Hafren Forest Bunkhouse (REVIEW) | Budget Places To Stay In Mid-Wales?

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Hafren Forest Bunkhouse was my accommodation for my recent trip to Wales. For those of you that haven’t stayed at or heard of a bunkhouse, it’s basically shared accommodation with bunk beds.

Of course, bunkhouses come in many different varieties. I have now stayed at a few in the UK and this was one of my favourites. The spacious and open layout, careful attention to detail in the bunkhouse and the warm welcome at Hafren Forest Bunkhouse makes it the perfect accommodation for groups, families and even solo travellers like myself.

Read my full review and photos of ‘Hafren Forest Bunkhouse’.

Hafren Forest Bunkhouse Information

Bunkhouse Address:

Staylittle, nr Llanidloes, Powys, Wales, SY19 7DB


Hafren Forest Bunkhouse is in the centre of Hafren Forest. Staylittle is in mid-Wales, although if you look on a map you’ll see mid-Wales covers a huge area. Driving south the bunkhouse is located 9 miles away from nearby town Llanidloes and heading north it’s 14 miles from Machynlleth, which is on the border of Snowdonia National Park.

Bunkhouse facilities:

  • 5 dorm rooms (5-8 beds)
  • Hot showers
  • Large comfy lounge with dining table
  • Large kitchen and table
  • Free tea, coffee and sugar
  • Information and maps available
  • Laundry facilities (donation)
  • Wood burner
  • TV, DVD player with DVDs and Games console

Dorm room:

  • Spacious dorm rooms
  • Under bed storage
  • Bedding provided

Hafren Bunkhouse Costs:

Dorm rooms from £20 per night*
Group discounts available
Single occupancy rates available

Breakfast costs from £2.50 for continental or £5 for a fully cooked option. Evening meals which include a main and dessert are £10.*

*Prices at range due to the time of year. All rates correct at time of writing. For latest rates contact Sarah and Darren on 07871 740 514 or message them via Hafren Bunkhouse Facebook page

About Hafren Forest Bunkhouse

Hafren Forest Bunkhouse Wales - lounge and social area
Hafren Forest Bunkhouse lounge with wood burner

The Bunkhouse used to be a former weather station with the main lab area now the large kitchen diner. From the outside, the Bunkhouse looks rustic, a large green wooden building in the beautiful forest surroundings. The style fits the area perfectly and certainly doesn’t look out of place.

Now run by Sarah and Darren, who recently took over the Bunkhouse last year. They have really transformed it into a cosy place to relax and enjoy the beautiful surroundings. It’s clean, tidy but has a homely feel, with quirky signs and plenty of pictures on the walls (some taken by Darren). There’s also plenty of books, maps and information about things to see and do whilst you are there.

As the location is literally in the middle of no-where, the phone signal is limited (depending on what network you are one). Vodafone and O2 have a good signal and you’ll be able to use your 3G or 4G but if you’re on EE network like me then there is no signal in the bunkhouse. This also means that the bunkhouse doesn’t have wi-fi. A welcome chance to have a break from technology, which can only be positive when there’s so much to do outside.

Read next: Best Places to Visit in Wales

Arrival and check-in at Hafren Bunkhouse

Hafren Forest Bunkhouse Wales (13)

Unfortunately, I’d written down the wrong postcode for the bunkhouse so initially ended up on the other side of Hafren Forest. A quick message to Sarah via their Facebook page and I was back on track. Yes, the postcode above is the right one!

A single track road leads up to the bunkhouse, it’s well signposted so you can’t miss it! My trip was mid-March, but the UK had experienced a crazy snowfall the day before. I was worried that my (none 4×4) car wouldn’t make it but after messaging I had confirmation that I would be ok without 4 wheel drive. Apparently, this is the worst it’s been in over 10 years. But it made for some pretty photos on my trip so I didn’t mind!

