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Budget hotels & hostels
Guesthouses and B&Bs
The Observatory Port Macquarie
A friendly welcome is the norm at this excellent modern hotel opposite Town Beach. Rooms and apartments are comfortable and well equipped; many have balconies overlooking the water...
Bourke Riverside Motel
An oasis in the desert, this rambling historic motel with an enchanting riverside garden has eclectic rooms with antique furniture and an array of good and bad artwork.
Simpsons Of Potts Point
Kings Cross to Potts Point
An 1892 red-brick villa at the quiet end of a busy cafe strip, the perennially popular Simpsons looks to yesteryear for decorative flourishes. The downstairs lounge and breakfast room are lovely, and rooms are both comfortable and impeccably clean.
Park Hyatt Sydney
Circular Quay & The Rocks
Luxury meets location at Sydney's most expensive hotel, where the service levels and facilities are second to none...
Camp in ecofriendly style in one of 12 luxurious solar-powered safari tents, with comfy beds, gorgeous en suites and wraparound decks. It’s set in dense bush 3.5km from Huskisson; you can borrow kayaks to paddle up the creek to the bay.
Quality Hotel Powerhouse Tamworth
The classy rooms here have an old-world style wedded to an impeccable attention to detail and stylish modern bathrooms. There's also an excellent restaurant.
Ballina Manor Boutique Hotel
One of the best places to stay in the region, this boutique hotel began in the 1920s as an Edwardian-style girls’ school. The 12 rooms have been beautifully restored and boast many antiques. The small restaurant serves dinner.
Diamant Hotel Canberra By 8 Hotels
Located in the up-and-coming New Acton precinct near Civic, the Diamant has a sheen of Sydney-style sophistication...
Bellingen Yha Backpackers
Once you enjoy the rainforest views from the broad verandah or listen to the flying foxes from a hammock, it’s easy to see why this hostel is always popular. A tranquil, engaging atmosphere pervades this renovated weatherboard house...
Samurai Beach Bungalows Port Stephens Yha
These attractively furnished, wooden-floored cabins are arranged around a swimming pool and set in koala-populated bushland dotted with Asian sculpture. There’s a bush kitchen with BBQs and a ramshackle games shed with pool table. Fabulous.
Yamba Yha Backpacker Beach Resort
Spankingly modern and groovy, this is a purpose-built hostel with an excellent downstairs bar and restaurant (mains $9 to $29). Upstairs there’s a rooftop deck, small pool and barbecue area. It’s family run and extremely welcoming...
Sydney Harbour Yha
Circular Quay & The Rocks
Any qualms about the unhostel-like prices will be shelved the moment you head up to the roof terrace of this singular, custom-built YHA and see Circular Quay laid bare before you. All of the rooms, including the dorms, have private bathrooms...
Melaleuca Surfside Backpackers
Architect-designed wooden cabins are set amid peaceful scrub inhabited by koalas and kookaburras at this friendly, well-run place. There’s a welcoming lounge area and kitchen and the owners offer dune surfing and other day trips. Equally fabulous.
El Paso Motor Inn
This kitsch Mexicana motel holds its own as a cheap and cheerful one-stop shop in the centre of town, complete with palm trees, terracotta decor and a swimming pool. It has beach access and does a penny-pincher dinner and B&B packages.
Merimbula Gardens Motel
Though there are no gardens to speak of, this old-school motel is one of the cheaper options in the heart of town. Rooms are basic but clean and comfortable.
George Bass Motor Inn
An unpretentious but well-appointed single-storey motor inn, the George Bass has clean and sunny rooms. The more expensive ones are slightly newer.
Twofold Bay Motor Inn
Substantial rooms, some with water views, are the norm at this centrally located motel. There’s also a tiny indoor pool.
Royal Exchange Hotel
This beautifully restored 1930s hotel with an art-deco bent is an accommodation oasis in the heart of town.
Beachside Holiday Apartments
This fun place is right across the road from Flynns Beach. The units are large, have balconies and face either the ocean or the enticing pool.
Clyde River Motor Inn
An older motel on the river in the centre of town, this one’s bathed in the sweet smell of jasmine. Rooms are clean and some have views.
Banjo Paterson Inn
The best rooms at this place have balconies and lake views. Other facilities include a rowdy bar and brewery. It might look a little washed out in summer but it's a lively establishment come snowtime.
The pick of the litter, the Karinga has had a tasteful facelift: the rooms have been fully refurbished and a funky pool and spa installed.