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.
The latest reviews. The lowest prices. The perfect place to shop for hotels.

“Cold and unfriendly” 3 of 5 bubbles
Review of Cactus Jacks Backpackers

Best prices for -
Check In dd/mm/yyyy Check Out dd/mm/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 2 more sites!
Cactus Jacks Backpackers
Travelling NZ/Aus
Level Contributor
13 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Cold and unfriendly”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 24 July 2009

This backpackers had great, friendly staff who gave awesome advice on where to find things and cheap tours to take. The room was tiny and freezing cold, though the staff did provide a heater. The place had a pretty unfriendly feel to it, and walking across the yard in the pouring rain to go to the toilet or use the shower (the showers were pretty grim) wasn't much fun. Pretty average stay.

  • Stayed June 2009, travelled solo
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank endilwen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Write a Review

106 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
    26
    38
    18
    9
    15
See reviews for
9
21
27
Business
0
Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (10)
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
Dublin
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 June 2009

Myself and my boyfriend stayed here for 2 nights on our 3wk tour of NZ. We've stayed in hostels all over australia and the rest of NZ so are well used to them. When we got here (central enough location about 5mins from main road with tourist office), we had to wait for 20mins to check in while the girl who was supposed to be on reception was in the back room doing aerobics. No kidding. There was a buzzer for the phone she was supposed to have on her but the phone was on the counter beside the buzzer...useful. I had to go roaming around the hostel to find another staff member to go and get the reception girl to check us in.

Eventually when we checked into our room (double room), it was small but seemed fine. As another review said it was dusty. We had to go outside to go to the loo which during the night was freezing! We did have a heater in our room tho but it was still cool enough. The loo's weren't great - quite old and no soap or towels in them (at one point I actually put a small soap into the ladies loo's to use each time and the next time I went back it was gone - so someone actually went to the trouble of stealing a soap or else the cleaners threw it out - helpful).

The kitchen was old too, could do with a lot of updating. Not much table space to eat your meal either. Then lastly, the morning we left we were getting our bus at 8.30am, so when we went to check out and get our key deposit back the reception (which was supposed to open at 8am), was closed. We hung around till 8.20am but still no sign. Not very helpful when you are leaving rotorua. To be fair I called them when I got to our next stop in the YHA auckland and they arranged to pay the rotorua YHA the cash, which allowed the auckland one to pay me. So I got the cash back but still its not something you want to have to deal with one day before you leave NZ.

Overall it wasn't a really bad hostel, I just wouldn't stay here again as ive stayed in hostels with better standards and don't think theres any excuse for places not up to scratch.

  • Stayed May 2009, travelled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank strawberrybliss
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London
Level Contributor
61 reviews
50 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 106 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 20 August 2007

Friendly, comfortable hostel. Good size rooms and clean facilities. The unique decor makes it a change from the usual hostels.

  • Stayed April 2003
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Check-in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank JosieH
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Toronto
1 review
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 July 2007

Bed Bugs. Thats all I really have to say.

  • Stayed February 2006, travelled with friends
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Check-in / front desk
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank AlexaToronto
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

Travellers are raving about these Rotorua hotels

Ireland
Level Contributor
7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 September 2006

