Pristine beaches, cool cafes, organic produce, proud locals, excited backpackers, hidden surf spots... Byron Bay is the coastal town that you will always leave wanting more.
It's the ultimate beach getaway to clear your mind and fill your body with healthy goodness.
For at least 22,000 years Byron Bay has been home to the Arakwal Bumberlin people and although Byron continues growing in popularity it's able to maintain its natural beauty, organic feel and chilled-out atmosphere.
WHERE TO STAY
Elements of Byron MGallery by Sofitel
Surrounded by lush bushland with the beach at your doorstep, Elements of Byron MGallery by Sofitel is the first world-class beach resort to hit Byron Bay.
The understated private villa accommodation sits on 20 hectares with nearly two kilometres of private beach. The design was driven by admiration to the four landscape ecologies present on the site -- rainforest, dunal, eucalypt and wetland. An infinity lagoon pool welcomes you when you first step foot into the lobby.
If you'd rather avoid the 10-minute drive into town for a meal, the resort's restaurant, Graze at Elements, serves produce-first meals for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Another restaurant, Mixed Dozen, said to be a signature dining experience is scheduled to open in the coming months. A private Beach Club is also in the works and by the middle of the year a heritage train is due to start running between the resort and town.
The infinity pool at Elements of Byron.
WHAT TO DO
If yoga is your thing you'll probably want to start the day saluting the sun overlooking Byron's stunning Belongil Beach. Elements of Byron offers classes every morning to yogis of all abilities. Talk about a pretty zen way to wake up.
Relax with an early morning yoga class at Elements of Byron.
Byron Bay Lighthouse Walk
You cannot go to Byron and not do the lighthouse walk. The 3.7km loop should take you about two hours. With impressive coastal views, the track to the lighthouse guides you through rainforest, beach, grassland and along cliff tops. Don't forget your camera.
The lighthouse walk is a must.
Imagine galloping along an empty beach, hair blowing in the wind (just like the Daryl Braithwaite videoclip). Zephyr Horses offer just that. The team will guide you on a memorable riding experience on Byron's pretty beaches and surrounding hinterland.
Horse riding on the beach with Zephyr Horses.
WHERE TO EAT
Three Blue Ducks run the restaurant, cafe and produce store at The Farm. 'The Ducks' endeavour to source as much produce as possible from The Farm, so you can expect a high standard. The perfect destination for a tasty meal at any time of day, The Farm's motto is "Grow, Feed, Educate" is driven by the team's philosophy -- by seeing how the food is produced, the eating becomes more enjoyable.
The (beautiful, lush) Farm. (Picture: Rhiannon Taylor)
In the historic town of Newrybar in the Byron Bay Hinterland sits Harvest cafe, bakery and deli. Harvest thrives to honour the produce of the region using fresh and organic ingredients and flavours sourced from local producers and the restaurant's own gardens and farm. Just a 20-minute drive from Byron Bay, the restaurant sprawls across three beautifully restored buildings.
Delicious mains at Harvest. (Picture: Rhiannon Taylor)
St Elmo Dining Room & Bar
Fancy modern Spanish tapas dishes and share plates after a long day at the beach? St Elmo uses fresh and flavoursome ingredients and the innovative menu will not leave you disappointed. The scallops and sangria are must-haves.
The fried soft shell crab tacos at St Elmo are out of this world.
Balcony Bar & Oyster Co.
Cocktails and a cheeseboard from Balcony Bar & Oyster Co. is the perfect way to kick-on after dinner out in Byron. Also popular for dinner, their unique and delicious drinks will make you want to sample the whole cocktail menu. 'She's Apples' is a sure hit.
Balcony Bar & Oyster Co. prides itself on its extensive cocktail menu.
Jetstar flies between Sydney and Ballina (Byron) two to three times a day and between Melbourne and Ballina six times a week. To book, visit Jetstar.com.
Rebecca Koerber travelled to Byron Bay as a guest of Jetstar and Elements Of Byron.