Back in the 1970s, Byron Bay was known for its alternative culture, laid-back surfers, and off-the-grid hippies. Now, Byron may be a bit more polished, high end houses, 5 star restaurants, and world class Beaches packed with celebrities under Beach Tents.
You'll still be able to discover fantastic surf breaks and tranquil yoga retreats that pay homage to Byron's hippie history.
You’ll also find barefoot backpackers through to Hollywood celebrities. One things holds constant year on year and that's Byron Bay has retained its status as a destination for everyone.
There is certainly no end of things to do and places to see in Byron Bay. To make the most of your visit, it’s worth planning ahead.
The local team at Byron Bay Beach Life has put together a few of their favourites for your next Byron visit.
TOP 11 THINGS TO DO & SEE IN BYRON BAY
1. Cape Byron Lighthouse
The Cape Byron Lighthouse was first lit on December 18, 1909. This day is celebrated each year by the community with a ceremony and fireworks display.
The lighthouse itself is one of the most iconic landmarks in Australia. It has guided ships around all sorts of dangers for over 100 years now, and it still stands guard today as one of the last lighthouses to be built in NSW during that era.
For such a small place, the lighthouse has seen its fair share of history. When it was first lit in 1909, coal was used as the main fuel source for the beacon and generator house. It wasn't until a decade later that a change was made to oil, which is still being used today.
When the lighthouse was originally built, it stood at over 30 metres high. However, in the 1960's it was reduced to its current height of 24 metres.
The current light is visible from 22 nautical miles away, and the site itself is open to visitors.
The lighthouse offers some spectacular views of Byron Bay and beyond. If you're lucky, you might be able to spot a pod of dolphins out on the water!
2. Byron Bay Lighthouse Walk
If you love scenic coastal walks then the Byron Bay Lighthouse Walk is for you. The whole 3.4km track takes about an hour to complete, but you can take your time and enjoy the view at all of the key lookout points along the way.
When you reach the lighthouse, take a moment to walk around and check it out. There's plenty of grassy areas nearby where you can relax and enjoy your picnic lunch. You can even climb up into the lighthouse for that classic photo opportunity if you're feeling energetic!
In addition to being a great place for a casual stroll, this track is also perfect for running or cycling. The track is flat throughout the majority of the walk, only rising slightly near the end up to a viewing platform overlooking Byron Bay and Tallows Beach.
If you enjoy a nice cold beer, then be sure to add Stone & Wood Brewery on your list of things to do in Byron Bay.
This award-winning brewery is one of the most popular spots in the Industrial Estate in Byron Bay they're always brewing up something new and interesting for you to try!
Once you arrive, you can try out some of their classic beers on tap while you munch on some delicious burgers or wood fired pizzas.
If you feel like getting creative with your tastebuds, there's also a tasting paddle option. This is a great way to tick off a few different flavours from the menu without filling up too much, speaking of the menu the food is awesome and there is a great vibe with locals & visitors alike.
4. Wategos Beach
If you're on the hunt for a nice, quiet beach, then Wategos is your answer.
Wategos Beach is one of Byron's finest picnic, paddle, and play areas. It is located north of Cape Byron and the lighthouse.
On the North Cape, this peaceful beach on the northern side of Cape Byron is a must-see. It's a fantastic place to picnic and have fun because it is protected by the headland from the rougher seas beyond.
It's also a favorite haunt for the local bottlenose dolphins, who use it for fun activities such as surfing on the incoming surf.
You may prepare your lunch on one of the free beachside barbecues and eat it outdoors, on the beach, or at one of the picnic tables.
You'll be ready to tackle the steep steps at the beach's end up to Cape Byron and the lighthouse after you've cooled down and refuelled.
As always on any beach to get the most out of your day on the sand a great Beach Tent is essential to protect against the harsh sun rays.
5. Byron Bay Bluesfest
The Byron Bay Bluesfest is Australia's premier blues and roots music festival.
The last few years have been a little trickly with Covid Lockdowns and the event being put on hold but it is one of Australia's premier music events when it is up and running.
The event has grown from a modest, local effort into one of the most significant festivals on the Australian calendar, with visitors coming from all over the world.
It's now a symbol for this gorgeous region as well as an important economic driver for the Byron Bay town.
Some people argue that it has become a part of the local culture!
The Bluesfest brings together diverse communities through live performances by some of the greatest international and Australian musicians in any musical genre, including rock, jazz, soul, folk, and country music.
It is approximately 30 years since its inception and is an unforgettable week-long celebration as it continues to grow into one of Australia’s best loved events.
6. Byron Bay Farmers Market
The Byron Bay Farmers Market is a community event that brings people together with locally grown produce, food and craft.
On offer are fresh fruit, vegetables, eggs, honey, dairy products, meats including beef and lamb as well as seafoods such as prawns and crab.
