If you’re visiting the Great Ocean Road, chances are, you will be staying overnight in the centrally located Port Campbell. I mean, the Great Ocean Road is something that needs more than one night to see. Whether you are taking a tour from Melbourne or planning to drive, your best bet is to stay overnight along the coast.
I joined a backpacker’s tour to see the Great Ocean Road which included accommodation
The funny thing is that it didn’t click that we booked a backpacker’s tour until I got to the hostel! Yeah yeah, how could you not know…you’re probably asking. For starters, they never called it a backpacker’s tour, but I should have known based on the accommodation. But I have to say, they couldn’t pick a better hostel for this tour.
Not only has this hostel won awards, but it is the only hostel in Australia with its own brewery.
The ambiance at Port Campbell Hostel Great Ocean Road
The ambiance is hip, fun with lots of colour and modern decor. There are a lot of places to relax in the common areas, making it easy for solo travellers to make new friends.
The room at Port Campbell Hostel Great Ocean Road
We stayed in a ten-person dorm room which was pretty clean and well laid out. There was no place to lock our stuff though, but luckily we had luggage that we could easily secure to the beds. Everyone had their expensive cameras and phones lying around and they didn’t seem to care. The door to our dorm room was open the whole time, despite signs warning guests to close the dorm room when leaving. I suppose it could be due to the lack of hostel experience in our group, who knows, but looking the door did not seem to cross their mind.
There are private rooms available for small groups and couples at Port Campbell Hostel Great Ocean Road
This hostel has a lot of private rooms with ensuite bathroom options. Unfortunately, we booked our tour last minute so we had to stay in one of the big dorm rooms. Boo. We tried to get our own private room but the hostel had no availability. That’s the price we pay for booking our tour at the last minute when we changed our plans to stay in Chiang Mai, I suppose. Fortunately, my fears of staying in a dorm weren’t so bad at all. Our roommates were polite, quiet and the bedding was very clean.
The downside with this hostel is that guests have to set up their own bedsheets and pillow sheets. In the morning, we have to remove the sheets and leave them in a bin. Maybe that’s standard in hostels, but I paid a pretty penny for this tour and was not expecting to have to make and remove my bedding.
There were also no towels, but luckily we came prepared with one towel
What I wasn’t prepared for was the snorer. Ugh.
Since I’m a super light sleeper, I tried to pick a room where there’s a small chance of having a snorer. I tried to avoid anyone who smoked because I knew they would snore like there’s no tomorrow. In our group of ten, there were no smokers, but right away, I saw the man who could potentially be a snorer.
And unfortunately, I was right. No one in my dorm room slept a wink that night, save for the snorer of course.
Five minutes after we turned off the light to sleep, this guy started a loud orchestra that kept the whole room up. The thing is, he changed his rhythm so much that even if you adjusted to his snoring, it would change later in the night. I prepared myself for potential snorers and brought headphones to block the noise. Somehow, I managed to sleep for three hours until the man decided to wake up.
The man then woke me (and everyone else!) up at 5 am by rummaging through his stuff. I don’t know what he was looking for but he spent a good thirty minutes rummaging in the darkness and making a lot of noise. By 6 am, I gave up sleeping and decided to get a head start on showering.
The bathrooms, toilets and sinks at Port Campbell Hostel Great Ocean Road
There’s a weird layout when it comes to the toilets, showers and sinks. The shower seemed to be fine, except that the lights will shut off on you if you didn’t shower fast enough. And by fast enough, I mean the lights shut off after what feels like five minutes.
But the toilets were set up in a way where there was no privacy, and you have to walk way down the hall to wash your hands.
Ugh… a germaphobe’s nightmare. Imagine hearing someone do their business in the middle of the hallway (it’s wiiiiiiiide open!) and then they have to open a few doors and walk quite a bit just to wash their hands. It’s obvious the design is this way so that everyone can shower and use the sinks without having to wait.
Because I was one of the first to get up in the morning, I noticed that the bathroom was in a complete mess. Whoever used the bathroom in the middle of the night seemed to go through the toilets as if there was a thunderstorm. Puddles of water were all over the ground and the toilet was in a complete mess. The people who used the bathroom at night seemed to not know how to flush, leaving yellow water everywhere. It was gross. But the hostel cleaned the mess shortly after.
The Wi-Fi situation at Port Campbell Hostel Great Ocean Road
The spotty Wi-Fi only worked on the first floor, which was a bit of a bummer. I wanted to share some stories on Instagram but struggled to do so since the internet was slow.
The communal kitchen at Port Campbell Hostel Great Ocean Road
A big part of staying in hostels is the ability to prepare your own meals so that you can save money. A crappy kitchen can really take away from the benefit of staying in a hostel. Luckily, this was not the case at Port Campbell Hostel. The kitchen is big, clean and has lots of space for people to prepare their own meals.
The common areas at Port Campbell Hostel Great Ocean Road
The hostel has a lot of space to lounge around and lots of games for guests to play. The bar area also makes it very easy to meet other guests.
The service at Port Campbell Hostel Great Ocean Road
I didn’t have much interaction with the staff so I can’t really comment on their level of professionalism. There aren’t any overnight staff and the last check-in is around 9:30 pm so keep that in mind if you think you’ll arrive late.
The location of Port Campbell Hostel Great Ocean Road
The location of Port Campbell Hostel is incredible. Our tour guide initially took us back to the hostel to freshen up and have dinner before driving us out to the Twelve Apostles for sunset. The drive to the Twelve Apostles is short and probably takes no more than ten minutes. She later drove us out to the middle of some remote area where we could go stargazing at night. Again, the drive was short and easy. Being so close to all the main areas makes it super easy to squeeze in a lot of things to do and see in a short time.
Port Campbell Hostel Great Ocean Road offers good value for budget travellers
Having never stayed in a hostel before this experience, Port Campbell did an excellent job in easing me into the hostel life. All the apprehension I had about staying in a hostel before this trip went away because it’s not that bad! As well, Port Campbell Hostel prepared me well for my trip to New Zealand where most of our stays were in hostels.
This hostel definitely sets high expectations for what a good hostel should be and what I can expect when booking at a high-quality hostel.
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