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Trekker’s Hostel Highlights: Long Street Backpackers, Cape Town

Hello, Sanibonani, Goeie More and all that jazz….. Hope this finds you all happy, healthy and travelin’.

In today’s piece I am writing up a real party hostel, Long Street Backpackers in Cape Town.

Long Street Backpackers was not my first choice of a hostel, as I prefer the quiet life. However, during my stay at Bomvu Backpackers I was sent on a marketing trip and wound up bedding down here. To my surprise, I really enjoyed it. While I wasn’t one for going out all hours, I did appreciate the hostel’s central location – it’s reaily easy to get to most of the tourist sites in the area from Long Street. I enjoyed my stay so much, in fact, that when I returned to Cape Town a few months later I checked in to LSB again.

The actual street, Long Street (map), is a famous party lane, with music and fun going well into the early morning 99% of the time. Fridays are a particularly festive time of the week. By staying at Long Street Backpackers you are very centrally located, with Spar and Pick ‘n Pay supermarkets just up and down the road (respectively), and numerous restaurants, coffee shops and internet cafes all around. (Have a look at SA Logue’s Long Street tag for more.)

Turn right as you exit LSB’s front gate and walk about three blocks downhill to find Greenmarket Square, a great market to pick up all the curios and gifts you missed on the way. Be sure to barter!!

With the backpackers’ maze of rooms surrounding an open-air courtyard, there are times you might get lost trying to find a bathroom, but give yourself an hour or two and it all makes sense. The bar is a little cramped, but since most leave the hostel to explore the surrounding nightclubs this isn’t an issue. For those who prefer to watch and be amused, the balcony is a great place to relax with a drink and enjoy the music as it filters up from the street below. If you are an early bird be sure to bring a pair of earplugs!

The rooms are basic and only come with a pillow and a blanket (on request). The sheets don’t appear to be the cleanest, but there have never been reports of bed bugs or other natsies here. There is a 24hr CCTV camera on the main gate, and you need a code to get in, so you have peace of mind as far as safety goes. But remember, this is still an active part of town, so be sure to walk in groups, and no dark alleys on your way home!

The staff consist of travellers just like you, and are very friendly, always ready to share a tale or help you find a good drink. Try their special house shot – can’t remember its name but have a fuzzy recollection that it had amarula with a few other things in it, was topped with Strom and set on fire. All I know for sure is that it was DELICIOUS!!!!!!

So I guess my tip of the week is – even if you aren’t a big party goer or night owl, or if you’re the type who just likes to sit and watch, this hostel is a lot of fun!

Till next time, keep trekkin’…