To work out the best Rotorua backpackers accommodation - for you - start with this handy guide. Once the accommodation is sorted you can relax into planning the fun stuff - hooyah! (As Jamie Fox would say.)
Most Rotorua backpackers are centrally located and within easy walking distance of supermarkets, the i-Site (info centre & long distance bus services), Government Gardens & Museum, Lakefront, Kuirau Park, Ohinemutu, and some tour operators. Te Puia and Whakarewarewa are further out at 2-3km.
The price guides quoted are not a good measure of actual prices. They change and special deals are frequent.
Something else, Rotorua backpackers accommodation providers often have good deals for local activities and attractions. Much better than official outlets.
1140 Hinemoa St
--- 4,6,8 bed dorms - mixture of bunks & beds
--- Private twin & double rooms
--- Ensuite rooms
Price range: $33 - $61
Rock Solid Rotorua Backpackers would have to be the number one backpackers in Rotorua. Well regarded within the backpacking fraternity, it has a solid reputation.
Bright, modern, contemporary. Spacious too. The building also houses a climbing wall and the quirky Basement Cinema. These are well-utilised by locals.
It's located in the middle of town near the main intersection of Tutanekai & Hinemoa Streets (closed off). We call the closed off portion the City Focus and you'll find a manned information center there.
Supermarkets can be found within a couple of blocks as well as the Central Mall, bars and cafes. Restaurants are nearby too.
1271 Hinemaru St
--- Dorms: 10, 8, 6, 4 rooms & 4 bed females
--- Single rooms
--- Twin & Double rooms
--- Ensuite rooms
Price range $23 - $62
Oops, Crash Palace is a different colour now. Blue. It's a popular place for backpackers to stay. It's off the main road so quieter than some of the others.
The interior is clean, bright and funky. Best claim to fame? Crash Palace won't be beaten on price. $10 anyone? A few rooms go up for grabs at that price so I guess you've got to get in early.
Walk out the door, look to the right and there's Pak 'n' Save, one of the local supermarkets. One block away is the Government Gardens and Polynesian Pools. You won't need that with your own hot tub though, will you?
4 Union St
--- Dorms sleep 7 & 4
--- Family 4 bed with ensuite
--- Double, single rooms
--- Double & twin with ensuite
Price range $52 - $80
This Rotorua backpackers is more like a home away from home than a backpackers. An Eco-friendly home at that. Located on the fringe of the city centre, the Funky Green Voyager is spread out over several properties. More like a residential street, the block is a blend of motels, apartments (private), flats and residential housing - not Rotorua's best looking street.
It's a short walk to the Central Mall and food outlets. If you're planning on shopping in the town centre, (far side of the mall), it would pay to use a vehicle if you have one.
In case you're specifically looking for Hennessey's Irish Bar with Blarneys Rock Backpackers on top, it doesn't exist anymore. The building was so old it has been pulled down with a brand new larger Hennessey's Irish Bar set to open in Nov 2016, minus a backpackers.
1278 Haupapa St
--- Dorms 6 bed mixed
--- Dorms 4 bed male/female/mixed
--- Private 3 bed
--- Private Double bed
--- Private Double bed - ensuite
--- Twin private - ensuite
Price range $48 - $81
Sleeping up to 180, the YHA can cater for large groups. If you don't mind a lot of people (at times) and want a modern look, it may be for you. But, apart from the spacious kitchen/dining area and outside areas, others have found the sleeping quarters on the small side with only basic amenities. It's no frills folks.
Located on a side street, this particular Rotorua backpackers is a 2 block walk to the main bus stop and 4 blocks to the nearest supermarket.
Best feature of the YHA would have to be its proximity to Kuirau Park - across the road. Free thermal activity and the Flea Market on a Saturday morning. You can pick up a tasty breakfast, fruit and veges, second-hand stuff and there's an assortment of other stalls too.
1080 Eruera St
--- Dorms 4 & 6 beds
--- Single, twin & double rooms
Price range $32 - $60
The best feature of Rotorua Planet Backpackers would be its proximity
to the supermarket. Fast food outlets are close too, as in 100m. The
Government Gardens, Polynesian Spa and museum are nearby.
It's a mixture of short and long term accommodation so you will be mixing it up with locals. That can add value to your experience. The amenities are basic but still everything you need.
1198-1204 Pukuatua St
--- Dorm 4 bed mixed
--- Twin & double rooms
--- Twin & double - ensuites
--- Family/group units sleep 3-6
Price range $48 - $70
A lovely looking motel cum backpackers, Astray is a comfortable stay in the heart of the city. It's close to Eat Streat, cafes and other restaurants as well as shops. Ronnies, next door, is a cheap eat.
The single rooms are on the small side but it gets better as you go up.
I've always thought it a pity about the location. Outside Astray is a major bus stop, which is fine because you also get the shuttles stopping here. The downside is across the road. The (WINZ) Work & Income NZ and Child, Youth & Family building attracts a lot of riff-raff to the area and of course they are catching the buses too. I haven't seen any complaints about this though so maybe the fact you're inside a compound makes the difference.
33A Tarewa Rd
--- Dorms sleep 4 & 6
--- Triple room sleeps 3
--- Double sleeps 2
--- Twin sleeps 2
--- Single sleeps 1
Price range $56 - $73
People looking for peace and quiet won't go wrong at the Oasis Rotorua backpackers. This two-story building is located on the fringe of the city in a park-like setting. It may be a bit out of the way for solo backpackers but it's ideal for families or groups.
If you have an aversion to walking more than a few hundred meters a car would be a must to get into town. It's a 4min, 2km drive to the i-Site for any long haul bus services.
The Aquatic Centre (public swimming pools) are very close as is Kuirau Park. Across the other side of Kuirau Park is the central city.
1193 Fenton St
--- Dorms 6 & 10 mixed, cosy
--- Dorms 6 bed females
--- Doubles sleep 2
--- Twins sleep 2
Price range $38 - $53
Think compact, cheap and cheerful for this Rotorua backpackers. Plus, you couldn't get much closer to the information centre and bus stop than this. Fall out of bed, you're there.
Across the road is the mammoth new police station and the Sir Howard Morrison Performing Arts Centre (that's your view). Behind that the Government Gardens and museum. A short walk and you're at the Lakefront.
Cafes and takeaways run adjacent to Downtown Backpackers; includes Turkish food, roasts and typical cafe fare for NZ. Closest supermarket (Pak 'n' Save) is a 4 block walk.