Tag Archives: Byron Bay

Top Tips for a Byron Bay Family “Glamping” Getaway

You want to take the family on a Byron Bay holiday with all the sights, sounds and feelings of being close to nature? You want to relax, take your time and soak up the culture of being free and to take each day as it rolls? You want to be comfortable and indulge in some of life’s little luxuries without all the hard work of setting up a campsite? Then you want to go GLAMPING – and with our helpful tips you’ll get back to nature without sacrificing any of your creature comforts!

1. Less Is More (work that is)

When it comes to glamping in Byron Bay, the less you have to do the better. Book ready-to-go accommodation such as our safari tents or self-contained cabins. These good glamping options can provide you with kitchen facilities, bathrooms, bedding with linen and more! All you need to do is bring the family! Click here to view all our beachfront accommodation options.

2. Location Is Everything

Whether you love the beach, the hinterland or the forest, location is everything and Suffolk Beachfront Holiday Park is located a handy 5 minutes from the centre of Byron Bay and only a short drive from the Byron Hinterland. Bush walking, biking, fishing, swimming and surfing all heighten the glamping experience and by having them close at hand, you and your family will be encouraged to get active together, creating lifelong memories.

nimbin

3. Get The Right Gear

There are so many amazing glamping accessories to be found and you really ought to set aside some time prior to your holiday for a fun shopping trip. From those found at traditional outdoor and adventure stores to stylish vintage glamour pieces. Gone are the days when spending time in the great outdoors meant going without the comforts of home. Some essentials to look for include picnic wear and baskets, luxurious small rugs and throws and classic retro cases and glass wear.

Great Fishing

4. Going Gourmet

Fine food and wine compliment every glamping experience and you’re spoilt for choice when staying in Byron Bay. There is no shortage of excellent fresh local produce and cuisine available all year round which you can buy pre-prepared, or try gathering a delicious bounty of ingredients from the local farmers markets. We can also recommend stopping off at some of these locations to find exactly what it is you’ve been craving – for authentic Asian foods including superb yum cha and dumplings you can’t go past Red Ginger on Jonson Street. Those of you who love deli delights will need to include a visit to Citrus, the ultimate delicatessen also on Jonson Street. Locals and tourists alike all love the Green Garage in Tennyson Street for all things fresh and local.

farmers-market

5. The Special Touches

Every holiday can be made even more special by having a few surprises and delights arranged for ahead of time. In Byron Bay the choice of options is incredible. An adventure tour or experience is easy to arrange online before you come. We can recommend some amazing options for you like Byron Bay Adventure Tours who operate a range of tours to suit all ages, Byron Bay Ballooning for a lofty look at the natural beauty of this area or arrange for a Gourmet Byron Bay Hamper to be delivered directly to your glampsite.

at-the-markets

6. Remember To Have Fun

Style, accessories, food and luxury are all important parts of glamping but not at the expense of having fun and enjoying your beautiful family time. Glamping is about brining all the elements of comfort together to create the best of all worlds combined into one. If you can’t find marinated goats curd then relax – it’s better to get some Greek fetta from the supermarket than to turn into “Glampzilla”.

7. Capture The Moments

Happy snaps are a staple of all family holidays, but with awe-inspiring Byron Bay scenery you will want to let your inner photographer run wild and free. Fully inspired, relaxed and armed with a plethora of magazine-worthy images, it’s now time to add your family Byron Bay glamping interlude to your blog, Facebook, Instagram or other fav social media site. Share your glamorous time away including your glamping ideas, creativity and newly honed ‘mobile’ interior design skills with family and friends!

Gold Coast to Byron Bay Road Trip – Tomewin Mountain Magic

Driving to Byron Bay from the Gold Coast goes together like bacon and eggs but it’s truly amazing how many paths can get you there. This itinerary leads you through the majestic Gold Coast Hinterland via the Currumbin Valley and Tomewin before winding down to Murwillumbah and returning to the coast at Byron Bay. We’ll cover some of the top spots to include, but as this region is a treasure trove of natural wonders and places to stop we think you may need to visit more than once to truly experience all there is to see and do.

Leave the highway and get on to Currumbin Creek Road at the southern end of the Gold Coast. In a matter of minutes you will be in the hinterland winding your way up into the mountains. One thing that will hit you along this entire journey is the brilliant green formed by both lush rainforest and fertile farming land which leaves little question as to why this region is known as “The Green Cauldron”. Scattered along this way are some truly beautiful opportunities to stop, breathe and cool down. Babbling creeks running with crystal clean water, quaint coffee and gift shops and BBQ and picnic areas abound. Watch for the signs to our top picks:

Nicholls Scrub National Park – Great for families with birdlife including geese and ducks for feeding.

Currumbin Rock Pools – Pack your swimmers and BBQ goodies for these natural pools loved by locals for cooling off over the summer months.

