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“Excellent hostel for travelers” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Backpackers SR

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Backpackers SR
Rruga Mithat Hoxha Nr10, Lagja 4, Saranda 7500, Albania   |  
Hotel amenities
New York City, New York
Senior Contributor
31 reviews 31 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
“Excellent hostel for travelers”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2014

This place is great if you're backpacking in Albania. The owner is *so* helpful - he would literally walk us somewhere when we asked him for directions. He never tried to sell you tours - he just explained the best way to do things, even if it meant taking the local bus. If you're coming from Corfu, you really couldn't pick a better starting off point for Albania.

The place itself is basic, but we weren't expecting anything super nice in Albania. There is no aircon and just one bathroom for everyone, but they make it work. I can't imagine you'd find something better for a similar price.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 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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39 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    25
    11
    2
    1
    0
See reviews for
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Rating summary
  • Location
    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 (3)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Any
English first
Australia
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 17, 2013

As a solo traveller I found this hostel to be one of the more social places to stay in my three weeks of traveling. Tomi definitely helps with this by arranging group dinners which are a nice way to meet people. Lovely breakfasts cooked by Tomi.
This place is very central and well located although I imagine it would be quite difficult to find. Fortunately Tomi found me when walking on the street with my bags and asked if I was looking for his place.
Only negative would be the one bathroom between all the guests.

Overall would definitely recommend.

Stayed October 2013, traveled solo
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 12, 2013

Great hostel with amazing owner Tomi who goes out of his way to help EVERYONE! Great refreshments, map and local info on arrival. 5 minute walk from "out of town " bus station and right next to a local bus stop that can take you straight to the Butrant national park.

Tomi also went to the bus station with us and made sure we got the right tickets onto Athens. On top of this he also made sure we had some breakfast as we were leaving early the next morning!

  • Stayed September 2013
    • 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
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Neu-Delhi, Indien
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed July 25, 2013

If you're travelling with kids, don't even think about checking in there. The hostel as such was quite ok, clean enough and in a convenient location. But I absolutely had the feeling that it was somehow not ok with Tomi (the owner) that we stayed there, though he gave my son and me a bed. It seemed to be alright at first, since there were no other guests, but suddenly a guy showed up the same evening, and there were two more guests the next evening. Tomi should have said outright in the beginning that children aren't welcome - which they don't seem to be. That's ok, I would have moved on to Ksamil or looked for another place in Saranda, since I wasn't desperate or anything, I just heard good things about SR Backpackers and so I enquired. End of the story: we stayed for a bit longer than we thought at first, and on our last eveing when I came back with and injured knee from Butrint, which was swollen and red, and continued to be swollen and blue during most of the trip and caused me medical treatment for weeks after I returned home - in that situation Tomi finally made a move and cam eout with the truth: that my boy was disturning and I should have kept him in our room if other guests were in the common room.... figure that. if ayone thinks my son is a monster kid, far from that, he's your average jolly cute toddler who might sometimes whine a little, but is otherwise rather calm, compared with other children the same age. So, great news, I packed immediately and wished I had known this fact before - I wouldn't have stayed for 3 nights, cause I know my money to spend in a better way than in a place where we're not wanted.
as I said, the hostel is alright, but Tomi should also mention that what sounds like a casual dinner "I'm making fish tonight, would you like some?" is a dinner you pay for, even if you only get to eat the fish later and cold and the salad is already finished by others... and you pay what you might pay in a low priced Albanian restaurant for a whole warm meal. Curious, our money was welcome, we were not. Just so you know, parents with small children - avoid this place. For others I think it's ok.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
Sofia, Bulgaria
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 30, 2013

It is spotlessly clean, in a great location and a great value. What more can you ask for? Oh yes, the other travelers were wonderful. Great wifi and laundry too, though i did not use the laundry. Cooked eggs and sausage for breakfast - very welcome. Highest recommendation for this place!

  • Stayed May 2013
    • 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
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saranda
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 25, 2013

As a long term resident of Saranda, I have got to know the owner of Backpackers SR, Tomi, over several years.
As a British person, I inevitably find certain aspects of life different in Albania - something that Tomi is sensitive too. With this in mind, we never finish a conversation without him saying, "Do you need help of any kind?" Trust isn't easily won, but anybody reading this whose wondering where to stay in an unknown land can be sure that under Tomi's roof you will find security, kindness and a genuinely warm welcome.

Richard Welch

Room Tip: Trust Tomi to give you the best room available
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled on business
    • 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne, Australia
Top Contributor
58 reviews 58 reviews
29 hotel reviews
Reviews in 36 cities Reviews in 36 cities
56 helpful votes 56 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 14, 2013

I spent two nights here in March 2010, and had almost the whole place to myself. It's basic but clean, the staff are friendly, and the location and view from the balcony are excellent: it's right on the waterfront and close to shops and transport.
Definitely recommendable as a hostel.

Room Tip: Ask for a sea view. :)
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  • Stayed June 2012, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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 Backpackers SR

Address: Rruga Mithat Hoxha Nr10, Lagja 4, Saranda 7500, Albania
Location: Albania > Vlore County > Saranda
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 29 Specialty Lodging in Saranda
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 3
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
My brand new hostel is located on the second floor of a secure contemporary apartment building, and all of the rooms have balconies overlooking the picturesque Ionian Sea. Situated just 50 meters from the port (ferry service to/from Corfu) and a quick walk from the central bus station, Backpackers SR is not only close to all the major transportation hubs, but it's also a short walk to the promenade which is lined with bars, discos, and restaurants (be sure to try the famous mussels). As you stroll along the promenade, stop to have a coffee or a shot of raki, and live in the moment as the locals do. Last but not least, the main beach is just across the street. Grab some homemade byrek (spinach pie) or a tasty treat from the corner bakery on your way. Soak up the sun, rent a paddle boat, or float the day away in the clear refreshing sea.After a day out on the town, you can return to your room for a hot shower, check your email for free, do some laundry, or take in the stunning view from the balcony. Enjoy making lunch and chatting over dinner with your friends, or fellow international adventurers, in our large kitchen or take your food on to the balcony and enjoy the seaside view with a cold beer. Fresh fruits and vegetables can be found at the Famer's market located just a few steps from our door. And, don't worry about breakfast, it's included! Come see, and savor, the Albanian Riviera and let Backpackers SR show you why Albanians are known for their warmth and hospitality. ... more   less 
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