We liked that it was far enough away from clubs and bars that you don’t hear the music throughout the night, which is a bonus.
We were surprised to find only 2 bunk beds in the room when we arrived, and a set of stairs from the front door to a second level. It was a 6 person dorm, with 4 beds below and a double bed upstairs (like a maisonette) for two people. Our bed was private from the beds below, and had a big locker with two sections, big enough for your day bag and valuable items. The room had its own light and two electric fans, one wall mounted and one free-standing, which kept us cool throughout the night. Really nice amount of privacy from the people staying downstairs! The beds were made upon arrival which was another really nice touch, and the duvet cover has a funky pattern, which made it feel less like a hostel and more like a friend’s home. Not much floor space around the bed, but we were able to tuck stuff underneath throughout our stay. The mirror was broken (it had a crack), and the reading light above the bed didn’t work, but they are the only two small negatives about the room.
No faults here – reception was right at the entrance. People could come and go during the day, but in the evening (around 9/10pm) the front gates would lock and you’d need your key to get in. That same key gave you access to your room. We had an older roommate, who appeared to be staying in the hostel long-term, and he kept leaving the door open and wandering off, but there’s not much the hostel themselves could’ve done about that.
We met a different staff member at reception almost every day. They were friendly and happy to answer questions. No one stood out in particular.
We’d definitely stay here again, the hostel was a great location and a really chilled break for us. We’d pay the extra for the double bed in the shared dorm again, definitely worth it for the extra bit of privacy!