One of our favourite YHA hostels in Australia, the Blue Mountains YHA is within a restored National Trust building with a beautiful art deco interior. It was built in 1918 as a guesthouse called Homesdale, but during the 1920s and 1930s, it underwent a series of extensions, including a huge ballroom. The building then became home to the Wentworth Cabaret, a popular club for music and dancing.
In the 1960s, tourism slowed down in the Blue Mountains and the building was sold to Illawarra Bible College. Eight years later, it changed hands again to the Assemblies of God and the ballroom was used as a chapel. YHA purchased the building in 2000 and a year later, the Blue Mountains YHA was opened.
The Blue Mountains YHA is huge and is perfect for groups and families. It sleeps 200 people and has a variety of room options. We were in the Blue Mountains during winter so it was fairly quiet. We had a 6 share dorm all to ourselves. All the rooms have heaters that become your best friend in winter, and plenty of lockable cupboard space per guest.
The common areas are bright and spacious. The old ballroom has been decked out with gas fire heaters and lounges, and the side rooms include a quiet reading room, a games room and a checker floor kitchen with gas cooking. Outside is a giant chess board and a few sun chairs for when the weather is warmer. There is also free Wifi available in the common areas.
- Café – less than 100 metres from the hostel is a cosy little café called the Yellow Deli.
- Supermarket – there’s a discount supermarket just around the corner only two minutes away, but if you’re looking for a major supermarket, you’re going to have to walk an extra 400m up the road.
- Street Art Walk – a collaboration with local graffiti artists, the Street Art Walk is 150m from the hostel and exhibits some fantastic works of art.
- Bottle shop – less than 200m up the street is a bottle shop.
- Katoomba Station – if you need to catch the train in or out of Katoomba, the railway station is only 800m up the road.
- Echo Point and the Three Sisters – only 1.7km down the road, this is the most iconic landmark of the Blue Mountains.
- Sublime Point Lookout – one of our favourite lookouts in the Blue Mountains is only 6.6km from the hostel.
- Bakehouse on Wentworth – Enjoy pie? This bakery does some ripper savoury pies and they’re only 11km away in Blackheath.
- Sydney – the largest city in Australia is only 130km away.
The Blue Mountains YHA is located at 270 Katoomba Street in Katoomba and is open all year. Reception is available from 7:30am to 8pm daily, but they stay open for an hour later on Friday and Saturday nights. Breakfast is available for $6.50 per person.