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“Very nice team, breakfast, location!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of The Flying Fox Backpackers

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The Flying Fox Backpackers
190 Bathurst Rd, Katoomba, New South Wales 2780, Australia   |  
Hotel amenities
Certificate of Excellence 2014
1 review
“Very nice team, breakfast, location!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 23, 2012 via mobile

It's a very familiar hostel to relax. It's a small, very nice place to know travelers from all over the world. Nothing to complain about. Big kitchen. One launch room with fire place and a seperate room with tv and DVD.

  • Stayed September 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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112 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (7)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Any
English first
Leamington Spa, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
188 reviews 188 reviews
139 hotel reviews
Reviews in 143 cities Reviews in 143 cities
155 helpful votes 155 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 22, 2012

We camped here for three nights (so can't really comment on the bedrooms - although the one double I had a peek into looked clean and comfortable). It was cold but worth it. The hostel is warm and friendly, with cosy communal spaces - lounge (with wood-burning stove), dining room and kitchen. It's a bit short on bathrooms; another one would be ideal. The hosts were really friendly, especially Ross, and pretty laid back. A campfire was lit each evening, and our daughter had a great time sharing travellers' tales and eating marshmallows. Our son enjoyed the free wifi.

We all felt really at home here, especially in the kitchen, where everyone mucked in with washing up etc, not like in most hostels. Ross tries to keep the lounge screen-free between 6 and 9pm, which means people really do talk to each other!

Katoomba is well-situated for seeing the Blue Mountains in all their splendour, and we would love to go back to the Flying Fox some time.

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 17, 2012

After one year of traveling all over Australia, Nz, Indonesia and Thailand the flying fox backpackers surely stays my favorite accommodation on this not-at-all-lonely planet so far!
It is located in Katoomba, in the blue mountains in nsw which are unfortunately promoted as "just some hours out of Sydney, ideally for a daytrip".
This area of Australia is so wonderful, there is so much to see and to do, a day is never ever enough if you ask me.
Yes, there are no numberless nightclubs or beaches, but breathtaking views over endless almost untouched valleys, forests and waterfalls. There are many different hikes to do, panoramas and sounds of pure nature you will never forget. The air is clear. You have that feeling to arrive somewhere with all your senses and have a rest from all the main-touristy hustle. Most of the times, there are some visitors up there, but the Asians take their pictures and Leave in their tourbusses again, and flashpackers take do the same and tick off their "bm daytrip" before they rush back down to sydney. So it's never too much and ESP the evenings and afternoons are wonderful to stroll through katoombas streets, have delicious fresh coffee or handmade chocolate with katoombas locals - a unique bunch of people, some have a special touch to them, but not a single one is off the peg. Katoomba is a
Little bit different and this is what makes it so amazing. There is an easy going slightly alternative touch to it. You will find good food, magical little thingies, well equipped outdoorshops, proper pubs and an amazing wintermagic sunsolstice festival in late June.
Families, artists, real travel spirits and outdoorsy people gather here, it's a hikers' and rockclimbers' paradise.
And to them I would like to highly recommend to stay in the flying fox.
In march I booked in for one night, and one of the first things I saw was the chalk board writing" you can check out but you can never leave". While wondering what that means, a handful of lovely down to earth guys from all age and heritage offered me tea, coffee, shared their dinner with us and were just so helpful and chilled out. Ross, the owner is a clever guy: he lets wwoofers/volunteer travelers stay for free when they "work" for some hours a day. Indeed, they do a good job, even guests help out sometimes, it seems like people just
Love this place and care for it straight away. One guy who stayed there gave me my first yoga lesson( spontaneously people come
Together and do sessions in the garden or go on hikes or jam together).
The simple breakfast of toast, jams, butter, vegemite,honey, muesli, cornflakes...tastes even better when some happy people wish you a good morning in a clean kitchen and tell you that" tea and coffee is right over there for you; Ross is a bit late this morning( the owner doesn't insist his morning ritual), so more
Bread and milk will be here in a bit but pancakes will be ready in some
Minutes". You might find some top up goodies on the free food fridge shelf or box, where guest share their food.
(otherwise you have your own box or marked food as everywhere). Also there is a priceworthy and very fresh fruit and vegetable shop right next door(also fresh pasta, laksa,pesto,real chiabatta and cheese...for a very fair price!)
Depending on the amount of helping hands is the amount of pancakebreakfasts per week. Til you are done with that, every little mess that might have resulted from the night around the campfire will be cleaned up by then, but normally guests in the fox inspire other guests not to leave a trace. So there are no annoying " clean up behind yourself we are not your mum"signs necessary.
A Irish guy celebrated his 68th birthday with us, while the 2,4 or 9year old kids just hung out with the rest of the travelers.the fox is a place for everyone with the heart on the right spot and an open mind, age doesnt matter.
It's easy to make new friends there, while social time there are no smartphones/pcs... Seen in the shared social areas between 6-9pm. But instruments and free books as well as the people who normally sit around in the fox make you forget about that.
People watch movies together on rainy days,three folders of DVDs wait in the office. Art equipment and games are to be found under the lounge table. For the ones who travel without a laptop, there is a computer in a corner in the dining areA. Free wifi is available all they long.
It's a colorful place with artwork on the walls, pillows and maps remind of even more travels, fireplaces inside and outside make it comfy and some chillout tunes do the rest. (ross'playlist, don't be crazy and plug in your iPod without asking;) )
Every room is unique. The equipment may not be the latest, but that goes well with the cosy charme of the fox and everything is super clean and comfy.
If you need more towels,sheets, pillows, blankets, maps, help- what so ever- ask. If Ross is not in, the wwoofers are in charge. And if no one of them is in, there are friends or regulars who know or know someone who knows someone:) rosses number is written down, he will fly in for a bit on his way if you néed him.
It's a small private alternative hostel that may feel like a home, no chain 08/15 massive off the peg stuff.
There are three dorms, one is a female, one sometimes is a male, a triple and some doubles. The private rooms are individually designed with even more artwork and mindful details like fresh extra towels.
There's guano the hostel cat, but she lives outside, you can meet her around the hut where some prayerflags flatter on the wind or chilling in the sun under the washing line(laundry can be done at the fox, no worries, the coinmaschine is in the extra bathroom you find outside).
While your room has a key, the front and backdoor have pin codes: it feels like a open house but is safe at the same time, what I really liked.
If you prefer to be even closer to nature, you can camp in the backyard either in your own van/tent or in one of the already set up hostel tents: filled with mats, sheets, pillows en masse, the best nests ever. Think about what's best for you, then open your mouth and ask for it, and if possible in any way, people will make it happen for you.
There are free pasta nights every now and then, Ross the owner really know how to make an excellent arrabiata( good enough that I want to write a recipe book about it:)). A really good bottleshop is just up the road, for the glass of wine with it. Ross and the wwoofers may approach you with gluehwein and chocolatecookies, no tricks, they are fine, that's just normal at the fox:)
Well. I could go on for ever.
In the end, we stayed for 2 nights, then for 3. Then we went all out together Which was so good, that we had to stay night 4:) this was my first stay at the fox. I finally checked out(at12 instead of 10am, if you need a late checkout, ask-won't be a prob). But I came back 7 times: as a guest, as a wwoofer and finally as a friend, even crashing on the couch or sharing tents when the place was crowded. That's the way it should be, because it's just unique and absolutely awesome.
I left Australia for now, (i enjoy traveling with some friends i made up there!)but I'm sure it wasnt my last time at the fox: it is definitely true. "you can check out but you can never really leave".

