The Backpack Hostel in Cape Town is an award-winning hostel, with everything and more you would expect from a 5 Star Hostel. In addition to the amenities and contemporary design, the hostel is passionate about sustainability. The Backpack Hostel has been accredited by Fair Trade in Tourism, which is a trademark awarded to businesses that adhere to Fair Trade criteria.
The infobox on The Backpack
How to book The Backpack?
We fully recommend The Backpack as the top hostel choice for Cape Town, South Africa!
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Hostel Location and Direction
The Backpack Hostel is located in the city center of Cape Town, just 5 minutes away from Kloof Street and Long Street.
From Johannesburg (N1) and Cape Town Airport (N2), continue past the entrance to the Waterfront along Buitengracht Street (M62), towards Table Mountain. On the corner of Buitengracht and Buitensingel the road becomes New Church. Immediately on your right you will see the building of The Backpack Hostel! Drive around the block and into our parking area.The Backpack, 74 New Church Street Gardens, Cape Town 8001
5 Local Tips for Cape Town
The mix of mountain trails, beautiful beaches, international culture and loving people makes this city a unique place. We collected for you 5 awesome tips for Cape Town! Subscribe to Geeky Guide Cape Town and get the 5 best things to do in Cape Town to your inbox - it's free!
Find all our secret city guides here.
All room types at The Backpack
Private Room Types available: Apartments, Single Rooms, Double Rooms, Twin Rooms
Shared Room Types available: 3-Bed Dorm, 4-Bed Dorm, 8-bed Dorm
Not sure what room to pick? Here is a full overview of hostel room types.
Guide to hostels
We care about you and your hostel experience. Therefore, we created an ultimate guide to hostels, covering all topics around hosteling.
We are Hostelgeeks, your independent shortcut to the worlds best hostels.
All hostels we introduce you to, fit the transparent criteria of a 5 Star hostel-typed accommodation.
In Namibia, you can find the Tsumeb Backpackers, a wonderful accommodation and the perfect point to start your Africa travels.
In addition, we also created an extensive guide to hostels where we cover all questions about hosteling.
Once in Cape Town, make sure you plan your trip around South Africa including these 50 things to do in South Africa.
TheBackpack Hostel in Cape Town in review
TheBackpack Hostel sponsors a sports program based in a community riddled with drugs and gangsterism, and you can even join them for a day to visit their project.
Therefore, bring your old soccer boots with you.
Take a swim in their swimming pool with stunning views of Table Mountain, and relax in this stylish hostel with its contemporary design.
Take your pick of various rooms, ranging between dorms, private or family rooms, with or without private bathrooms.
Free unlimited WiFi is available throughout the hostel (we know you wanted to know this!), and you can even withdraw cash at their in-house ATM.
1. Sustainable, Green, Social
The Backpack is owned and managed by two South African females, Lee Harris and Toni Shina.
The Backpack Hostel constantly strives to reduce and reuse in all areas of the business and to uphold and improve their green practices.
The best and most geeky part (Hostelgeeks loves this!) of these green practices: They receive a monthly breakdown of what they have recycled, and the impact of it.
Check out their monthly recycling statistics here.
Supporting Local Economy:
The Backpack contributes to the development of local businesses and employment opportunities by making use of local tour operators.
Where possible, they book ethical and responsible tours, with companies that are Fair Trade Tourism accredited or companies owned by previously disadvantaged individuals with tours that uplift communities.
They are one of the chosen establishments for the Fair Trade Travel Pass, an ethical tour in South Africa which benefits local communities and economies.
A prerequisite for being a provider of this tour is that the business is operated ethically and in a socially and environmentally responsible manner.
Social Charity Projects:
This 5 Star Hostel supports several different social charity projects such as Vallies Stitch and Bitch Program, The Rope Skipping Project, Bursary Scheme, and more.
And remember: if you have been traveling for a while and have a pile of unwanted clothes in your backpack, you can donate them at The Backpack’s Reception.
The team will sell them on your behalf, with the proceeds going to The Soccer and Jump Rope Project.
2. Contemporary Design with South African Charme
The owners of The Backpack Hostel wanted to keep the design aesthetic local and South African as possible.
Inspiration was drawn from the beautiful city of Cape Town and its fusion of cultures, colors, authentic fabrics, inspirational and imperfect street art.
Another inspiration was its rich biodiversity of indigenous animal and plant life.
All in harmony to create a space that breathes soul, creativity, positive energy and most importantly sustainability, which is the driving force behind all that The Backpack does.
Shelley, the designer from Space Solutions, works very closely in collaboration with the two owners Toni and Lee.
The aim was to create a welcoming and unique space for travelers that epitomizes the heart and soul of the beautiful city of Cape Town.
Check out the video below to get your own opinion.
We recommend visiting the on-site Community shop, where you can buy locally made handcrafts and artworks.
3. Unique? Social Responsibility
We love the luxurious comfort that comes with this 5 Star Hostel: the swimming pool, the clean and beautiful designed rooms, and the outstanding, welcoming staff.
Even more important than being a great a hostel, the people at The Backpack choose to make a difference.
The eco-friendly installations, the social projects plus the support of local economy, brings together all 3 pillars of sustainability.
Be part of The Backpack and leave your travel destination as a better place.
4. Conscious and inviting – your social spot!
The atmosphere is inviting, and friendly.
Whether you want to take a swim in the swimming pool with great views of Table Mountain, or have a game of pool with your fellow travelers, The Backpack is a social spot offering the cosiness of a home and the luxury of a 5 Star Hostel.
Travelers of all ages are more than welcome.
After a long day of tours, excursions, and sports, this hostel is the best spot to end a fantastic day in Cape Town in an appropriate way.
And if you feel hungry, don’t worry.
Just get a delicious sandwich at the hostel’s bar.
5. 100% Local Tips and an own Travel Desk
The Reception and Travel Desk at The Backpack is open daily from 7am until 10pm.
The friendly staff will arrange transport, book day tours, overland safari’s, car rentals, recommend excursions and restaurants.
Also, don’t be shy and ask anything you need to know about Cape Town – they will give you 100% local recommendations for their beautiful city.
And pssst: Ask The Backpack staff about the Bursary Fund and Community Projects.
You can even take part and donate your key deposit. Choose to make a difference!
The Backpack Hostel in 1 Minute
The video of our 5 Star Hostel in Cape Town gives you an introduction of what you can expect when traveling to Cape Town and staying at The Backpack.
The best 60 seconds you will spend today guaranteed!
You can find +22 cool videos of the 5 Star Hostels with Hostelgeeks.
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How to book The Backpack?
We fully recommend The Backpack as a top hostel choice for Cape Town, South Africa!
Here is an extra 15€ discount for Booking.com.
You will receive the discount when booking any accommodation with Booking.com.
Compare all rates at
Hostel Packing List
Now that you found this amazing hostel, make sure you pack the right away and the right things.
Here is our ultimate hostel packing list. It features 23 smart items you need to pack.
The main things to pack are:
- eye mask
- key chain flashlight
- the right backpack, the Lowe Alpine Lightflite 40 Pack
- packing cubes
- generic padlock
- quick-dry travel towel
- universal power adapter
- travel-sized toiletries
- The hostel address – written down
FUN Things to do in Cape Town, South Africa
Remember to book your tickets to the most popular sights in advance.