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“Reasonable”

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Happy Hippo Accommodation
Ranked #10 of 81 Specialty Lodging in Durban
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed September 15, 2011

Our room was nice and the hostel is really spacious - so was good value. It was also useful to be able to use the wifi in the rooms. However, it felt a little 'institutional' compared to some of the other more relaxed places we stayed in South Africa

  • Stayed: September 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank noone28
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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183 - 189 of 227 reviews

Reviewed September 2, 2011

The rooms were named by African tribe which was fitting to the African themed decorations. It was a very nice hostel that offered a roof top bar. Unfortunately, while I was there it was pouring rain. However, they kept the bar open and enclosed under a plastic tent so that you wouldn't get wet. Despite all the bad things I had heard about the location, I found no trouble walking to UShaka Marine World (Only about a block away) alone, as a female, and completely new to the area. The hostel is very close to the beach and is a safe walk... although I wouldn't recommend going at night. Overall I was very happy with my stay.

Room Tip: I stayed in Xhosa. It was a nice 5 bed room, but unfortunately it did not have it's own bathroom...
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  • Stayed: July 2011, traveled solo
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1  Thank Amy L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 17, 2011

Feels fairly spacious, including the bedrooms and showers. Once I realized that the mall attached to Ushaka contained a variety of interesting take away places, self catering was easy (samoosas!). The stainless steel kitchen was also a nice switch and well maintained. Very good base to explore Ushaka and the waterfront during the day, and the rooftop bar was one of my favorites in SA (with helpful and fun staff). Tidier than other places I stayed while in Durban, but also a little more impersonal aside from the bar. Could develop the downstairs common area a bit more and provide more info on the area when you arrive.

Stayed: November 2010, traveled solo
Thank MKSimons
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 20, 2011

Staff is not friendly and not helpful at all and the rooms on the streetside are really noisy. These were the downsides, here are the upsides: spacious, breezy rooms, great beds, the ensuite doubles were extremely clean and reminded me more of a hotel than a hostel. The whole hostel is enormous: dorms are 4 persons max, huge communal area with loads of tables and couches, a balcony, huge rooftop bar, massive kitchen. It's situated nearby the Marine shopping mall and very nearby the beach where there's lots of activities to do. It is a very nice hostel and for what you get absolutely not expensive! Loved it there!

  • Stayed: March 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank nellie3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 4, 2011

we stayed two nights at happy hippo and the rooms were spacious and clean but a bit noisy at the street side, the shared bathrooms were very clean. it's a big lodge with a huge rooftop bar. the staff at the reception is not that friendly but it's still ok. the kitchen is big and nice and clean. there is a lot of chill-out space with books and games. decent place for a day or two, the location is good, you are close to the aquarium and water park and the beach.

  • Stayed: February 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank Blade29
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 3, 2011

Great hostel, very clean and comfortable rooms.

We had a double room with en-suite which was as nice as a hotel!

Great kitchen facilities.

Good location for beach and ushaka marine world.

Wifi is fairly pricey and un-reliable...

Staff could be much more helpful about tours and attractions etc.

  • Stayed: February 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank mattcooke123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 5, 2010

It seems many people have differing opinions of this place. Someone I know called it “shady” but I did not feel that it was at all shady. The crowd is really a mix of young college students, older tourists, NGO workers on a tight budget, and European travelers. I found the vibe was really great and it was nice to meet and even socialize with other guests at the backpackers. I think we met people from Germany, England, Canada, and Mexico along with other Americans.

The area where HH is situated, right next to Ushaka Marine world is fairly safe, though a girl coming back alone at night ( not a smart move anywhere in SA) was accosted and chased by a man when we were there. This is a rare occurrence. There is a safe for locking up valuables and the door has a buzzer, CCTV camera, and code access. There was no security guard in sight, which was a bit confusing. Still, my buddy and I did not feel unsafe. It’s HIGHLY advisable to take a metered taxi at night or the People Mover rather then walk back to your hostel.

As with most backpackers, Happy Hippo has a fairly open layout of lounge areas and clustered rooms. There is an internet café and a rooftop bar, but no food on the premises as it is self-catering. A kitchen with a fridge is there for you to use and tea and coffee are free ( coffee snobs like me can even use their coffee-maker). Need a quick bite to eat but don’t feel like walking over to Ushaka ? Grab a snack at Engen or a meal at Vic’s Bar, a Portuguese bar and restaurant opposite the backpackers that has insanely good Calamari. Rooms were clean ( Banana Backpackers is just plain DIRTY) with comfortable beds and lockable doors, the bathroom was also clean. The bar upstairs is a nice place to relax, but can be a pain to deal with if you room is underneath as the noise is only slightly contained. All in all, it’s a nice, cheap, and laid back place for the budget traveler. If you are looking for something more upscale and out of the city centre, use Hippo Hide in Berea.

  • Stayed: September 2010, traveled with friends
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4  Thank JOsmun
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Happy Hippo Accommodation

Address: 222 Mahatma Gandhi Road | KwaZulu-Natal, Durban 4001, South Africa
Location: South Africa > KwaZulu-Natal > Durban
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Parking Kitchenette Shuttle Bus service Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #10 of 81 Specialty Lodging in Durban
Price Range: $16 - $55 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Happy Hippo Accommodation 3*
Number of rooms: 24
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Born from a passion for traveling, the legacy of the Hippo Hide has been passed on to this unique and amazing lodge. Situated approximately 500m from Durban's best beaches and right next to uShaka Marine World, you couldn't ask for a better location. Durban's first purpose built backpackers hostel for the discerning budget traveller, welcomes you to come and enjoy state of the art facilities. These include the amazing roof top party and recreational area, known as "The Globe", FREE WIFI, travel desk with up to date information and the best deals. This is your one stop youth hostel with all your amenities close by. ... more   less 

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