Find peace and quiet and friendly conversation in Byron Bay. This laidback town is known for its welcoming locals, made up of surfers, hippies, backpackers and artists. Relax on its long golden beaches, drink at bars overlooking the ocean or climb the Cape Byron Lighthouse to see the sunrise.
Byron Bay has come a long way from its beginnings as a timber and dairy town. Wander the wide streets and find clothing boutiques, gift stores and surf shops. Try a beachside yoga class, taste some chai tea or peruse a wide range of herbal medicines available for purchase. The area is especially famous for its locally grown coffee.
Surfers can choose from numerous breaks around the bay. Try the big waves at the Pass or ride one of Australia’s longest breaks at Wategos Beach. Inexperienced surfers should stick to the calmer Tallow Beach. Though local surfers can be possessive of their waves, the view of the coast from “out the back” is well worth the effort.
For swimming, head to Main Beach, the town’s largest beach. The waist-high water here is crystal clear and perfect for kids.
Admire the local scenery with a walk up Cape Byron to the lighthouse. This path passes Australia’s easternmost point and takes around an hour each way. Visit before dawn and be one of the first people in Australia to see the sunrise. Inland, Arakwal National Park offers great walking trails where you can spot native birds and lizards.
In the evenings, grab a drink and a meal at the Beach Hotel. This lively meeting place overlooks Main Beach and often hosts live music performances. Restaurants and cafés around town serve a range of cuisines from fish and chips to Lebanese.
Byron Bay is a day’s drive north from Sydney, or 2 hours’ drive south from Brisbane. Feel your troubles disappear as you enjoy the relaxed atmosphere and natural beauty of Byron Bay.