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.

“Still the best hostel in Windhoek by FAR!!!!”

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
Cardboard Box Hostel
Exeter, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Still the best hostel in Windhoek by FAR!!!!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 January 2013

I stayed at the Cardboard Box for several weeks this December-January, whilst doing some research in the area. It is where I have (almost) always stayed in Windhoek, and since trying other hostels, it was great to be back there this time. It outshines its competitors by a country mile with regard to the vibe, the bar and social experience, which is lively when you want to be sociable, but which does not keep you up into the night if you prefer an early night. It was great to meet a wide variety of guests and to have the opportunity to socialise with some locals as well, which only adds to the Windhoek experience - why travel around the world and only socialise with other visitors??!! Thank you to Chad (the owner) for being such great company and for giving advice and help with regards to restaurants, outings and sorting out the braai on numerous occasions. Next time I shall head off on one of his value tours as well (just didn't have the time this visit). The bar staff are great fun and always around for a chat if you're travelling alone. I found the staff in general to be very friendly and always helpful (I find other reviews which say the opposite rather odd). Overall, great value and a safe and secure place for a single (female) traveller to rest, socialise and meet new friends. Having free wi-fi made the research possible as well. Thank you for a wonderful stay. I look forward to visiting again and no doubt the quality of the facilities will have been perfected by the time I return. Looking forward to it very much!

  • Stayed December 2012, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Helen J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Write a Review

105 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
    20
    26
    24
    22
    13
See reviews for
3
24
30
7
Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    3 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    3 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (13)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
East London, South Africa
Level Contributor
30 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 January 2013 via mobile

We stayed at the cardboard box for about a week. The staff were unpleasant, were not very friendly or helpful at all. They kept on forgetting if we were staying there, and always asked if we have already paid for the next night. There were dogs everywhere, which do not seem like the cleanest. It has a big outlook on partying, but is not a party hostel at all (which is prefectly fine.) It is strange how the locals hangout at the hostel ..... Kind of makes it uncomfortable that you dont know everyone that is staying there. The pool is nice always clean, the pancakes are great and the beer is only R15. Very different vibe from most hostels, everyone kind of does there own thing and it's quite peaceful.

  • Stayed January 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Amelia K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chad_WWindhoek, Owner at Cardboard Box Hostel, responded to this review, 3 March 2013
Hi there, thanks for taking the time ti write a rieview. It is a pitty you would not recomend our hostel as we do take a lot of pride in our product. We are a dog friendly backpackers and the majority of our guests really enjoy the dogs. Also we do keep a tight lid on the amount of outsiders we let into the bar area but once again our international guests enjoy the interaction with the "friends of the box" I will certainly speak to my reception staff about being more pleasant as that is not the image we want to give off. Thanks again & safe travels. Chad
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Windhoek, Namibia
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 8 January 2013

It has been many years since I last stayed at a hostel and after my extended stay at the Cardboard Box I would heartily reommend it to anyone passing through Windhoek. The staff have been attentive and friendly, the other guests a diverse and entertaining bunch and Chad the Owner is always ready to ensure that the Braai is lit or the music is turned up or down according to the mood. Having free wifi, charging points throughout the bar and reception area, the cool and clean pool and the laundry facilities have all consipired to keep me here longer than I expected. If you are looking to find others to travel with or book a trip to the desert, the Cardboard Box seems to be able to cater to all types of travellers. To address the points made by other commenters about toilets or noise, I can say that the blame really must fall on some of the guests who are not always particularly respectful of their fellow travellers or the facilities. I my experience, the Cardboard Box is great value, a great location and oone of the best vibes I have experienced while travelling. I hope they keep it up for years and look forward to coming back!

  • Stayed December 2012, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Emma W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
91 reviews
80 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 72 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 December 2012 via mobile

As previous review stated there are several good points to the hotel for a backpacker; laundry facilities, tour information, safe environment, cheap rooms, good wifi, kitchen, lockers, powerful showers, a lively atmosphere and a good bar/pool area being probably the highlight of the hostel.

However unfortunately there are also several negative points, which if addressed would probably make this a perfect place to stay. Firstly the rooms are extremely tired, the beds for example are simple appalling with wires sticking out of the upper bunks. One bed in our room was so slanted it wouldn't have been a surprise had a traveller fell out during the night! There was one plug in the room for 6 people and it was falling off the wall with the wires sticking out, needless to say it didn't work and was quite possibly a safety hazard! The toilet was shared between 12 beds and anyone camping outside, the heavy traffic might not have been a problem had the light not stopped working. When we asked the owner if he could fix it we were told that he would deal with it in the morning. The shower also electrocuted someone, I have no idea how, but again the owner said he would address it later. Apparently a prevention of this occurring is to wear flip flops whilst showering so take heed!

Whilst the atmosphere was good it also felt a little superficial. The numerous quotes around the place about drinking alcohol was tiresome, and a little try hard to impress what I presume they think are alcoholic travellers. By 11pm there was a pile of vomit in the courtyard, perhaps a product of the 'inspirational' quotes?!

Music from the bar was played loud until late which although not a problem for me might not be welcomed by some.

The hostel is very cheap and is absolutely fine but just be aware of some of the pitfalls before staying here.

