We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“A noisy place to stay”

We can't find prices for this accommodation
Our online travel partners don't provide prices for this accommodation, but we can search other options in Arorangi
Check In dd/mm/yyyy Check Out dd/mm/yyyy
Rarotonga Backpackers
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 14 July 2010

We stayed in the beach house for 8 days. It wasn't actually that bad of a place to stay, nice location on the beach and the owners were friendly enough, however we were unfortunate to share the hostel with some very loud, obnoxious and inconsiderate young males who were on an extended stay. These people seemed to be completely obvious to the volume of their own voices and to the fact that the walls were very thin. Despite the fact they appeared to be in their 20's they all acted like they were about 14. They were up making noise at 3 am most nights and also left a huge mess in the kitchen everyday. There were signs from management saying if we had complained about these people they would have been kicked out without a warning, but we didn't want to be responsible for having these people kicked out, we would have preferred a warning been given - i don't think they were even aware of how annoying they were being.

While staying here we weren't to worried about the lack of cleanliness, figuring we got what we paid for, however after leaving we stayed at Maiana's guest house for the same price, and that was far, far cleaner not to mention quieter, and they gave us free fruit as well.

Don't stay here if you want a quiet vacation, it's more suited to noisy, inconsiderate teenagers who just want to party, or people who still act like noisy, inconsiderate teenagers.

  • Stayed: June 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank maybecrazy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Write a ReviewReviews (181)
Traveller rating
Traveller type
Time of year
Language

126 - 132 of 181 reviews

Reviewed 17 June 2010

I stayed at the Backpackers Beachhouse in March 2010 with 3 mates. We were there for 2 weeks and had a great time.

The rooms were basic but all we needed were mattresses and pillows. The bathroom was large and clean. the kitchen was clean.

The house is in a very quiet location and is metres from the waters edge. We took some fantastic sunset photos from here.

The issue of security wasnt a problem as the owners have recently put new screens on the windows and we were very conscious of protecting our valuables.

I would recommend it to people looking for a budget holiday.

  • Stayed: March 2010, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Trevor R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 May 2010

Went to Rarotonga for my BFF's wedding, they all mostly stayed at The Rarotongan which was upwards of $400 a night!? I however decided to save my money for other things like cocktails ; ) etc and chose to stay at Rarotonga Backpackers in their one bedroom fully self contained house.

It is actually about 600m down the road from the backpackers itself and is located between two privately owned houses so its not like there is rowdy backpackers causing chaos. There is also a little shop pretty much right across the road and a bus stop. And the beach was right out the back door and because it was by private houses there was never anyone else using the beach while I was which was nice!!

Was $90 a night and had full kitchen and laundry facilities and tv/dvd player. Luckily I had read other peoples comments on here about the tv stations being crap (they weren't wrong!) so I actually bought dvds with me! I was also super paranoid about getting my room broken into due to previous comments and so wanted to use the in room safe but apparently a member of staff had locked the key inside lol thankfully everything was fine.

The room and furniture were all kinda old and in need of spring cleaning but had everything I needed and for $90 a night who cares!! And with free "shuttle" to and from the airport as well! Oh yeah and be sure to by your duty free in Raro coz it is MEGA cheap - thanks to the staff for that tip in my confirmation email!!

  • Stayed: September 2009, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank BelindaJane
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 March 2010

We stayed at beachfront for one night then hillside for 3 nights. Arrived in Rarotonga at 2.30am and the humidity was hard to handle. We stayed in basic room in beachfront complex and the bed was comfortable but walls were dirty. Shared bathroom was quite grimy. Pool was good and enjoyed swimming in sea and lying in shade.

Gifts of fresh fruit was a lovely gesture - star fruit and pawpaw

On our return from Aitutaki we stayed at the hilliside.The pool here was refreshingly cold but made the skin on my legs tight. We were booked in for basic room but were given an ensuite cabin with kitchen and insect screens. There was a deck with views of local vegetation. We were really impressed by this. Unfortuantely this joy didnt last when we got bitten by ants and what looked like fleas. In addition the bed, pillows and linen smelt awful, damp i guess. I appreciate that humidity and insects come as part of the package in the Cook Islands but we didnt sleep well at all and had heaps of bites.

The host was very helpful with advice on places to eat and best places to go

  • Stayed: February 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Mini026
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 March 2010

Friendly people, beautiful location. I stayed in a single room at the beachfront house, and I had a great time. I found the place safe and friendly. Some people might complain about the state of the kitchen or bathrooms, which could be improved, but I wouldn't expect much more from a budget backpackers in Rarotonga.

The single room was OK, I had the fan turned on for sleeping so I didn't really suffer the heat, and the mosquito nets were in perfect condition so I had no insects at all in the room. The room can get quite hot in the afternoon, but I wasn't interested in spending time there at that time of the day! I'd rather be at the beach or by the swimming pool!

About the environment and the people there, I have to say that I found a really friendly & tranquil atmosphere. It was a great place for meeting people, socializing while having dinner at the tables outside, and staying there chatting to fellow travelers for hours. I got to share some tropical fruit with other backpackers, and a British couple even taught me how to open a coconut just taken from the beach. But there was never late loud parties at night, so I never had problems sleeping there.

