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YOUTH BEAT

British, Australian Hostels Offer Welcomes Worthy of a Queen

March 04, 2001|LUCY IZON

Britain makes a special effort to open its doors to young visitors by publishing a helpful free magazine called UK: The Guide.

The 2001 edition provides information for trip planning, from inexpensive sightseeing in London to cycling from one coast to another and finding night life in major cities. Copies can be requested from the British Tourist Authority, 551 Fifth Ave., Suite 701, New York, NY 10176-0799; telephone (800) GO-2-BRITAIN (462-2748), Internet http://www.btausa.com.

Young travelers bound for Glasgow, Scotland, have a new choice in budget accommodations. The Glasgow Euro Hostel, open since December, is described as a hostel suitable for families and travelers on tight budgets.

Glasgow, Scotland's largest city (population about 675,000), has worked hard to develop an attractive image.The 386-bed Glasgow Euro Hostel, so new it won't be listed in most guidebooks, is in the city center, at Clyde and Jamaica streets. It offers accommodations for $20 per person per night, including continental breakfast. The hostel has 386 beds. Most rooms have two or four beds, but there are also three dormitories with up to 12 beds. A breakfast room doubles as a lounge. Reservations can be made by faxing Euro Hostel at 011-44-141-222-2829.

For Australia-bound travelers, Hotel Bakpak, which has eight locations in Sydney, Melbourne and Magnetic Island, is offering arrival packages for gateway cities that include sightseeing opportunities.

If you want to stretch your budget and don't mind dormitory accommodations, the Arrival Packs offer three nights' accommodation, transfer from the airport, an orientation tour and a $10 phone card. The price is $117. Remember that if you want a bed in a same-sex dormitory room, you must request it when you make your reservation. The Arrival Pack for the 400-bed Hotel Bakpak Westend in Sydney includes a Sydney Harbor cruise and a Blue Mountains tour. This hostel is centrally located at 412 Pitt St. It has 24-hour reception and a lounge, coffee counter and self-catering kitchen. The rooms have air-conditioning, personal safes, telephones and bathrooms.

At the 683-bed Hotel Bakpak Melbourne (167 Franklin St.), the Arrival Pack includes a Great Ocean Road tour, a Yarra River cruise, two breakfasts and 10 minutes of free Internet access.

In Melbourne, Arrival Packs are also available for the 110-bed Nunnery, which is close to theaters, restaurants and bars.

The packs include a Great Ocean Road tour and a Yarra River cruise. The Nunnery is at 116 Nicholson St., Fitzroy.

If you prefer more privacy, you can book a single room for two nights at the C.B. Hotel Bakpak in Sydney (it's at 417 Pitt St., within walking distance of the Opera House and Darling Harbor) for $87. This includes a transfer from the airport, a $5 phone card, Sydney Harbor cruise and city tour.

Packages can be booked by Internet. For more information, visit http://www.bakpakgroup.com.v, or call Bakpak Hotels in Sydney at 011-61-2-9211-4588; in Melbourne at 011-61-3-9329-4012.

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Lucy Izon is a Toronto-based freelance writer. Internet http://www.izon .com.

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