  • Stayed December 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank deluxetrolley
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chad_WWindhoek, Owner at Cardboard Box Hostel, responded to this review, 25 December 2012
Thanks for your review, especially the several good points. It is also good to hear where we can improve.As i have said before we do take pride in our product and will rectify any problems. The shock in the shower will be sorted out asap. How ever i would like to point out no one has sopken to me about that and there is no way i would have said wear flip flops.We have a bag of light bulbs in reception & nobody has spoken to me about a light fusing in many months. I certainly would not have told you to wait until the morning to fix it. We have a maintanance guy during the day and a security guard at nights that does it in a few seconds. Maybe it was one of my staff in which case it will be dealt with. My appologies. The mattresses are less than a year old so we have very few complaints but i will have a look at the beds them selves and sort out any problems. As this was a house before there is only one plug in the rooms but we have installed 10 in the bar area and 6 in reception. I will look into putting more into the rooms. There are 5 bathrooms on the premisis and you are always welcome to use any of them ( as you would know as the drinking alcohol signs are only in the bathrooms) I am sorry you did not enjoy the signs but the majority of guests seem to find it quite funny. Sorry that it seemed superficial but our best reviews seem to be about our nice vibe. Maybe you were here on a bad night & will hopefully give us a second chance the next time you are in WHK. Once again thank you for your rieview and i look forward to 2013 to sort out any gremlins and make our product better in every way. Safe travels. Chad
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Karlstad, Sweden
Level Contributor
28 reviews
28 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 December 2012

The hostel is great in many aspects, good location, nice pool and bar area (with barbecue etc.) pool table and campsite. A lot of nice backpacking people, met several who drove all the way from Europe with car, and some people on there way to Europe by bicycle!

The drawbacks are the quality of mainly the beds and the bathrooms..

The beds are old and made terrible lound noices at the slightest movement, thats absolutely not ok in dorm room! Moved from a dormroom to a private 3 bed room, which was much better.

The bathrooms are ok, but were partly flooded with water, bit dirty, lacked soap and toilet paper..also not ok for a hostel in my opinion.

If these two things could be fixed, I think it is a really good place..

Room Tip: Moved from a dormroom to a private 3 bed room, that was worth every dollar.. much better beds.
See more room tips
  • Stayed December 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank MrAlexS
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Perth
Level Contributor
20 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 15 December 2012

On a positive note, the vibe around the pool/bar is really friendly and wonderful. It is also close to town. However, the cleanliness of the place is terrible!! The bathrooms and toilets stink of urine!!! Not nice when you are trying to shower first thing in the morning. The kitchen often has dirty and clean dishes piled high and lacks general cleanliness and utensils. The facilities and furniture is old and run down. The service is average and it is difficult to get help as the travel agency is not located on site. This is the third backpackers I have tried in Windhoek and the only one I wouldn't come back to.

  • Stayed December 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Returnt0sender
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chad_WWindhoek, Owner at Cardboard Box Hostel, responded to this review, 17 December 2012
Hi there and thanks for your review. I am glad you enjoyed the vibe and atmosphere here. It is a real pitty you found the toilets dirty, i however can guarantee you that the team of cleaners come in @ 6-30 every morning and start with the toilets. We are an older building and due to the amount of traffic moving through we do sometimes have blockages in the pipes ( 10 days ago for example) but as soon as we are aware of the problem we get the plumers in. The Box has a self catering kitchen and as you would know there are signs up all over the kitchen asking the guests to wash up after themselves. Unfortunatly this does not always happen. Once again the cleaners come in and do that as soon as they can. I will certainly speak to the staff about being more helpfull but i do get many compliments about them. All in all we are always trying to improve our product and will try even harder now. Hopefully you will comback some day and enjoy it more. Safe travels. Chad
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Romanel, Switzerland
Level Contributor
98 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 November 2012

The staff were pleasant (though one of the doormen was a bit grumpy - probably because we had a car and he had to walk way round the back to open the gate for us) and efficent. However, it was a hostel with some of the downsides - noisy, some guests with unsocial hours... My main complaint about the Cardboard Box is the lack of toilets and showers - a few more would have been pleasant as the toilets were always occupied at crucial moments!

Stayed August 2012, travelled with family
Helpful?
Thank Titch-the-Witch
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotels you might also like...
Travellers also viewed these Windhoek hotels
1.3 mi away
Hotel Pension Uhland
Hotel Pension Uhland
#8 of 16 in Windhoek
4.0 of 5 bubbles 184 reviews
1.5 mi away
Protea Hotel by Marriott Windhoek Furstenhof
1.2 mi away
Windhoek Gardens Guest House
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
1.5 mi away
Tilla's Guesthouse
Tilla's Guesthouse
#29 of 95 in Windhoek
4.0 of 5 bubbles 29 reviews
1.3 mi away
Rivendell Guest House
Rivendell Guest House
#5 of 95 in Windhoek
4.5 of 5 bubbles 357 reviews
1.6 mi away
UrbanCamp.net - Camping, Leisure, Windhoek
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Cardboard Box Hostel? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Cardboard Box Hostel

Property: Cardboard Box Hostel
Address: 15 Johann Albrecht St | West, Windhoek, Namibia
Region: Namibia > Khomas Region > Windhoek
Hotel Style:
Ranked #59 of 76 Speciality Lodging in Windhoek
Number of rooms: 26
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with HostelWorld so you can book your Cardboard Box Hostel 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