With travel restricted to local destinations, Byron Bay is a township that has been over run with visitors the past 12 months. As if it wasn't high enough on the agenda before Covid hit - especially with international visitors - it's certainly on the local radar now too.
My family of four had a trip cancelled last June, so we rescheduled and took a long weekend there for Mother's Day in May. The kids scored a couple of days off school (so they were pumped), and I was excited to take my family to a place I've visited quite a bit over the past few years. I've been to Byron for both work and for play, and was keen to show them my favourite spots.
If you're considering a visit to Byron, here are my best-ofs, collated over the past 4 x visits. Build some of these spots into your itinerary but make sure you leave plenty of room for beach time too.
I won't go into too much detail, but each place is linked so you can easily find out more.
And because of Byron's popularity, I'd recommend booking all restaurants at least a couple of weeks in advance.
We had such a lovely time last visit, we all agreed to make it an annual trip! Mother's Day in Byron each year? I will happily vote that in.
Elements - I love staying at Elements. It's a privately owned, beachfront 'resort' with nature all around. It has an almost eco feel, with individual, very tasteful Villas, and world class facilities. The combination of an Adults only pool, with swim up bar, and complimentary beachfront yoga every morning at 7am is truly the best of both worlds!
The Lord Byron - A spruced up hotel, these rooms are ideal for a single or a couple who need a bed for a night or two. No breakfast or restaurant, but there is a pool, and uber eats and a plethora of restaurants nearby. Situated in the middle of town and right next door to Woolies. I love the complimentary bikes to cruise around town.
The Bower - reimagines the Beach Motel concept with refined luxury interiors, and pool. There is a large house for bigger groups too and of course complimentary bikes also, so you can get yourself to the beach fast. It's on the outskirts of town, so probably a 15-20min walk otherwise.
Elements of Byron from above.
Light Years - Asian Bar & Diner. Delicious cocktails and modern Asian food. Yum. Tucked in behind some shops, close to Main Beach & Balcony Bar (see below).
Balcony Bar - A Byron Stalwart overlooking the main street, The Balcony Bar is open all day, and never fails to impress. Great for groups.
Raes - I enjoyed the most delicious meal I've had in a LONG time here on the Monday before flying home. It was a very special way to start a week!
The Farm - no trip to Byron is complete with out a visit to The Farm. Encapsulating their ethos of Grow. Feed. Educate. Give Back - there's something for everyone when you head out of town (10min drive) and visit The Farm.
Top Shop - Perched on the end of a street on a Byron hilltop, this Cafe has gained cult like status. Ideal for breakfast after a Lighthouse or Beach Walk...
Barrio - good food cooked slowly with love to be enjoyed with beautiful wine. Check out my husband's breakfast in the pic below! Located in the Habitat Precinct (see below), so you can combine my two loves: shopping and eating! A 3 min walk from Elements (see above)
Brunch at Barrio
Habitat - A collection of local brands have their stores in this precinct just out of town in the Arts & Industrial Estate. Barrio (See above) is here too, so a great spot for a shop and some brunch and Elements is just down the road.
Spell & The Gypsy - I never visit Byron without popping in here. The store is beautiful and I've never left empty handed.
Rowie The Label - A local born brand, Rowie offers a considered range of clothing, using natural and sustainable fibres.
Newyrbar Merchants - another collective, this time based in a nearby township called Newyrbar, of locally based artisans and curators of fine goods. Clothing and homewares.
Citizen Nomade - luxurious hand crafted textiles, clothing and interiors right in the heart of Byron.
One Fable - small-batch capsule collections for all aspects of your laidback lifestyle. Main store is in Bangalow, but a new shop just opening in Byron now too.
Mark Tuckey - has now opened a showroom in Byron.
Spell signature store in Byron
Other Tips -
While you can Uber from the airport quickly, if there are lots of you or lots of luggage you might like to pre-book a car?
Linda and Mick run Byron to You and are ex Long Haul Qantas Cabin Crew who took a redundancy last year and made the sea change to Byron. They run exclusive transfers and will happily ferry you around or just do the airport runs:
0422 382 240
I've enjoyed a few massages in Byron over the years, but these two venues take the cake:
Osprey Spa - located at Elements. The hot stone massage is sublime
Comma - located in the Arts & Industrial Estate (10 min walk from Elements), Comma offer a modern Australian massage experience.
Endota Spa - Newly opened in late 2020, I booked my kids in here for a half hour massage each as a special treat.
Comma - Byron Bay.
Byron Bay Community Market - 1st Sunday of the month on the Main Beach foreshore
Bangalow Market - 4th Sunday of every month at the Showground in Bangalow
Horse Riding - Zephyr Horses (3 min walk from Elements!)
Surf Lessons - Let's Go Surfing
Dolphin Kayak Tours - Cape Byron Kayaks
Until next Mother's Day (if not before!!)...thank you Byron! x