Ocean Backpackers
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Ocean Backpackers

29 St. James Place, Ilfracombe EX34 9BJ England
Traveller (73)
Room & Suite (25)
Communal Living Room
Dining (13)
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About

4.5
#1 of 1 hostel in Ilfracombe
4.8 of 5 bubbles
Location
4.2 of 5 bubbles
Cleanliness
4.5 of 5 bubbles
Service
4.6 of 5 bubbles
Value
Tripadvisor gives a Travellers’ Choice award to accommodations, attractions and restaurants that consistently earn great reviews from travellers and are ranked within the top 10% of properties on Tripadvisor.
Ocean Backpackers is a contemporary hostel situated close to Ilfracombe's picturesque fishing harbour. Nestled in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, Ilfracombe has many shops, galleries, cafes, pubs and restaurants and is filled with curious coastal charm. The harbour is home to Damien Hirst's 20m statue Verity and trips to Lundy Island, coastal cruises, sea-life safaris and diving are available from the quay. Local attractions include Ilfracombe Aquarium, and the award winning Tunnels Beaches. Surfers' favourites Woolacombe, Croyde and Saunton are a short drive away. Adventure swimming, sea-kayaking, quad biking and horse riding are also available. Ilfracombe is the start of the NCN route 27 Coast to Coast ride and the South West Coast Path provides wonderful coastal walks with stunning scenery. Facilities include a lounge, free Internet/WiFi, self-catering kitchen and surfboard/bike storage. Weekly discounts and large group whole hostel bookings are available on request when booking directly.
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Property amenities
Paid public parking nearby
Free High Speed Internet (WiFi)
Diving
Hiking
Books, DVDs, music for children
Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly )
Non-smoking hotel
Outdoor furniture
Wifi
Horseback riding
Board games / puzzles
Shared kitchen
Shared lounge / TV area
First aid kit
Room features
Oven
Stovetop
Electric kettle
Room types
Non-smoking rooms
Family rooms
Good to know
HOTEL STYLE
Budget
Family
Languages Spoken
English

Location

29 St. James Place, Ilfracombe EX34 9BJ England
220Reviews0Q+A41Room tips

Reviews
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Traveller rating
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Detailed Reviews
Rob B wrote a review Sept 2022
Newport, United Kingdom9 contributions6 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
I've stayed at Ocean Backpackers several times before, on this occasion I stayed in a family room with an en suite bathroom.

The location is perfect; right next to the harbour, in and amongst a number of shops, bars and restaurants, and only a short walk up to the main high street. The Ropery car park is located directly behind the building, and there is a rear entrance which makes it really easy to carry things to and from the car.

The hostel itself is clean and welcoming, and the room was clean and had everything I needed. The staff were very friendly and knowledgeable, and there is a communal kitchen and seating area which is extremely clean and well appointed with all necessary appliances, utensils, crockery and cutlery. There is plenty of space available in the refrigerators, and there is even free tea and coffee available.

For simplicity, all access to the building and your room is via key code, which is great as you don't have to worry about carrying keys/cards with you. My only minor concern with this is that during the checking-in process the door entry codes are presented on a board for you to photograph. On a previous stay (and I believe the hostel has changed management since then) there was a group stood behind me in reception who could see the code to my room when the board was held up for me to photograph. On this occasion I was on my own during check in so had no concerns, but if they haven't already done so, I would recommend that measures are put in place to prevent other guests from seeing your room code on the board during busy periods.

