Dolphin Lodge Backpackers, Kaikoura

10 Reviews
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Dolphin Lodge Backpackers Reviews

Comfortable bed, plenty of hot water

There is an adequate kitchen. But no TV for news & weather. Needs soap dish in shower, needed for old folk.

Age 85 | New Zealand


The accommodation was great and clean. The hosts are super friendly. I can only recommend it!

Age 25 | Germany

Good Hostel with Basic Necessities

I would recommend this place because of the proximity to the beach! The toilets are clean. Well, the bunk beds are a little creaky but are still alright.

Age 23 | Singapore

Dolphin Lodge Backpackers is an excellent hostel. It is located in a quiet residential street about fifty meters above the main street of town, and its elevated position allows for stunning views of the mountains and ocean from the rear deck and spa, as well as the kitchen and dining room. It has a quiet and friendly feel, and is great for meeting people. The staff are friendly and exceptionally helpful.

The Location

The hostel is located a few minutes walk from the centre of Kaikoura on a quiet residential street, with a rural property (complete with livestock!) next door. It is easy to find, and located on an elevated no-through-road. At the end of the street, a set of steps leads down to the main street of Kaikoura, landing halfway between the main shops and the information centre, putting the hostel within easy walking distance of the information centre and bus stop, shops, and cafes and the beach. There is ample on-site and street parking available.

Rooms and Bathrooms

The rooms are small but adequate, with four to six beds per dorm. There are also two double rooms available. All rooms have individual locks, but no lockers are available in the rooms. The bathrooms are small, shared male/female, and can get crowded at peak times, as there are only three toilets and three showers for the entire hostel. The floors can also get quite wet and muddy when busy. There is minimal space to hang clothes and toiletries while using the showers.

Common Spaces

The highlight of the hostel is the huge outdoor deck and heated spa bath, with fabulous views toward the mountains and ocean. There are also tables, chairs, a hammock, and a large garden. Indoors, there is a large communal dining room set inside bay windows looking out to the ocean -- beautiful at sunrise. There is a large, well equipped, and very clean kitchen with plenty of fridge space. The hostel encourages green travel, and there are separate bins for rubbish, recycling, and organic compost. There is also a wood stove, book exchange, board games, and a TV room located at the back of the hostel. All common spaces are kept clean and tidy.


Dolphin Lodge is an excellent hostel with lots of personality. It is well located in terms of convenience and views, and kept in good condition. The staff are friendly, and the atmosphere is very welcoming. The view from the back deck alone is worth the trip. This place is highly recommended.

kim isaacs


Although the receptionist was very friendly she would not give us BBH discount as we had not booked directly. Although this is technically part of the rules of bbh we did not have any other problems in seven months of hosteling in new zealand with this, so i thought it was rather unreasonable. It is a beautifully situated hostel and maybe it is enjoyable in summer but do not stay here in winter! It was so cold! None of the people in my room could sleep because it was so chilly!



Homey, friendly, and clean. Simply lovely.


This was the most wonderful hostel! It has a very homey atmosphere, a fantastic view, the hill to the side is perfect for watching sunrise, and the hammock and spa in the yard are great for night time. Town is just a few minutes walk away, and the pubs in town have a real NZ feel. I would never stay anywhere else in Kaikoura.

Kourtney from Michigan

This hostel was absolutely lovely, a nice change from the busier hostels in the cities and you are made very welcome by the family atmosphere here. The rooms are small but comfortable - what more do u need. It is located perfectly to get to kaikoura's attractions - the seal colony! and whale watching. It has a beautiful garden, with spa and gorgeous views of the mountains.

Make sure you get down to the beach and take in the night sky, you won't see anything like it in the cities.

I definitely recommend this hostel.


More reviews...

