- Reviews: 5956
Koala Inn: the guidebooks can be wrong
Our guidebook had given a fairly scathing review of the Koala Inn, an old Australian standby that had evidently gone into Colombian hands on a bad note. There were not any other truly inexpensive options in Pasto and we were dreading going there for this reason alone but were committed as we had a flight from there back to Bogota. Thankfully, the owners of Popayán's Hostel Trail said the Koala was perfectly fine and on their recommendation we decided to give it a go. We were glad we did. It certainly looks unimpressive on arrival from the outside but once up a flight of steps, we entered a charming common area with all the rooms looking down into this courtyard. The manager Luis was very friendly and helpful. He made great suggestions for food and even helped us track town the town's helado de paíla.
Our room was very spacious and comfortable, simply but tastefully enough furnished. There was even a TV in the room and the lighting was blissfully not florescent. The common bathrooms were clean and contrary to written reports, there was plenty of hot water, something important and very chilly Pasto. The common area kitchen had a lot to be desired but it was serviceable and since we don't cook when traveling around South America it was not our concern. It was fine for making a hot canelazo each night we stayed. We had some granulated cane sugar left over from making luladas and with a handy bottle of aguardiente, an anise-based liquor, they were easy to make and very warming. Luis appreciated one too.
Our room was 28,000 COP ($14) per night. We stayed two nights but not consecutively as we went to stay at Las Lajas outside of Ipiales one night in between. Still, Luis watched our backpacks and even made sure we got the same room on our return. I had told him to not worry about changing the sheets or towels since we'd only used them once but it was totally redone like we were just checking in.
Sometimes guidebooks have dated information and this was definitely one of those times. Do not hesitate to stay at the Koala Inn if overnighting in Pasto!
- Reviews: 1221
KOALA INN: PASTO
- My absolute favourite hostel in Colombia... very centrally located, just 1.5 blocks from the main plaza, Plaza de Narino, plenty of shops and restaurants nearby
- Huge, bright, colourful, friendly, cheerful... the hostel looks like it was converted from a grand old colonial house with a lovely central courtyard. Rooms are located on the ground and second-storey facing the courtyard.
- Rooms are spacious and very clean and comfortable
- Many rooms have TV, but there is also a communal TV in the courtyard for guests to hangout
- Book exchange, travel information, kitchen, laundry service, etc...
- NONE AT ALL
Room: 12,000 Colombian pesos (2005)
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