Sydney, Australia is a city that I have visited many times in the past several years. The first couple times I visited I was new to traveling by myself and thought hostels were scary. I also had a job at the time and way more money than a do now so I was slightly frivolous. I stayed at hotels by myself spending more than $100 a night and then that all changed.
When I went to Spain to film the first episode of my own travel show in 2009, I stayed at my first hostel ever. I loved that hostel and from then on I pretty much loved all hostels. (There was this one in Madrid that is still questionable today though…) So the moment I found myself going back to Sydney again I searched for the hostels and the one I chose was the best decision.
I booked myself in at the Sydney Harbour YHA, located in The Rocks, one of my favourite parts of the city, the Sydney Harbour YHA was less than a year old at the time. The only flaw was that it was built on a top of a hill however it was built in such a way that was very interesting. The Rocks area of Sydney is one of the oldest inhabited parts of the city and when they started to build the hostel there were excavations and many remains and artifacts from old Sydney life in The Rocks was found. Instead of digging up some and covering the rest with this new building the hostel was built on stilts hovering above the artefacts.
Inside the hostel there are pieces of things found like glass bottles, pottery and old tools incased in glass table tops in the lounge areas. There are display cases through out the building and even images of the artifacts have made their way onto the art work on the walls. There are also free guided tours around the hostel area talking about the different artifacts that were found.
The artifacts were just one small part of the reason I think this is best hostel in Sydney. Being a new building everything was fresh and updated, each dorm room has its own separate shower, toilet and sink however what blew me away the most and it might seem simple to some was the lockers.
The lockers in the Sydney Harbour YHA are not only big and spacious, but they also have a top shelf for smaller items and they have two plugs inside them! TWO PLUGS! So you can charge your computer, camera or other gear while it is safely locked away inside your locker. Yes this blew my mind. Don’t judge me. Each person also had their own light and two plugs at their bed which was extra convenient.
Other bonuses of the Sydney Harbour YHA include a cafe inside the hostel that sells breakfast food for you to cook up in the big open kitchen area, there are plenty of shelfs and fridge space for people cooking their own food. There is a bunch of computers with internet to use with a Global Gossip Card, they have storage lockers, it is extremely envorinmentaly friendly and have events different nights of the week. From BBQs of kangaroo to $5 burrito nights they definitely help travellers stay with them travel for cheap.
The costs to stay at the YHA are a more expensive that what you might be accustomed to in Europe and definitely way more than what you may expect in Asia however for the quality and location you will quickly realize its at a pretty good price especially when you compare it with other hostels in the city and throughout Australia.
I’ve now stayed at the Sydney Harbour YHA at least5 or 6 different times and if I still haven’t convinced you to stay here with anything that I have said above then at least stay for the view.
Oh and the Sydney Harbour YHA has also won 20+ awards, one of those being the “Best Hostel in Australia & Best Hostel in Oceania” by the Hostelworld Hoscar Awards in 2010.