Old Bridge Backpackers is located just outside Maun, within close distance to the Okavango Delta. This hostel is something of a ‘legend’ amongst the Southern Africa backpacker trail. As the hostel is located 10km outside of town, there isn’t much of a surrounding neighbourhood. However, the hostel has a wide array of facilities on the grounds, including a pool, bar, restaurant, billiards table, tv room, library and a relaxing area with hammocks. The hostel is in campground style, with areas for tents and then dorms and private rooms housed in larger permanent tents. The hostel grounds are very large, with a picturesque location overlooking a channel of the Okavango Delta.
The hostel is located 10km from the town of Maun itself, generally requiring a taxi. All taxi drivers in Maun know Old Bridge Backpackers, so you will have no issue reaching the hostel. When you reach the road, the streets are well-signed to indicate the turn off. Seeing as most travellers don’t come to Maun for the city itself, but rather for access to the Okavango Delta, Old Bridge Backpackers is perfectly situated. For those driving, there is a safe parking area.
Rooms and Bathrooms
The dorms have enough space for the number of people and have an element of privacy. It should be noted that this hostel isn’t for the faint hearted, the dorms are often visited by spiders, mice and frogs. Regardless, the dorm areas and bathrooms are kept clean, with daily cleanings. The bathrooms and showers are of an outdoor style, but with adequate privacy and daily cleanings. The shower areas are spacious, with enough room for hanging clothes and towels. It should be noted that there is often not enough bathrooms (only 4) for the amount of people here. Note that the wifi does not reach the dorms.
The hostel’s common spaces are large and very relaxing. There is an open air bar and restaurant, surrounded by a TV room, billiards table and then an outdoor pool, tables and hammocks. All of this overlooks the river, making for a very atmospheric experience. These areas are big enough for all the guests and you can find Wi-Fi in the common areas. The communal kitchen was dirty for most of our stay, however most people just order food from the bar/restaurant. Given that this is the only real hostel in Maun, the common spaces are usually full of every type of budget traveler.
This is an average hostel, designed for those who enjoy relaxing and socialising and are willing to compromise on luxury. Without doubt, the best part of Old Bridge Backpackers is their own organised tour options to the Okavango Delta and Moremi Game Reserve. Thanks to this hostel, these areas are accessible to backpackers and made very affordable. Their overnight Okavango Delta camping trips are a unique way of experiencing the Okavango Delta and a highlight of any trip to Maun. When considering the lack of alternative options in Maun, this is cheap hostel is probably the best available in Maun.