Follow the signs onto Tomewin Mountain Road to begin your climb up and over the next valley. The air becomes fresher as you climb and get closer to the NSW border and it is here you will find an icon of mountain life and the most scenic place to buy fruit anywhere – Freeman’s Fruit Stall. Run by the 4th generation of the Freeman family you can pick up fresh organic produce for the road, grown in the fertile volcanic mountain soil.  The Arthur Freeman Lookout on the QLD side of the border and Elliot Gruner Lookout on the NSW side of the border let you see the entire scope of this ancient landscape from the Gold Coast down to the Tweed and offer views that are truly awe inspiring.

freemans-fruit-stall

Pass through the historic town of Tomewin, and take a pitstop at the Red Rattlers Gallery. This gorgeous cafe and gallery is filled with local arts and crafts and is built in two vintage 1928 rail carriages affectionately known as “red rattlers”. Stop for coffee or browse for gifts to take home. Then it’s full steam ahead as the road descends from the mountains and enters the pioneer sugar cane and banana growing town of Murwillumbah. The heart of the Tweed Valley, its unique blend of eateries and galleries is mixed with old fashioned country charm. You could easily spend a few hours browsing and soaking up the atmosphere or just lazing beside the river with a view of Mt Warning in the distance. The Rainforest Information Centre is home to a unique panoramic display expertly painted by local artists that offers visitors a 360 degree simulation of the view from the top of Mt Warning.

Leaving Murwillumbah you’ll head towards Byron Bay via Moobal and the Burringbar Range. This was the original highway but is now a scenic drive that takes you back to the true essence of the Northern Rivers and away from the freeway. The Moo Moo Café in Moobal is very hard to miss with its cow print exterior and is a cute spot to make one last stop before your destination.

Arrive in Byron Bay with a sense of satisfaction that you’ve just unlocked some of South East QLD and Northern NSW’s hidden secrets. Then make the most of this great journey with a stress free stay so close to beach you can hear the waves. But there’s no hurry AND you can always take the scenic road home!

Road Trip from Brisbane to Byron Bay – The Road Less Travelled

Are you the kind of person that loves the journey as much as the destination? Then why not make your next adventure a road trip to Byron Bay from Brisbane – but with a difference! Unleash your inner explorer by veering away from the coast road and travel along the lesser travelled Mt Lindsay Highway and onto Lions Road and Rainforest Way before continuing through to Byron Bay.

If you have never discovered this amazing and unique part of Northern NSW then you haven’t truly discovered everything this colourful and pristine region has to offer. Come with us as we guide you through this adventure and share just some of the highlights and “must see” places to stay or stop along the way.

Which Way from Brisbane to Byron Bay?

Program your GPS and head off the M2 Ipswich/Toowoomba Motorway through Logan and onto the Mt Lindsay Highway. As you enjoy the picturesque rural landscape you’ll find yourself passing some of the many horse studs, wineries and cattle properties along the way. You’ll already be starting to get the feeling that this is a new experience from the coast road. Your first leg should take you around 55 minutes.

Beaudesert

beaudesert

Picture credit: Scenic Rim Escapes

As you enter rural and rustic Beaudesert you get an immediate sense of its agricultural history. Part of South East Queensland’s “scenic rim”, this town is a springboard for exploring a host of nature, food and art trails. You may also be interested to learn that Beaudesert is one of the most popular places in Australia for hot air ballooning. Stop for a break or put together a picnic for the coming drive. As a starting point to find out more about what’s available to see and do here you can visit the Beaudesert Tourism or Scenic Rim Escapes websites.

http://www.beaudeserttourism.com.au/
http://scenicrimescapes.com.au/

Nature and History Surround You

Leaving Beaudesert behind the journey South continues along the Mt Lindsay Highway and the kaleidoscope of colours is breathtaking as the terrain changes to incorporate rugged valleys and rock formations. As you begin to climb the McPherson Range the winding road will lead you through areas of eucalypt forest, lush rainforest and mountain heath all with their own unique beauty and wildlife.

Tip: There are many charming picnic areas and lookouts dotted along this road so keep an open eye and be prepared to stop so you can revive and truly take in the beauty of this area. Our top pick is Captain Logan’s Lookout in the historic village of Rathdowney.

While you are there make sure you include a stop off at the adorable Information Centre and Historical Museum, open every day of the year (except Christmas Day). Take advantage of their local knowledge, pick up maps and unearth the history of the region. Rathdowney is also host to the unique Heritage Festival and Bush Poetry Competition held in March.

historical-museum

National Parks

At this point of the journey it should be becoming clear why you’re travelling along what’s known at the Rainforest Way. With the Mt Barney and Border Ranges National Park on either side you now have access to some of the most pristine wilderness in Australia. We recommend you check out both the QLD and NSW National Parks websites for advice on the many recreation and camping areas nestled around the two parks and for any warnings or bush fire advice.

Mt Barney National Park: http://www.nprsr.qld.gov.au/parks/mount-barney/
Border Ranges National Park: http://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/border-ranges-national-park/travel-info

 

The Lions Road and Border Loop Railway

Follow the signs from Rathdowney and snake your way along to experience two marvels of engineering and human endeavour. The Lions Road is a scenic shortcut through the Richmond Gap built in the early 70’s. In a massive community effort led by the Lion’s clubs of Kyogle and Beaudesert they created this amazing stretch of road that will take you through some unforgettable scenery. It is here that you will cross the Border from Queensland into New South Wales and come upon one of the most extraordinary lookouts that is a favourite of train buffs from around the globe. Here nestled amongst the forest is the vantage point for viewing the Border Loop Railway. As you look down upon the railway line winding around and through the mountain twice, you cannot help but marvel at the skill and dedication of the 1500 men who worked to build this essential link to connect Brisbane the rest of the nation for both goods and passenger trains. Take the short bush walk (suitable for all levels) or have a BBQ and smell the forest air as you look down along the valley toward your next stop Kyogle.

Tip: To find out train times call 132 232 for the best chance of seeing the track in action.

