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Gibela Backpackers Lodge Durban Reviews

119 Ninth Avenue, Morningside, Durban, South Africa

Reviews & Ratings Explained


60 Total Reviews
  • 80%Value For Money
  • 100%Security
  • 80%Location
  • 100%Staff
  • 80%Atmosphere
  • 100%Cleanliness
  • 100%Facilities

The rating percentage is calculated from customers who booked within the last 12 months.

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Great hostel with really friendly staff. Elmo was great and incredibly helpful. Great breakfast in the morning. Quiet and comfortable. In a very safe area to walk around but quite far from the centre of town

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great place and location. for the price, I might expect just a little more (soap and hand towels in all bathrooms and showers, perhaps towels for guests), but all in all, I enjoyed my stay here a lot.


I had a great time here. The hostel is in a nice neighbourhood with good restaurants. Highly recommend.


Unfortunately I only got to stay at Gibela 3 nights instead of 6 as I had planned because I managed to injure my knee before I even arrived.The staff was great and very helpful.The owner recommended which hospital I should go to, and did what he could to help me out. Location is good with a few minutes walk to Florida Road with lots of restaurants, and just on the corner is a big supermarket where you can buy anything you might need (also hot lunch/dinner),with a cheap laundromat just behind it.

Owner Comment (Hide)
Morning Hope all is well and that you recovered from your injury. Hope to see you back in Durban one day so you can explore and experience Durban. Thanx


We loved gibela, it was certainly a home away from home, very nice feel and friendlt people, not so busy anf close to shops and Florida road.


Wow, what a fantastic hostel this turned out to be. It's in a great location near Florida Road and is also less than 30 minutes away from the city centre or the magnificent Durban beaches. Elmar, the man in charge, was very helpful and gave me plenty of good recommendations and ideas of things to do while I was there. The hostel was incredibly clean and the free breakfast was excellent. It is a very quiet, relaxed and peaceful place so if you are looking to party then go elsewhere. Thanks Elmar.

Owner Comment (Hide)
Many thanx for your review and kind words. We try and make every stay as unique as possible. Exploring Durban by foot is the best and we share as much as we can to make guests stay as memorable as possible. Hope Durban is on your to re-visit list.


FAB backpackers.. clean, lovely b'fast included, little pool to cool, great location, helpful staff, really couldn't complain at all! Many people had previously stayed at other backpackers in Durban and had converted - a good night's sleep but also a fun crowd. Well worth the slightly higher price.

Owner Comment (Hide)
Many thx for your review. Well what can I say you get what you pay for and all the extra luxuries we offer, does cost to maintain but it adds to a pleasant stay. Sleep is what we specialise in and we try and ensure that the backpackers remain a quiet haven where travellers can kick back relax and now a days enjoy our new pool !!


great location for Florida Road with a great choice of restaurants.Free 100mb internet when you check in, free city maps and owner very knowledgeable of the area. Close to a spar and laundrette. Very chilled out and relaxing atmosphere.

Owner Comment (Hide)
Hello , yup we are spoiled as far as location is concerned everything you need within a 10 - 15 min walk. AND the addition a free wi-fi connection sure is appreciated by guests.


I had a great stay at Gibela. Cyril was very helpful and friendly. I thoroughly recommend.

Owner Comment (Hide)
Afternoon Deborah Many thx for the kind words. I was off duty when you stayed but is very pleased to hear that your stay was great.


This is one of the cleanest hostels I've stayed in. It's quiet and close to Florida Road, one of the main bar/restuarant streets. There isn't any social life here. No bar but there is beer available at reception until they close for the night. The management is super nice and very helpful. It's a hike to the beach but walkable in about 30 min. If you're just looking for a clean neat place to rest your head for a few days it's great. If you're looking to party or meet others I'd look elsew

Owner Comment (Hide)
Hello Michael Many thanx for taking the time to review Gibela Travellers Lodge. Since your stay the comfortable 25 min walk back from the beach is now highlighted with our new pool we added to Gibela. So when next in Durban you can have a relaxing swim right here. Yes you right we are a no party place. Being a 3 to 6 min walk to more than 50 restaurants cafes and bars we encourage our guests to go out and socialise with Durbanites. The refreshments on sale at reception is usually to quests satisfaction, but are allways open to any ideas and suggestions to improve this service. Happy travels !!


