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”’Colonial YHA”’
 

**GENERAL INFORMATION**
 

This is a hostel in Hervey Bay. The details are as follows:

Address- 820 Boat Harbour Drive, Hervey Bay, 4655.
Email- herveybay@bigpond.com.au
Phone- 0741251844
Freecall- 1800818280
Fax- 0741253161
Reception opening hours- 7am to 8pm

It is a 3 star, which is an AAA Tourism Standard. This is a national tourism body of the Australian monitoring organisations, which manages the STARS Accommodation Classification Schemes. The YHA is the first network of backpacker hostels to use this and 3 stars indicated a well-appointed establishment with comfortable accommodation and facilities.

The cost for rooms where as follows:
Multishare adults $20-32, 6 rooms/4-5 share
Double/twin room $50-56, 9 double, 9 twin
Double ensuite, $65-73, 3 double/ 4-share ensuite
There are 4 villas and 5 cabins

It is roughly 1 GBP = 2.18 AUD

**TRANSPORT**
 

We got to the hostel from Brisbane by the Greyhound bus. It is 7km from the bus terminal so it’s not a distance you would want to walk but there is a YHA shuttle bus, which picks you up, free of charge. Once you get off the Greyhounds bus it is waiting for you plus they will bring you back to the bus terminal again free of charge at designated times (these times are posted on the wall in reception). It runs 7 times a day. Another method to get there is by train. The hostel is 30km to the station however you can get a local bus which will bring you from the train station to the hostel. If you are flying the hostel is 3km from the airport.

**FACILITIES**
 

Hervey Bay has no town centre, rather it has 5 shopping villages between housing. The closest is Urangan, which is 5-10 minutes walk from the front door. As well there is speciality shopping at the marina about 5 minutes away. Its 800m to the nearest food store which is in a shopping complex and happens to be a Woolworth’s and there is also a convenience store. There is a bar and eatery in the YHA itself, which does cheap meals for roughly $10. They have a set menu with various different dished. I am not sure what they taste like as we cooked out own food. Do bare in mind there is no oven in the kitchen just cooking rings and a microwave. You can store food in the fridge they have provided. The kitchen isn’t super clean but this is a hostel and compared to others I think that it was cleaner than others were and I didn’t mind cooking in it. In the eating area there was a TV so you could watch TV and eat at the same time or if you wanted you could have ate at the bar area. When cooking in hostels you need to remember that you have to tidy up after yourself and wash and dry your dishes.

There are several computers at the bar area which you can access the internet. Time codes can be purchased from either the front desk or the bar during opening hours. You may log in and out as many times as you wish until he expiry of your time code. This area was never overly crowded and computers were always free, however it cost $5 an hour to access the internet.

There is a medium sized pool, which a net can be put up so volleyball can be played. Beside it is a spa, which about 4 people could fit into at any one time. The pool and surrounding area is clean and I seen several children playing there in my stay. There is a shower and toilet right beside the pool, as well as picnic tables, seating area and sunloungers. Over the fence beside the pool there is a pond which is supposed to have ducks, though I never seen any. In fact the pond to me just looked like flooded swampy grass, but I never got too close to investigate it properly.

At reception there is a tour booking service. Here you can buy postcards, digereedoos and snack food. You can book any tour the YHA offers here. The main attraction as you are right beside it is the most sought after locations on Fraser Island. If you are lucky enough to arrive and stay here from July to November you can go whale watching on the beautiful esplanade and beaches. The only place in Hervey Bay itself that is within walking distance is the marina, which is a nice walk however, I would not come here to see it alone. As there is not much to do here I see Hervey Bay as a gateway to Fraser Island and a mere stopover until people move on. To fill in your time in the hostel they have free stuff to do including tennis, monopoly, table tennis and backgammon.

There was complimentary (yes free!) breakfast each morning that was a pleasant surprise for us. It is in the bar and eatery area and runs from 7.00am to 8.30 am. It is self service with cereal, toast, tea and coffee provided. When we arrived at the hostel we got a complimentary drink and piece of cake as we were waiting on the reception to become available, I thought this was a nice touch.

**ROOM**
 

I stayed in a double without an ensuite. It was small, yet comfortable, you could only really fit in your rucksacks and not much else. There was a sliding door with a fly net over it to keep bugs out and I have to say it did this quite well. There was lots of vegetation around out room and my partner only had to remove 2 bugs (which were ants). In the room was a mirror which I found handy and there was a small thin ledge with a lamp o n it. You have some space on this ledge to put your items but not much. A small bin had also been provided. There was no wardrobe or storage area for your rucksack/suitcase, which was a bit of a pain, but there was space on the floor. The room was clean and tidy with bricks on one corner of the wall and white plaster on the rest and clean carpet on the floor. To keep cool (and you need it as it was very, very, very warm!) there was a fan above the ceiling which was kind of noisy. It had 3 settings but at even the highest it didn’t cool the room much and we were left feeling smothered with the heat. If needed there were 2 plug outlets, if you removed the light from the socket. The matrices were thin and you could feel the springs under the bed, which some people may find hard to sleep on. This didn’t bother me and neither did the continuous buss from the fan but what stopped me from falling asleep easily was the chirping of the birds and humming from the frogs at nigh, it drove me mad. I suppose if I had of been staying for a few nights I would have gotten used to it. When checking out you needed to bring your sheets down to the reception as you generally need to do in most hostels.

**OVERALL**

For a hostel I think this one is good. It is clean, offers free lifts from the Greyhound bus and free breakfast so its great value for money. It is easy to relax at the pool or around the complex as they have gardens, pools, ponds and geenery. The only down side is that there isn’t much to do in Hervey Bay itself. Also the charming wildlife that likes to keep you up at night while you are far too warm. It is a great stopover on the way to Fraser Island to suit someone on a budget and definitely is one of the better hostels I have stayed in.

Further reading

http://www.bukisa.com/articles/346664_noosa-day-trip

http://www.bukisa.com/articles/331970_crikey-its-australia-zoo

http://www.bukisa.com/articles/331971_moreton-island-near-brisbane-do-you-want-to-feed-dolphins-in-the-wild

http://www.bukisa.com/articles/331972_hunter-valley-australia-near-sydney-wine-tours-and-wine-tasting

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