There is a huge array of accommodation in Australia. Ranging from budget hostels to luxury Five Star Hotels to clean and comfortable hotels to camping under the stars and with everything else in between. Pretty much something for everyone and every budget. So what will you choose? Here is my lowdown on the types of accommodation in Australia.
Sharing a room in a hostel makes accommodation cheaper.
Hostels provide budget priced accommodation in Australia. They can do this because you share all the facilities. You share a room, bathroom facilities and all the communal areas like the kitchen and lounge room. Generally hostels cater to the younger age groups, particularly singles although there are no age restrictions. Many hostels are changing and offer smaller dormitory rooms and rooms for families and couples. They are located everywhere from major cities to small country towns. Some have fantastic views like the Sydney YHA that has a view over Sydney Harbour while others are found in places like the ski fields. Hostels are great places to meet other like-minded travellers.
Australia has a wide range of comfortable three to four star hotels. These aren’t as luxurious as the 5-star hotels but are still clean, comfortable and provide you with a number of services. Mostly providing a clean and comfortable bed with extras such as a bathroom and maybe some tea and coffee making facilities. You usually find them in both the cities and country areas throughout Australia. Some of the better known chains include: Travelodge, Novotel, Best Western, Ibis, Vibe, and Mantra to name a few.
Five Star Luxury Hotels
Australia has a great selection of Five Star Hotels and international hotel groups offering comfort, VIP services and luxury. They include Sheraton, Marriott, Hilton, Intercontinental, Hyatt, Radisson to name a few. They are mostly situated in the major cities and offer their guests the highest level of service. Services include spacious and luxurious rooms, 24 hour reception, valet parking, room service and Concierge. You will definitely have the best of everything and be treated like a VIP in one of these hotels. You can book your stay in a luxury hotel by visiting their website directly or through Booking.com.
Motels and Motor Inns
A typical motel room
Motels and motor inns can be found all around Australia. Even though they have different names I find them very similar and don’t really know exactly what the difference of them are! Basically this type of accommodation offers rooms that have a different number of beds from single, double or twin to family rooms. They will have private bathrooms plus have extras in the room like a television, tea and coffee making facilities, a small fridge and sometimes a small kitchen. Most offer free Wi-fi. Many of them have a swimming pool but I have found they aren’t usually heated! Motels and motor inns are great for an overnight stay or a stay of a couple of nights.
There are a number of motel chains throughout Australia including Country Comfort, Best Western and the Budget Motel Chain. You can usually find them when you arrive in a town as they will be located on the main road so they can be easily found. Breakfast isn’t usually included though some might offer a free continental breakfast in a breakfast room. Motels and motor inns usually have a sign out the front advising if they have a vacancy or not. You can simply pull up outside, walk in and ask if there are any rooms available for the night. You can also book one in advance through Booking.com.
Many Australian pubs offer accommodation. Rooms are usually basic with or without shared bathroom facilities. The accommodation is available upstairs from the main public areas of the pub and can be noisy. You should be able to get a good meal for dinner as most pubs have a bistro section. This may also be open for breakfast for guests.
Bed and Breakfast
A typical breakfast when staying at a B&B
A Bed and Breakfast is typically a small establishment that offers overnight and weekend accommodation that includes breakfast. So if you want to spoil yourself for the weekend or have a romantic escape then a B&B is an excellent choice. Typically a Bed and Breakfast will be part of a private home that has a small number of rooms available. The room can either be in the house or on another part of the property. A bed and breakfast experience I had was on a farm and an old farm shed had been turned into accommodation. It was very nice and cosy. We shared it with another couple. Breakfast ranges and can be a mix of cereals, toast or other bakery items like croissants to a fully cooked breakfast. Sometimes your host will provided your breakfast cooked or sometimes they will provide you with a basket of items you can cook yourself. You can book a bed and breakfast through Booking.com.
Camping Grounds and Caravan Parks
There are thousands of camping grounds and caravan parks in Australia. So if you are on a self drive holiday and have camping gear with you or are towing a caravan or driving a camper van then staying in a camping ground or caravan park is a great option.
Camping grounds and caravan parks are convenient, affordable and offer many services to the traveller. These include power for your van, toilets and showers, play areas for kids, BBQ areas, maybe a small grocery shop and sometimes a pool. They can also be found in unique places like national parks, beaches, lakes, mountains, and in most towns and cities.
One thing I like about caravan parks is they offer on-site vans or cabins to rent also. They are great to stay in as they have a kitchen and bathroom facilities. So if you want to stay in a place for longer than one night then renting a caravan or cabin might suit. Many camping grounds and caravan parks are privately owned but some belong to chains such as The Big4.
A typical resort
Australians love recreational and leisure activities both indoors and out. Couple that with high quality facilities and services and resorts are a very popular form of holiday accommodation. Typically a resort offers a range of activities such as a gym, pool, tennis courts, sauna, a games room and outdoor BBQ facilities for guests to use. There might also be services like hairdressing and body pampering. Plus the resort provides accommodation from affordable to luxurious but that will depend on the individual resort. There are also restaurants and bars. So really you don’t have to leave the resort! Resorts can be found all around Australia and are particularly found in beautiful areas such as near beaches or in the mountains. You can be book them through Booking.com
Apartments and Houses
If you like privacy, having your own space and access to all the comforts of home then a fully-furnished apartment or house might be for you. These are ideal for singles, couples or families who like a home away from home. You can expect to have a complete kitchen with all the utensils needed to make all your meals. Also entertainment systems for TV, music etc. and usually free Wi-Fi. So if you plan to spend a week or more in one place paying a little extra to have a home away from home would be ideal. To find an apartment or house some advertise on accommodation booking sites such as Booking.com and AirBnB. You could also try house and pet sitting – see following.
House and Pet Sitting
If you are interested to stay in the one place for a few days to a few months then you might consider house and/or Pet Sitting. This can be done when the owners are going away and need someone to stay in their home and look after it, and their pets. It is a great way to save on accommodation costs as in return for you staying in the house you get to stay for free. The accommodation can be anywhere and staying for a while will allow you to immerse yourself in all the local area has to offer.
Other Types of Accommodation in Australia
How much fun to stay in a lighthouse – well the accommodation attached to the lighthouse!
As well as those accommodation in Australia options mentioned above you could find yourself staying in unique accommodation. There are lighthouses, houseboats, farm stays, home stays, historic estates, vineyards and renovated trams or trains to name a few. So how do you find these things? Booking.com is a great way to start.
So this is my take on accommodation in Australia. With such a wide range of accommodation throughout Australia there is something for everyone and every budget. I am happy to admit that I have stayed in every style of accommodation I have mentioned, and I still do as I travel in and around Australia.