Oh Byron, weren’t you a pleasant surprise! We celebrated our baby moon and one year anniversary in Byron at the end of 2018 and I thought I’d share a little travel guide with you.
I haven’t been to Byron in over 10 years. Ditto with Mr TUQ. Our memories of Byron was that it was a hippy little beach town full of tie-dyed outfits and reggae music. Seems that in ten years it’s had a huge makeover and become more hampton’s chic rather than hippy.
Oh and if you want to do see some more happy snaps then I’ve saved more pics in my Byron Bay highlights on Instagram (click here).
Byron Bay Travel Guide
We stumbled across The Atlantic online and immediately knew that’s where we wanted to stay. It was four original cottages which have been restored to uber chic modern boho beach houses.
The best thing about The Atlantic were the communal areas which everyone staying on the property can use. Each of the cottages have their own chill out areas and communal fully equipped kitchens which are also stacked with a range of tea and coffee choices too. Of course, there is an amazing lap pool which was perfectly when I wanted to cool down but couldn’t be bothered to waddle by belly down to the beach. They had really thought of everything to cater to the whims of all holiday makers. Think surfboards, a mini library, bikes, umbrellas and endless spaces to chill out with friends or enjoy an afternoon siesta. Each night they also light a fire which you can come and kumbaya before you head out to dinner.
If you do have kiddies, I saw that Sarah from The Bear Cub Club stayed at the Bower, Byron Bay and that looks incredible!
Eat & Drink:
Aside from the glorious beaches, the food up in Byron was a huge draw card for us. There are so many local producers who whip up the most amazing
Probably one of the most instagrammed places in Byron, Combi has frothy pink lattes, raw vegan wagon wheels and smoothies every colour of the rainbow. They make a pretty dang good coffee too. Mr TUQ was a bit dubious of the menu but was pleasantly surprised.
Probably my second favourite meal while we were in Byron, this is a delicious tapas restaurant with all the moody vibes. From memory I think we had the squid with this mouth watering almond skordalia dip (potato & garlic goodness), the slow cooked lamb with dukkah, the potato bravas (always). And because I was eating for two, the usual cheese, olives and cured meat selection too! The wine list changes regularly and you can order by the bottle or the glass. Mr TUQ assured me they were very good rioja and tempranillos to work your way through!
Come here for a meal or a late afternoon drink (mocktails for me) and watch the sunset. If you’re lucky you might spot a few whales and their cubs putting on a show for you. I think we saw about seven whales while we sipped on our drinks and devoured an antipasto platter.
A modern asian diner with the coolest decor (think lanterns with pink interiors and mint green interiors under a sea of pretty lights). Unfortunately my stomach wasn’t up to much food that night but Mr TUQ loved it. I think we had the fried chicken, bao buns and fried eggplant. You can’t book so go along and put your name down and go for a drink at the bar.
One of the most popular places to eat in Byron on ‘The Farm” – no surprises that a lot of the food comes from the farm or local producers. I ate an entire cheese board to myself while Mr TUQ had some sort of pork concoction – pretty standard orders for us! The menu changes regularly depending on what’s in season and if you get organised, you can also order a packed picnic which you can eat on the lawn while staring at the piglets and shaggy Scottish Highlander cows. You’ll need to book or wait because it seems that everyone flocks to this well known place.
This little place is pretty far off the beaten track, you’ll need a car to get here. However, once you’re here, you feel like you’ve ventured into the woods for a picnic. Folk is an organic, ethical and plant based restaurant and certainly don’t compromise on flavour. I’m going to put it out there and say that this was the most scrumptious food I had while I was in Byron.
Serious coffee for serious coffee lovers (i.e. Mr TUQ). He went here every day at least once to get his coffee fix. I feel like this is a real local’s favourite, it doesn’t draw you in with fancy pink lattes or pink walls. The food and coffee do all the talking themselves, and they boast all their local producers up on the wall.
Think tapas plates, large plates, local beer on tap and a sweets cupboard that will make you drool. We stumbled across here in desperate need of lunch (don’t mess with a hangry pregnant lady!) and I had the most delicious mezze plate with pickled veg, hummus and olives while Mr TUQ had the crispy pork belly (see a pattern here?). If I wasn’t pregnant I would’ve eaten some sweets from that amazing baked goods counter but ‘Fundas’ (Finn’s name in my belly) was not a fan of anything sweet.
We didn’t eat here but I would have liked to. Seems there just weren’t enough meals in the day to get to all the places we wanted to visit. We did however grab some coffees and cheese toasties from the coffee cart in the morning and I chilled out on the beach and read my book while Mr TUQ surfed.
We didn’t eat here either however my friend Ali has been and raved about the degustation menu here! We did however stop in at the harvest coffee shop and stock up on cheese, chocolates and coffee of course!
After a busy day, we decided to head down the road to the Mez Club for a light dinner one night. It was full to the brim of people enjoying cocktails and greek and mediterranean inspired share plates. They also managed to do some delicious mocktails for me – I think that’s a sign of a good bar tender then they can make even a non-alcoholic drink taste delish!
The best thing about being pregnant is being unapologetic about getting massages! This place was also a bit further out of town but it was SO worth it! This one of the best massages I’ve ever had, and I’m not just saying that because every massage during pregnancy felt pretty good! The interiors also made the place even more serene.
We got half way because #pregnancymakesyoutired but it is a beautiful walk that takes about 1.5 hours.
Self explanatory right? No, this isn’t you ‘typical farm’. Rather it’s a cross between a working farm and a play farm for children, adults and city kids alike. Go feed some grass to the gorgeous Scottish Highland cows, spot the bees buzzing into their hives, hold your nose as you walk past the piglets (which I’m assuming are huge piggies now) and perhaps go on a horse ride. Oh and there is also an amazing huge veggie patch too full of lush produce.
Newrybar merchants have created a beautiful emporium of local makers and beach boho inspired wares. There’s a gorgeous toy room, a florist, prints and furniture all housed within this beautiful old homestead.
If you’re on holidays, chances are you won’t be taking a bunch of these beautiful blooms home with you but it’s definitely worth going in to swoon over the walls literally overflowing with flowers.
As far as beaches go, we loved Wategos for swimming (and surfing for Mr TUQ) and then the pass for the views. Wategos has the iconic pandanus palms which frame the sparkling turquoise blue water and make it seem even more appetising. The pass also has a beautiful stretch of water and a viewing point which is perfect for whale watching, spying on the sunrise or just a bit of people watching.
Another thing Byron is pretty famous for, is it’s designers. They seem to have a real knack for creating beautiful beach chic attire and homewares.
When we were meandering around Banglow, we stumbled across Hendrix & Harlow, which is a gorgeous homewares store in Bangalow with a neutral colour palette. I loved everything in this store and had it not been for my minuscule luggage allowance, I would have stacked up my bag with cushions, baskets and throws. Instead I settled on a gorgeous round straw bag which was super handy to take to the beach.
Some of local brands which I love are:
THE BEACH PEOPLE: All your beach essentials including towels, beach carts and carry-all beach bags.
SPELL: Flowy, boho inspired clothing.
This trip already feels like a lifetime ago but I loved it so much and that I’m already excited to visit Byron again soon. I’m sure Mr Finn will love it as much as we did!