Parking directly outside the front gate (there’s more parking around the back) I carried my bags into the bunkhouse via the side entrance. There was a lovely welcome note, with two hot cross buns, a very lovely touch after a long drive. Sarah and Darren arrived not long after me and were the perfect hosts making me a cup of peppermint tea. You must all know by now how I love my peppermint tea #notsponsored haha.

At Hafren Bunkhouse, you have the option to add breakfast (continental or full cooked) and dinner. Home-cooked and hearty meals made by Sarah and Darren. I’d opted for dinner on my first night. Who wants to cook after a long drive, not me!

I’d provided Sarah with my dietary requirements (basically eat everything and anything haha!) So my first night I was tucking into a delicious cottage pie, with amazing cauliflower cheese and green beans, oh and lots of gravy.

The dorm room at Hafren Bunkhouse

Hafren Forest Bunkhouse Wales - 5-bed dorm room
My dorm room at Hafren Forest Bunkhouse

I was staying in dorm room number 5. A room with 5 beds, two bunks and a single bed which I opted for. All the beds are made up in matching duvet sets and the room was very clean and tidy.

Well, that was until I moved all my bags in. I somehow seem incapable of packing light when I’m travelling in my car haha. There are handy storage pouches on each bed for you to put your phone or other personal belongings in. As well as under the bed storage but if you have a bigger bag it probably wouldn’t fit.

The room is minimalistic but that’s exactly what I would expect from a bunkhouse. The only thing that there could be more in the room is the electric points. Although, this is something on Darren and Sarah’s list. I can’t believe how much they have done in such a short time so it’s likely they won’t be far behind!

You might like to read Hostel dorms – What to expect staying in a hostel dorm room

Overall thoughts at Hafren Forest Bunkhouse

Hafren Forest Bunkhouse Wales breakfast room
Large kitchen diner with views of the forest and hills

My overall thoughts on Hafren Bunkhouse are all positive. As a solo traveller, it was lovely to have Sarah and Darren’s company in the evenings. They also provided me with handy tips and advice on where to go whilst I was there. Darren even gave me a couple of colour printed maps that I could use whilst exploring the forest.

One of the highlights of staying in the bunkhouse was the location itself. Looking out the windows you either have the beautiful forest or roaming hills all around you.

Also, a bird table positioned outside the kitchen window provided plenty of entertainment for me watching the birds feeding whilst having breakfast. The very friendly, but shy, Great-spotted woodpeckers were regular visitors. Along with other smaller birds and I was even lucky enough to see a Red Kite fly very low and directly above the bunkhouse.

Would I stay at Hafren Forest Bunkhouse again?

Yes, the bunkhouse was fantastic. It is a great location for exploring Hafren Forest and also the bedroom and shared rooms were lovely. As were Sarah and Darren as hosts and Maisy the dog (a very loving and friendly dog).

For further information or to book call 07871 740 514, email mrsh66@btinternet.com or message via Hafren Bunkhouse Facebook page

For more of my accommodation reviews please check out Where to stay? – Hostels and Bunkhouses

If you are interested in working with Becky the Traveller, please see further information on my Work with me page.

Read more on Wales here

More photos of Hafren Forest Bunkhouse

(And some of the other visitors :))

Hafren Forest Bunkhouse Wales (6)
Hafren Forest Bunkhouse Wales (11)
Hafren Forest Bunkhouse Wales (9)
Hafren Forest Bunkhouse Wales (2)
Hafren Forest Bunkhouse - Birds (1)
Hafren Forest Bunkhouse - Birds (3)
Hafren Forest Bunkhouse - Birds (7)
Hafren Forest Bunkhouse - Birds (4)

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Hafren Forest Bunkhouse, mid-Wales review
Hafren Forest Bunkhouse, mid-Wales review
Hafren Forest Bunkhouse, mid-Wales review

*I was a guest at Hafren Forest Bunkhouse. However, all views and opinions are my own.

*Becky the Traveller participates in the Amazon Services Associates Programme, as well as other affiliate programmes. If you make a purchase through these, I earn from the qualifying links. This is at no extra cost to you. Read more here.

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