The only downside I could find, is that the beach on which the hostel is located is not good for swimming because it's full of rocks. Nevertheless, there's a little spot there in which you can go and sit in the water and refresh yourself. Besides, the feeling of getting out of bed and seeing that you have the beach just there is fantastic!

There's Aro'a beach only 25 minutes away walking, which is one of the best spots for snorkeling on the island. If you want to go to Muri, which I think is a much nicer beach (with the four motus), but not as good as Aro'a for snorkeling, you can either catch the bus or hire a scooter.

There is a grocery only a few 200 meters away, which is practical, but there aren't any big supermarkets nearby.

Overall, I enjoyed my stay. However, if you're too worried about staying at an immaculate place, I would recommend paying a little bit more and staying somewhere else. If you're into loud late night parties, or you want to be located at Muri beach, then you might choose Vara's, but if you're the more relaxed sort of guy, that wants to have a good time and take it easy, you might consider this place as the best option.

Stayed: March 2010, travelled solo
1  Thank FedericoB2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 January 2010

When choosing a hostel or any type of budget accommodation in Rarotonga, the main island in the Cook Islands, there isn't a huge range to pick from. I can't remember what made us go for Rarotonga Backpackers, but whatever it was, I'm so glad we did as we had the best time there.

~ Arrival ~
On our arrival at the airport, which was at a disgustingly horrible time in the morning, we were surprised, but so relieved, to find that someone from the backpackers actually picked us up. Whatever time you arrive they will be there to welcome you and to take you to the hostel.

We were shown into our room and didn't really take any notice of anything as we were kind of mucked up on time flying from New Zealand as the time is so different that we ended up living the same day twice! The next morning we took a look around and it really is a lovely place.

~ The Hostel ~
The hostel takes up a fair bit of space even though there aren't that many rooms so it's not too noisy a place to stay. There's a pretty little garden at the front and a drive which keeps a couple of cars and scooters on it for you to hire out. The reception area is just like a tiny little port-cabin which is host to the reception desk, lots of DVDs and books to hire as well as snorkelling equipment which you can borrow for no charge. Behind the reception room is the main part of the hostel which hosts a communal area, a few dorm, single and double rooms, and the kitchen. The communal area is pretty big and has four big comfy sofas, a large TV, computers with internet access and a pool table. The kitchen is also pretty big and has everything you need to make your own food as well as plenty of take away menus and a phone available for you to use with free local calls.

Outside the kitchen is a lovely decking area where you can either relax on the sunbeds or take a dip in the pool or do some laundry if needs be. Steps leading down from the pool take you directly onto the sandy beach. On the beach there are several more rooms which are obviously the most expensive ones in the hostel, being on the beach front, but if you have the extra money to spend, they really are worth the treat.

~ Rooms ~
We made friends with lots of people here so we got to check out all the different types of rooms that everyone was staying in. The dorms are nice enough - not too squashed but I would have thought it would get pretty hot in there when full. They may also be a little too close for comfort if you had to share with the opposite sex. The standard doubles are fairly big but very basic. We stayed in a standard double and all we had was a no-frills bed and a bedside table each. There was nothing fancy about it and we did ask to change rooms seeing as it was the last place on our 5 month trip, but no other rooms were available. In the end though, we hardly spent any time in the room so this didn't really matter to us at all. The double rooms with ensuite bathrooms are near the reception area and are also a kind of port-cabin with patio doors and a small separate room with a toilet and shower.

The huts and bungalows on the beach front are the best of all though. As the beach slopes down to the sea, the very front rooms are on pillars so you have to climb up some stairs to get to the room, which means that there's a balcony at the front, overlooking the sea. The room opens up with patio doors into a large open area which has a large double bed, a small kitchen with microwave, oven, toaster, kettle and all the cutlery and crockery that you need, and then a separate room with a very plush shower and toilet. You get your own TV and DVD player in these rooms and they really do feel like luxury. A couple we made friends with were upgraded to this room and so about nine of us spent the night in there watching DVDs, making food, and drinking and playing games on the table on the balcony. A few steps down onto the beach below, there's a hammock underneath the room, a rope swing to play around on, and the beautiful sea literally a few feet away.

The bathrooms for those who aren't in an ensuite room are fairly standard but not at all dirty. They have a separate guys and gals shower and they had about 3 individual showers in the gals ones. If you're having a shower at night you should be aware that each separate shower has its own little window - no one can see in but when the lights are on all the creepy crawlies are attracted to the light so make sure you shut the window in there before turning the light on.

~ The Weird and Wonderful ~
A couple of strange things about the hostel is that, in the garden, there are random chickens walking around (don't ask me who they belonged to) and the roosters are very noisy in the morning which does get a little annoying if you want a lay in. Another strange and slightly creepy thing is the fact that the garden is also home to a couple of buried bodies. It's not a cemetery, there are only a couple of people buried there with headstones - don't ask me where the people came from either, they had nothing to do with the hostel owners - just as mysterious as the chickens! At first this is really weird but after taking a quick bus trip around the island, you realise that these are all over the place buried in every house's garden simply because there isn't enough space to bury every resident of Rarotonga in a proper cemetery!

