This section is dedicated to take away all your "I wish someone had told me that before I went!" experiences. This way, you are better prepared for what to expect, what not to expect and can spend less time settling in, and more time making new friends in your chosen hostel. We share our insider knowledge of tips, tricks and important things to look out for in Greymouth. To help you make friends with Greymouth before you visit, we've included a few helpful and fun things you should know about the area. Enjoy!
Greymouth might not be one of the big-ticket attractions on the South Island of New Zealand but it is definitely well worth a stopover on the run down the West Coast. It is the largest town along the west coast and as such is a great place to make the most of all the usual facilities on a sparsely populated route. The Greymouth hostels are all of a particularly high standard and are all positioned in close proximity to the town centre.
The Grey River, after which the town is named, is an unavoidable presence in the town and the stroll along the harbour arm and out onto the pebbly beach is a pleasant way to pass an hour or two. The views from the beach are magnificent and on a really good day then you can see as far as Mount Cook, the country's highest peak! If you are a beer fan, then the Monteith's brewery tour is a must do -- you not only get to see the brewing process but also sample some of the end product on site. Greymouth is also famous for Whitebait and in season you will see plenty of fishermen on the river and get to try out a whitebait fritter in one of the many cafes.
Greymouth is also in the heart of what was once gold country and is now known for pounamu or greenstone carvings. There are plenty of great shops to pick up an authentic carving and also learn a bit about the Maori culture that influences so much of the work.
So, whilst Greymouth might not have the fame of Queenstown or Christchurch, it is a great place to see how ordinary Kiwis live and to rest and recuperate en route to the glaciers. It has all the facilities you need and a growing backpacker scene and is certainly worth a stop off for a night or two.
Written by local enthusiast for Greymouth hostelsHowellsey