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“Lovely stay, wonderful people”

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Jembjos Knysna Lodge & Backpackers
Ranked #12 of 103 Specialty Lodging in Knysna
Certificate of Excellence
Maastricht, The Netherlands
Level Contributor
17 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Lovely stay, wonderful people”
Reviewed August 3, 2014

Stayed here for 1 night. Knysna is a small and really comfy place. Everything is just a 5- 10 min walk away (except for two heads, can get there easily by car/public transport/taxi). Real nice people, trying to help you with everything (called other hostels to make reservations, book tours, find out which restaurants are nice to eat etc. etc.). Stayed in dorms because double rooms were full. Dorms were quite empty (only 1 other person), so quiet and peaceful. There was some noise from the streets (earplugs are useful). Showers bit unpractical because you're practically naked whilst you're drying off. Sanitary facilities always neat & clean. You can park your car safely next to the hostel or in front of it. Did our laundry here for us at only 70 rands for A LOT of laundry (wash + dry). All the gates are secured with a code. Free (good) wifi and breakfast. Kitchen clean and lots of equipment to cook. Cosy common room to watch TV. We really liked our stay here and can certainly recommend for: couples, people travelling on their own (not really for families).

  • Stayed July 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Anne Z
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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189 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (8)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Level Contributor
52 reviews
47 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 79 helpful votes
Reviewed August 1, 2014

We read some reviews on TA about Jembjos and decided to stay here for three nights in a private room. While there were other guests staying at the same time as us, we felt we had the place to ourselves. I wish I could say there was a “vibe” here like at Amapondo’s in Port St John’s, but I can’t complain too much since we stayed in low season. From what the owners say, high season is rowdy with the place full of braai-and-beer-loving guests.

Our private room felt like a converted one-car garage due to its shape. There was a heater in the room and lots of blankets. All was clean and comfortable. The shower could have been a little bit hotter, but was sufficient.

The family that owns the hostel were helpful with talking about local restaurants, tours, malls, etc. Without prompting to do so, we got a free map and step-by-step directions with how to get to the Featherbeds tour takeoff point. That was really kind! You can walk to the main street to restaurants, shops, grocery stores, and malls. You could reasonably stay here without a car, which is not typical for most of South Africa.

You can park your car behind a secured gate, which is great peace of mind over leaving it in the street. There is a self-catering kitchen there, and eggs, bread, jam, and fruit are provided each morning, and free tea and coffee are available anytime. There’s a braai pit too, along with some common seating areas outside. The main living room area has a wood stove and large TV and several sofas for lounging around. The family that runs the place is always in there watching TV, so it probably intimidating of some of the guests from commandeering the TV for their use. Not many people will think to ask to put on their programs when they’re in the middle of a movie.

There’s a sweet dog there name Fraser that cuddled with us in the common area. He just wanted to stay warm and cozy on those cold July nights! If you want to talk to someone that been just about everywhere in Africa, speak with Amanda, the owner. I've never met anyone that's been to Sudan as a tourist!

  • Stayed July 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank paulino636
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ranst
Level Contributor
56 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed June 1, 2014

Jembjos has a really relaxed atmosphere, the staff is very friendly!
Good value for money, that's for sure! Breakfast inclusive, just set it up yourself!
The dorm is nice althought not the best matrasses but good enough for me :)!
Kitchen, braai, tv, wifi, everything is available. The backpackers is located close to the main road. Feel free to ask what ever information you need, the staff will tell you everything and arrange it if you want.

  • Stayed May 2014, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Jasper C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Eastbourne, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed May 8, 2014

I really liked it here. I had the double room on the ground floor by reception. The staff kindly shuffled their bookings around so I could keep this room for both the nights that I stayed, I didn't pre-book I just showed up last minute on a friend's recommendation.
The place was clean and lovely, the room very spacious. The free breakfast had lots of variety, with different fresh fruit both days.
The staff were lovely, showed me all the best places to go and see in the national park and how to get to them, also showed me a couple of gorgeous walks that aren't in the travelling guide books.
All in all a lovely stay both Jembjos and Knysna are beautiful.

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Trisha B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hamburg, Germany
Level Contributor
145 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
Reviewed April 16, 2014

Jembjos Lodge is a really nice and cosy place with lovely personnel and helpful people.
We stayed in the garden room on ground level and the self service kitchen and the shared bathrooms is just fine and worth the price.

