We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
New! Find and book your ideal hotel on TripAdvisor — and get the lowest prices

Brown Sugar Backpackers

Show Prices
Book on TripAdvisor
Trusted partner. We work with to make your booking as easy as possible.
Secure payments. We use industry-leading practices to keep your information secure.
Enter dates for best prices
powered by PriceFinder
1 room
Check In Check Out
Please enter your travel dates to continue
Check Availability
Compare best prices from top travel sites
Management photos
Brown Sugar Backpackers
View Map
{"widget":{"name":"ibex_photo_carousel","template":"ibex_photo_carousel__widget","dust":{"nav_controls":"ibex_photo_carousel__nav_controls"},"js":{"handlers":"(ta.prwidgets.getjs(this,'handlers'))"},"divClasses":"prw_rup prw_ibex_photo_carousel","moduleList":["handlers"]},"scriptFlags":null,"containerClass":null}
Add Photo Write a Review

126 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

Traveller rating
Traveller type
Time of year
Language
  • More
There are newer reviews for Brown Sugar Backpackers
See the most recent reviews
Showing 96: English reviews
Boulogne-Billancourt, France
Reviewed 23 November 2015 via mobile

We spend 2 months in south africa and it was the worst experience we had. During the first night, 2 guys climbed the wall and entered in the hostel. They stole 2 parts on our car (and on others customer cars), and came in our dorms to stole 2 phones while we were sleeping (with 4 others people in the...

 Report
Helpful?
Thank littlevadrouille
LiezelRoux, Owner at Brown Sugar Backpackers, responded to this review

The overall security ratings and measurements at our hostel is very high but we had an isolated incident on the day you stayed with us and we did apologise sincerely to you and guests affected at the time. The dorm that you slept in was NOT locked and the only area that the unwelcome men had access to out of...

Reviewed 26 October 2015 via mobile

Very good hostel! Nice, very helpful and friendly staff! Bookings are handled flexible and on short notice! Good food (hostel offers dinner, as well)! Breakfast buffet was more than enough (eggs are made separately on individual order)! Room and bathroom (shared) were clean! Towels are provided by the hostel! Good and comfortable atmosphere! We would book it again!

 Report
Helpful?
1Thank suedafrika15
Reviewed 21 October 2015 via mobile

Myself and my partner stayed at Brown Sugars for 5 days at the end of August. We had one of the private ensuite rooms which we situated next to the car park. The hostel is really homely and comfortable and the staff were all really helpful and friendly (especially Soloman). The hostel offers a shuttle service which is really convenient...

 Report
Helpful?
Thank Lauren W
Reviewed 21 September 2015 via mobile

My friend and I had a very enjoyable experience here. The staff are friendly and happy to help if you ask. The rates are reasonable and the rooms comfortable. There is an excellent social setting in the bar, got talking to some folk and had a nice evening. The airport pickup was a nice feature too. The only real problem,...

 Report
Helpful?
Thank Jamie B
Miami, Florida
Reviewed 21 September 2015

I tried this place for 2 reasons: free airport pickup & "ex mafia mansion" story. Area is dangerous & out of the way. Staff is unattentive. Their driver tries to charge more than reception quotes, then tells us "ok ok" and tells us not to say anything inside. They also charge R250 for transfer to airport, don't bother, if you...

 Report
Helpful?
2Thank BackpacksAndMiles
LiezelRoux, Owner at Brown Sugar Backpackers, responded to this review

Thank you for the review. The area is only "dangerous" if you walk into the wrong direction and after dark. We offer cheap shuttles to all areas on the local area map for a slow as R10 per person. The driver that you mention was working on a final written warning and he is no longer employed with us. I...

East London, South Africa
Reviewed 1 August 2015

I have spent the last three days at Brown Sugar Backpackers. On arrival we were met by a friendly staff and walking into the foyer it felt as though I. was not in my own country but in a backpackers overseas. We arrived early so our rooms and dorm were not yet ready. They locked our luggage away allowing us...

 Report
Helpful?
Thank Abrie P
Dallas, TX
Reviewed 27 May 2015

This place is a mixed bag, depending on what you're looking for. The room rates are cheap, and you get what you pay for. It is a hostel after all. The staff is very friendly and helpful. There is a bar area with a pool table, community TV, and board games. Several nice patios for sitting outside, and a pool...

 Report
Helpful?
Thank TXtrvellr
Manchester, United Kingdom
Reviewed 22 May 2015 via mobile

We had heard many great things about Brown Sugar, especially on TA. But sadly we were quite disappointed. While the location and manor itself is amazing and very inviting, the hostel felt quite hostile. Front desk and kitchen staff were not very helpful and awkward at best. There are rules EVERYWHERE, typed out in bold capital letters to remind you...

 Report
Helpful?
1Thank Avgoch
Reviewed 3 May 2015

Great place to stay in Joburg! Very clean and relaxing with awesome common areas like the bar and pool. Very well managed and they offer a shuttle service to common places of interest around the area. Will definitely stay again.

 Report
Helpful?
Thank Lish420
Reviewed 15 April 2015

I was worried about finding a Hostel in Johannesburg because of many place with bad rewies. But i couldnt be happier for choosing Brown Sugar. Its an amazin hostel with pool, bar, recreative areas and its very secure. We had lot of advice from the staff to places to go and how to get there and also made a lot...

 Report
Helpful?
Thank Ana Flávia M

45 photos of this hotel

Traveller photos: See what travellers like you saw

Viewed
All Traveller Photos (33)
Viewed
Family/Play Areas (1)
Viewed
Dining (2)
Viewed
View from Room (1)
Viewed
Room/Suite (1)
Viewed
Hotel & Grounds (13)
Viewed
Other (15)

Management photos: Courtesy of the property manager

Viewed
All Management Photos (12)
Viewed
Room/Suite (4)
Viewed
Dining (1)
Viewed
Other (7)
Check In Check Out
Hotels you might also like...
Travellers also viewed these Johannesburg hotels
3.2 km away
The Residence Boutique Hotel
The Residence Boutique Hotel
#1 of 70 in Johannesburg
630 reviews
5.4 km away
The Reef Hotel
The Reef Hotel
#25 of 70 in Johannesburg
308 reviews
3.6 km away
Curiocity Backpackers
Curiocity Backpackers
#1 of 89 in Johannesburg
173 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
10.4 km away
The Birches Backpackers
The Birches Backpackers
#6 of 89 in Johannesburg
24 reviews
18.2 km away
Lebo's Soweto Backpackers
Lebo's Soweto Backpackers
#2 of 89 in Johannesburg
173 reviews
8.3 km away
HomeBase Melville
HomeBase Melville
#12 of 89 in Johannesburg
77 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Amenities

Highlights
  • Pool
  • Free Internet
  • Bar/Lounge
  • Free Breakfast
  • Free Parking
About the property
  • Non-Smoking Hotel
  • Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly )
Things to do
  • Pool
  • Bar/Lounge
Room types
  • Non-Smoking Rooms
  • Suites
  • Family Rooms
Internet
  • Free Internet
Services
  • Shuttle Bus Service
  • Airport Transportation
  • Free Breakfast
  • Free Parking
  • Self-Serve Laundry
Official Description (provided by the hotel)
This 'Ex-Mafia Mansion' offers clean, spacious, comfy and secure accommodation from camping, dormitories, family rooms, doubles, twin, triples and singles with shared or privite bathrooms. We are the largest hostel in Johannesburg and offer the following freebies: A Scrumptious breakfast, Free pick up from OR Tambo Airport or Park Station, Wi-Fi and internet, safes in all private rooms and private lockers in dorms, day and long term storage, tea and coffee. Print, scan and postage facilities available. Self service coin operated laundry room and swimming pool with amazing views. We have credit card facilities and our own ATM on site. We have our own drivers and vehicles for cheap shuttles to the shops and other locations. Our in-house tour guide is available daily for the most popular local tours of Joburg. The staff can assist you with a Kruger Park Tour, Victoria Falls or Chobe National Park tours. We are a Baz Bus stop and just waiting to welcome you. ... more   less 

Additional Information about Brown Sugar Backpackers

Address: 75 Observatory Avenue | Observatory Extension, Johannesburg 2198, South Africa
Region: South Africa > Gauteng > Greater Johannesburg > Johannesburg
Price Range: €13 - €26 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 15
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with HostelWorld so you can book your Brown Sugar Backpackers reservations with confidence. We help millions of travellers each month to find the perfect hotel for both holiday and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?
Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.
Claim Your Listing

Questions & Answers

Here's what travellers have asked, with answers from Brown Sugar Backpackers staff and other travellers.
1 question
Ask a question
Singapore
over a year ago

See all questions (1)

Questions? Get answers from Brown Sugar Backpackers staff and past guests.
Posting guidelines
Typical questions asked:
  • Can tickets for local attractions be purchased at the front desk?
  • Do you have to pay extra for a mini-fridge?
  • At what time does the pool open each day?

See which rooms travellers prefer

“The upper dorm has a large balcony with great views.”
 of 5 bubbles 515janettew, 2 Dec 2016 | Read review
“All rooms were great. I stayed in The Glass Room which has a glass roof.”
 of 5 bubbles rochelle3103, 17 Oct 2016 | Read review
“love the cabins at the back.”
 of 5 bubbles nimblenomad, 18 Jul 2016 | Read review
“Breakfast is very good,eggs every day,but no bananas.”
 of 5 bubbles ricobee, 25 Jun 2016 | Read review
“I stayed in the dorm, was fine and value for money”
  • Front of the building in the evening
 of 5 bubbles abriep, 1 Aug 2015 | Read review
5 of 5
Enter dates for best prices
Check In Check Out
Price Your Stay