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“Above and Beyond Helpful” 5 of 5 stars
Review of 1166 Backpackers

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1166 Backpackers
1048 Nishimachi, Nagano 380-0842, Nagano Prefecture   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 38 Specialty lodging in Nagano
Seoul, South Korea
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Above and Beyond Helpful”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 28, 2013

My boyfriend and I stayed here for one night on a really tightly planned trip of Japan. First of all, Ori (the manager or owner... I can't remember!) was so welcoming. There were a few Japanese people sitting around a table eating when we came in and they offered us our food.
We also told her about our hectic next day. Basically we were unsure if we'd make our flights because we hadn't planned the train routes correctly. Ori sat with us and found a new route for us, even recommended an option that the internet didn't because of her local knowledge. She went so far as to print out a map and highlight where we should go! It's thanks to her that we were able to make our flights.
Aside from her being an absolute hero, she was welcoming and the place was very clean. It felt a little cold but they have huge duvets in the rooms as well as heaters. The accommodation was simple, however, the service and kindness we were shown was worth more money than we paid.
DEFINITELY stay here!!

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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36 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
    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
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Japanese first
  • Any
English first
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Senior Contributor
33 reviews 33 reviews
19 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 29, 2012

I had thought about going to Hakuba for a few nights to enjoy skiing, but I was glad I decided to base myself in Nagano instead. It seemed to offer more possibilities for exploring the entire region. And I'm glad I decided to stay at 1166 Backpackers.

The place is a beautiful old house, well done up in the old Japanese style. The dorm rooms were a clever design that incorporated great tatami floors and futon lined bunk beds. One thing to keep in mind is that as beautiful as old Japanese houses are, they are poorly insulated and often quite cold with only space heaters to warm you up. The giant quilts on each futon, however, more than made up for the cold room.

The staff were great and friendly and were a wealth of local knowledge. I wanted to hit the slopes in Hakuba for one day, and they directed me on how to get there and where to go once there. They even directed me to the local onsen in Nagaon, which turned out to be the best onsen I've ever visited.

So if you're looking for a nice place to stay in Nagano, near the Zenkoji temple, this is easily the best choice.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Malmö
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 28, 2012

I arrived early from Tokyo and found the place fairly easy -15 minute walk from the JR station - and was welcomed by very accommodating staff (English speaking), a guy and a girl, whose names I'm ashamed to say I've forgotten. They gave me lots of tips and suggestions on where to go and how to get to places I was interested in.

I only spent one night there, but could easily have spent another week or year there just doing day trips to the surrounding mountains which were beautifully clad in their seasonal red and yellow foliage with white caps.

The social/reception area is a nice place to meet your fellow travellers. Dominated by a large table making it quite intimate. Some travel litterature available in English and Japanese and the WiFi worked great when I was there (in the dorm room as well). A nice touch is the free tea, coffee (instant) and snacks available.

Beds are pretty good if you don't mind sleeping on Tatami mattress (personally I like it alot), as are facilities, though only one western toilet and one squat, and one shower that I could find. Enough during my stay, but possibly crowded if the place gets filled up. Clean and well maintained!

The only negative about this hostel for me is the price. I payed 2600 JPY which was about what I paid for private rooms (mostly small rooms with shared facilities) elsewhere and 2-600 JPY more than the other dorms I slept in, in Japan.

Upon my arrival, after leaving my bags, I took a walk up to Zenkoji at ~10:00 AM. Beautiful temple area, though a bit crowded for any feeling of serenity. I returned the same evening at ~8:00 PM and the place was all but deserted. And I returned a final time for the morning service ~6:00 AM to experience its actual purpose. I loved seeing these three different faces of Zenkoji and highly recommend it. Especially if you're staying at 1166 as it's only a 5min walk.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled solo
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
revelstoke
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 8, 2012

Overall I thought this was a good place to stay. The ladies were super helpful in getting us good deals on the things we wanted to do and were really helpful in giving us directions and tips. I can't give it the full rating though. The rooms were a cramped, the halls were even tighter and difficult to maneuver heavy suitcases through and there is only one toilet and shower for the whole hostel. The dryer does not dry clothes no matter how much money you put in. And my uncle, who is an early riser, was given "a talking to" for making noise in the kitchen before 7am, although he was just sitting reading a paper and drinking a coffee. Too bad. The upside was mostly positive though. The location to the arcade, temples, onsen and train station made this one of our favorite towns in all Japan. I would return to Nagano in a minute.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kyoto, Japan
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 28, 2012

Beautiful little place with a lovely common area that drew guests and staff together naturally for some enjoyable socializing. Small but neat kitchen facilities and clean rooms and bathroom facilities. The sleeping areas of the hostel are less updated than the common area, but the dorm room had a cozy feel and plenty of space for large luggage and backpacks and thoughtful utilization of space.

Really close to the temple but a bit of a trek from the train station. There's tons of dining and drinking options in the area too. Delicious oyaki can be had from the obaachans up the street towards the temple-- Orie can point you in the right direction!

Overall a really nice vibe-- you can tell the employees have a lot of passion for the work they do!

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Top Contributor
73 reviews 73 reviews
42 hotel reviews
Reviews in 46 cities Reviews in 46 cities
47 helpful votes 47 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 6, 2012

Pros: Great atmosphere. Very clean double room. Orie and Hickory were lovely and very helpful. Cooking facilities and fridge for food and everything was high calibre. Wifi in the rooms and good location for the temple. About a 15 minute walk from the train station.
Cons: You had to climb stairs in the middle of the night if you wanted to use the washroom (but there are lights!)

Stayed for two nights and it was fantastic. Thank you Orie.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 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.
Singapore
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 17, 2012

Had a great one night stay at 1166. The place was cosy, clean and comfortable. Orie was also a great hostess, and the place clearly showed how she had carefully planned out the space. I would have stayed longer in Nagano, instead of just transiting thru the city, if I knew 1166 was good. Will stay here again if I'm back in Nagano.

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 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.
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Additional Information about 1166 Backpackers

Address: 1048 Nishimachi, Nagano 380-0842, Nagano Prefecture
Location: Japan > Chubu > Nagano Prefecture > Nagano
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Kitchenette
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 38 Specialty lodging in Nagano
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 3
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Take a break. Nagano is an ideal stop if you are traveling through Japan. Close to Tokyo and Kanazawa, it's perfect to take a break from the big tourist cities and enjoy little breeze from mountain surrounding a cozy city. Nagano is a very warm and welcoming city, neither too big nor too small. We are proud of our city and will always be willing to help you discover it. Please don't hesitate to engage in conversation with anyone on the street. The people who were falling love with this little city are running 1166backpackers. We are not party hostel but we often have a day to have dinner with. We try to connect with locals and travelers - all around a dinner table. So, we go beyond dinner parties. If you need some local tips, feel free to ask us as we are looking forward to your stay. ... more   less 
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