Kyogle

A bustling and vibrant country town with a friendly atmosphere, Kyogle (which is the indigenous word for place of the Bush Turkey) is a great spot to grab a bite to eat spend some time and explore its many outlying villages. A must see here is the The Roxy Galley a home some stunning works from talented local artists with changing feature exhibitions. If your timing is right you may also include gathering some fresh local produce the Famers Markets held every Saturday morning 8am to 12 noon.

http://www.visitkyogle.com.au/

Nimbin

It’s an enjoyable and scenic 40 minute drive from Kyogle to the iconic and world-famous village of Nimbin. With its colourful alternative atmosphere, and bustling community it is an essential part of any visit to the Northern Rivers region, especially when your ultimate destination is Byron Bay. Feel the pace slow to what’s known locally as “Nimbin time” and be immersed in the laid back counter culture. Allow yourself time to browse and shop for souvenirs as there are many artisan shops, stalls and handmade trinkets available all with a uniquely Nimbin feel. Taste the flavours of the region in one of the many cafes, or put together a range of local and organic delights available along the main street.

http://www.visitnimbin.com.au/

TIP: Watch out for the many honesty boxes and roadside stalls selling freshly grown local and often organic produce. Delicious!

nimbin

Your Byron Bay Destination Awaits

As you descend from the mountains and enter the township of Byron Bay you can enjoy the wave of elation and sea breeze that will meet you. Most importantly you can look forward to the many awaiting adventures along with the diverse range of eateries, entertainment and natural beauty on offer here in “the bay”. And if you’ve chosen to stay with us here at the Suffolk Beach Holiday Park you can relax knowing you have the perfect beachside accommodation with everything you need. If you haven’t booked your stay yet – then what are you waiting for!

Click here and start planning to hit the road.

South East Queensland to Byron Bay Road Trip

Last month we took you on a road trip from Sydney to Byron Bay along The Legendary Pacific Coast. This month we reverse directions and discover what’s on offer from Brisbane to Byron Bay – the perfect escape for a weekend getaway. Click here to visit our Accommodation page or click here to visit our Accommodation Specials page! 

Historic Town of Murwillumbah

With its picturesque streets, federation buildings, magnificent shady trees and meandering river, Murwillumbah has all the charm and character of a quintessential country town. Spend a morning looking for antiques, browsing home ware stores, visiting the Tweed River Art Gallery and of course – enjoying some great eating. For an authentic 50’s diner experience, check out the Austral Cafe with its vintage booth seats, traditional roast lunches and great coffee and cakes.

Go Green!

Murwillumbah is located beneath the awe-inspiring Mt Warning, which is part of the Wollumbin National Park and the Gondwana rainforests. The park is accessed 12km south-west of Murwillumbah off Kyogle Road. Captain Cook named Mount Warning, but to the Aboriginal community it is a sacred place known as Wollumbin. Enjoy a picnic or walk the Lyrebird Track which winds through the lush subtropical rainforest.

Border Rangers National Park is also accessible from Murwillumbah. Follow the Kyogle Road west to Lillian Rock and turn right onto Williams Road. From Kyogle, travel 15km north along the Summerland Way to Wiangaree and then turn right onto Lynchs Creek Road. Experience spectacular views across the Wollumbin National Park, Mt Warning and the Gondwana rainforests as well as rainforest walks, picnic areas and campgrounds. Travel around the national park by taking the Tweed Range Scenic Drive.

Beautiful & Historic Village Market

Only a short drive from Mount Warning through the countryside of green hills and along the gentle flowing river is the wonderful hinterland village of Uki. On the 3rd Sunday of the month the town comes alive with the Uki Buttery Bazaar markets, which is a kaleidoscope of food, music, fashion, art and hand-made goods! When you’re finished browsing, the town is well worth a visit. A true regional treasure.

Beach & Creek Swimming

For beach lovers, there are so many great spots to enjoy along the way from Brisbane to Byron Bay. Four of our favourites are Snapper Rocks Coolangatta, Norrie’s Head Cabarita Beach, Pottsville and Brunswick Heads.

Snapper Rocks is a very popular surfing beach with classic, long, easy right-hander waves making it popular with locals and visitors alike. If you are looking for less crowds then head further south to Norrie’s Head Cabarita Beach. Located on the coast road, the small township of Cabarita fronts onto a long open stretch of beach which is ideal for swimming, fishing, boating, canoeing and surfing. If you’re looking for calm waters for the kids, then take a break at Pottsville and enjoy a splash in the Mooball Creek. Finally make a stop at the tranquil coastal town of Brunswick Heads, 20 minutes north of Byron Bay. Not only will you enjoy a great surfing beach and a beautiful riverbank, Brunswick Heads also has the added bonus of the iconic Brunswick Heads Hotel with a large outdoor beer garden, great pub food and live music.

Cuddle A Koala!

Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary is a must visit destination on the Gold Coast and offers visitors the chance to cuddle a koala, pat a kangaroo and is home to the original wild Lorikeet feeding. Set amongst 27 hectares of rainforest, this place is a delightful way to spend the day.

Soak Up Some Art

Set high on a rural hilltop, the Tweed River Art Gallery and cafe offers breathtaking views across the Tweed River. A variety of exhibitions are presented in six spaces and range from contemporary to historical works. The gallery’s extensive collection of Australian portraits, prints and other works are always on display. Open Wednesday to Sunday with easy access and parking – admission is free.

