Where to Stay in the Bay of Islands for Backpackers
Sea, sand, waterfalls, wildlife… The Bay of Islands is the North Island’s little piece of paradise with consistently good weather and lots of things to do. To save money for boat trips, mountain biking, skydiving or whatever it is you want to do, stay in one of the awesome backpacker hostels in the Bay of Islands, New Zealand!
The Bay of Islands encapsulates the towns of Paihia, Kerikeri, Russell and Kawakawa. Paihia is your main hub for water activities in The Bay, while Kerikeri is a backpacker favourite for seasonal work and a great place to learn about New Zealand history. Russell was New Zealand’s first capital, full of charm and also history. Find out more in our Bay of Islands – Guide for Backpackers.
1. Centabay Lodge (Paihia)
Right smack-bang in the middle of Paihia, Centabay Lodge is an excellent go-to for backpackers looking for dorms or budget travellers looking for a cheap private studio room. The hostel has a generous array of inclusions, from WiFi to a games room. Take one of the ultra-cheap rental kayaks for the day, then relax in the spa pool in the evening! What’s not to love about this hostel? For more Paihia favourites, check out the 5 Best Backpacker Hostels in Paihia.
Check Centabay Lodge out:
- Centabay Lodge on Booking.com
- Centabay Lodge on HostelWorld
- Centabay Lodge on Trip.com
- Centabay Lodge on Expedia
2. Relax a Lodge (Kerikeri)
If you fancy yourself as a flashpacker for the night then consider Relax a Lodge in Kerikeri. With affordable double, twin and triple rooms in their farmhouse, get a break from busy dorm rooms. There are all the usual communal facilities found in a hostel, from the kitchen to laundry (except they have a dishwasher!) Not that you’ll want to spend too much time inside when there’s a swimming pool, pigs to feed, freshly laid eggs to gather for breakfast, and more. BBH members also benefit from a discount. For more hostels nearby, check out the 5 Best Backpacker Hostels in Kerikeri.
Check Relax a Lodge out:
- Relax a Lodge on Booking.com
- Relax a Lodge on HostelWorld
- Relax a Lodge on Trip.com
- Relax a Lodge on Expedia
3. Haka Lodge (Paihia)
Modernly refurbished with great views over Paihia Beach and pod-style bunk beds, no wonder Haka Lodge Paihia is so often highly rated. The highlight is their quality bunks with privacy curtains, power points and a lockable storage area for your bags. There are also private rooms, should you crave your own space. We also like how spacious the hostel is with free unlimited WiFi!
Check Haka Lodge Paihia out:
- Haka Lodge Paihia on Booking.com
- Haka Lodge Paihia on HostelWorld
- Haka Lodge Paihia on Trip.com
- Haka Lodge Paihia on Expedia
4. Peppertree Lodge (Paihia)
This purpose-built backpackers in Paihia has beds for every type of budget traveller, from the budgeting backpacker to families. The stylish hostel with its subtropical theme also offers a generous array of freebies, such as a barbecue, bikes, kayaks, tea, coffee, tennis courts and more. Peppertree Lodge‘s sun-filled mezzanine communal lounge is also an awesome place to relax.
Check Peppertree Lodge out:
- Peppertree Lodge on Booking.com
- Peppertree Lodge on HostelWorld
- Peppertree Lodge on Trip.com
- Peppertree Lodge on Expedia
5. Hone Heke Lodge (Kerikeri)
For a great place to stay on a budget in Kerikeri, take a look at Hone Heke Lodge. The lively atmosphere is thanks to the backpackers choosing Hone Heke while doing seasonal fruit picking work (as a working hostel, the team can help you find a job). Mingle in the covered outdoor dining area, play some table tennis or lounge in the huge garden area. Choose from dorm rooms, private rooms and motel rooms. What’s more, there’s free WiFi.
6. Pukeko Cottage (Russell)
Stay somewhere a little different at the charming homestay/backpacker accommodation of Pukeko Cottage. The hostel is a mere 5 minutes walk from the Russell Wharf. This accommodation prides itself on its homely and relaxing environment. With only three rooms, the place certainly never feels too crowded. You’ll also find a basic kitchen and lounge, as well as a sunny decking area and barbecue outside.
7. Bay of Islands Lodge (Paihia)
Centrally located in Paihia and a few steps away from the beach, Bay of Islands Lodge is another worthy go-to for your backpackers of choice! With attractive timber-lined rooms, bunks fixed to the wall in dorms (no squeaky bunk beds) and an array of affordable private rooms for couples and families, there’s something for everyone. What’s more, all rooms have an ensuite bathroom! Enjoy a barbecue in the undercover courtyard in summer or huddle in the homely lounge and kitchen area in winter. There’s also free WiFi, on-site parking and a nearby tennis court for hire.
Check Bay of Islands Lodge out:
8. Bay Adventurer (Paihia)
Another awesome hostel in Paihia is the Bay Adventurer. There’s plenty of space in this apartment/backpacker resort with a swimming pool, spa pool and tennis court. There is free WiFi, a book exchange and board games, as well as communal facilities such as a kitchen, laundry, terrace, courtyard and a lounge with Netflix. Choose from studios, apartments, dorm rooms, female dorms and tent/campervan spaces.
Check Bay Adventurer out:
9. KeriCentral (Kerikeri)
Another fantastic working hostel in Kerikeri is KeriCentral. They’ll help you find season work while providing hostel accommodation and facilities such as a swimming pool, free WiFi, kitchen, laundry and all those other little essentials. What’s more, they’re located right in the town centre of Kerikeri.
10. Aranga Backpackers (Kerikeri)
This large hostel is located along the river and is only five minutes walk from Kerikeri town centre. At Aranga Backpackers, choose from single rooms, double rooms, dorm rooms and camping sites with a kitchen, lounge, table tennis room and barbecue area to share. The team can help you find local jobs too. Aranga Backpackers is part of the Kerikeri Holiday Park.
More Backpacker Hostels in the Bay of Islands
That’s it for our list of the best hostels in the Bay of Islands but if you want more hostel-like stays, check out the following:
- 5 Best Backpacker Hostels in Paihia
- 5 Best Backpacker Hostels in Kerikeri
- 10 Best Budget Accommodations in the Bay of Islands
Finally, if there’s anything that we’ve missed, you’re like to find it in Bay of Islands – Guide for Backpackers or The Travel Guide to the Bay of Islands on a Budget.