Despite Lakefront Backpackers’ central location in easy walking distance to anything of interest in Te Anau, I cannot recommend it as it fails in all other areas important to budget travelers.
The property (several buildings) is rather run-down. My partner and I stayed in a 4-bed dorm in a cottage-style building that had 2 very old kitchens, 2 bathrooms and 2 toilets. Rooms and facilities not exactly clean and everything looked quite neglected. The place could need an overhaul, and some proper locks on the doors, too.
Our room was spacious enough, beds were massive wooden bunks but mattresses were quite bad and the bed linen really smelled. The light in one of the bathrooms didn’t work. The kitchen were not very well equipped, but the state of them (old, in need of renovation), the smell of the building and the dirt didn’t really make us want to cook and eat there anyway. The furniture in the living area of the cottage was shabby and old.
Reception wasn’t particularly interested in providing us with a nice stay either, totally disinterested in any form of conversation or making travelers feel welcome.
I cannot recommend this place to anyone. Lakefront Backpackers needs a general overhaul and also needs to replace rickety old windows and makeshift locks on external doors. Although on the cheaper side of hostel accommodation in Te Anau, it still fails to provide value for money, which says it all about what a stay there is really worth.
The views expressed in this review are my own based on my subjective experience.