There is also an extensive range of hand-made crafts which include pottery, glassware items made by local artists plus clothing for men women and children.
The market also has a coffee van with hot drinks available all day long or if you fancy something cold there's plenty of soft drink options too! You can either pick up something to eat while you're there or bring your own picnic basket.
At the time of this article the Farmers Market is held at Cavanbah Centre, Ewingsdale Rd, Byron Bay NSW 2481 every Thursday from 7am.
There's plenty of parking available at the markets too so it makes for a good day out.
7. Cape Byron Gin Distillery
You can also enjoy a tour and tasting at the Cape Byron Distillery and watch how their award-winning range of gins, vodkas and liqueurs are made.
As you walk through the distillery’s doors it becomes immediately evident that the people behind this company love what they do.
They've got three premium gin products; Byron Bay Distillery Gin, Belongil Beach Gin and Jillian Jay.
All of these gins have a unique flavour profile that reflect the nature of their location including wild botanicals foraged from the surrounding rainforest, dry Australian wines and local fruits.
Another feature is their craft liqueurs which are created in small batches.
Their most popular being the Mediterranean Chamberlain with its unique blend of Turkish rose petals, Bulgarian rose oil and Australian lemons. This is an artisanal product made in very limited quantities using traditional methods which make it different to other companies on the market, including some of their European competitors.
The restaurant offers high-quality food reflecting the same passion and flair.
The menu is an eclectic mix of locally grown, harvested or foraged produce with European flavours. The dishes are rustic but refined using only the best available ingredients.
The food has a Mediterranean influence; think fresh local squid ink pasta, king prawns with stone-chilli vinaigrette and roast pumpkin, homemade Mediterranean-style lamb sausage with sautéed wood mushrooms served on grilled Turkish bread with roasted capsicum, or beef shin ragu served with parsnip puree.
A great experience which may have you converted to a Gin lover moving forward.
8. Tallows Beach
Tallow Beach is 3.2 kilometers from the centre of Byron Bay town.
Tallows is a huge stretch of Beach stretching all the way from the bottom of the Lighthouse down to Broken Head.
Tallows a fantastic beach for swimming, birdwatching, whale viewing, beach fishing, and just laying out a towel to soak up the rays.
Tallow Beach is a buzz with ospreys and white-bellied sea eagles searching for food along the coast. Pied oystercatchers wander by as you relax on the sand, looking for pippis. Birders will discover more species in the dunes adjacent to residential areas, where many paper bark trees offer plenty of hiding
There are several excellent locations for beach fishing and surfing, depending on the tides. Please be aware of rip tides and keep an eye on children while swimming and surfing at Tallow Beach; it is not guarded. It is nevertheless highly popular throughout the summer, school vacations, and Easter holidays, so arrive early to get a good location.
Cozy corner at the end of Tallows Beach - under the Lighthouse is one of the best beaches for protection from a strong Northerly wind. On any given day there will be a range of Sun Shelters creating a great atmosphere for beach lovers including Beach Tents, Pop up Beach Tents, Beach Umbrellas, Cool Cabanas, Coleman Beach Tent, Kmart Beach Tents, and everything in between.
The Farm, is essentially a working farm with a variety of independent enterprises pursuing the same goal: "Grow, Feed, and Educate." Come see for yourself how a farm functions, promotes the environment, and contributes to a healthier lifestyle.
The Farm has something for everyone across great food and hands on farm related activities. They grow fruit and vegetables, raise poultry and sheep, make cheese and ice cream, produce honey, jams and chutneys.
Located about 10minutes from the Town Centre at 11 Ewingsdale Rd, Ewingsdale.
10. Whale Watching
The Whale Watching season for the Bay is from May to October. The best months are June, July and August when you can expect sightings of humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae).
The bay area is littered with bays, estuaries and beaches which provide a perfect habitat for these gentle giants. Humpbacks have an amazing sense of hearing so they use their sonar to find food in the ocean depths. They'll often surface just off our coast line where they can be seen breaching or slapping their tails on the water's surface as they feed on krill, squid or fish. With every breath they take, 20 tonnes of water are expelled through their blowhole causing an eruption that reaches heights of 10m.
The Bays whale watching hot spots are The Lighthouse, Main Beach, Ewingsdale, Broken Head and Lighthouse Beach.
Alternatively there are a number of Whale Watching Tour options from the Bay with many operators in town that available for bookings for a day to remember.
11. Watch the sunrise and sunset from the Beach.
Sunrise vs Sunset…what will win?
Either option, your beach trip at Byron Bay has some pretty spectacular Sunrises and Sunsets. A perfect time to reflect on the day, reflect on your life perhaps.
Some popular spots to watch the Sunrise:
Tallows, Broken Head Beach, Byron Bay Lighthouse.