Where ever your adventure takes you, don’t forget to STOP, REVIVE and SURVIVE! There are many ‘Driver Reviver’ stops along the way offering motorists free tea, coffee and biscuits. Remember the most important thing is to get yourself and your loved ones there safely!

We look forward to welcoming you soon.

South East QLD

Are you driven to hit the road and explore The Legendary Pacific Coast from Sydney to Byron Bay? Then read on as we wind through the scenic landscape and discover what’s on offer.  Of course, all this driving is tiring work, so don’t forget to book a stay at the First Sun Holiday Park! Click here to visit our Accommodation page or click here to visit our Accommodation Specials page!

Road Trip – Sydney to Byron Bay by Car

So you’ve hired the camper van, strapped your caravan to the 4WD or jumped in the car with the kids and are set to explore the east coast of NSW. Well…you’re in for a treat! This adventure truly does have something for everyone, whether it’s getting out in the wild (or admiring it over the top of a latte), surfing up the coast, taking in some culinary delights, backpacking or discovering the local arts and indigenous culture.

With so much on offer, we have created the below recommended highlights:

National Parks

Get back to nature and experience ancient rainforests, majestic waterfalls, pristine beaches, bush covered headlands, aboriginal heritage sites and endless walking tracks by visiting some of the 48 national parks and 12 state forests between Sydney and Byron Bay.

Our picks includes Cape Byron National Park in Byron Bay which offers some of the best vantage points to watch the migrating Humpback whales during the winter months, not to mention the stunning coastal and hinterland views. Nightcap National Park in Northern NSW is also well worth the visit and home to the awe-inspiring Minyon Falls. And what’s more, the park is a short 30 min drive from Byron Bay and First Sun Holiday Park. Bouddi National Park on the Central Coast offers visitors the opportunity to explore important historical aboriginal sites, go swimming, enjoy some fishing or camp by the beach. Arrawarra Headland in Coffs Harbour, which is a favourite with swimmers and surfers, rewards visitors with incredible views over Solitary Islands Marine Park and finally Bundjalung National Park which stretches from Iluka to Evans Head and offers adventure seekers river canoeing, mountain biking or Ten Mile Beach.

To find out more visit:

http://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au

http://pacificcoast.com.au/trails-and-itineraries/national-parks-and-nature-trails

Food Trail

Whatever your style – cafe hopping, fine dining, fish & chips by the beach, traditional aboriginal fare, wineries, surf clubs, farmers markets, coffee stops, boutique local beers – The Legendary Pacific Coast has it all! There are so many good cafes and restaurants along the way and more than 40 farmers markets, offering visitors a real taste of the region.

With so much to choose from, we recommend heading to The Legendary Pacific Coast website for their downloadable guides. To find out more visit http://pacificcoast.com.au/trails-and-itineraries/food-wine-farmers-gate-journey or read our many local dining guides including our ‘Locals Guide To Byron‘, ‘Dining On A Budget‘ and our ‘Local Byron Bay Dining Guide‘.

Surfing Safari

There is arguably no better surfing safari road trip in Australia than from Sydney to Byron Bay! Australia has some of the best waves in the world, and most are located along the east coast of NSW.

Some of the highlights include Tallow Beach First Sun Park which is located on our doorstop and is one of Byron Bay’s best surfing beaches. At either end of Tallow Beach is two of the best point breaks in Australia – Broken Head and The Pass – offering fantastic left and right breaks. Wategoes Beach Byron Bay is another ‘must do’ surfing beach and the ultimate long board haven, as well as being one of the most picturesque beaches in the world. The famous Byron Bay Lighthouse rises out of the rainforest which comes right down to the beach meeting the crystal clear ocean waters. Sheltered from northerlies, this glamorous beach is a favourite celeb hangout! Other favourite breaks include Newcastle, Crescent Head, Port Macquarie, Lennox Head and Ballina. To get a full list of surfing hot spots visit:

http://pacificcoast.com.au/trails-and-itineraries/legendary-surfing-safari

Backpacking

You haven’t backpacked in Australia until you’ve visited the East Coast of NSW. Where do we start? Everything from dolphin and whale watching, stunning national parks, some of the country’s best music festivals, surfing, beaches, diving, kayaking, bush walking and some great nightlife. Highlights include the Splendour in the Grass music festival held in Byron Bay, Walkabout Wildlife Park at Calga, the Akoostik music festival at Wingham, Chinese Junk Boat ride at Port Stephens, learn to surf at Port Macquarie, a ‘selfie’ at the Big Banana in Coffs Harbour, kayak with dolphins in Byron Bay, a visit to the historical hippie town of Nimbin, diving at Julian Rocks in Byron Bay and snuggling up to a Koala at the Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary! Get inspired and visit The Legendary Pacific Coast website for more ideas including working holidays http://pacificcoast.com.au/trails-and-itineraries/backpacker-working-holiday-trail

Arts & Culture

Soak up the diverse arts and culture of the region including everything from history-packed museums, art galleries, local artisan studios, community markets, quirky cinemas and much more! The Northern Rivers region is well known as the regional arts capital of NSW and attracts some of the finest artists, musicians and performers. Highlights include The Avoca Beach Picture Theatre which has been operating since 1950’s, Newcastle Art Gallery and Museum, Myall Riverside Art Walk at Tea Gardens, Artisans…On The Hill Gallery at Tinonee, The Glasshouse Performing Arts Facility at Port Macquarie, Northern Rivers Community Gallery at Ballina, Lismore Regional Gallery, Lismore Lantern Festival, Channon Community Markets and the Byron Arts Trail which takes visitors on a journey through the Byron Arts & Industry Estate visiting local fashion designers, jewellery makers and furniture studios. For more inspiration visit http://pacificcoast.com.au/trails-and-itineraries/legendary-culture-heritage-trail

Where ever your adventure takes you, don’t forget to STOP, REVIVE and SURVIVE! There are many ‘Driver Reviver’ stops along the way offering motorists free tea, coffee and biscuits. Remember the most important thing is to get yourself and your loved ones there safely! We look forward to welcoming you soon.

