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“Animal Sanctuary well worth a visit, even if you don't stay” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Bungalow Bay Koala Village

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Bungalow Bay Koala Village
40 Horseshoe Bay Road, Magnetic Island, Queensland 4819, Australia (Formerly Geoff's Place)   |  
Hotel amenities
Wentworthville, NSW
Top Contributor
83 reviews 83 reviews
29 hotel reviews
Reviews in 36 cities Reviews in 36 cities
65 helpful votes 65 helpful votes
“Animal Sanctuary well worth a visit, even if you don't stay”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 12, 2013

I didn't stay at Bungalow Villiage, but did visit the animal sanctuary, where you can get very 'up close & personal' with some cute and not so cute ozzie animals. The koalas are just lovely, especially one little tyke called "Cuddles". He was so lovely and seemed to really like the keeper. Cuddles had been abandoned by his Mum, but was doing well. Good talks about the different animals we saw, their lifestyles, what they eat etc. Very informative. You can touch, hold or even have your photo taken ($15 for the koala one, not too bad really) with pythons (smallish one's) a young croc (mouth taped for safety) cockatoos, a frill necked lizard and a blue tongued lizard. Bungalow Bay Village is about a 10 min. walk from Horseshoe Bay, which is a lovely area. The bus stops outside Bungalow Bay Village. Lovely beach front at Horseshoe Bay, plenty of eateries. The public bus meets the ferry from Townsville and it cost me $2.50 bus fare (pensioner) to go to the other side of the island, where Horseshoe Bay is (half an hour drive).

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
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221 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (26)
Date | Rating
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  • English first
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English first
Melbourne
Top Contributor
65 reviews 65 reviews
51 hotel reviews
Reviews in 43 cities Reviews in 43 cities
104 helpful votes 104 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 13, 2013

My self and my partner stayed here for 2 nights for a quick weekend trip. We arrived on the bus from the ferry terminal which was really convenient and cheap. There were several other people who got off the bus and checked in with us. This meant that the person checking us in basically just shouted info and instructions to us all so that she wouldn't have to say it several times. It didn't feel like the friendliest or most welcoming of arrivals!

We got our key and headed up to the A frame bungalows which we'd booked. The room itself looks fine from the outside but is not the cleanest inside. The bed sheets and bed clothed did look very clean and the pillow and mattress felt comfortable. The floor was dirty and the walls looked dirty. Yes, there were a few ants in the room, but I have no issues with that - it's the nature of where you're staying! The room has a good sized fridge but no where at all to hang anything up or put any clothes away so they just stayed in a bag on the floor. I liked having a veranda with chairs to sit outside on. We weren't too far from the amentities block which I thought was generally fine and clean. The showers were ok and teh toilets were clean. It's not the best amenities block but certainly not bad at all.

We had a drink in the bar in the evenings before going into town for dinner. Drinks were not really cheap but were reasonably priced. Bar service was ok. I was surprised to find that the bar closed at 10pm which suited us but as it's a backpackers place I thought it would be open later.

We liked seeing the wildlife around the accommodation - lots of rock wallabies, possums, rainbow lorikeets and kookaburras.

There is also a kitchen and pool which we didn't use so can't comment on that. We also didn't do the koala tour. We had a snack in the restaurant (garlic bread $4.50) but they also had basic pizzas for $12.

The location of the YHA is good. Only 400m to the beach so just a few minutes walk to Horseshoe Bay which has a few restaurants, pub and Foodworks grocery store. The beach is lovely and they have stinger nets allowing you to swim during the stinger season.

Overall, I liked the location and the wildlife around the accommodation. The rooms were average (some pros and cons) and the staff were ok but not especially friendly or welcoming.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Senior Contributor
49 reviews 49 reviews
23 hotel reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 20, 2013 via mobile

Absolutely loved staying here and te koala village. We were only here for 1 night but it was really easy to get to and from Nelly Bay. The rooms were great and loved the Eco friendly vibe the park has got going. The beer is cheap, company is good, and I'd definitely recommend the koala park. We did the breakfast and the tour and absolutely loved both. Cannot fault anything here! Staff were amazing and just can't wait to come back!

