Awesome Backpackers Accommodation On The East Cape New Zealand

by Mark Perkins

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I want to share with you a hidden backpacker accommodation gem I found on our recent campervan holiday in New Zealand around the East Cape on the North Island. On of the great things to do in New Zealand is to stay at a backpackers lodge or Farmstay. Farmstay Te Araroa a backpacker’s accommodation house is run by an awesome lady, her husband and whanau (family)  in a little town on the East Cape called Te Araroa.

When we first arrived there didn’t seem to be anybody around, Pauline’s sister arrived and went and found Pauline for us. Well I got to tell you it was the most welcoming greeting we have ever experienced, apart from meeting our own family and personal friends. Pauline gave us a great big hug and kisses and immediately made us feel at home. By this time an English couple Jan & Jeremy (or J&J), who we had met the night before, had also arrived and we were quickly setup in our motor home – campervans and ready to explore this delightful property.

New Zealand

Pauline had invited us up to the backpacker accommodation block and homestead, to meet the rest of her whanau (family) and show us around her fascinating home, an old nunnery which has been relocated from nearby Gisborne. Her husband and she are trying to return the decor to original, leaving some of the raw rough sawn timber walls uncovered as they were all those years ago.

campervan holiday in new zealand

She also has a small unobtrusive gift shop, all the items for sale are locally made including a bodice and skirt, made totally from New Zealand flax. It was woven and designed by her niece for a wearable arts exhibition, not the sought of thing you would wear out, but even to me your regular blokey bloke (Kiwi for mans man) I was most impressed with the detail and design.

That evening we were invited up to the main house where Pauline her whanau and other backpackers were sitting around a fire chatting and enjoying a beer or glass of wine. I struck up an extremely interesting conversation with Martin, a German backpacker who was making his way around New Zealand. He had stayed at Paulines ‘Farmstay Te Araroa’ on his way south and had come back to stay for a couple of nights on his way north.
Farmstay Te Araroa, a truly kiwi, New Zealand backpacker accommodation.

Situated at:-  57 Waione Rd, Te Araroa, contact Pauline Hovell on +6468644896 or When you book or go to Farmstay Te Araroa, be sure to mention me for a little special attention.

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Hannes May 31, 2012 at 4:13 pm

Hi there,
I have a request: my girlfriend just spent some time at Pauline’s backpackers and wanted to help them update their webpage. The biggest issue was that the contact details were wrong: Pauline’s email address is Since your post is one of the highest entries in google for “Te Araroa Backpackers” – would you be so kind as to update the information in your post? I’m sure Pauline would very much appreciate that. Thank you!


PS: Here is a link to the (updated) webpage:

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