  • Stayed March 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Halifax, United Kingdom
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 16, 2012

We had a great time at the Flying Fox hostel and were really disappointed to have to leave in order to return our campervan to Sydney. The place is very welcoming and there were some very friendly people staying there. The common room is excellent and good kitchen facilities. Staff are extremely helpful and willing to tell you all of the best places to go and see while in the Blue Mountains. The place is very small so if you want to meet new people this is a good place to be. The one downside is that the hostel is absolutely freezing and in desperate need of some radiators - but you are supplied with plenty of blankets to keep you warm at night. Highly recommended if you're taking a trip to the Blue Mountains - we loved it!

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boston, Massachusetts
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 23, 2012

This would have been a great hostel at a warmer time of year, but we stayed in July, and the air outside was close to freezing at night. It wasn't much warmer inside. While the bedrooms each have a small space heater, these are on timers that are inaccessible to guests. That means you have no recourse beyond piling on the blankets when the heat goes off at night. There are no heaters at all in the bathrooms, which makes showering torturous. (Water temperature is hard to adjust, but we did have hot water.)

On the plus side, the beds are comfortable enough, the cooking/food facilities are adequate (free toast in the morning, and once the manager made tasty pancakes), and the social area was fun (kind of like a college group house, with board games and a fireplace we all huddled around). The colorful walls and mismatched furniture gave it character, and the price can't be beat in Katoomba.

In sum, stay here in the warmer months. Avoid in winter.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 30, 2012

This was my third visit here, but the first in winter. If you like hostels to be small and personal, you will like this one. And the bathrooms and the kitchen are clean.

Stayed June 2012, traveled solo
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Singapore, Singapore
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 29, 2012

The atmosphere at the hostel was just homely and amazing. The owner, Ross, is a really friendly and hardworking guy. There were people there who planned to stay for only 2 nights but ended up staying for more than 2 weeks.

Beds are really comfortable and there are hot showers. Generally the place was very clean and there is a common room for guests to mingle and play the guitar etc. Basic breakfast like assorted toast and jams were provided. Once a week or so, there would be pasta for dinner.

My friends and I went to Flying Fox in winter so there were nightly campfires where guests can warm themselves and enjoy some wine. There were also free Tim Tams! I would say the only minor drawback of this place is the lack of heating at night but covering yourself with more blankets would solve the problem.

Location wise, it's a short walk from Katoomba station.

All in all, this place was amazing and I would certainly return.

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Flying Fox Backpackers

Address: 190 Bathurst Rd, Katoomba, New South Wales 2780, Australia
Location: Australia > New South Wales > Blue Mountains > Katoomba
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 13 Specialty Lodging in Katoomba
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Flying Fox Backpackers is located in a lovely old building, 400 metres from town. Established to cater for independent travellers and not large groups, it's the perfect place to make new friends. A vibrant Hostel with No T.V. and log fires for warmth and atmosphere, people feel very relaxed at the Fox. Free Breakfast and free wifi internet, lovely double, twins and dorms secure Hostel with a great outdoor area with fires in side and out. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Flying Fox Backpackers Katoomba, Blue Mountains

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