Byron Bay is my ideal super chilled holiday destination; great weather, super maxin chillaxin’ vibes, beautiful people, amazing food and great shopping. It’s small & cutesy and ultimately super romantic. The restaurants all have that seaside thaaang going on with white & blue décor, al fresco dining and delicious fresh fish dishes enjoyed with an ice cold glass of rosé in hand. The locals are some of the friendliest & happiest I’ve come across, and the majority of men have some or all of the following: an “on trend” tattoo, long hair tied back in a pony, a deliciously deep tan and a surfboard safely tucked under their arm {dreamy}. Shoes are by no means compulsory in Byron and the status quo is salty hair & sandy skin. It is the epitome of #luxuryislandlife and a place all to easy to fall in love with and to never want to leave.

1. Go brunchin’

Byron is a brunch lover’s dream with endless healthy eateries and creative dishes to choose from. The most popular spots are Bayleaf Café (I’d recommend their “breakky greens”; a dressed mix of chopped raw broccoli, shredded kale, avocado, fresh chili, buckwheat kernels, sunflower seeds, fresh herbs and pistachio nuts topped with two poached eggs… YUM), Combi (both their avo on toast and acai bowl are insane!), Folk (indulge in any of their organic, ethically sourced, plant-based bowls of goodness) and Safya, which I unfortunately didn’t have time to visit myself but is an Egyptian restaurant offering a delicious twist on all the usual brunch favourites, of which I know from Tally Rye the “Cairo eggs”, eggs fried in cumin-infused butter with labne and falafel, are like nothing you’ll ever have tried before, so make sure you check them out!). And that’s just brunch… you could spend weeks eating your way around Byron, so go hungry!

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2. Do the Lighthouse walk for sunset

Cape Byron Lighthouse is about an hour’s walk from town by the time you’ve stopped to enjoy the views and take pictures along the way. It’s a stunning walk along the beach, through grassland and lush rainforest, and rewards you with spectacular coastal views as well as the opportunity to spot sea life swimming in the waters below. It’s a great spot to enjoy the sunset on a clear evening and if you’re lucky enough the bongo drum players might even make an appearance so you can dance your disco feet to your hippie heart’s content.

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3. Visit Nimbin town

Just over an hour’s drive from Byron is the town of Nimbin, an interesting little hippie {read: stoner} town that quite literally smells of weed and where the majority of locals have dreads. Shops selling weed cookies, muffins and caramel slices are in no shortage and the décor of the town is vibrant and rather mystical. Although smoking weed is still illegal in Australia, police in the state of New South Wales have been granted “discretionary powers” to deal with those in possession of marijuana as they see fit, and with regards to Nimbin in particular, that is to turn a blind eye. I visited with Grasshoppers Tours {note the fitting name} which included the trip to Nimbin as well as a visit to Rocky Creek followed by a yummy BBQ, a stop at the National Park lookout point where you can see Minyon Falls waterfall in full flow and, most importantly, a hilarious tour guide called Jim who made the winding bus journey all the more enjoyable with hilarious stories from his 20 years doing the Byron > Nimbin drive and played a very well curated playlist to match the day’s itinerary.

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4. Go surfing / watch the surfers

I have honestly never in my life seen waves like those in Byron Bay. There is a reason why the town is full of surfer’s and it is definitely THE place to try catching a wave for your first time or work on your surfing skills. However, if you’re more of a spectator than participator then just watching these beach babes doing their thing will totally mesmerize you. {AP Top Tip: A little different but you can also go dolphin kayaking which I’m absolutely gutted I didn’t have time to do but some of my friends did and absolutely loved.}

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5. Go shopping

Byron is filled with the most incredible beachy homeware stores and bohemian clothing shops. There was so much stuff I wanted to buy for my “home” but since I don’t currently have one and am on a bit of a traveller’s budget during this 3-month adventure, I had to mentally bookmark all of the things that I fell in love with and will just have to come back some day soon to collect all of my goods 8-). As for the clothes on offer, think endless cute beach dresses, vintage frayed shorts, crochet crop tops, handmade trinkets and intricate bikinis. Bring a stash of cash for Byron Bay as you’ll want it!

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6. Dance on the tables at Cheeky Monkey’s

Cheeky Monkey’s is one of the main bars/dancing spots in Byron and the layout is such that the “dance floor” is essentially picnic benches lined close to one another so that everyone is dancing on levels, if that makes any sense. It’s a really fun night out and regularly has special nights on, including jelly wrestling, wet bikini competitions and a UV paint night, which is the one I went to and absolutely loved (though I would highly recommend wearing clothes you don’t care about and being prepared to scrub yourself silly in the shower afterwards!). When it’s time to go home follow the crowd across the road to Abrakebabra and feast on a genuinely excellent and fresh kebab!

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Byron is a really unique and special place and so different to everywhere else that I visited in Australia. There’s something for everyone and the general vibe and attitude of the locals will ensure that you leave feeling that bit more relaxed and energised, I can’t wait to go back! Have you been/would you like to go to Byron? xo