Shambhala, Golden Bay

12 Reviews
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Shambhala Reviews

Beautiful Location -- Low Quality Accommodation and Service

We stayed at the Shambhala over the New Year holiday. To begin, the reservation was easily made and we were invited to store our luggage at the Shambhala a few days before our official arrival, for which we were grateful! To our surprise, when we arrived, we were invited to store our belongings in an outdoor woodpile. We were in a crunch for time and simply had to accept the offer as it was. When we returned to officially check in, we were impressed by the grounds, which are lovely; the view of the Bay is superb, the landscaping in pristine and you are a 2km walk, on a dirt road, from the Mussel Inn. We had booked a private double room, which fell short of expectations based on the website (please see photos). We were told the rooms with ocean views were sold out and that we could have the room without views for $10/night less. To our disappointment, the room didnt just lack views; it was also musty and dank, with mold on the walls. In Johns defense, we didnt express our disappointment, though he never asked if we were settling in nicely either. We had to rent our towels for $2/each and had to retrieve them from his place ourselves. While there, we were treated without much respect, as though we were young children paying very little money when, in fact, we are in our mid-30s and we paid $70/night for our accommodation; an affordable rate, but by no means the $30/night rate of a backpackers accommodation, which was how it felt. While there, a guest made a negative review and, in response, she was asked to leave. The police were called and a scene was made. An older guest was given an apology and an explanation for the disruption; we were ignored. Overall, if you are young and glad to pay the $35 for the lodge accommodations, the grounds are lovely and the people drawn there are pleasant, but do not book the cottage that lacks sea views (its really just a damp shed in the woods), and do not expect quality customer service.

Age 35 | NZ

Fantastic -- peaceful

I will come back! A great place to relax by making meditation and Yoga and walking on the beach! Thank you for 3 beautiful days enjoying your house and wonderful garden.

Age 52 | German


Absolutely amazing place with lovely beach. We went there for one night, ended up staying there for two weeks. They have great yoga / meditation space with magnificent views. We will be back definitely.

New Zealand

As others say -- the best hereabouts

simply a dream. yes its kind of 'off the grid' though another inn is at the other end of their road. Beautiful place to rest and relax. Main House for meeting people if you are alone/many, and the private cabins a little up the hill if you are a couple. About my only criticism is that the owner allows some people to do cleaning duties for rent, and they can be patchy -- skipping/missing things (dirty kitchen towels, and we found someones 'intimate lubricant' under our bed!) that aside, the views and peace are sublime. we're a city couple but the composting toilets were fine and showers worked well in lovely January weather. Have been twice and would happily come again for longer still.


If you want to relax in a great atmosphere, this is the place to go

Amazing hostel. After having traveled nearly through the whole of NZ, I can honestly say, that this was my most favourite place. If you want party, you're definitely in the wrong place, but if you want some days to relax, this is the place to go. Had a double room just for myself with amazing see views. They also run some kind of yoga/meditation stuff, but if you don't want to take part in that stuff (like me), no one is going to bother you. Also really great is the tea house, a little pavilion over the cliff with a water line and a gas stove where you can cook a tea and relax. It's just really nice and absolutely lonely. So beware, really bad or no cell phone reception and a car comes really handy, too, if you want to go anywhere or get some groceries, cause you're really in the middle of nowhere here.



A wonderful place -- I could have easily stayed for a week. Interesting, gentle people and a peaceful feel. I will be back.


Amazingly peaceful

A great place to have serious time out from busy, noisy lives, especially if you like a bit of meditation. The view is quite breathtaking and the peaceful feeling a relaxed atmosphere is very therapeutic.

Christchurch. New Zealand

The most beautiful spot in the world

the location sells this place. It is tranquil and beautiful -- there is no debating just how beautiful this spot is. If you stay at Shambhala you need to be prepared to go along with basic living. There is only one electrical socket -- how badly do you need to charge that mobile phone? He is doing you a favour by not making it easy for you to have outside contact. The outside toilets (all there is during daylight hours) smell but so what (only when you are in them, the smell does not travel outside). Many people stay here longer than intended. That is due to the location and the vibe of the place. It is unbeatable.


More reviews...


Located in the hidden paradise of Golden Bay, Shambhala offers unique backpacker style accommodation. Peace and quiet, inspirational artistic surroundings and the beauty of nature will guarantee an unforgettable stay.

Shambhala Guest House is situated up on a hill with magnificient views over Golden Bay. A 100 metre walk will get you down to our own secluded beach, where you can go swimming or snorkling, find beautiful shells and stones, and occasionally spot seals. There are also nice beach walks you can do in either direction depending on the tides.

Shambhala is set within artistic surroundings. Beautiful mosaic artwork, paintings and sculptures nourish your soul along with the natural beauty of the place.

The guest house is open from November to May. In winter Shambhala we offer different kind of retreats.

Location and Contact



Address: 1234 Takaka-Collingwood Highway, Takaka, Golden Bay, New Zealand

Shambhala is listed on the following booking sites:

Not listed at Hostelworld


Website Shambhala Golden Bay
Phone Number: +64 (3) 525 8463
To add or correct information for this listing, please use the Listing Correction Form.

Facilities and Amenities


Bike Rental

Luggage Storage


Wi-Fi in Lobby/Commons

BBQ Grill

Book Collection/Exchange

Credit Card Payments

Entirely Non-Smoking

Hot Showers


Lounge Area

No Bunkbeds

Outdoor Seating

Airport Pickup


Lockers in Rooms

Power Point/Sockets in Rooms


Wheelchair Accessible

Wi-Fi in Rooms

Size: Small (less than 30 beds)


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