Some Popular spots to watch the Sunset:
Byron Bay Lighthouse, The Pass & Belongil Beach, The Beach Hotel Beer Garden, The Wreck Carpark, Main Beach Byron Bay.
One of the best beaches to sit under your Beach Tent at the end of a day at the beach and enjoy the Sunset is Clarkes Beach takes in an amazing view of the Bay, The Mountains, The Pass and plenty of Beach Lovers enjoying the sun setting vibe.
BYRON BAY BEACH LIFE - BORN & BREED IN BYRON BAY
Born and breed in Byron Bay is Byron Bay Beach Life since 2013.
Byron Bay Beach Life was created out of appreciating and loving everything summer in Byron Bay - enjoying those long, sunny, lazy days at the beach.
Our Lifestyle products are designed locally with the Aussie summers in mind and inspired by our distinct and unique Byron Bay lifestyle.
We celebrate sunny days, all things cool, vibrant design and lasting quality and founded the company out of a desire to bring a touch of classic style back to the beach.
At Byron Bay Beach Life, we want you to look cool on the beach this summer with one of our distinctive Byron Bay Beach Tents or any of our other lifestyle solutions so that your day at the beach is a relaxing one.
Specialising in Premium Beach Tents Byron Bay Beach Shades are Premium Beach Shelters that are built to last offering the highest levels of quality craftsmanship.
Six Timeless Beach Tent Designs to choose from channelling the retro Byron Bay Beach vibe.
The Beach Tents include :
A versatile and user-friendly Beach Shade that is perfect for the beach, parks, picnics, camping, poolside or fantastic for helping to protect children playing in the backyard.
Not only is a Byron Bay Beach Tent made from summer love but tough, durable, quality light weight canvas that has the highest ARPANSA UPF 50+ rating.
The Beach Tent sun protection product is a great alternative to the hot & stuffy pop-up sun tent or common beach umbrella. One of the best Beach Tent on the market for sun shade protection.
A Byron Bay Beach Tent gives plenty of natural airflow and is easy to manage.
Gone are the days of chasing your umbrella down the beach, this Beach Tent performs well on a windy day with your Beach Shade secured safely on the sand at six points.
The stable Beach Tent frame and tightly pulled canvas creates the A frame which is secured down by four sand pegs helping to keep your beach shade standing strong, safe and secure in high winds.
Beach Tent Features & Beach Shelter Components
Each Byron Bay Beach Shade offers amazing components and features including :
- Beach Tent Multiple Set Up Options - Classic "A" shape for high sun or "L" shape for low sun
- The Compact Travel Size Carry Bag for your Beach Tent is ideal for packing in a suitcase or taking on luggage
- Strong Beach Tent canvas fabric, which has been UV treated with an anti-UV agent, is used in this project
- Approximately 97% UV+ Protection UPF 50+. This ensures the Byron Bay Beach Tent is one of the best beach tents on the market for sun protection
- Colour Fast Anti Fade offering the highest level fabric colour fast to ensure that your Beach Tent will maintain its colour for may Summers
- Mould, Stain, Water resistant with Beach Tent Canvass treatments to withstand mould, stain and water
- Strong double cotton stitching throughout creates a durable beach shade tents
- Rope Clamps with No knots to tie. This ensuring easy, fast set up. There is nothing more frustrating than wrestling with a pop up tent. This Beach Tent can be set up in minutes.
- Beach Tent Poles are made from reinforced light Aluminium poles
- Ropes are marine grade for superior strength & support making for a durable Sun Shelter
- Lightweight Pole Holders assist with a strong structure & enable one person set up
- Heavy Duty solid Stainless Steel eyelets mean they are rust resistant the best beach tent for non-rust components
- Heavy Duty Carry Bag zip to prevent jamming in sand helps
- Beach Tent Security Pouch is large and lockable
Beach Tent Kit Comes Fully Complete with :
- Beach Shade Canvas approximately 3.6m L x 1.8m W,
- Incredibly Lightweight beach tent weighing in at approximately 3.5kg
- Sand Pegs to ensure a sturdy Beach Tent set up in strong winds
- Small Mallet for hammering in the Beach Tent Pegs
- Connected Ropes already attached to your Beach Shelter
- Lightweight Poles for your Beach Tent
- Pole Holders for your Beach Tent Poles
- Easy to follow instructions making the set up on of the easiest Beach Tent set ups and pack downs available
Byron Bay is one of Australia's premier beach town destinations. It is well known for its beautiful white sands, clean blue water and laid back atmosphere. On and off the Beach there is always plenty to do in Byron Bay.
For individuals seeking for some shade on the beach this summer in Byron, look no farther than one of Byron Bay Beach Life's Premium Beach Tents, which is inspired by the laid-back Byron lifestyle.
The team at Byron Bay Beach Life hopes to see you on the Beach some time soon, under your Byron Bay Beach Tent - kicking back, chilled and loving your Beach Life.
Bring on Summer.