Melaleuca Surfside Backpackers
2 Koala Pl, Port Stephens, Australia
www.melaleucabackpackers.com… - (02) 4981 9422
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Melaleuca Surfside Backpackers Port Stephens Reviews
Great little hostel tucked in the bush Jul 01, 2012
I recommend a Port Stephens trip to anyone traveling to NSW, it's a beautiful area that's not too hard to get to from Sydney. I heard the HI hostel there was pretty good, but they were all booked up so I reserved a room at Melaleuca. It's a hostel with an on-site campground that's tucked in the bush, but just a 10 minute walk from the beach. It also doubles as a wildlife rehabilitation center and they have a cute little kangaroo that lives on the property.
Kitchen is well-stocked and the lounge is a great place to watch a movie or meet other travelers. The dorms are in a separate building from the washrooms, laundry and lounge/kitchen, which is a nice escape from the extra noise & smells, but can be annoying when it rains. It can be quite chilly in the dorms but there are space heaters provided in each room. The security also isn't the best -- rooms don't have lockers and the doors don't lock. But the managers are some of the friendliest people you'll ever meet and very knowledgeable about the area. They're willing to give advice on everything to see & do, and sometimes offer to give rides. The hostel is right on a bus route though and offers bike rental, so travel around the area is very easy.
If you're looking for a bit more "luxury", you may want to check out the HI down the road, but Melaleuca is the place to go for anyone looking for a relaxed, unique place to stay.
**Once you're in Port Stephens, take the local bus to Shoal Bay, where you can hike up Tomaree Head for amazing views & walk along the beach beside crystal clear waters. The Stockton Sand Dunes are also a must-see attraction - many tour companies offer sand boarding & 4-wheel-drive tours, but you can alternatively travel them by foot for free.
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