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Byron Bay travel guide

Soak up the bohemian vibes in the coastal town of Byron Bay - this little beach town has surfing, independent boutiques and cafes, perfect beach sunsets, and the laid-back attitude you expect when you visit Australia. The barefoot policy is well and truly alive here. Discover this free-spirited corner of Australia, and learn how to chill like an Aussie. 

Top things to do in Byron Bay

A woman posing on a roadway leading up to the Byron Bay lighthouse

Cape Byron Lighthouse

This is a must-see when you visit Byron Bay - it's situated up a hill with a great view over the whole of the coast. Take a walk up for the sunrise over the beach, we promise you won't regret it.
A sunset on the horizon of a beach

Sunset at the main beach

Just like the sunrise, the sunsets are also amazing in Byron Bay. Not only does the sky look like a painted picture of colors (sometimes orange, sometimes purple), the atmosphere along the beach is buzzing. People arrive with picnic blankets, beers, and musical instruments, and just chill out with their mates while watching the sunset. Typical Aussie beach life.
A woman making a peace sign with her hand while standing next to wall with peace sign graffiti

Nimbin

You can't visit Byron without taking a little day trip to Nimbin - it's only a half hour drive away, and it's a place you'll never forget. It's a small hippy village in the middle of a beautiful valley, full to the brim with tie-dye, colorful street art, cute independent coffee shops, fabrics and interesting locals.
Two surfers carrying surfboards walking towards the sea

Surfing

Another must when you visit Australia, surfing is a local past time, and Byron Bay is a great place to carve it up or just sit and watch the other surfers do their thing. Never surfed before? There's a few schools in Byron that will get you started!

Byron Bay Hotels & Hostels

A view of a woman on a beach waving a scarf

Aquarius Backpacker Resort

Located right in the center of town, right in front of all of the bars, cafes and shops, and only 150m walk to the main beach. This is a super popular hostel for backpackers, as it's the only Byron Bay hostel to offer a cafe and a bar onsite. So relax in the tropical pool area, join the free nightly meal, the Sunday BBQ's and drinks at the bar.
A view of a swimming pool surrounded on both sides by two story hotel buildings at the arts factory byron bay

Arts Factory Byron Bay

This Byron Bay institution was created in the 70's by hippies and artists. Today, it retains its original 'free spirit' with a range of weekly activities from yoga to bongo classes. Laze by the pool or swing in the hammocks, and stay in anything from a teepee to a dorm.
People sitting in hot tubs embedded in a wooden deck by a pool at nomads byron bay

Nomads Byron Bay

A perfect location off the main strip, and a short stroll from the beach - but if you're not feeling the beach, this hostel has Jacuzzis and an outdoor cinema. Perfect for flashpacker's, Nomads is big, bright and loads of fun. 

Byron Bay surfing

four surfers in wetsuits heading into the surf

Surf & Stay at Spot X

• 2-night surf and stay
• 3 days at Spot X
• Learn to surf or improve your skills
• Chilled beachfront surf camp vibe
• Two nights accommodation and all meals
• Choose a 4-night package and get 2 free nights in Byron Bay
A person standing on a surfboard surfing on a wave

Great Aussie Surf Adventure

• 5 days, Sydney to Byron Bay
• Learn to surf on one of Australia’s best beaches
• Embrace the surfer's way of life with campfires and beach parties
• Make loads of like-minded new friends after five fun days together!
A man falling off of a surfboard into a wave

Livin' the Dream

• Similar to the Great Aussie, but with two extra nights at Byron Bay
• Experience five surf lessons at Spot X and two in Byron Bay
• Enjoy 7 nights of accommodation, all meals and transport between Sydney and Byron Bay
The back of a shirtless man carrying a white surfboard by the sea

Byron Bay Surf Lesson

▪ Spend half a day with fully qualified instructors
▪ Focus on five key areas that will get you surfing with style
▪ Lessons suitable for all levels of surfers from beginner to advanced
An action shot of a person falling off a surfboard while the board flies into the air

Beginner Surf Development Course

No trip to Australia would be complete without attempting to try the Aussie pastime of surfing. But why just learn to just about staying upright on a day course when you can spend 2 months perfecting the art to impress everyone back home? Choose from a 30 or 60-day program at the secret Spot X surf camp! And with all meals and accommodation, surf lessons, equipment and a 5-day Sydney to Byron Bay tour - this is the ULTIMATE surf package!
The outline of a male surger with a surfboard walking by the sea at sunset

Learn to be a Surf Instructor

• Develop your surf skills from beginner to intermediate
• Get up to speed with surf safety, wave selection and maneuvers
• Learn weather and surf forecasting skills, coaching and training skills

Spend three months based north of Coffs Harbour and south of Byron Bay eating and breathing surf culture - at the end of it you'll get an internationally recognized Level 1 Surf Instructor Qualification. Outside of pure surfing you can enjoy long days kayaking, skydiving and camping out with some of the best surf coaches in Australia – quizzing them for pro tips to your heart’s delight. Don't want to be an instructor, but still want an intensive surf course? Ask us about our 1-month and 2-month options.

Where is Byron Bay?

Byron Bay is in the far northeast of New South Wales, about 480 miles north of Sydney and 103 miles south of Brisbane. Travelers often either hire a campervan or buy a car to drive up or down the east coast of Australia, or they'll buy a hop-on hop-off bus pass either from or to Sydney.

What's the closest airport to Byron Bay?

The easiest airport to fly to in order to get to Byron Bay is the Gold Coast Airport, which is about a 50=minute drive away, or just over an hour by bus. The closest airport to Byron is Ballina, which is a 30-minute drive away. 

Looking for some more inspiration? Check out our STA Travel Blog!

STA Travel Blog

Get your surf on in Byron Bay

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Byron, campervans and Mullum

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How to travel the East Coast of Australia for under $1,150

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