Mbizi Backpackers Lodge

Mbizi Backpackers Lodge

288 Trichardts Road Parkdene, Boksburg 1459 South Africa

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About

4.5
#1 of 5 lodges in Boksburg
3.9 of 5 bubbles
Location
4.6 of 5 bubbles
Cleanliness
4.5 of 5 bubbles
Service
4.6 of 5 bubbles
Value
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HOTEL STYLE
Budget
Quaint
Property amenities
Free parking
Pool
Outdoor pool
Free breakfast
Bar / lounge
Airport transportation
Non-smoking hotel
64Reviews0Q+A4Room tips
Traveller rating
  • 37
  • 15
  • 9
  • 3
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Detailed Reviews
ailsadunphy wrote a review Mar 2016
Halifax, Canada
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mbizi is a relaxing, well equipped hostel with a bar and a lovely pool! My boyfriend and I stayed here for two nights, and the owner Patrick was a wealth of information for onward travel, and was only too happy to help! Mbizi is in a safe area, is close to both the airport and the facilities we needed (like cheap restaurants, grocery stores, and camping stores). I wouldn't hesitate to stay here again! I would definitely recommend this hostel! :)
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Date of stay: March 2016Trip type: Travelled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Sanj J wrote a review Nov 2015
Durban, South Africa
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Excellent place. Stayed in December 2014.
Awesome bar and entertainment area. Sports on the big screen TV. DSTV (cable tv). Well maintained gardens and pool.
The owner, Patrick, is really cool and accommodating.
Booked a double room, beds were comfortable, bathrooms were neat & clean.
Kitchen is well equipped.
We look forward to another stay at Mbizi. It truly is like a home away from home.
We never felt unsafe in any way here.
Read more
Date of stay: December 2014
5.0 of 5 bubblesValue
5.0 of 5 bubblesRooms
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Adriana_Sato wrote a review May 2014
Sao Paulo, SP
5.0 of 5 bubbles
MBizi is a wonderful place to stay in Johannesburg. The hostel is clean, good location and safe place. The kicthen is complete and I used every day to prepare my dinner. Matthew and Patrick are so nice and helpful, specially Matthew who helped us with all tours.
Read more
Date of stay: May 2014
5.0 of 5 bubblesValue
5.0 of 5 bubblesRooms
5.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
5.0 of 5 bubblesCleanliness
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
5.0 of 5 bubblesSleep Quality
Trip type: Travelled with friends
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
JamesBradley5 wrote a review Oct 2013
Oakland, California
2.0 of 5 bubbles
Stayed in September 2013 with my girlfriend, and despite having traveled for over 5 months around the world, I have not yet felt compelled to write a review of a lodging until now. Why Mbizi is the top-rated hostel in Johannesburg (on TripAdvisor and Hostelworld) either speaks to systemic, massive grade inflation on the part of the typical reviewer or an extremely low standard for hostels in this area. The owner, Patrick, is a nice guy and helpful with tours and safaris, but we need to get real about this hostel. Below are my ratings and their explanations:

0% Security: I would define security as keeping out the people that aren't supposed to be in the hostel while allowing in those that are. At no time is this achieved. During the daylight hours and sometime after darkness, the front gate is unlocked, the front door is wide open, there is no staffed front desk, the rooms have no locks on them, and there are no lockers. There is literally nothing stopping anyone from the Johannesburg public from walking in and having their way with your things and/or you aside from an unlocked front gate. At night, the owner padlocks the front gate and front door shut preventing everyone from entering or exiting. Aside from being a massive fire hazard, this means that you'll be stuck in or out if he is not around to unlock these doors. As he is the sole manager of the property and must necessarily run errands, sleep, use the bathroom, etc. you definitely cannot count on this being a possibility when you may need it. I may also add that we payed for a "Private" which I have a hard time classifying as "Private" given the absence of locks which resulted in THREE no-knock, uninvited incursions into our room by strangers during our short, two-night stay at all hours of the day and night. In one instance, this was executed by a member of the cleaning staff which is inexcusable as they should know better than to simply barge into a guest's room without so much as knocking. After somebody came in at 10 PM and shined a flashlight in my face before I yelled to drive him out, we did our best to bar the door with a piece of furniture. Patrick, I don't care if it is a safe neighborhood (with electric fences, barbed wire, and "armed response" signs everywhere?), put some locks on the doors and give the guests keys.

20% Location: There is a low-quality Chinese restaurant, a pub that serves pizza, a mini-mart, a pool hall, and a gas station near by. The nearest grocery store is about 3/4 km with no sidewalks which is a significant distance if you are carrying four or five days worth of safari food in the heat and sun, for example. Otherwise, there is nothing else and no public transportation nearby. It is physically close to OR Tambo Airport, but given our experience with the airport transfer, this didn't mean much (see below).