Pacific Coast

The Hidden Gems Of The Byron Hinterland

Don’t for one second think that the Byron Bay beaches are the only attraction in the Northern Rivers region. Behind the coastal strip is a fascinating mix of cultural and geographically attractions and Suffolk Beachfront Holiday Park is your gateway to the hinterland’s green rolling hills, world heritage national parks and charming villages. It really is the best of both worlds!

Firstly, Minyon Falls which is located within the Nightcap National Park, is a scenic 30 minute drive from Byron Bay. Part of the volcanic escarpment, the top of the cliffs are forested with ancient rainforest and abundant wildlife including koalas, goannas, whipbirds and Yellow Tailed Black Cockatoos. Definitely worth a visit on a hot day as the temperature is always cooler than on the coastal strip and a great place to be on a wet day when the falls are at their majestic best.

While we are in this region, why not take a diversion to the The Channon Markets, a mere 45 minute drive out of  Byron and 20 minutes from Minyon Falls. One of the longest running markets in the area (35 years!) it is held on the second Sunday of every month and still upholds its founding mantra “Make It, Bake It, Grow It”. The stallholders are as colourful and unique as the objects they sell. You are sure to run into a busker (or ten) as you lazily make your way around the stalls or sit down under a tree to enjoy the delicious organic and locally grown food choices.

Protesters Falls, just outside The Channon, is historically significant as the scene of a long and ultimately successful protest against the logging industry in the 1970′s. Just 14km from The Channon village, it is well worth a visit. You can appreciate the vigour with which the protesters clashed with the loggers when you see the natural beauty of this ancient area. There’s a track which wanders through old growth timber and rainforest and gives you a close up appreciation of the area’s natural assets. Especially worth a visit if it has been raining, as the falls cascade to wonderful pools and waterholes. Take a moment to thank those who fought for this absorbing landscape.

Bangalow is one of the area’s prettiest villages with its main street architecture virtually intact and untouched since settlement and development in the 1880′s. Visually enhanced as a tourist destination, whilst maintaining its old world charm, Bangalow offers the diner a wide range of cafes and restaurants as well as funky boutique shops. One of the local fashion leaders, ‘Lazybones’ has a shop here as does the upmarket lifestyle store ‘Island Luxe’. Standouts include an original art deco cake shop and a traditional old time butcher. One of the oldest buildings is the Bangalow Uniting Church built in the early 1900′s and still active.

If you are hankering after locally grown organic produce and really want to savour alfresco dining in a charming, historic cottage with a shabby chic appeal, cross the Pacific Highway and head over to Newrybar, 15 mins from Byron. Open every day for breakfast and lunch and Thursdays, Friday and Saturday evenings for dinner, Harvest Cafe will satisfy your modern palate and your love of history.

Again, just across the Pacific Highway, is the quaintly named Possum Creek Road and off this road is the equally intriguing Friday Hut Road.  Here, you will find a treasure of a restaurant, Lilianna’s. Located in the lovingly restored and maintained Old Possum Creek School, Lilianna’s holds true to its belief in honouring the past whilst devising innovative menus using the best local and ‘in season’ produce. An added bonus is the local Koala population occupying the surrounding trees.

Ok, we have given you a few of the amazing attractions and hidden delights of the Byron hinterland. Now, we will take you to two locations which, while being further afield from Byron Bay, are equally worth the visit. Firstly, Uki, a small village situated near Mt Warning. Legend has it that the early timber getters used to make the finest cedar for export to the United Kingdom as ‘UK1′, hence Uki. Still dominated by its one pub, Uki now attracts day trippers and tree changers. Beautifully green, tropical fruit is now the #1 agricultural activity and you will find lots of stalls along the road offering fresh fruit using the ‘honour box’ system. New settlers have retained the original homes and shops and reinvigorated the town with new businesses. A must-see, historically authentic small town.

70km west of Byron Bay is the infamous town of Nimbin. Once a farming district, whose main claim to fame was being home to the world tug-o-war champions, Nimbin’s renaissance was the Aquarius Festival in 1973. A peaceful takeover by hippies was completed with multiple occupancy communities and the landscape was changed forever. The main street is dominated by street art, a hippie museum, alternative shops and colourful locals. As amusement, Nimbin, cannot be surpassed.

If you want all the fun of a Byron Bay holiday, but without all the hustle and bustle, then stay at Suffolk Beachfront Holiday Park, with all the hidden gems of the Byron hinterland at your door!

Top 10 Things To Do on a Byron Bay Camping Winter Holiday

So much to do, so little time! To help, we’re created the ultimate Byron Bay camping TOP 10 ‘Things To Do’ this winter. So whether you’re pitching a tent, caravanning, driving a campervan or taking it easy by staying in one of our heated safari-style tents, we’ve got you covered for a great winter break in Byron Bay.

