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Jakelj Backpackers House

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Hostelz.com's Review
Jakelj Backpackers House is a little out of tow, but it's fantastic if you want to be treated as person -- not a tariff -- and the meals are fantastic!

Location

This hostel is more of a large, suburban house that has been converted into a hostel. Run by a little old couple who will do anything to please, it is three stories of dorms and private rooms, a common room with internet, book exchange, and drinks for sale. It is very homey -- you feel more like you are at your grandparents' house than a hostel -- and Damian will pick you up from the station, drop you into town, do your washing for a very low price, and arrange a three-course, traditional Slovenian meal for a low price!

The hostel is about five kilometers out of town, but they will pick you up from the station when you arrive and usually do about two or three trips into town a day (10 a.m. to take you into town and 7 p.m. to pick you up -- if you arrange a few people, he will also do special trips to the mountains, gorge, or sporting activities if you are nice!). The hostel is just below the mountains amongst corn fields and churches -- a bike ride around town is the perfect way to see a traditional Slovenian village. Although it is a little inconvenient being fifteen minutes from the lake itself, there is still plenty around to see and this is a great location to take in the countryside. To get there, catch a train to Lesce Bled station, where Damian will pick you up. On Sundays not all the trains are running, so check the timetable.

Rooms and Bathrooms

Some rooms are underground with little light but some have balconies and are slightly larger, and all are small. Some rooms have their own bathrooms, and others don't -- it really depends on how many beds are in your dorm (the more beds, the better chance of a shared shower). The rooms are slightly chilly but there are large fluffy quilts and pillows and places to hang your clothes.

The showers are small and slightly falling apart, but they're hot and do the job. Don't expect a whole lot of room here to spread your stuff out and if Damian sees your clothes strewn about the room he will comment on your living like a goat, but all in good humour!

Common Spaces

There is not public kitchen but breakfast is included (cereal, tea, coffee, eggs, and toast) and a fantastic three-course dinner is available for a small price -- it's well worth it. There is free internet, though it's a bit slow and perched on top of a shelf that is way too high -- so surfing for too long will make your neck sore!

The common areas are welcoming and covered in photos from all over the world and thank you letters from the people who have stayed there -- an indictment on the hospitality offered. There are bikes to use for free, they will let you use the fridge to chill your wine, and will happily arrange any activities for you (horse riding, canyoning, rafting) but it pays to be nice to the old couple as they sometimes get a bit stroppy if you forget your manners -- treat them like you would your grandparents!

Summary

This hostel is a very welcoming place, and reasonably priced (however don't be surprised if they tag on an extra few euro for the lifts). Overall, staying here was a very pleasurable experience -- this is the type of place that's very hard to leave!

