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“Stunning location, beautiful people!!”
Review of Mdumbi Backpackers

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Mdumbi Backpackers
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed September 6, 2013

This place really did something to me. Felt at home from the very first minute! It's situated in an amazing location on the coast in very close proximity of the beach. Dolphins and whales (if you happen to come in the right season) come by on a regular base and it's spectacular to see them play out in the waves.
Staff is very nice and you can order tasty food from their kitchen. They're doing an amazing job in keeping the place look beautiful and make you feel comfortable at their place. I love sleeping in a rondavel!!! The toilets and showers have great mosaic!!
Definitely a place I'll be coming back to!!! It's a paradise! Thanks for sharing your amazing place!!!

  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled solo
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Thank margriet m
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Johann S, Owner at Mdumbi Backpackers, responded to this reviewResponded October 28, 2013

Hey Margriet... hope you are doing well. Thanks so much for the lovely words!!! We have being experiencing a whale and dolphin explosion. So many these days its just supper pretty!!! The mdumbi point sticks out quite far that's why they come really close to the land here. Hope you enjoyed the rest of your travels. Greets johann

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101 - 107 of 131 reviews

Reviewed August 8, 2013

We found here what we didn't find in Coffee Bay - a beautiful, unspoilt, rural setting and very easy going friendly accommodation. The site, which consists of various rondavels and sheltered camping grounds, is set on a hill overlooking the sea where whales and dolphins can be spotted. We ended up staying here much longer than expected and spent our time walking along the beach, doing a cultural walk of the nearby xhosa village, fishing in the mdumbi river, visiting the community run preschool and generally relaxing. There are plenty of other activities on offer including kayaking and horse riding so bring plenty of cash so that you can stay for as long as you want. The evening meals are really good value-hearty and delicious! I would definitely recommend visiting this place if you're on the Wild Coast.

  • Stayed: August 2013
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1  Thank Izzy V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Johann S, Owner at Mdumbi Backpackers, responded to this reviewResponded October 28, 2013

Hi Izzy. Your words just put a smile on my face. Thanks for visiting us and really seeing the place for its beauty and diversity. We are working hard to create that feel of real relaxation and away from it all but that's maybe not that hard, if the beach next to you is rated one of the top beaches in africa and the community is as cool as ours then its more just seeing it as a privilege. Hope you can come visit us again soon!! bi johann

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Reviewed July 24, 2013

We hiked from Port Edward to Kei river mouth, 300km. Mdumbi is one of the excellent backpackers on this stretch of coast. They made us a large 3 course seafood supper. We stayed in the dorm and the mattresses were good. We bought Milk Stout beers at the local place close by.

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank Stephan T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Johann S, Owner at Mdumbi Backpackers, responded to this reviewResponded October 28, 2013

Hi Stefan.. that's really great that you guys did that hike!!! It must be one of the most amazing hikes in this country!! I see that you stayed in the big hall... That's not really part of our accomodation, its more likean emergency room for when we are full, but really glad that you still enjoyed it. Hope to see you back here again one day!! bi johann

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Reviewed April 1, 2013

I feel conflicted writing this review, because Mdumbi really is the best semi-kept secret in the Transkei and, for someone who plans to return, I partly hope it remains undiscovered.

Mdumbi offers everything you could ask for from a beachy backpackers, and the activities on offer are well suited to the spectacular scenery. But it's more than that: Mdumbi is unlike some of the slightly seedy coastal towns of the Transkei, and fantastically integrated into the local community. Your experience will be authentic, and the money you spend will benefit the area directly.

It is a little out of the way, so plan to stay a few days to make the trip worthwhile—and make sure you bring enough wine!

  • Stayed: March 2013
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1  Thank StealthDonkey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Johann S, Owner at Mdumbi Backpackers, responded to this reviewResponded October 28, 2013

Hi there Stealthdonkey(I really wish I knew who you are)
Thanks for deciding to review us in even if it was a hard choice!! I feel the same when I travel places, and also starting this business 10 years ago I was asking myself what am I doing here... but over the years I have just realized that through this development we can conserve the area and by doing it right the people around here really benefits from it...
Our community is not subject to a exclusive sense of business, we share our income and everybody has a say here and this makes the place quite special.
Cheers and thanks for the review!!