50% Staff: The owner, Patrick, is the only staff aside from cleaners present. When he is present and available, he is friendly and helpful. However, as he is only one man, this is not always possible. This was evident in multiple situations in our two days there: A woman guest who could not check in because Patrick was out when she arrived and loudly gave up in frustration and left, being awakened one night by some poor soul yelling "hello" from the locked front gate and honking his horn, (by the time I got up to look, he had given up and driven away), arriving from the airport and having to explore the entire place before finding Patrick in the back smoking in his bar watching TV so we could check in. In that last instance, keep in mind that he knew we were coming as we had arranged an airport transfer with him for that time. The transfer itself, provided not by Patrick as promised in e-mail but by a fellow that wasn't quick to convince us that he wasn't a hustler as he did not have Patrick's phone number and did not know our names (that took some sorting out), was 20 minutes late on top of the hour buffer they had added on our landing time, and this was followed by another 40 minutes of waiting for another guest to be picked up. Throw in some traffic, and in total, it took about 1.5 hours to make the "15 minute" trip from the airport.

60% Atmosphere: There wasn't one. Even when the place was full according to Patrick, the social aspect of staying in a hostel just didn't happen. People kept to themselves, the bar wasn't full or interesting, and at best you could play pool with your friends or watch a movie from their DVD collection. Fine for resting aside from the noise of people leaving early for Safaris and the occasional small groups of men being drunk and disorderly, retching in the bathroom, etc.

75% Cleanliness: The rooms, kitchen, and bathroom were kept generally very clean, but the pool was very murky. I would not have gone in it for money. The lawn chairs in the back are also rather dirty making lounging in the sun uninviting.

80% Facilities: It had most everything you could expect at a hostel though the pool, in its current state, is simply false advertising. Shower pressure/temperature was prone to dramatic fluctuation. The internet and the use of Wi-Fi wasn't free.

20% Value for Money: In the absence of security and it's other failings, it is difficult to justify paying much of anything to stay here. Really, how do you even sleep soundly or go out confidently when you know that some random person or even a member of the staff can and will walk into your room where you and/or all your belongings lay exposed at any time?

Overall average rating: 44%
Read more
Date of stay: September 2013
1.0 of 5 bubblesValue
3.0 of 5 bubblesRooms
1.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
4.0 of 5 bubblesCleanliness
3.0 of 5 bubblesService
2.0 of 5 bubblesSleep Quality
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
Room Tip: Don't bother with a private: it won't be
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Katherine F wrote a review Sept 2017
2.0 of 5 bubbles
Clean hostel. Far away from everything. Good option if you have rented a car. Breakfast? Bread and coffee. Not a good option....It's economic, but when you add the expenses in taxis can be very expensive
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Date of stay: September 2017
2.0 of 5 bubblesValue
4.0 of 5 bubblesCleanliness
3.0 of 5 bubblesService
Trip type: Travelled solo
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Megan C wrote a review Aug 2014
Stamford, Connecticut
2.0 of 5 bubbles
I stayed here two nights, once before my tour with Selous, and once during the 11-day tour (in between Kruger Park and our trip up to Victorica Falls). There is no security here. The front gate is never locked. We went on a tour of Soweto while there and we were returned by our guide after dark. Our guide locked the gate after dropping us off. Patrick then came back from wherever he was and was honking the horn until someone let him in. He was mad as a hornet that our driver had locked the gate, in a country known for being quite dangerous. Ironic, I know. Most people would be mad if the gate wasn't locked. We stated that our driver was just doing what seemed "sensible" by locking the gate. Patrick then stated that our guide "was not paid to think" that he was "paid to think." Wow. The racist overtones in this statement (our driver was African and Patrick is white) made my friend and I more than a bit uncomfortable. The second night we stayed there, he was yelling at everyone because someone had changed his computer screen. I might also mention that the owner always has a beer in his hand. He may have a bit of a problem. I wouldn't stay here again.
Read more
Date of stay: August 2014
3.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
2.0 of 5 bubblesService
3.0 of 5 bubblesSleep Quality
Trip type: Travelled with friends
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
cantwait2holiday wrote a review Apr 2013
Derby, United Kingdom
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Great place to start or end your trip as located near to OT airport.

Clean rooms and shared kitchen. Great bar area with flat screen tv and pool. The owners are really helpful and can arrange tours into Jo'burg and Soweto.

Great selection of books and DVD s to watch if you are just wanting to chill out.

Would have been 5 star review but they were having internet problems when we stayed.
Read more
Date of stay: March 2013
5.0 of 5 bubblesValue
5.0 of 5 bubblesRooms
4.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
4.0 of 5 bubblesCleanliness
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
5.0 of 5 bubblesSleep Quality
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Brodie H wrote a review Jan 2013
Boston, Massachusetts
5.0 of 5 bubbles
This place is great if you are going to/coming from the airport. The rooms are nice and the living room and outdoor area is very friendly and welcoming. The lodge isn't located near any attractions so you will need a car to get anywhere. There is a restaurant, small store, and ATM a 5 minute walk away however.
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Date of stay: December 2012
4.0 of 5 bubblesValue
4.0 of 5 bubblesRooms
4.0 of 5 bubblesCleanliness
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
3.0 of 5 bubblesSleep Quality
Trip type: Travelled with friends
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
LanaKB wrote a review May 2012
California
+1
5.0 of 5 bubbles
We came to South Africa to do a safari and relax a bit while on our 1 yr. world tour. We stayed at Mbizi and loved it! Jo'burg isn't the most beautiful place, but Mbizi was like getting away for a bit and staying with a friend. Patrick, the owner was awesome! He had us picked up right from the airport (great price, cheaper than a taxi) let us relax (no hassle, never bugs you while you're there) and set up our 3 day safari in Kruger park, which was amazing! He stored our luggage for us while we were gone for 3 days, and when we got back we stayed another night there, and then hung out the next day and he took us back to the airport. The house is big, rooms are clean and comfy! Heating blankets on the beds in winter are awesome! There is a "man cave" in the backyard which was great, and you can do laundry there for about 40 rand a load, which we thought was good. All and all, it's affordable, clean, comfy, and the perfect option for Jo'burg.
Read more
Date of stay: May 2012
5.0 of 5 bubblesValue
5.0 of 5 bubblesRooms
4.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
5.0 of 5 bubblesCleanliness
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
5.0 of 5 bubblesSleep Quality
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
CFEIII wrote a review Mar 2018
Center, Texas
3.0 of 5 bubbles
As part of a tour, we stayed here for one night. there is a small shopping area and a couple restaurants/bars. Overall, the facility is adequate, the place is clean, marginal breakfast (bread and coffee), didn't try the pool. Slow internet, but good showers!
Read more
Date of stay: March 2018
4.0 of 5 bubblesRooms
3.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
3.0 of 5 bubblesService
Trip type: Travelled with friends
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
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Dronin87 wrote a tip Mar 2015
London, United Kingdom13 contributions3 helpful votes
4.0 of 5 bubbles
"Dorms are fine and comfortable"
Read full review
Marc R wrote a tip Apr 2014
Steffisburg, Switzerland26 contributions12 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
"Nothing to say"
Read full review
JamesBradley5 wrote a tip Oct 2013
Oakland, California27 contributions35 helpful votes
2.0 of 5 bubbles
"Don't bother with a private: it won't be"
Read full review
RevnedCO wrote a tip Nov 2012
Denver, Colorado83 contributions69 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
"I loved having the cabin in the back...it was nice and quiet & I wasn't bothered by any other travellers early wake ups or anything!"
Read full review
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LOCATION
South AfricaGautengGreater JohannesburgBoksburg
NUMBER OF ROOMS
21
Prices are provided by our partners, and reflect average nightly room rates, including taxes and fees that are fixed, known to our partners, and due at time of booking. Please see our partners for more details.
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MBIZI BACKPACKERS LODGE - Reviews (Boksburg, South Africa)

Frequently Asked Questions about Mbizi Backpackers Lodge
Which popular attractions are close to Mbizi Backpackers Lodge?
Nearby attractions include Emperors Palace (5.9 km), East Rand Mall (1.6 km), and Petmasters Bird Park (1.4 km).
What are some of the property amenities at Mbizi Backpackers Lodge?
Some of the more popular amenities offered include free breakfast, a pool, and a lounge.
What food & drink options are available at Mbizi Backpackers Lodge?
Guests can enjoy free breakfast and a lounge during their stay.
Is parking available at Mbizi Backpackers Lodge?
Yes, free parking is available to guests.
What are some restaurants close to Mbizi Backpackers Lodge?
Conveniently located restaurants include Airport Craft Brewers, Quills, and Cuisine Afrique.
Are there opportunities to exercise at Mbizi Backpackers Lodge?
Yes, guests have access to a pool during their stay.
Does Mbizi Backpackers Lodge have airport transportation?
Yes, Mbizi Backpackers Lodge offers airport transportation for guests. We recommend calling ahead to confirm details.
Are there any historical sites close to Mbizi Backpackers Lodge?
Many travellers enjoy visiting L. Ron Hubbard - Linksfield Ridge House (15.8 km) and Franz Hoenig Hauz (13.9 km).
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