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“The place to stay in Hualien”

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Formosa Backpackers Hostel
Reviewed April 13, 2014

Our group stayed here for two nights while exploring Taroko Gorge. The rooms were basic and simple, but clean. The Hostel workers are really nice and helpful, giving advice for places to eat and bars to check out. The hostel also has a lot of activities including a piano, guitar and board games. A real nice "Indie" feel to the common area. They also have some amazing coffee that you need to try! A very good option to stay in Hualien!

  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled with friends
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2  Thank Devin J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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25 - 31 of 40 reviews

Reviewed February 13, 2014

Formosa has a good location in Hualien, only a cheap taxi ride from the train station - easily walkable but it was raining when we got there. It has a good social vibe - reviews scrawled all over the walls, a piano and guitar, bar/ cafe, lots of great events like movie nights and second hand fairs and, best of all, a huge book shelf! The room and bathrooms are fine - I liked room 1A because the wall is made of glass and it backs onto a charming private back garden.
We were all sick with colds while we stayed there and it was cold and raining everyday, but the hostel adapted to our needs - endless cups of free hot tea, a library of books to keep us entertained, clear directions to good restaurants in the vicinity, and the host spent a lot of time giving us a lot of help and advice. They advised us to take a bus around taroko gorge as it fitted our needs better since it was raining. It is walking distance to a park and a nice night market too. Even after we checked out they let us leave our bags in the hostel and come back and charge our phones before we got the train. They even called a cab for us to take us to the train station. Very grateful for their friendliness and envy their lives in such a beautiful place.

  • Stayed: February 2014, traveled with friends
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Thank Melimei
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 21, 2014

I wish I came to this site first, then I would have known about the bedbug infestation.

I stayed in room 4A my first night. When I first checked in, I noticed a few ants, but there's a door leading to an outdoor patio so I killed them, took all of my belongings off the floor and was going to ask for bug repellent later on. I decided to go to bed early because I was exhausted and my body was aching. I woke up at 11pm and after a while I noticed an ant on the bed, then a little while later a bedbug! I stayed awake the entire night after checking my belongings, showering and moving everything into the lobby. There isn't any staff onsite until 10am and no one was there when I first woke up. When I told the female worker about the problem, she said they never had a problem there and she wasn't authorized to give a refund but could switch me to another room for the night. I was reluctant at first but then convinced myself that this was a problem that could happen anywhere and maybe it was just that room. Since I had no money because I couldn't get a refund, I stayed the night with the light on in room 2C, waking up every few hours checking for bugs and I didn't notice notice anything.

Next day, there was a male employee there (maybe the owner) and he told me that I needed to get out of that room because someone else booked it and the only room available was 4A which I originally booked. He said he could give me a refund, but only for the days I didn't stay there, even though the first night I didn't even sleep in the room and I only stayed there the second night because they was holding my money hostage! (I'm a traveling student on a budget!) But because I stayed on the property and they "checked" the room and didn't see anything they weren't giving me a refund.

I even caught the damn bug and put it in a plastic bag for them to take a look. I left it in the room and they claim they didn't see anything.

DO NOT STAY HERE!!!!!

  • Stayed: January 2014, traveled solo
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Thank Lakisha D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 21, 2013

All my friends got it. The beds are infested with bed bugs for the 6 room dorm. . Horrible stay there. I switched bed from my allocated one to another empty one. I woke up at 2am in the morning cause i was itching all over, and confirmed with my very own eyes the army of bed bugs.

  • Stayed: September 2013, traveled with friends
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7  Thank packmylife8888
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 7, 2013

Hard to fault this excellent little hostel - one of the best I've ever stayed in. We stayed in a private room so I can't comment on the dorms, but the whole place was spotlessly clean and nicely decorated. Shared bathrooms are really big and nice. The woman who runs it speaks excellent English and was really helpful. Location is great, 15 minutes walk from the train station and 10 minutes to downtown Hualien. There's a night market at the end of the road, too. We only stayed one night as a base for going to Taroko Gorge but I would actually recommend staying in Hualien longer as there is a lot to do and it's a lovely town, right on the sea. And Formosa is definitely the place to stay.

  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank wherenext65
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 12, 2013

Fab hostel with super staff, fresh clean rooms and a cute dog.

I stayed here with my Girlfriend during our tour of Taiwan and we could have been happier with the place.

We sampled the dorms, both 6 and 10 beds. The 6 bad was very spacious and looks out onto a cute garden with floor to sealing windows, very peacful. The 10 bed dorm is upstairs and has a private bathroom and a lovely balcony with sliding doors so the room can be kept nice and kool on the hot days. The 10 bed was also very large and despite all beds being full, the room never felt cramped.

The lovely owner upgraded us free of charge to a private room, that was simply lovely. The room was recently refurbished, it had a great big comfortable bed and opened out onto a very nice roof terrace.

The hostel had a bar which is reasonably priced and is a kool place to hang out, the wifi is quick and the sofas and outside seating are ample and comfortable, making it a nice place to relaxe after a long day at the gorge.

Staff are friendly and knowledgable about the local area and Taiwan as a whole, the fact that they gave us a free upgrade was very sweet and much appreciated. I alao wanted to catch the F1 GP whilst I was staying there, I was unable to find a venue and the owner kindly lent me laptop to use, this made me super happy.

Formosa also has a super cute dog named Sunny, I will miss her.


All in all I have nothing but praise for Formosa, the staff and Sunny

Room Tip: If you book a double, the top floor rooms are fab
See more room tips
  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Deaninmotion
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 8, 2012

I stayed there with my mother and my boyfriend. It was great. We rented out a room upstairs for 3 people that cost 1700 a night. The staff was incredible helpful and friendly and the whole atmosphere was ok for any age. Nothing negative to say.

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled with family
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Thank Chelsie R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Formosa Backpackers Hostel

Address: No.206 Jianguo Road, Hualien City, Hualien County, Taiwan
Location: Taiwan > Hualien County
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free Parking Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #58 of 249 Specialty Lodging in Hualien County
Price Range: $12 - $13 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 17
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Welcome to Formosa Backpackers Trip Advisor Page. We are a Hostel in the Heart of Hualien city. We have been open for 11 years now. The owner loves to travel all around the World , so she knows what a traveller needs. We have all kinds of rooms from Dorm style to private doubles, also family rooms. We welcome single travellers, couples or even groups. Please feel free to contact us with any questions that you may have. We can help you with travel advise. We also can arrange tours for you. Whale whatching, River Rafting, River Trekking, Taroko Tour. We look forward to welcoming you to our hostel. If you have stayed here before please feel free to upload your photos and to leave us your review. Many thanks ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Formosa Backpackers Hotel Hualien

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