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Reviewed February 28, 2013

I've been going to Mdumbi for over 10 years now and I always stay at Mdumbi Backpackers. The place is like a family to me now and I always look forward to going back. The Backpackers is very rural - so if you're looking for luxury accommodation then stay away....but luxury isn't the reason for going to Mdumbi - it's a rustic jewel and one I hope that remains a little rough around the edges. There is always plenty to do and all activities are organised via the backpackers main office through the local community. The community is very friendly and approachable; which in turn I think tends to mean the community and backpackers have a very good relationship. Finally the beach is to die for - more often than not, if you're just out of holiday season, you have the whole beach to yourselves except for maybe a cow!

Room Tip: The main accommodation is in Rodavels - these are quite old but are being renovated - ask to be put...
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  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Obly1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 29, 2013

This place is unique. First of all: If you are looking for a luxury five star hotel - stay away! But if you are looking for a small rustic backpackers next to one of the most beautiful beaches in South Africa you`ll be happy. The backpackers is well integrated and partly owned by the local community and one has the possibility to meet local xhosa people (at mdumbi, the shebeen in the village or the village itself). One night we lit up a fire at the beach and had some beers, which was wonderful. I really enjoyed the good vibes and the stunning location. The people running the place and all the guides and mammas, who offer trips and other services (delicious Xhosa Bread, laundry, massage...) are great people - these guys really created a wonderful little paradise.

Go with Lusanda on the cultural hike - he is really a cool guy and the trip is quite interesting. Canoying is also cool - you`ll see monkeys and lizards and other animals.

By the way: If you let them know your diatry requirements, they will do everything to make you happy - therefore, I don`t really understand the negative review on that topic. Sometimes they run a bit out of stock, but that`s maybe a day in week or so (and there are even then still able to provide good food).

So far, it was the most amazing place with the most amazing people I have visited in South Africa . 100% recommandation! (of course only, if you are not snobby or a racist)

Cheers

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank JonasSwitzerland
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 27, 2013

Mdumbi is now accessible via tar and good gravel road but still feels totally disconnected from the rest of the world - in a very good way! When you arrive you can just feel yourself relaxing and chilling out - i think it would be impossible to do otherwise.
Accommodation is basic but clean and has all the backpacker and/or camper needs. The staff are friendly and approachable and the food was pretty decent - especially considering how remote their location is.
Prices are also quite good for accommodation and food and if you need a drink its only a 500m walk to the locals tavern/shabeen.
In short - if you're looking to get away from it all and relax and chill out in an absolutely idyllic setting then this is the place!

Room Tip: Although its a backpackers, they do have private rooms - so if dorms aren't going to do it for y...
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  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with friends
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Thank EvanPrice
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Mdumbi Backpackers

Address: Mdumbi Village, Mdumbi, South Africa
Location: South Africa > Eastern Cape > Wild Coast > Mdumbi
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 3 Specialty Lodging in Mdumbi
Price Range: $7 - $30 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 9
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Get back to basics and experience a true rural community in the heart of the Wild Coast. Stay in comfortable traditional mud huts surrounded by beaches, forests and estuaries. Support one of South Africa’s most community active backpackers with 50% belonging to the community, and 100% of all activities owned by the community. Get involved with Transcape, Mdumbi’s NPO, and all our current projects. Check out Mdumbi’s garden and eco friendly systems. Learn to surf or get barrelled at Mdumbi’s world class point break surf—it just might be the longest ride of your life. Hear the inside scoop and set off to the best undiscovered surf spot on our coast. Kayak up the tranquil Mdumbi river and feast your eyes on the amazing birdlife. Hike along our coast exploring caves and swimming in water pools, or take a guided wander through our friendly village. Stroll along South Africa’s most beautiful beach (as voted in Getaway Magazine). Take our horses out for a gallop down the beach or have a massage after a long day of adventure. Fill your belly with mama’s delicious cooking (try our Saturday seafood feast). Enjoy the community dance troupe’s traditional performance, or head to the beach guided by the moon and watch the red sparks from the bonfire float up to the silver stars. Wake up for sunrise, catch a glimpse of the dolphins riding the waves, and ponder how lucky you are to have discovered such a magical spot. ... more   less 

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