1. Whale Watching. We spotted our first migrating humpback whale 10 days ago and they’re now a daily feature. Pack a picnic and take a short stroll up the beach from the park to the Broken Head lookout for an unbeatable (and uncrowded) view. Spread out a rug and enjoy this majestic sight. Don’t forget your camera and zoom lens!

2. Walking. There are great walks to be found all over Byron Bay and in the surrounding hinterland. One of the most popular, and a personal favourite, is the Lighthouse walk which rewards you with some of the best ocean views in Australia. Park your car at The Pass car park and then follow the walking track through the bush and over the headland to Wategoes beach. Wander along the beach and then take the clearly marked walking tracks up to the Lighthouse. On your return, enjoy a leisurely lunch at The Pass Cafe. Looking for adventure? Then jump in the car and take a scenic drive to Minyon Falls (about 45 min drive from Byron). From the car park there is a boardwalk that takes you to a lookout located at the top of the falls. Marvel at the truly jaw-dropping beauty of the falls and the panoramic views. However, to experience the full majesty of Minyon Falls, pull on your walking shoes and follow the 4km round-trip walking trail. Nothing can prepare you for the beauty and magic of this historic rainforest landscape.

3. Cycling. Byron Bay locals love to cycle! And for good reason. The town has over 15km’s of dedicated bike paths, which run straight past our front door. The family-friendly paths are flat, purpose built and great for all ages. Take a ride into town for the Thursday farmers market or Sunday community markets (1st Sunday of every month) or just grab a coffee and relax on the beach. Bike paths also take you out past the Arts and Industry Estate which is filled with artist studios, home wares, handmade jewellery and local Byron Bay fashion brands including Maddog, Goddess of Baylon and many more. Either bring your own bike or hire locally.

4. Hit the beach. Do you think of beaches as cold, unfriendly and to be avoided during winter? Not in Byron Bay. With water temperatures between 18-20 degrees and less crowds, now is perfect time to learn how to surf, enjoy a family day at the beach building sand castles and exploring rock pools or try your hand at Stand Up Paddle boarding. There are so many beautiful beaches in Byron Bay to discover! Our favourite has to be Tallow’s Beach, which runs along the eastern perimeter of the park, but we biased!

5. Sea Kayaking. Want to get up close and personal with the local dolphins? Then a Byron sea kayaking tour is a must! Go Sea Kayak Byron Bay offer 3 hour tours leaving from Clarkes Beach daily. The tour includes a sit-on-top-style kayak, safety equipment, free snorkelling gear, morning tea and free pick up from the park. They also guarantee if you don’t see a whale, dolphin or turtle you can paddle again for FREE.

6. Eat! Actually this should have been at the top of the list! This is one of Byron Bay’s greatest joys. With over 90 cafes and restaurants, you are spoilt for choice. Everything from takeaway fish & chips to organic cafes to award-winning restaurants. Let your taste buds run wild. In Suffolk Park there is a fantastic bakery, pizza shop, Indian restaurant, take away shop and of course the pub. There is also a great little supermarket for home cooked meals. At the park our facilities include a stainless steel commercial style kitchen (for all you Master Chefs!), free BBQs and undercover outdoor dining area – which is a great place to gather with friends, enjoy dinner as a family, or just sit with a glass of wine.

7. Mind Body and Spirit. Byron Bay is a mecca of holistic and natural treatments. Everything from Yoga on the beach, Kahuna massages, tarot card readings, Ayurveda treatments, spa & beauty treatments and much, much more. Escape to the beautiful Byron hinterland and experience the tranquillity of Crystal Castle including amazing crystal’s, the Buddha statue walk, rainforest walk, aura photos and a labyrinth and playground for the kids. Delight the senses.

8. Take to the sky! Winter is the ideal season for hot air ballooning and what better way to experience this beautiful region. Soar majestically over the terrain and be overcome by the beauty. Byron Bay Ballooning offer daily sunrise flights followed by a gourmet champagne breakfast. Also on offer to Byron visitors are skydiving, hang gliding and micro flights. Alternatively, unleash the daredevil within, and book a Flying Trapeze class at Circus Arts Byron Bay.

9. Byron Bay Community Markets. Take a stroll through the Byron Bay Markets and every sense comes alive with the sights, sounds and smells of the world. Shop for unique, locally designed clothes, jewellery, swimwear, kids clothes and home wares. Listen to live music, sip a hot cup of chai tea or indulge in some locally made organic ice-cream. The Byron Bay market happens on the 1st Sunday of every month and is held at the Butler Street Reserve.

10. Mullumbimby Markets. We love a market and this is one of our favourite. On the 3rd Saturday of every month head for Mullumbimby, ‘The biggest little town in Australia’, for some relaxed market fun. Again, the alternative community spirit here is palpable as you lazily browse for that perfect item. If you are looking for home made, locally sourced produce and objects, this is a great place to find them. Delicious food, everything from Indonesian Satay to Persian couscous and fresh tropical juice is available here.

Byron Bay Beach Holiday

There is nothing more relaxing than a caravan or camping holiday and the atmosphere at the First Sun Holiday Park is one of tranquil relaxation. The quintessential Aussie smell of suntan oil. Wet towels and swimmers drying on tarp ropes. Fishing lines leaning against the vans. Guests, in swimmers and sarongs, reading, sitting, too relaxed to speak. Buckets and spades discarded in annexes whilst everyone has a siesta. Long days in the water, exploring the natural bush setting, going to the shop for a much longed for ice-cream. Nights by lamplight eating BBQ’ed sausages, playing cards, talking and laughing. Caravanning is enjoying somewhat of a renaissance by a younger generation who want to experience that deep family connection that only a caravan or tent can provide.