All in all, the hostel is perfectly located and is clean, friendly and reasonably priced. I wouldn't consider staying anywhere else if visiting Ilfracombe.
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Date of stay: September 2022Trip type: Travelled solo
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Response from Alex McWilliam-Brice, Owner at Ocean Backpackers
Responded 7 Apr 2023
Hello Rob, I'm very sorry I didn't thank you for this earlier I'm not sure how I missed it. Thanks, its very helpful. I hope we see you again. Alex
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Katherine M wrote a review Sept 2022
1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
We stayed at the Ocean Backpacker hostel as we had a wedding reception locally. It was a fantastic hostel.
The location was perfect a few steps from the harbor. The staff were really friendly and informative. Really clean with a comfy area to eat and relax. A clean well equipped kitchen. Our room was light and spotless and the shared bathroom was only between 2 rooms so worked really well.
There was attention to detail such as recycling. A place to keep surf boards and a drying room. I took a pic on arrival for bedroom Wi-Fi and front door codes and it all worked brilliantly.
It was refreshing to stay somewhere that was communal relaxed and with high standards. On a budget we could cook our own meals and store food.
Far cry from old fashioned stuffy hotels!
Staff had great knowledge of local area and were really helpful.
Defiantly go back. Thoroughly recommend.
Kath and Steve
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Date of stay: September 2022Trip type: Travelled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Response from Alex McWilliam-Brice, Owner at Ocean Backpackers
Responded 8 Sept 2022
Thank you so much for your helpful and informative review.
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Garry M wrote a review Sept 2021
Budleigh Salterton, United Kingdom13 contributions1 helpful vote
+1
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Would highly recommend staying here, the new owners Alex and Gavin and family will create a thriving business here and around with their great attitude and vision for the area, I enjoyed the company and relaxed atmosphere of the hostel, didn't feel the need to go out into Ilfracombe. A very trusting feel to the place, some high star rated hotels could learn a few tips from the staff here, speaking of the staff, extremely friendly and with a smile on their face, there to help the way it should be. Well done all of you, see you again soon hopefully.
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Date of stay: September 2021Trip type: Travelled with friends
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Response from Ocean Backpackers, Owner at Ocean Backpackers
Responded 20 Sept 2021
We are delighted that you enjoyed your stay and have taken the time to share your experience. Thank you very much.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Hannah S wrote a review Apr 2023
Napton-on-the-Hill, United Kingdom76 contributions18 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Booked this place for a two night family get away. Haven't stayed in a hostel before but we were on a budget and this looked perfect. Private rooms as an option with en-suite, Easter weekend, only £22 each per night. It was everything we'd hoped and more. Excellent service from the moment we arrived, exceptionally clean, a more than well equipped communal kitchen and comfy living area. When I asked if I could take our mugs of tea to our room - the reply was 'of course it's your home from home here'. Made me smile and I knew we had found a gem. Excellent location right between the harbour and high st. We parked up and didn't need to use our car until we left. Because the rules are clear, re noise, cleaning as you go in communal areas, etc, everyone is so friendly and courteous. Just perfect for everyone from lone travellers to families. Well done Alex and team, you exceeded what we had hoped for.
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Date of stay: April 2023Trip type: Travelled with family
Room Tip: The car perk at the back of the hostel get busy, but there is other local parking near by. There...
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Response from Alex McWilliam-Brice, Owner at Ocean Backpackers
Responded 10 Apr 2023
Thank you so much for the review. We hope to see you agin soon.
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Matt Pochin wrote a review Jul 2021
1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Stayed here for one night in a private room on the top floor. There's a handy fully functioning kitchen on the top floor and a communal/lounge area downstairs. Highly recommend staying here for a budget stay in the center of Ilfracombe. Perfect location for visiting the local sites. Staff (esp. Jackie) were very helpful.
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Date of stay: July 2021
5.0 of 5 bubblesRooms
5.0 of 5 bubblesCleanliness
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
Room Tip: Top floor room was quieter. Close the windows to avoid being woken up by the sound of seagulls !
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Mark H wrote a review Sept 2022
Godalming, United Kingdom12 contributions4 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
We have stayed at Ocean Backpackers a number of times over the last couple of years for our group surfing trips and it has got better and better each time we have stayed. The owners have done a lot of work over the last 12 months and the new-look rooms, communal areas and outside spaces are fantastic. The kids loved the darts, the mini table tennis table and the range of board games and cards in the evenings and there are so many handy places to eat right on the doorstep if you don't want to use the very well equipped kitchen facilities to cook for yourself. The staff are really helpful, friendly and welcoming. I am looking forward to our next stay later this year.
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Date of stay: September 2022
5.0 of 5 bubblesRooms
5.0 of 5 bubblesCleanliness
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
Trip type: Travelled on business
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Response from Alex McWilliam-Brice, Owner at Ocean Backpackers
Responded 7 Apr 2023
A very belated thank for this review Mark.
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kenneth p wrote a review Jun 2023
1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
We stayed with a group of 16 sixth-form students on our annual A-level Biology field trip. The Ocean Backpacker's is in an excellent location and the staff were extremely helpful, friendly and accommodating. We have used this as our base for a number of years and I have been impressed with the improvements to the dorm rooms and the living space. The kitchen was spotless.
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Date of stay: June 2023
4.0 of 5 bubblesValue
5.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
Trip type: Travelled on business
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Response from Alex McWilliam-Brice, Owner at Ocean Backpackers
Responded 14 Jun 2023
Thank you Ken, much appreciated and we look very much forward to hosting you again.
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Seb&harriet wrote a review May 2022
3 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Had a lovely time staying at backpackers hostel. My boyfriend and I are keen surfers and loved the drying facilities available here (no squeezing into wet wetsuits).

The rooms are lovely and beds super comfy. The kitchen is also kitted out for you to cook.

The staff are all so lovely and welcoming and always happy to help- great to
Meet you jimmy! Top guy!

Definitely would recommend to anyone.