There are a couple of cats and a huge dog that make the hostel their home and they all love to snuggle up in the lounge and watch the DVDs with you.

~ Staff and Activities ~
The owner and all the rest of the staff were so friendly and they were brilliant with giving us advice on things to do and places to go.

They have a notice board up in the communal area which details the different activities you can take part in every day and I'd recommend doing some of them as they're all fantastic and great value. Some of these include a cheap BBQ on a certain night of the week where the food is all cooked for you and you can help yourself to as much food or yummy punch as you like. You can go to church on Sunday morning and this was a great experience to see into the local way of life and to see all the Cook Island folk singing away really loudly. There's also the hostel's shuttle which will take you and pick you up from anywhere on the island at whatever time of night including to some of the best bars, nightclubs and traditional dancing shows which all have to be tried out. During the day the bus stops directly outside the hostel and this goes round and round the island's only road throughout the day so it's perfectly easy to get anywhere and only a 10 minute ride into the main part of town.

As I said, part of the hostel is actually on the beach so whether you want the sea or a swimming pool, you don't need to go further than down a few steps. This part of the beach is very quiet and I don't think we saw more than a couple of people on it the whole time we were there, as the hostel is mostly surrounded by homes. The sea here isn't the best place to swim in as it can get very choppy but the 'official' beach is just a 10 minute bus ride away.

~ Overall ~
Part of the reason why we loved the place so much was because we made some wonderful friends here but focusing on the hostel itself I still can't really think of anything negative to say about it. The only thing which some people may not like is that there are small gaps under the bedroom doors and, being very close to the beach, we did have a visitor one night - one of those little opaque coloured crabs. All I could hear was this clicking noise as it snapped it claws together and getting it out was so bloody hard as it would never go in the right direction to the door because the stupid thing only walks sideways!

Overall, this place made a lovely stay for us on our last stop on a 5 month trip, and I'm so glad we stayed here. It felt so homely and comfortable right from the off, especially as you have to take your shoes off inside the hostel. Not a single thing could have made it better.

  • Stayed: June 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
4  Thank MrsAylasAdventures
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 September 2009

We spent a total of 5 nights with Rarotonga Backpackers - two nights at the beachside location and 3 nights at the hillside location.

>Beachside: I don't think I would go back to the beachside location. It was really noisy (got woken up at 2am one night) and the kitchen was terrible. It was small, dirty and did not have a great stock of supplies. The location was lovely as it's really close to the beach - and if you get the villa/bungalow rooms they are pretty much on the beach. Definitely not much of a swimming beach but we didn't really see any beaches that were great for swimming on Rarotonga - most had coral or rocks everywhere. The pool was ok but we didn't end up using it. The room was pretty typical as were the bathrooms. Overall, just kind of felt like it wasn't super clean.

>Hillside: The hillside location was interesting. It had a great view and it was quite large. The pool was ok as well. The kitchen was big but also suffered from a lack of supplies. There was a common room that was quite big as well. We ended up in poolside room which meant that it was built into the side of the hill so the room smelled really "earthy" and it was pretty dark. The room was tiny. The water randomly stopped working while we were there. Like in the middle of a shower and it wouldn't come back on for an hour or so. Possibly just an island issue and maybe not a specific plumbing issue at the hostel. Not sure - the staff weren't around very often to ask if anything went wrong.

Overall, they are budget places to stay so you get a budget stay. Transportation on the island is difficult as there weren't really taxis and there is a bus but it runs maybe hourly, of half-hourly I can't remember. They charge you to bring your luggage on the bus too! We tried to ask the hostel to take us to the ariport but they said they didn't run their van unless it was full.

Don't think I would stay again at either location as we had a much better experience at the Aremango Guesthouse - yeah it was maybe $20 more a night but it felt worth it after we stayed at these hostels.

  • Stayed: August 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank teamBCtravellers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotels you might also like...
Also consider these accommodations in or near Arorangi
6.4 mi away
Muri Beach Club Hotel
3 mi away
Moana Sands Beachfront Hotel
0.6 mi away
Aro'a Beachside Inn
Aro'a Beachside Inn
#3 of 4 in Arorangi
171 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
5.3 mi away
Kiikii Inn & Suites
Kiikii Inn & Suites
#5 of 5 in Avarua
65 reviews
1.4 mi away
The Edgewater Resort & Spa
5.2 mi away
Club Raro
Club Raro
#2 of 5 in Avarua
244 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Rarotonga Backpackers? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Rarotonga Backpackers

Address: PO Box 3103, Arorangi, Cook Islands
Region: Cook Islands > Southern Cook Islands > Rarotonga > Arorangi
Hotel Style:
Ranked #7 of 13 Speciality Lodging in Arorangi
Number of rooms: 63
Also Known As:
Rarotonga Backpackers Hotel Arorangi
Rarotonga Backpackers Cook Islands

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing