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Nomads Cairns Backpackers and Serpent Bar
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Reviews (474)
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Reviewed 12 September 2009

I stayed there in feb 2003. Took diving certificate too so i studied alot on the hostel wich was alittle disturbing sometimes..:P i rather took a swin in the pool=)

  • Stayed: February 2006, travelled with friends
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Thank karinpalmer77
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 August 2008

Stayed here for about a week.

The free dinner is a nice bonus, even if it is small. Has a nIce pool, good outdoor common/tv area, lots of internet terminals, a good bar (for a hostel).

The rooms are pretty basic, what you woud expect at a hostel. I thought they were pretty clean compared to some places ive been. The washroom/shower facilities are really nice, very clean looking and with lots of toilets and showers so you never have to wait. Plenty of mirrors and sinks to go around too.

I should also add that they were really good about getting the room cleaned everyday. Sometimes this is an area of let down at hostels, but I was pretty happy with the clean towels and sheets we got everyday without fail.

The downside is the location. It is a little too far out of the main part of town to walk in a timely manner, although there is a shuttle service provided. If you hate waiting around for a shuttle or simply must be in the town centre then its probably not a good hostel for you.

Overall, I am satisfied with Serpent, and recommend it to other back-packers. I think its a hostel that people sort of forget about since it is out of the way a bit, but its worth a look for sure.

  • Stayed: April 2008, travelled with friends
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Thank ehrady
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 August 2008

This place isn't bad, but i agree with some of the other reviewers who've mentioned certain less favourable points... what IS that smell in the bedrooms??

there were a fair few horror stories when we were there too... a whole gang of complete chavs who were there at the same time as us managed to completely destroy the experience for one of our friends (we were in a female dorm whereas he was in mixed) - let's just say that they didnt keep their nocturnal intimacies very quiet, and their mates were cheering them on, smashing up furniture (literally) etc ALL NIGHT. needless to say, our poor friend could not be talked out of checking out the next day. we later found out that the exact same thing had happened three or four times already, with the same gang of people, and i immediately lost respect for a hostel which is so clearly incapable of throwing out people who are completely ruining the experience of other guests.

this hotel is also way out of town, and we were fooled into thinking that this would be ok due to the proudly proclaimed shuttle bus running in and out of town. however, this shuttle bus runs irregularly, infrequently (ignore the timetable - it is not followed!) and serves Serpent's two sister hostels too... we had rather a nasty experience of being left stranded in the town centre too (they couldnt fit everyone in the minibus, and refused to come back for the 6 of us left behind because - and i quote - they needed the minibus for the staff night out). the town centre of cairns is about one of the most unpleasant and unsafe places in the world to be stranded in. basically, the shuttle bus is not the most efficient of 'services'.

on the plus side, the pool is very nice (and clean), most of the reception staff are friendly (one older bloke who i think is the manager was exceptionally jovial), and there's a great system of daily alternated cheap meals in the bar. the bar has a good happy hour too, and it's a nice size and plays music videos, and has a reasonable atmosphere which somehow avoids the chavvy style of most hostel bars. there were some fun things like pub quizes too.

not sure i'd stay here again if i was ever unfortunate enough to be re-visiting Cairns, as there were some other hostels in the town centre which might be worth a try instead for convenience (although - as i said - the town centre is not necessarily a nice place to be anyway!!). probably worth a look if you're looking for a place to chill out with a nice pool and bar though, especially if you're with a group who could afford to book out a private dorm between you and avoid potential nocturnal disturbances from strangers!

  • Stayed: February 2008, travelled with family
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1  Thank LosingMyself
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 June 2007

This is a very average place but if you're on a budget and would rather spend your money on other things like I did (you've got to do a skydive!) then its not too bad.

Ok so the rooms aren't amazing, at one point I was in a room with 10 beds but at the end of the day I didnt spend a lot of time in there. The air conditioning was only allowed on after 5pm so it was always cool enough to sleep.

The free dinner is a bit of a joke but it wasn't much to upgrade, I think it was 7$ and for that you got a decent portion and a free beer or cocktail which was good.

It isn't near much but the free bus ran every half an hour right into the the town and there was also a late bus to take you to clubs and pick you up again at night..

The pool was ok and there were volleyball competitions against other hostels. The layout is good downstairs, the pool tv area and bar are all next to each other so its a really friendly environment.

I actually had more fun here than a hostel in the centre of cairns because the way it is laid out means you spend more time with people in the communal areas and get to know everyone, my brother and I were there for 2 weeks and at the end of it it was his birthday which turned out to be a great party as we had got to know so many people!

If you're on a budget and looking to meet people then this place is ideal, its basic but like I said your money is better spent elsewhere, its not the room I remember when I look back but the scuba diving, rafting and skydive!!!!!!!

  • Stayed: September 2006, travelled with family
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2  Thank BEACHBUMBUM
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 February 2007

The staff here are an absolute joke, most off the staff are backpackers themselves and they know absolutely nothing about Australia and in particular Cairns.

Let me give you an example, i asked the lady at the bar the following, "can i please have a pot of beer?" she looked at me dumb founded, so I proceeded "how about a schooner? a midi? a glass? a handle?" she replied in a thick german accient I dont know what you are saying. Unbelievable all things mentioned above are typical australian beer glass sizes. if they cant work that out, I'd hate to ask for a meal.

The rooms themselves have a jail cell feel, you cant control the air-con, so just have to put up with either freezing cold or boiling hot.

And if you to sunbake on one off the deck chairs, make sure your by the pool by at least 10:00am otherwise you will be lying on concrete.

  • Stayed: February 2007, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank SnakeSyd
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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