Thank you ocean backpackers
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Date of stay: May 2022Trip type: Travelled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Response from Alex McWilliam-Brice, Owner at Ocean Backpackers
Responded 2 May 2022
Thank you for taking the time to review, its always appreciated.
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Vicky G wrote a review Sept 2021
3 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Can’t fault this hostel for its location, cleanliness, value for money and friendly staff. Superb from start to finish.

We visited as a group of six friends on a swimming weekend and shared the rooms at the top of the hostel. It was like having our own flat with a kitchen.

We recommend the walk from the hostel to Lee Bay along the coastal path and swimming in the Tunnels Beach Rock Pool.
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Date of stay: September 2021Trip type: Travelled with friends
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Response from Ocean Backpackers, Owner at Ocean Backpackers
Responded 20 Sept 2021
We are delighted that you enjoyed your stay and have taken the time to share your experience. Thank you very much.
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Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Noelle H wrote a review Sept 2021
United Kingdom12 contributions2 helpful votes
+1
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Spent a few days in Ilfracombe over the weekend with some friends from London. The Ocean Backpackers hostel was one of the nicest I have stayed in. The rooms were clean, cosy with great light. The communal areas were brilliant and have that wonderful sense of community with people eating dinner together and chatting about their days. My friends and I were able to chill in the evenings on the sofas with a glass of wine and we got chatting with a group of surfers and ended up going for a late evening walk to the harbour. It was just a really friendly, chilled place to stay and the owners are lovely - they relocated from London with their teenage sons to run the hostel and it does have that great authentic family run feel to it.

The town itself offers everything you could want for a active or chilled destination. We hiked to the Leigh pub on a clear day and could see the coast of Wales from the cliffs. We swam at the Tunnel beaches, a little slice of heaven and we saw seals hunting for their lunch on the sea safari tour! Apart from that there was the food - locally sourced calamari, reasonably priced pints and of course the fresh Cornish pasties.

One of the best weekends we have had in ages. Will be booking in to come back as soon as possible.
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Date of stay: September 2021
5.0 of 5 bubblesValue
5.0 of 5 bubblesRooms
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Response from Ocean Backpackers, Owner at Ocean Backpackers
Responded 20 Sept 2021
We are delighted that you enjoyed your stay and have taken the time to share your experience. Thank you very much.
Read more
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
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David W wrote a tip Apr 2024
1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
"Sleep quality: next to a church so te bells can wake you if you are on the chruch/car park side. However, the hostel provide ear plugs "
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George W wrote a tip Aug 2023
1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
"Snap up a booking at Ocean Backpackers soon"
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Trish S wrote a tip Jul 2023
3 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
"Walk to or from Woolacombe along the coast path and get the bus back the other way - buses roughly hourly and stop just behind the hostel"
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Dominique C wrote a tip Jun 2023
London, United Kingdom1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
"Bring hood shoes, lots of hikes. Also bring rain jacket, unpredictable weather. "
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John wrote a tip Jun 2023
3 contributions1 helpful vote
5.0 of 5 bubbles
"Bring your own towels. All kitchen-ware and cooking pots and pans are provided. "
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Not the right property for you?
There are more places to choose from in the Ilfracombe area.
PRICE RANGE
£73 - £75 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
LOCATION
United KingdomEnglandDevonIlfracombe
NUMBER OF ROOMS
11
Prices are provided by our partners for one room, with variable occupancy rules as provided by the property, and reflect nightly room rates, including all taxes and fees known to our partners. Please see our partners for more details.
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OCEAN BACKPACKERS - Updated 2024 Reviews, Photos & Prices

Frequently Asked Questions about Ocean Backpackers
Which popular attractions are close to Ocean Backpackers?
Nearby attractions include South West Coast Path Walk - Ilfracombe and the Torrs (0.1 miles), St Nicholas Chapel (0.07 miles), and Ilfracombe Museum (0.3 miles).
What are some of the property amenities at Ocean Backpackers?
Some of the more popular amenities offered include free wifi, books, DVDs and music available for children, and diving.
Is parking available at Ocean Backpackers?
Yes, paid public parking nearby is available to guests.
What are some restaurants close to Ocean Backpackers?
Conveniently located restaurants include Antidote, Giovanni's & Luca's, and The Terrace Tapas & Wine Bar.
Is Ocean Backpackers located near the city centre?
Yes, it is 0.3 miles away from the centre of Ilfracombe.
Are pets allowed at Ocean Backpackers?
Yes, pets are typically allowed, but it's always best to call ahead to confirm.
Are there any historical sites close to Ocean Backpackers?
Many travellers enjoy visiting Hele Corn Mill & Tea Room (0.8 miles), Chambercombe Manor (0.9 miles), and St Nicholas Chapel (0.07 miles).
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