A hostel that is a notch higher in quality than similar establishments. Good location, very clean, tasty breakfast, the owner knows a lot about the area. It's a good idea that now some internet bandwith is included in the rate (I stayed there last year, when it wasn't, and when it was quite expensive).


Owner has a serious attitude problem and needs to lighten up. Has a short temper and not certainly does not love life..

Owner Comment (Hide)
Strange that majority of the reviews above didn't find any problem with owner and / or staff. It's always the bookings that leave everything till the last minute who seem to find fault. This maybe because of their inability to plan ahead and then have an unpleasant stay.


Great place, great staff, very well located, loooove the showers! I highly recomend!

Owner Comment (Hide)
Well the showers and endless hot water is a great Gibela selling point. Even in the midst of of summer the showers go down well.


Great hostel... The owner goes out of his way to show you everything you need to know on a map and tells you where you should and should not be at night. Calls taxi cabs when you need them. Showers and toilets are clean. Can get a tad warm at night with just the ceiling fan in the room. Really close to Florida St where are the action is! Area around hostel is very safe and supermkt and laundry facilities are 2 mins away!

Owner Comment (Hide)
Glad to hear you enjoyed your stay at Gibela Backpackers. January February is the hot humid months and Durban being in a sub-Tropical climate stay hot all day round. Been looking at putting more or stronger fans in the rooms. Good to hear you felt safe in the area. Happy travels.


This place was very well maintained and charming. The staff was very helpful and friendly, and everything was very clean. It's a really quiet hostel, but close to restaurants and bars. My boyfriend's only complaint was that we had two twin beds instead of a full bed, but I don't see that as much of a drawback for a hostel. I think it was a great place to stay.

Owner Comment (Hide)
Thanx Nicole - Its allways great to hear that travellers appeciate and notice the small things that make a stay a rewarding one. Hopefully on your next visit we will have double bed rooms ready for your boyfriend. Thx and happy travels from the Gibela team.


After I made a booking here, I attempted to contact the owner to ask a simple question (are taxis in durban metered, or do you set the price with the driver? approximately how much would a taxi to the hostel cost?). The owner was extremely rude and unhelpful, to the point of being insulting. I was shocked by his attitude, as all other places I have stayed in SA have been friendly and helpful. I regret staying here.

Owner Comment (Hide)
Some travellers crossing a certain age should rather buy the coffee table book and page through it instead of taking to the road. Thank goodness this cut off age increases with the more seasoned travellers.


we found Elmer to be especially helpful and knowledgeable about the Durban area and beyond. The decor is fantastic and original.


Thank you for a great stay! We had a great time. -Laiah and Jeremy, CA, USA

Owner Comment (Hide)
Allways a pleasure in hosting travellers with a bright open outlook on life - HAppy Travels !!


Cancelled 1 night of our booking with 48 hours notice - the aggressive owner tried to insist that we pay for the additional night. When we explained that we weren't obliged to do this, he became even more aggressive. This left a very bitter taste in the mouth - what a shame because the hostel is great otherwise except for his unpleasantness.

Owner Comment (Hide)
We as hostel owners are the ones who gets the raw deal on travellers inability to plan and uncaring attitude in cancelling accommodation last minute. It seem to be a growing issue under young careless travellers - without their issues the industry would be so much more pleasant.


Could do with a refurb in the kitchen area. maybe a few activities to do during the evenings. maybe a cafe and tv area would be good.

Owner Comment (Hide)
The kitchen sure is a point of discussion. Most guest find it more than adequate and love all the free spices, real coffee (not chicory) teas, sugars and well equiped utensils, pots and pans. Yes its not up to standard witht he rest of the lodge but if 10% of guest make use of it, its a miracle. So instead we spend the money on things all guest utilises being high quality matresses, comfortable seating, welcominh outdoor spaces and clean showers and toilets. Yes we are not big on entertaining guests but then most actually get out there and experince Durban's nightlife - whether it being clubbing, cafe's. bars or restaurants, Unfortunately we don't guarantee people interaction.

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