I can recommend this place for a stay in Knysna.

Knysna itself also is very beautiful and you should definitely take a boot ride to the featherbeds reserve.

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank superlumidee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa
Level Contributor
9 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed March 24, 2014

I just spent 3 nights back at Jembjos since last being in Knysna in September 2013 and felt immediately at home with smiles from Karl & Mandy and barks from Frazer the house hound. Usual mix of happy guests from all over the world, the garden is green and grown lovely over this summer, the vibe in the kitchen especially at communal breakfast time with everyone enjoying cooking up their own eggs of choice always makes for a super home-away-from-home feel and for solo travellers I reckon safety, peace and stability at Jembjos always a huge plus as well as the location in quiet area close to Knysna waterfront and amenities in town. THANX !!

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Pieter C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Somerset West, Western Cape, South Africa
Level Contributor
228 reviews
41 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 109 helpful votes
Reviewed March 19, 2014

I stayed here for one night early March 2014. I paid for a 4-bed dorm to myself, with shared bathroom, on the ground floor next to the reception and entrance. Comments below relate to this.
Overall, the place has many positives: easy to find, well-kept grounds and buildings, secure off-street parking, close to all amenities, delightfully friendly and helpful staff, and a well-stocked kitchen. However there were some drawbacks.
1) Sleep quality was very poor, and not due to the bed! There are signs inside asking residents to be quiet after 10pm, which they did, but that didn't stop 3 different sets of residents from coming home at 11pm, 12.45am and 3.15am, each group standing at the gate to the premises shouting and laughing loudly while saying an extended goodnight to their buddies! Then they come inside, and troop up the wooden stairs outside my room, and into their wooden-floored dorm above me, each step creaking and squeaking as they go! I suggest well-fitted earplugs if you want any sleep.
2) The shared bathrooms on the ground floor are a bit of a problem. They are miniscule and there is absolutely nowhere to put anything, not even a hook, to hang your towel/gown/clean undies/slippers/toiletries bag or anything else while showering. How about a small shelf and a couple of hooks??
3) I was rather taken aback while checking in, to find that I would be expected to cook/make the free breakfast myself! I didn't see anywhere on their website that this was the case.
4) They could do with another fridge. I arrived with a few things for my dinner, and for my lunch the next day, and there was almost no space in the fridge, without doing a complete re-pack. A large portion of that was 6-packs of beers and 2L cooldrink bottles. I would suggest a separate bar-fridge out near the braai area.
5) I didn't find it good value. I paid R290 for a large room (4-sleeper) with shared bathroom and make-yourself breakfast. On my return journey, I stayed at a different place (agreed not in Knysna) and I paid R300 for a large double room with TV, en suite bathroom, dinner (including tip!) and large breakfast served to me! In the room there was a separate fully-equipped kitchen alcove and fridge so you could self-cater if you wanted (who would for that price?).
So ... if you want REAL value, and it isn't critical to stay in Knysna, do a bit more searching on the internet: there are some real gems out there. Good luck.

Room Tip: Avoid the room on the ground floor just beyond reception / entrance
See more room tips
  • Stayed March 2014, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank angtravel18
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Jembjos Knysna Lodge & Backpackers

Property: Jembjos Knysna Lodge & Backpackers
Address: 4 Queen Street | Lower Central, Knysna 6571, South Africa
Location: South Africa > Western Cape > Knysna
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Shuttle Bus service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #12 of 103 Specialty Lodging in Knysna
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:2 star — Jembjos Knysna Lodge & Backpackers 2*
Number of rooms: 7
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Tucked away in the heart of the Garden Route, we warmly welcome you to relax & enjoy Jembjo's of Knysna. Our boutique backpackers/lodge, is a little bit of luxury that is kind on your pocket & we take pride in making sure you feel at 'home'. We have a range of accommodation to suit every budget, from Dorm beds to de-luxe family en-suite rooms. We are perfectly located in the heart of lower-central Knysna & are just a 2 minute walk away from both the 'Waterfront' & town. - Knysna is South Africa's best kept secret - so come check it out... Book directly with us - 3 nights or more for 10% discount. ... more   less 
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