Dolphin Lodge Backpackers Reviews from the Web

Liked: Location mostly, beautiful outside area Didn't like: Nothing that I can think of


Liked: Feels like you are staying in a house so nice homely feel to it. Didn't like: The Spa wasn't working, it was being fixed


Liked: So clean and BEAUTIFUL location, the staff was very friendly Didn't like: Nothing


Liked: Beds were good and the view was great! Didn't like: Wifi was crazy prices, I've never had to pay so much! No lockers in the rooms, bathroom was freezing (despite the water being hot) and the cat brought in a dead bird when I was having breakfast which wasn't great


Liked: I really liked the location, close to the I site, close to pub and other attractions. I loved how cheap bike rentals were and the hot tub and hammock! Great view as well! Didn't like: Bathrooms were quite small. But not a lot to complain about!


Liked: Friendly & helpful. Clean. Lovely position. Small & personal. Didn't like: Trek up steep path to reach it on foot. Only heavy going with luggage though.


Liked: Close to town good views Didn't like: One plug in the room not convenient for travelers. Bathrooms small, showers not very good water pressure very low


Liked: Small, friendly and pleasant hostel, in a good location on the hill above the waterfront just a few minutes walk to the beach or into the main strip of bars etc. From our room (a private double) you could see the sea, and clearly hear the waves as you drifted off very relaxing! We liked that you could rent (slightly beaten-up) bikes for just $5 a day. The jacuzzi was also very welcome Didn't like: The need to push a button for 1 hour of electricity was annoying (especially as you also needed to press it for hot water but this wasn't pointed out it took us a while to work that one out! The dcor is tired, but who cares really


Liked: hot spa pool, cosy rooms Didn't like: lack of view from windows


Liked: The staff was really friendly and helped me through trouble with my credit card (they were great!), very nice atmosphere, terrace to eat outside, beautiful view Didn't like: it was a little hard to get up the hill with my huge backpack but the beautiful view compensated for that



Dolphin Lodge offers travellers a homely place to stay in the heart of Kaikoura.

Enjoy relaxing in the private garden with decking, barbeque and free hot spa. All of this comes with great views across Kaikoura's coastline and mountains.

All rooms are heated and we have a log fire to keep you cosy and warm in the winter months.

The lodge has a fully equipped kitchen including free herbs and spices, out-door hot tub, off-street parking, budget bike rental for you to explore Kaikoura, laundry facilities, 24 hour internet access and wi-fi and friendly staff to make you welcome.

We have a wealth of knowledge of the local area and we can give you lots of great tips on things to do in and around Kaikoura. We can even book your tours for you.

Location and Contact


• By Bus: There are regular buses into Kaikoura from Chirstchurch, Blenheim, Nelson and Picton. From the bus stop in town we are a few minutes walk away, located at the top of the walkway across the road from the I-Site. The walkway will lead you to Deal Street and you will see us on the left hand side.
• By Car: From the South we are just off SH1, when you enter Kaikoura take the next road, Deal Street, on the right after the turn off sign posted for Town Centre. From the North go past the turning for Town Centre, go under the bridge and take the left hand turn onto Deal Street. On Deal Street we are at the end of the road on the right hand side. Look out for the Dolphin sign!
• By Train: The Transcenic Coastal Train will bring you into Kaikoura. The train station is just 10mins walk from the lodge. Head into town, go down the West End towards the I-Site. Opposite the I-Site there is a walking track up to Deal Street, you will find us on the left hand side.
• If you have any problems at all locating us, then please call us. We are more than happy to help you.



Address: 15 Deal Street, Kaikoura, New Zealand

Dolphin Lodge Backpackers is listed on the following booking sites:

Not listed at Hostelworld Not listed at HostelsClub


Website Dolphin Lodge Backpackers Kaikoura
Phone Number: (03)319-5842
To add or correct information for this listing, please use the Listing Correction Form.

Facilities and Amenities

Solo Traveller



Wi-Fi in Lobby/Commons

Bike Rental

City Tours

Lockers in Lobby

Luggage Storage


BBQ Grill

Concierge/Info Desk

Credit Card Payments

Hot tub/Jacuzzi



Lounge Area

Swimming Pool

Curfew: No Curfew


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