First Sun Holiday Park fulfils all these expectations and more. With our proximity to the beach, families can come and enjoy a great Aussie beach holiday. And in Byron Bay you are spoiled for choice when it comes to beautiful beaches! Please find below a list to some of the best local fishing, swimming and surfing secrets. Each beach has its own distinct flavour and all are within easy reach of the park.

The Wreck:

A popular surfing spot, the wreck of the ship ‘Wollongbar’ slipped its mooring to the old pier in 1922 and drifted 30m offshore where it sank. Happily, it landed parallel to the shoreline and created a perfect surf break about 30m long with swells of 1-2m. It is also a fascinating dive spot where you can snorkel amongst the almost intact ship which has attracted swarms of fish and marine life. It is located just off Belongil Beach.

Main Beach:

This is the central Byron Bay beach. Located at the end of Johnson Street, it is usually pretty busy during the summer. Fully patrolled, it provides safe swimming and is handy to all the cafes and shops of Byron. When the surf is pumping, it can get quite crowded in the water. A great beach for people watching. The nearby wreck of the Tassie 11 is a popular spot for snorkle and goggles.

Belongil Beach:

Belongil has an intriguing past. Just over the disused train lines as you leave Byron, or accessed from Main Beach, it was once home to Byron’s only major industry and employer, F J Walker’s meatworks. There was a huge pipe that ran straight into the sea to dispose of the animal waste. The only ones in the water were the Great White Sharks! The meatworks closed in 1983 and the beach has been regenerated into one of our best. The beach stretches from Main Beach to Brunswick Heads in one unbroken sweep. The sharks got the message and it is now ideal for swimming, surfing and walking. A beach where you definitely get the feeling that you are miles from nowhere.

Clarkes Beach:

Seamlessly joining up with Main Beach, this idyllic Byron beach offers swimming perfection and surfing highs. This beach can become quite crowded during the summer months but is another great vantage point for viewing migrating whales in winter. The beach can easily be reached by taking a stroll along the beachfront walking track from the Surf Life Saving Club.

The Pass:

Just along from Clarkes Beach lies the most popular surf break in this area and one of the best in Australia. Early morning sees a flock of wetsuits waxing up and heading out. The beach has a beautiful shady foreshore with huge hoop pines and is ideal for families. Built into the rocky outcrop there is also a fantastic wooden viewing platform called ‘Fisherman’s Lookout’ which offers stunning views over the bay. Get there early and see the intrepid ocean swimmers head out in all weathers for their daily deep water swim to Main Beach.

Watego’s Beach:

Multi-million dollar homes overlook this stunning beach. The famous Byron Bay Lighthouse rises out of the rainforest which comes right down to the beach, the waters of which are crystal clear. Sheltered from northerlies, this glamorous beach is a favourite celeb hangout welcoming guests such as Keith Richards, Russell Crowe, Kylie, Nicole Kidman and Tom Cruise. Wear your best bikini, just in case.

Little Watego’s:

This is one of the most picturesque beaches in Byron Bay. The walk down to the beach deters the hordes so it is also one of the most secluded. The Cape Byron Walking Track to the Byron Bay Lighthouse runs along the back of the beach so it is perfect for a swim on the way up or down. In a naturally occurring amphitheatre, this beach is sheltered from the northerlies and is the most easterly swimming spot in Australia!

Locals Guide to Byron Bay

What to do in Byron? There is just so much to do and explore. To help you plan your next Byron Bay getaway we have created the ‘insiders’ guide to Byron Bay, local style! We’ve asked each of our team to provide their favourite local places to swim, eat, shop and play.

Favourite Breakfast and Coffee – Maree, Park Manager

The best locals hang out for a fantastic coffee and relaxed, carefree atmosphere has to be The Top Shop. Sit on the grass and enjoy a locally blended coffee with a delicious home-made muffin or their famous ‘breakfast burger’. This is a great place to stop after a lighthouse walk, early morning surf or to just soak up the sunshine. Located outside the town centre and slightly back from the beach, this cafe is a little harder to find but I promise you won’t regret it!

In the Byron hinterland, I also love a weekend breakfast at Harvest Cafe in Newrybar. This beautifully renovated old farm house bakes their own breads and pastries on-site in a 100 year old wood-fire oven. Magic with a morning coffee, some locally made jam and the weekend paper.

Favourite Beach Experience – John, Park Caretaker

If unpopulated and secluded beaches with pristine white sand, palms and astonishing natural beauty are your thing, then the little known ‘Whites Beach’ near Broken Head is for you! It is off the beaten track and there are no life guards, so this needs to be considered. However if you want to get away from the crowds, this is the perfect beach.

To get there, drive towards Broken Head beach and take the dirt road on the right before the Broken Head Beach car park and head into the national park. Follow the road past ‘Kings Beach’ car park, which is a nudist beach, until you get to a small dirt car park. Once parked, follow the well-worn path through the rainforest down to the beach. This path is fairly steep, but enjoys some magnificent ocean views and is well worth the effort. Don’t be surprised if you’re the only people on the beach!

