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Reviewed 5 February 2015

Great overnight stay with my sister whilst she was visiting us in Sydney (two women in our fifties) - a truly away from it all place just over an hour from the city. You arrive by boat from Church Point ($15 return) and climb a relatively steep (muddy and uneven) path to the YHA.

It has 8 rooms and about 30 beds - including 2 private double /twin rooms (room 5 and room 2 - room 5 is small and dark, room 2 is the best with a door to the front terrace and very light and roomy). Mattresses very comfortable, with good pillows. Sheet sets cost $3 per person to rent. There are two toilets and 3 showers to share. Hot water and good pressure. Everything spotlessly clean.

A lovely lounge with leather sofas, books and a fire. Large well equipped kitchen - small hob and microwave and a gas BBQ. You must bring all your supplies with you.

The views are amazing over the treetops to Pittwater. The best view was the morning we got up before sunrise and climbed a steep path to the sunrise lookout - stunning. There is a nice loop walk back via the small dam - a good hour and a half walk before breakfast. We saw a few wallabies, glossy black cockatoos - and a lyrebird. No possums or king parrots.

The two staff were very welcoming. The night we stayed the whole area had an electric cut - but for us that added to the charm. We cooked steaks on the BBQ and had with salad and wine, in candlelight and an almost full moon. Stunning. Bacon on the BBQ on rolls for breakfast with fruit.

Other activities include other walks direct from the lodge. Via the boat you can also go to Scotland island for a walk and other bays. From Church Point there is a boat to Palm beach and from there to other beaches and the Hawkesbury river. Boat to Great Mackrel beach and a walk to West Head (takes all day there and back) is great. A climb up to Barrenjoey lighthouse is also well worth it. You can kayak from the YHA - around to Elvina bay or over to Scotland Island, or even over to the small beach opposite the YHA.

If you get chance have lunch or breakfast at the Boatshed. Food at Church Point is also good.

After just one night at this YHA we felt like we had had an escape back to nature. Everyone in Sydney should do it - at least for 1 night; 2-3 even better.

Room tip: For a double/twin ask for room 2.
Date of stay: February 2015
  • Trip type: Travelled with friends
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
3  Thank gerbilsontour
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 January 2015

My husband & I were looking for a rejuvenating few days away in nature by the sea without having to pay a fortune. I was told about the Pittwater YHA was an incredible spot for people who love nature with the pleasure of a simplicity. So true. I love that there was no T.V. Walking down to the jetty each morning diving into the water, reading in hammocks, meeting all sorts of people from all sorts of backgrounds, was so refreshing as you could be a anyone there and people wouldn't know, as everyone was on the same level. Being in the dense national park was so stunning with visits from the wallabies was a treat. The humble yet clean environment, topped with great hosts of Michael & Sarah make you feel at home. I also appreciated that it was a sustainable environment too. We will be back

Date of stay: January 2015
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
Thank Naomi N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 January 2015

The location is stunning, but depending on luck with transport can 2 hours or 4 hours if travelling by public transport from Sydney CBD.
Mangers are sticklers with check out time and will not allow bags to be stored even a little while. So if you arrived much later than expected it is not that easy to go for a long walk the next morning. Given the travel time you feel hard done by and worse when told that as the hostel has been booked there is not to be any sign of other guests in the vicinity.
Hostel advertised as offering basic accommodation, kitchen was very good, the showers/toilets and had basins need to be cleaned better.

Date of stay: November 2014
  • Trip type: Travelled solo
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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1  Thank chillin335
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 September 2014

I was determined to return after visiting the hostel on a day trip via the ferry from Church Point. Michael and Sarah are lovely hosts and so dedicated to the work of the YHA and bush regeneration. I met a great group of like-minded people at a bush regeneration weekend; enjoyed the wonderful view of Pittwater from the building; relaxed in the hammocks; and went kayaking and swimming in Morning Bay. It was also fantastic to be there for the YHA's 75th anniversary.

Date of stay: September 2014
  • Trip type: Travelled solo
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
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Thank Anton J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 June 2014

My very energetic 7 and 4 year olds beg to go back to the YHA Pittwater. We've just returned from our second weekend and we are thinking about booking again. Why? From the moment our city kids hit the trail from the ferry up to the hostel, they are engaged with nature and each other. We always book with friends and the kids get such a kick out of building a cubby, swimming, sitting around the fire (thanks Sarah), running after the soldier crabs, watching the wallabies and one wee joey and so much more. They even enjoyed the hike up the mountain to the look out. I won't go on about the wonderful view as that is more then covered in other reviews. What I will say is how good this place is for our city kids. In a world that is increasingly concerned with the individual, our children get to meet people from other countries and learn to respect those around them. They are expected to move away from the sleeping area before 8am and asked not to scream and run in the main building. I have loud energetic kids, so did our friends but they all understood and with a few gentle reminders, thorougly got on with enjoying themselves. My 4yo son loves talking to people from all over the world and discussing various topics with Michael. This place is truly fantastic for families and only an hour from Sydney, I can't recommend it highly enough.

Date of stay: May 2014
  • Trip type: Travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
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2  Thank SueHammer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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