YHA NZ: Queenstown, Wanaka and Taupo Sometimes when you are tired of sleeping in a van, you will want to spend some money on a proper bed hahaha. I did a month’s roadtrip in a humble campervan, slept in campgrounds, weird places like a museum’s carpark (Story for another time) and it could get a little hard at times especially during winter. Hence, staying in hostels will be a great break from the camping life, where you get to be under a duvet, springy mattress, hot shower, and a full fledged kitchen to cook your meals. I always liked staying in hostels under Hosteling International, as I do not have to worry about the cleanliness, noise, and rowdy people as every hostel under them has a certain quality to meet. Most of my trips I’ve always booked under them even when I’m not sponsored, and one of the best hostels for me was in Utretch and Paris during my Europe trip last year. YHA Lakefront Queenstown In Queenstown, there are two hostels, one in town and YHA Lakefront which is a 10 minutes walk to town center. I stayed in a 4 person mixed dorm, and it has plenty of space, a huge locker for your belongings, and a personal usb port at every bed. There’s no ensuite bathroom in dorms, but the common bathroom was huge, clean and complete with hairdryers. 🙂 On the second floor, you get a huge kitchen, with plenty of dining spaces, and also a bar top to look at the lake while you feed yourself. There are also complimentary spices like salt, pepper, herbs and chili flakes! And on the other side, it’s a common lounge with plenty of couches and tables and plug points, and I saw many people around especially at night. Made a hugeeeee mistake of not taking photos of the lounge hahaha. Only found those 2 above. 😞😞😞 The good Many offsite (free!) parking Fully equipped kitchen and huge dining area Lakeview all day, everyday The not so good Not in the middle of town No ensuite bathrooms for most of the dorms Price starts from NZD34 | More info here YHA Queenstown Central The name of the hostel really reflects its location, located between Shotover Street and Lakefront, and surrounded by liquor store, and bars (ahem), cafes, restaurants, shops like Kathmandu, UGG and many more. It’s good because it’s near to everything, but it’s bad if you are in a budget hahaha cause you will definitely want to spend (I think I have a tiny shopaholic syndrome in me) some money like me. Every room here comes with ensuite bathroom, TV, wardrobe a small coffee table and dressing table. I was given a 4 person dorm room, and although the interior is a little bit old as it was refurbished from an old hotel, it is still well maintained. Because it’s such a huge hostel with many rooms, the kitchen, lounge and dining area is all in one space, overlooking the lake. I was a little sad because of the size of the common area, but it’s adequate. The kitchen is fully equipped, it has long tables to dine on, and comfortable couches with a TV and boardgames. The good Right in the middle of town Only 2 minute walk to the famous Fergburger Every room comes with ensuite and TV Convenient for backpackers with no car Gorgeous Queenstown town view from the kitchen The not so good Small common lounge, hence might be hard to meet new people Feels like huge apartment with many rooms in one alley No onsite parking Price starts from NZD40 | More info here YHA Wanaka: Purple Cow Ah, how do I even began. I love this place so much it almost felt like home. Not sure if it’s because I spent the most time here, but I felt really comfortable and really enjoyed my stay. Room was spacious with ensuite and central heating, a huge locker for your belongings, with plenty of room to walk and put your stuff. There are also additional blankets available in the room for the cold, winter months. The kitchen is huge with adequate cooking hobs, fully equipped with the things you need (Even a toastie maker) and you can get free vegetables and fresh herbs outside. However, what I liked most about this hostel is the common lounge, where you are greeted with Lake Wanaka and the Southern Alps. The lounge is opened whole day, with the fireplace constantly going on, perfect for the cold winter days heh. The good Close to New World Supermarket Gorgeous view from its lounge and dining area Warm fireplace Fully equipped kitchen and herb garden Movie night every day at 8pm with a large projector On site parking The not so good Am I being biased here? I think it doesn’t have a bad for me. Price starts from NZD31 | More info here YHA Taupo: Finlay Jack’s The logo made me like the hostel the moment I saw it haha. They even gave me a sticker for my laptop. #gotbribed Located near town center, the hostel carries a pastel blue color throughout the building, interior and even the tables. Finlay Jack’s has a huge outdoorsy area, with pretty picnic tables, grass and hammocks for you to laze around. The weather was perfect when I was there and you get to see Lake Taupo if you’re on the second floor. YHA’s kitchen are always fully equipped and Finlay Jack’s is no exception. I didn’t manage to see the lounge but it has a public toilet (So you don’t have to run back to your room), DVDs, XBox and books! The 4 person dorm has a bean bag and built in wardrobe (DID I MENTION BEAN BAG?) with a coffee table in the middle and ensuite bathroom. The duvets and pillow sheets were really pretty as well, fitting Finlay Jack’s theme. 😍😍 The good Close to town, Pak’ n’ Save and Warehouse On site parking Huge kitchen and BBQ facilities Quaint little lounge with Netflix, DVD, books, XBox Hammocks! Fun and colorful environment The not so good Might be hard to drag heavy luggages up if you’re on the second floor Could be noisy if you have rowdy neighbours 🙁 Price starts from NZD23 | More info here Was a pity that I didn’t snap enough photos of YHA Nelson that I’ve stayed for a night, but looking forward to head back to New Zealand in the next few years! 🙂 Tongariro Crossing, wait for me!