Favourite Local Shopping – Hannah, Receptionist

I love to go shopping in the Byron Arts and Industry Estate. It’s located just outside the town centre and has a wonderful mix of local fashion designers, home wares and hand-made jewellery boutiques. For the girls, check out Spell Designs, Goddess of Babylon and Byron Designworks and for the boys drop by Maddog Surfboards, McTavish Surfboards and Bear Surfboards.

If you’re in town for a few days, then head to the picturesque hinterland town of Bangalow for a cool collection of vintage shops, quirky home wares and for some serious fashion fabulousness the gorgeous Island Luxe! Shopping is thirsty business, so be sure to also pop into the Bangalow pub for a drink on their back veranda. It never fails to delight!

Favourite Cheap Eats – Paul, Park Manager

Eating out in Byron Bay can quickly become very expensive and hunting down a great meal at a reasonable price can be a bit of a challenge. My favourite cheap eats for a great meal is Pizza Paradiso in Suffolk Park. A favourite with the locals, Pizza Paradiso offers ‘giant size’ pizza’s on Tuesday nights for only $20! Choose to eat in, takeaway or they deliver and there’s a great little bottle shop located next door for BYO wine or beer.

Favourite Family Place to Eat – Sue, Receptionist

We love to take the family to the Suffolk Park Pub. ‘The Park’, as it’s affectionately called by the locals, has a fantastic large outdoor deck overlooking tropical gardens and an all-weather kid’s playground. They offer a traditional pub menu with lots of variety including vegetarian dishes and fresh local seafood. On Monday nights, KIDS EAT FREE, so for anyone on a budget this is a great way to enjoy a meal out with the entire family.

Favourite Hinterland Pub – Sarah, Marketing Manager

It has to be the Eltham Pub. Located in the Byron hinterland in the small historic village of Eltham, the Eltham pub is a great way to meet some local north coast characters! Grab a stool at the front bar and you’ll be chatting with the resident farmers in no time. The pub has a fantastic award-winning bistro with some of the best slow-cooked Bangalow pork in the district! The pub is well over 100 years old and is a favourite meeting place for visitors and locals alike.

Favourite Romantic Dinner Spot – Pauline, Receptionist

It is hard to go past the Byron Beach Cafe for their summer dinners. They have a large outdoor dining deck that looks out to the Pacific Ocean. Enjoy watching the sun sink slowly away over the mountains while sipping on a chilled glass of wine or cold beer. The cafe has won multiple awards and the food is always incredible. The dining deck has a retractable roof and at night, the atmosphere is very romantic with twinkling tea lights on the tables and the stars above. Bliss.

Favourite Local Drive – Jack, Park Maintenance

There are so many choices! Some of my favourite weekend drives include Coolamon Scenic Drive, which offers incredible views of Byron Bay, the lighthouse and the mountains. Another one of my all-time favourite drives is to Minyon Falls. This drive takes you through some of the prettiest countryside in the entire region. Once you arrive at the Minyon Falls car park, it’s just a short stroll through ancient palm trees to the waterfall’s viewing platform. What a view!

Cycling in Byron Bay

Spring has arrived! The weather is perfection. Clear skies and 25 degree sun filled days. This brilliant springtime weather is expected to continue and now is a great time to visit Byron Bay. In addition to being the ideal conditions for learning to surf, walking to the famous Byron lighthouse or strolling along the beach, it’s also the perfect weather to ride your bike more (and work less!). Please find below our guide to cycling in Byron Bay.

Family Friendly Bike Paths

Looking for a two-wheeled adventure for your entire family to enjoy? Suffolk Beachfront Holiday Park is the perfect destination. Running right past our front door is the start of a 15km network of coastline bike paths that take in some of the best local scenery. The family-friendly paths are flat, purpose built and great for all ages. The paths will take you into the center of town for a coffee and a swim or you can venture further afield to explore the many shops and studios located in the Arts and Industry Estate. At low tide, you can also ride your bike out of the holiday park and along Tallows Beach into the Byron CBD.

Mountain Bike Tours

The soaring popularity of cycling is testament to its clean, green appeal. Nothing could be truer of mountain biking in the beautiful Byron Bay hinterland or along our world famous beaches. Mountain Bike Tours Byron Bay offers a number of different packages including a full day rainforest tour or a half day scenic coastal tour.

The full day guided rainforest tour is designed for all levels and takes you through the lush, tropical rainforests of the world heritage listed Nightcap National Park. The coastal tour is a half day guided tour that explores remote beaches, nature reserves and some secluded trials. Enjoy the amazing Byron Bay scenery and them finish off with a splash in the ocean. For more information visit their website at http://www.mountainbiketours.com.au

Byron Bay Surf and Bike Hire

Get out there with Byron Bay Surf and Bike Hire. Bikes can be hired from $10 a day, including road bikes, ladies bikes, girls and boys bikes, tandem bikes, kiddy karts and baby bike seats. Pick up a free cycle map while you’re there. To find out more visit their website at http://www.byronbaysurfandbikehire.com.au

The Rainbow Ride Cycle Charity Challenge

Sunday 11th November 2012 is the Rainbow Ride cycle charity challenge supporting Byron Emergency Accommodation Project. This road ride weaves through the beautiful Northern Hinterland known as the Rainbow region and is considered one of the more challenging rides in Australia. There are 160km and 100km events, each designed for different bikes and age groups. To view more details visit their website at http://www.summerofcycling.com/rainbow_ride.htm