We recently spent 3 nights in Cactus Jacks. First of all if you're allergic to cats watch out here as Cactus is a cat (Jack is a pet bird, caged out front!). If you arrive to Rotorua by bus you will be dropped off at Tourism Rotorua and its just a couple of minutes walk to the hostel from here. Don't be put off by the small reception area. The hostel has plenty of space for all its guests and lots of nooks to throw yourself in to chill. The owners-Joe and Sheryl, are so so nice-really friendly at all times, and a good laugh.
We stayed in room 34, a double off the courtyard area. The bed was extremely comfy. The kind that when you test it after throwing off your luggage you will have difficulty getting up! There are plenty of hooks and shelves and a little dressing table too. Now if you're someone that like spacious rooms this won't be for you. The rooms are small- all of them- but they are comfortable. There are rooms inside the main building and then some that surround the courtyard area. Those surrounding the courtyard did seem bigger so perhaps request one of these when booking. The only draw back is you'll have to go outside in order to get to the bathroom, which might be a pain if it rains. On the topic of bathrooms, there are several- inside and out- so you never have to wait to go. Similarly with showers.
The whole hostel is based on a Wild West kinda theme. For example the room that houses the vending machine and pool table is called the Saloon and the courtyard bit has a great porch swing chair. There is also a hot pool/tub which is great to chill in. The tv room had a good dvd player and vcr and a good collection of movies. I found it great to chill there as there was rarely many prople in it. They only have 3 channels though (although many hostels in NZ only have TV1, Two and TV3). The kitchen was very clean and had plenty of everything, including a couple of fridge-freezers. There is only one table (seats around 6) in the kitchen, but the ajoining room has more seating, along with 2 internet computers (coin run-around $6 an hour). Soup and scones are served free every evening around 6 in the kitchen. We arrived on a Friday and the scones and soup were fresh and delicious, but we found that it was the leftovers of theis that were served the next couple of days so they weren't as good- but still free!
All in all this hostel had lots of character, friendly staff and comfortable beds. It is definitely worth staying here simply for the effort to be different the owners have put in. A gem of a hostel.
(Oh if you're planning a trip to Rotorua I recommend doing the Tamaki Maori Village concert and hangi. I thought it would be touristy nonsense but it was really great fun. The food was amazing and the whole night was thoroughly enjoyable. It costs about $85 for the whole lot but you can literally eat until you burst and everything was really well organised. Another good trip is to go via the shuttle bus from Tourism Rotorua to the Thermal Wonderland. It costs about $10 for the bus and $25 to enter the park. The driver narrates you're trip with interesting info and you also get to visist Lady Knox Geyser and the Mudpools. Well worth a visit.)

  • Liked — Really different from other budget accommodation
  • Disliked — Had to go outside to get to the toilet, although you get used to it.
  • Tips/Secrets — Get a room by the courtyard.
  • Stayed August 2006, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Check-in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
3 Thank juliedon1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 June 2004

If you are visiting Rotorua, this is the place to stay. The owners are possibly the nicest people in the world, and while I was there they even cooked fresh scones for us few times a week!

There is a relaxed, sociable atmoshere, easy to meet people. Thermally heated hot tub, pool table, TV and videos, large kitchen etc etc...... And Cactus the Kitten!!

Good rates, town centre location, walking distance to Lake Rotorua.
Thumbs up all the way!!

Helpful?
3 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 14 April 2004

One of the best kept secrets of NZ, mine hosts; Joe and Sheryl are amazing, nothing seems to be any trouble to them. They will do anything to make your stay that little more homely. Its not unusual for Joe to wash up and do your laundry for you with out asking. Sherly's comprehension of the Japanese, Chinese and German language is to say the least "brilliant",roll on my next holidays. My most memorable evening would have to be the "WILD WEST" night, Joe's lassoing tricks are breath taking. What talent a man of his age has. I will be seeing you again.

ps. the rooms where a bit dusty.

Helpful?
1 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotels you might also like...
Travellers also viewed these Rotorua hotels
0.2 mi away
Rotorua Downtown Backpackers
0.3 mi away
Rotorua Planet Backpackers
Rotorua Planet Backpackers
#24 of 57 in Rotorua
4.5 of 5 bubbles 25 reviews
0.2 mi away
Rock Solid Backpackers
Rock Solid Backpackers
#6 of 57 in Rotorua
4.5 of 5 bubbles 334 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
0.3 mi away
Crash Palace
Crash Palace
#3 of 57 in Rotorua
4.5 of 5 bubbles 355 reviews
0.1 mi away
Astray Motel
Astray Motel
#14 of 57 in Rotorua
4.0 of 5 bubbles 194 reviews
0.1 mi away
YHA Rotorua
YHA Rotorua
#4 of 57 in Rotorua
4.0 of 5 bubbles 368 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Cactus Jacks Backpackers? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Cactus Jacks Backpackers

Property: Cactus Jacks Backpackers
Address: 1210 Haupapa Street, Rotorua 3010, New Zealand
Region: New Zealand > North Island > Bay of Plenty Region > Rotorua District > Rotorua
Amenities:
Hotel Style:
Ranked #46 of 57 Speciality Lodging in Rotorua
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Number of rooms: 20
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Fun Themed Hostel with Cartoon and Movie Characters ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Booking.com, Odigeo, HostelWorld and Agoda so you can book your Cactus Jacks Backpackers reservations with confidence. We help millions of travellers each month to find the perfect hotel for both holiday and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.

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