If you’re after a perfect slice of beach paradise, few places do it better than beautiful Byron Bay. A coastal town in northern New South Wales, while once known as a backpackers’ mecca with hostels a-plenty, recent years has seen Byron establish itself as the go-to place for a relaxing beach break. And with brunch-spots and boutiques galore, it’s all-too-easy to see why. Lucy Pearson gives us the low down on what we should all be ticking off our Byron Bay bucket list…
Elements of Byron
Beachside bliss doesn’t get much better than recently-opened Elements of Byron. A short drive or leisurely beach walk away from the hustle and bustle of the town centre, this sumptuous hotel boasts four different types of villa, all of which offer coastal interiors, indulgent stand-alone baths and beautiful views of either the resort or the nearby beach. Breakfast is a leisurely affair; with diners being treated to views of the infinity pool and a menu to rival any of the town-centre eateries. With a fire-pit, morning yoga and in-house spa also on offer, Elements of Byron is the ultimate indulgent stay, perfect for some serious R&R.
For a more budget-friendly stay, colonial-style Arcadia House is another brilliant option. With six stylish rooms offering the best in beach chic, a leafy veranda and the greenest of gardens, it’s the perfect home away from home. Free bikes are available for guest use, and the location is second to none when it comes to strolling home from an afternoon spent on the beach. With friendly hosts with a wealth of knowledge on Byron’s hidden gems, Arcadia House is a must-stay for anyone wanting to live life the Byron way.
A trip to Byron wouldn’t be complete without sampling the beach town’s famous surf. And if you’re looking to catch some waves with the best in the business, try Mojo Surf. Whether you’re a novice or an expert, you’ll be sure to be up on your board in no time, riding some of the country’s best waves.
Cape Byron Walk
Offering some of the best views in Byron – and indeed, all of Australia – is the Cape Byron lighthouse. The perfect place to watch the sun rise – or set – Byron’s famous lighthouse is certainly a thing of beauty and well worth a visit. Accessible by foot, car or bike, it’s the first place in Australia to see the sun rise and despite the early start, setting your alarm for a pre-dawn awakening is a must-do while in Byron.
For a memory-making experience, little will come close to horse riding across Byron’s beaches or through the hinterland at sunset. Zephyr Horses offer tailor made rides through Byron and visitors can choose whether to explore Byron’s surrounding forest, or venture out on a beautiful beach ride. Indulgent and unforgettable, this is an experience not to be missed.
For the finest in fresh food, try the aptly named Byron Fresh. Whether you’re after a leisurely brunch or a candlelit dinner, their mouthwatering menu in one of the best in Byron. With live music, and a relaxed vibe, Byron Fresh’s offerings range from buckwheat and chia pancakes or a market fruit board for breakfast to quinoa and zucchini hotcakes for lunch. For the creme de la crème of all things hip and healthy, Byron Fresh is where it’s at.
For food with a view, Foam Lennox is a must-do. Located in nearby Lennox Head, Foam offers its guests an unbeatable ocean view and a seasonal breakfast menu that comprises of coconut bread, quinoa toast and a mouth-watering roasted pumpkin with poached eggs – perfect for a post-surf treat.
One of Byron’s hottest spots – for a leisurely brunch, sunset cocktails and everything in between – is Balcony, a beach-chic eaterie whose blue and white interiors and denim-clad staff give it a retro feel. Offering the best smashed avocado in town and cocktails served in coconuts, it’s the perfect spot for a healthy hit or indulgent treat alike.
For the ultimate in relaxation after a day in the surf, Osprey Spa is the place to go. Offering an array of indulgent treatments, from massages to facials and everything in between, there’s no better way to soothe sun drenched skin than with a trip to this haven of complete relaxation.
words by Lucy Pearson