The first time I ever went to Byron Bay was August 2011 on a family trip. Once being approved for my working holiday visa to Australia in January 2014, I knew Byron Bay would be a stop along the way… What I didn’t know was how it would become a huge part of my life and who I am today. I originally planned to visit Byron Bay for a weekend, I ended up staying roughly a year and a half on and off. It simply has an effect on people that continue to bring them back. Every single time I arrive in Byron my heart smiles, I’m instantly overwhelmed with feelings of my own perfect paradise – an endless summer with the warmth of the sun shining down on my salty hair and sandy feet.
Recommended things to do – Byron Basics:
Byron Bay is known for being a small surf town… And one of the greatest on the East coast of Australia. There are numerous point breaks in Byron for all levels and styles. It’s constant and reliable swell keep surfers coming back year round. Belongial Beach and Clarkes Beach are known for more inexperienced surfers whereas, The Wreck, The Pass, Wategos Beach and Broken Head are a few of the locals favourites where you’ll be sure to have a good splash.
2. Sunset at Main Beach – Drumming Circle
The notorious Drumming Circle located at main beach is always one to remember. Locals year round (weather dependent) gather for sunset and put an end to the day as the sun sets by playing several different instruments. Locals, visitors and backpackers are all welcomed to join in. As music fills the warm air all sorts of people, young and old, big and small exchange smiles and laughter while dancing together in a formed circle around the musicians. Some of my most memorable and happiest moments of Byron Bay have been right here. I encourage any and all to experience it at least one!
The Farm is located just off Ewingsdale Road to the left as you’re coming into Byron Bay – about a five minute drive outside of town. It’s a farm, a restaurant, a yoga studio, a produce shop and so much more. The 80 acres of land is a self-sustained farm that uses its freshest ingredients, pesticide free to produce for its restaurant – Three Blue Ducks. You’re able to walk around the farm, see all the animals and veggie patches, makes for a great afternoon of good food, drink and wander!
The iconic lighthouse overlooking Byron Bay’s peninsula is a must see. There is a beautiful walk (or drive) that can be started from Clarke’s beach. If you don’t want to do the whole walk, roughly a leisurely 3 hour return you can also pick up from The Pass or Wategos beach that will connect you with the trail. This makes for a great walk overlooking some of Byron Bay’s most prestige beaches and views so make sure to bring your camera!
This is one of my personal favourites. I’ve spent many nights at Wategos beach enjoying the sunset with the silhouettes of the mountains in the background over good food with good friends. There are two public BBQ’s for use, generally one is always free or you won’t have to wait long to use the other. This is a great way to spend a relaxing night with friends or family while taking in Byron’s enchanting beauty without the crowds from Main Beach.
Bay Leaf and The Roadhouse are two of Byron Bay’s most popular and famous cafes/restaurants. Known for their excellent coffee and deliciously healthy ingredients in all their dishes from organic local farmers. Not only does the Roadhouse have an eclectic menu, it’s also open evenings as an excellent whiskey bar.
Byron Bay is renowned for its beautiful sandy beaches. Belongial Beach, The Wreck, The Pass, Main Beach, Wategoes Beach, Tallows Beach and so many more! It’s crystal clear waters make any and all water activities a delight so if you have snorkeling gear it’s the perfect place to try and see some underwater life.
The treehouse is a cafe/restaurant in a beautiful setting directly across from Belongial Beach amongst the trees. Whether you stop in for a morning coffee or sip on a refreshing local beer on a hot summers day or enjoy their fantastic wood fire pizzas in the evening accompanied by some of the best local bands and entertainers – it’s a wonderful spot for any and all!
The one thing that Byron doesn’t lack is creative souls…you’ll never have to look far for live music or entertainment. Whether its buskers on the street that have you stopped and staring in awe or its one of the many gigs that come to The Northern, The Beach Hotel or The Brewery.
Byron Bay is my second home, I will be forever grateful for the creativity, vulnerability and abundance of love in every aspect it has shown me, like many others. What I’ve learned about living in Byron Bay and growing from everything it’s taught me is its a place where you can be whoever you want to be. Whether you go there for the surf, or a good gig playing at The Northern, or a meditation retreat… It’s a place where the impossible seems possible again and limited to no worries apply. I’ve been told I’ve developed a sparkle in my eye that wasn’t there before… I have Byron Bay to thank for that, so take my word for it and allow yourself to experience some of the magic!