Exclusive Hostelz.com Review
October 2008

Photos taken by the Hostelz.com reviewer — Genuine photos you can trust.
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Location/Contact
How is Jakelj Backpackers House rated on other websites?
 OverallCleanlinessStaffLocationAtmosphereSecurity
Hostelworld  
83%
77%
96%
73%
86%
78%
Hostels.com  
90%
80%
100%
86%
93%
86%
HostelBookers  
Not listed on HostelBookers.
HostelsClub  
Not listed on HostelsClub.
Average  
87%
79%
98%
80%
90%
82%
Jakelj Backpackers House Reviews from the Web
Hostelz.com Guest Reviews
5   Feels like home Can't say that the hostel is perfect, but I can sure say that the staff is doing its best, the only so-called "problem" is the grumpy old guy called Damien and his mood swings, sometimes really really nice, and sometimes -- why bother the old man must be at least seventy years old. No nightlife? A step away from the hostel you have a small bar, near the covered tennis courts/roller hockey rink. It's kinda hard to find although it's only a two-minute walk. Don't ask Damien where is it, because he thinks that they're poisoning people, but the only problem is that the drinks are so cheap and sometimes people just get too wasted. Mama's cooking is more than delicious, and it's really a bargain for 6 euros. Got free transfer from the train station and then to Bled lake and back to hostel in the evening.  , Deutschland ()
3   Mixed Stayed in July '07. It is the family home, the old guy and his wife, their granddaughter(?) -- about sixteen or so, and the guy's son drops in regularly. It is Jakelj backpacker house, and the son runs an outdoor adventuring racket with horse riding (ripoff), rafting, whatever else. Really they try to push you into it, but say no if you don't want to, you'll just have to say no a couple of times a day. The meals were home-cooked (the wife I guess) and were magnificent! Breakfast was cereal or bacon and eggs. All meals are paid for extra, but cheap. Maybe 5 euros each meal plus 1 euro for a drink. He drives you in and out of Bled once each a day (about five kilometers away, ten-minute drive or so). Last pickup at 7 p.m. so if you wanted to have dinner up at the castle for its views and free entry, find your own way back. Lastly, he picked us up one day after we walked through Vintgar Gorge and all the way back to town (he says the way is easily signposted -- it is not, but head in the general direction and you can't go wrong) in the pouring rain. Got back and he told us to wait, would give us some "medicine." Skeptical, we followed and he poured three shot glasses of a clear liquid from a half empty clear bottle behind the bar. My suspicions were correct as he, then we, downed a shot of homemade vodka! But hey, we didn't get sick. Seemed good, but inconvenient, and awkward as often you are the only ones about and he's not the greatest conversationalist. One computer, free internet. And if you don't eat everything, he will eye you off like you've kidnapped his family.  , Australia ()
5  this is a great place, we had a great time here, the hospitality and friendly atmosphere is fantastic, the food is better than any other hostel ever! it is a little quiet at night but there is beer! we where able to arrange skiing and transfers no problems at all. great place and people.  ()
1  This owner promised us rooms on the phone and when we arrived he shouted at us for half an hour saying he didn't have space and we had lied about having a reservation, although when we refused to leave it appeared there were plenty of room, I suspect he was trying to see if we would offer more money. Different staff members will give you different information and it might take all day to arrange leaving as he waits for a car load before taking you into town. If you do get rooms, they are nice with a balcony but there is nothing to do in the village in the evenings.  ()
5  this hostel was great! After travelling for three weeks this was a great place to go for some rest and relaxation. I loved it, the rooms were comfy, reasonably priced, and the breakfast was great. they don't even serve dinner! anyway I managed to get my best nights sleep here and a decent shower!  ()
1  Don't you let him get away with his smiles, the man is a sharper! In order to earn a maximum of money, the owner never refuses a reservation, even when he doesn't have any more rooms! If by any (mis)chance this should happen to you, he will take you to the nearby hotel. Take our word -- unless you want to wake up with a backache, refuse or sleep on the floor beside the beds! All the rooms give on the TV lounge but watch out, the doors are glass doors! No privacy but you can always take a peek on the TV in the hall. After your good night's sleep you'll notice the price of your room is actually half the price you pay good old Damian but then stop dreaming, he'll never give you a refund. As for the luckier ones who get to stay at Jakelj Backpackers House, the rooms are ok but the hotel is right in front of a road with no shops nearby. We thought we'd be in a nice cozy place with the lake nearby (silly us!). Eventually, if after the following lines you still want to book there, the shuttles to Bled are very few (after breakfast at noon and seven p.m. for the return too bad if you're not on time)! Mind you the return time hasn't been chosen out of the blue, if it prevents you from eating in Bled, you'll surely be on time for dinner at Jakelj's Bpackers!  ()
5  I came here a a year ago -- we had no expectations but turned out to be the funnest hostel I've stayed in. The owner was awesome, driving us anywhere whenever you asked and also picked us up from the train station. Attracts some cool people to meet and one night the hostel took us out onto the lake in a big boat and the whole of it was covered with little lights in egg shells -- gotta be seen. And you gotta stay here if in the area!  ()
4  Very nice, all in all. I stayed in a 6-bed dorm, which was very reasonably priced though a bit small. It has very little storage space, which leads to cramming-in when everyone has lots of luggage. There was an en suite bathroom, with good, hot water, though the shower leaked water on the floor and there was no place to hang the showerhead. Food was good, and cheap (try the goulash!) though the service is slow and sometimes odd. (My friend was practically force-fed ice cream once.) The breakfasts, in particular, are HUGE. They will gorge you until you roll out the door.  ()

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