  • Stayed April 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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Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 19, 2013

This has been one of my favourite hostels to stay at so far. Its a 20 minute bus ride from the ferry terminal, but thats ok as the hostel is only a short walk from a lovely quiet bay.
The hostel itself is clean, and has plenty of wildlife running around the place which was always interersting....Parakeets in the day, and then Wallabees at night. And the bar has different things going on every night.
The Koala sanctuary connected to the place is defintely worth a visit too, as you get to hold loads of wild animals.
would definitely recomend this hostel.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Nunspeet, The Netherlands
Top Contributor
58 reviews 58 reviews
27 hotel reviews
Reviews in 35 cities Reviews in 35 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 19, 2013

The hostel itself is not really good. The bar is nice (closes quite early), the toilets near the bar were clean. The staff is friendly. But the bungalows/dorms are very very basic, old and in need for renovation. It was raining while I was on Magnetic Island, and water came inside our bungalow, falling from the roof in one of the (luckily empty) beds. There were also holes in the 'mosquito net' in front of the 'windows'. Just the bathroom seemed a bit newer, and was clean! But the wildlifepark and the tour with the ranger was great!!! The ranger is so friendly and knows a lot about the animals, the nature and the country. The koalas are sooooo cute!!! I also liked the bird feeding the afternoon before, between the wildlifepark and the bar..

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
1 review
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 4, 2013

Cons:
*TOO EXPENSIVE- I paid for a private double room which was meant to be an upgrade, it was literally an a frame bungalow big enough for a double mattress(there was no bed frame) and fridge. Very little room to move around, my partner couldn't even stand fully when getting out bed.
*INSECTS- I wouldn't expect anything else considering we are in the middle of nature, with plenty of bushes and trees, but they get through every nook and cranny!
RUDE STAFF: There were a few members of staff who rubbed me up the wrong way and they were not even rude to me, I experienced staff at the koala tour being impatient, rude, and not understanding to foreign tourists who were trying to learn about the native animals. I have just read a few reviews about rude reception and bar staff, I'm pretty sure the only reason for negative comments is because they have back backers volunteer for accommodation and obviously don't care about professionalism.
DIRTY: I have never stayed in a back packers environment and found the showers to be a little displeasing and full of bugs, I am just going to assume that's expected at a back packers resort.

Pros:
HELPFUL/FRIENDLY STAFF: There were some very friendly staff members and their names were Charlie, I mainly saw her at reception and she was always welcoming, friendly and helpful, she knew local business numbers off by heart, she was happy to book tours ect for us. Rachel: lovely young English girl who I mainly saw do the koala tours and she was kind, patient and understood all the tourists. She would make sure everyone had their fair share of handling animals. There was also a young man who was from New Zealand and he was also helpful but never caught his name.
GREAT LOCATION: only a few metres from horseshoe bay and a few hiking tracks, also up the road is the horse riding ranch, for horse riding on the beach. Magnetic island also have 'hail and ride' which means even though there is no bus stop you can hail the bus from anywhere and the bus will stop when safe to do so, so even though there is no actual bus stop out side of the village, there is always enough space for the bus to stop right outside of the village.
ANIMALS: even though possums are classed as a pest in Australia, to me and I'm sure to foreign tourists this is a positive, as there is no shortage of them at night on the premises. They are pretty tame and come onto your bungalow deck to be fed, of course caution should always be taken but I managed to stroke a few. There are also a few Curlews (bird) which are also waiting to be fed and great to look at. Everyday at 4.30pm they have free lorikeet feeding which is also a great attraction for tourists.

OVERALL: I think it's basic enough for most needs and obviously targeted at back packers. I wouldn't stay again for the price and I am personally not an insect person. Remember it is all based on shared facilities e.g kitchen, toilets and showers. I think there are private bungalows with en suit but of course at an even extra cost.

Room Tip: From walking passed the bungalows some had air con and some didn't. So especially in summer, do...
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 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.
Camden Town, null, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
38 reviews 38 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
37 helpful votes 37 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 21, 2013

I linked up with some friends on magnetic island, and we hired a car to explore; the koala village tour was top of our list (we did not stay at the accommodation there)

It was actually really good value to see lots of native Australia species (croc, varying birds and lizards, snakes and spiders, a wombat and of course the koala!)

I was staying over in Townsville and popped over for the day, which is totally doable - I would highly recommend the tour!

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 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 Bungalow Bay Koala Village

Address: 40 Horseshoe Bay Road, Magnetic Island, Queensland 4819, Australia (Formerly Geoff's Place)
Location: Australia > Queensland > Magnetic Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #8 of 18 Specialty Lodging in Magnetic Island
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 35
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The stunning landscape of this island on the Great Barrier Reef makes this destination truly distinctive & attractive to the eco conscious traveller. Bungalow Bay focuses on delivering a Australian Experience complete with boutique wildlife sanctuary ... more   less 
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