Byron Bay Weekender
Maybe it's because it's the first place in Australia that the sun touches each day but something happens to you when you're in Byron Bay. Your worries seem to melt away, you relax instantly and all of a sudden a stupid smile appears on your chops.
If your soul needs a recharge, Byron is the place for it. Originally named Cavanba meaning 'the meeting place' by the Arakwal people who lived in the area for more than 22,000 years(!). This was the place for all of the different tribes to get together, until... dun dun dun...Captin Cook came along on the HMS Endeavour in 1770 and started killing everyone. It is thought that he named it Byron after the poet Lord Byron but in actual fact it was named after his naval officer John Byron (Lord Byron's Grandfather). People went ahead and named the street names after famous poets anyway.
Thanks to the Nimbin Aquarius festival in the 70s for bringing a hippy crowd to the area. Byron now attracts spiritual seekers, backpackers, surfers and wealthy city refugees from all over the world.
The first thing you have to do when you arrive in Byron is go to the BEACH. Byron Bay is perfect, its calm, clear and ideal for swimming. Or Wategos Beach, which is a little drive towards the lighthouse (also worth checking out for views of blue for miles and miles). There are tons of surfing beaches around too.
And the second thing is to go for a beer at The Beach Hotel. It has to be done!
If you have a car, its a nice drive up to Bangalow. There's a good pub and a nice row of shops, cafes and restaurants. On the forth Sunday of every month check out Bangalow Markets to balance your chakras or buy a dream catcher for your car. Obvs.
If its yoga that you want, I'm sorry to tell you two of my experiences were not amazing. One being at Beachside Yoga & Massage. I was not expecting to have my pelvic region massaged during shavasna!! Every yogi I have mentioned this to says that this is not a normal yogic practise and he was most definitely copping a feel! Suffice to say I won't be back!
My other experience was at Ananta Yoga. The teacher here seemed to like helping the more beautiful ladies. Maybe if you are a male yoga teacher looking to pull beautiful women, Byron might be the place to be?!
Here is a list of all the yoga you can try in Byron... at your own risk.
Whenever I go to Byron I usually check airbnb to see what is available. If you want a nice hotel, the Lord Byron Resort is nice and reasonably priced. If you want budget the Aquarius Backpackers has cheap private rooms which are perfectly acceptable and there is a nice pool with a bar ; ). You will want to stay close to town to avoid having to catch cabs.
A good friend of mine in London got me into tarot reading, we would meet up, drink some wine, he would get the cards out and we would ask the universe questions and be amazed at the accuracy of the results. Tarot is not so much predicting the future but speaking the truth, it tells you what your subconscious already knows. My parting gift from my friend was my very own pack of tarot, which I sometimes pull out and do a very long reading with the aide of the internet, although this pales in comparison to my friend's natural talent.
So when we stumbled upon (on the corner of Johnson and Lawson Street) a mysterious looking fella with a pack of tarot and palm reading skills, I had to have a reading. My reading brought up The Lovers, Lust and Love cards - apparently I'm going to fall in love soon 😍. I'm still waiting?! He knew a lot about our personalities from the reading, I would recommend him for sure... if only I could find his card!
If you're going out on the town I can recommend, The Beach Hotel for afternoon beers, The Railway for evening beers, there are always gigs and live music going on at The Northern. Woodys for late night drinking and dancing although be aware that the crowd is young backpackers on the weekends, The Bolt Hole for cocktails, La La Land is a club for beautiful people who like to be seen and Cheeky Monkeys a last resort.
For food, go to The Farm on the way in our out of Byron to their restaurant The Three Blue Ducks. Amazing organic food and delicious wines, you need to book on a weekend as its always busy or you can grab something of the BBQ and admire the sunflowers. 100 Mile Table is a lovely cafe hiding in an industrial estate, where the locals go, slightly off the beaten track. Or The Balcony in town for amazing oysters and seafood.
For dinner another local haunt is The Treehouse, a little way out of central Byron, this busy bohemian restaurant serves up wood fired pizzas and bountiful booze.
When you are hung over the next day and close to death the juices and brunch at Bryon Fresh will save your life.