Byron Bay is a town in the state of New South Wales on the eastern most point of the mainland of Australia. The town is the nucleus of Byron Shire, which has in excess of 30,000 people (ABS est. 2003).
Captain James Cook named the area Byron after John Byron.
Byron Bay is located 20kms north of Ballina, about 800 km north of Sydney and 200 km south of Brisbane. Cape Byron, a headland adjacent to the town, is the eastern-most point of the continent of Australia, and is part of a giant volcanic crater.
However if low water mark is counted, then Flat Rock to the south near Ballina is just slightly further east.
The Cape Byron lighthouse was opened in 1901, and has the most powerful beacon in Australia. The town has several beautiful beaches and it is a resort popular with both domestic and international tourists, including backpackers, who travel along the Australian coast.
Byron Bay is popular with residents from all socio-economic backgrounds and walks of life. It is famous for its laid back and alternative lifestyle, but also has a higher proportion of Baby Boomers (27%) than any other town in Australia.
Events such as yoga retreats, pagan gatherings, raves and music festivals, including the East Coast Blues & Roots Music Festival and Splendour in the Grass, are based in Byron Bay. The area is also noted for its wildlife, with the whale watching industry a significant contributor to the local economy.
Byron Bay Cape is popular with surfers, who come for the famous breaks at The wreck, The Pass and Wategoes. Hang-gliders too are drawn to the headland to launch from its 65m cliff.
The Cape is also a great spot to watch the dolphins surfing and the annual whale migration.Byron is a popular spot with great swimming, fishing, snorkeling, sailing and just about everything else you can do in a coastal town.But best of all, you can relax here.
Probably the easiest way to get to Byron, is to land at the airport in Ballina which has many daily flights from Sydney as well as several flights from Melbourne during the week.
You then travel through picturesque Ballina, along the majestic coastline to Lennox Head and then through the cane fields to finally arrive in byron Bay.
Many drive up the long coastal eastern highway which is undergoing many upgrades to improve its safety.
Unless you are after backpacker style lodging then accommodation can be rather expensive here and it is recommended staying in Lennox Head or Ballina can offer many more benefits, and as well you get the added extras that this rich enjoyable region has to offer.
Byron is 800 kms north of Sydney, 200 kms south of Brisbane, 20 kms north of Ballina and 100 kms south of Coolangatta. The drive from the Gold Coast Airport is less then 1 hour.
By air: The closest airport is Ballina (a short 20 minutes). The flight from Sydney takes around 1.5 hours. There is also a direct service from Melbourne. You can fly in to Ballina with Virgin, Jetstar or Rex from Sydney and from Melbourne with Jetstar several times a week.
The shuttle buses that service the Ballina Byron Airport will also drop off in Lennox if the visitors don't have a need for wheels while in town. But if you want to get out and have a decent explore of what's on offer around our region, go to the markets at the Channon, go to Nimbin etc then they could always pick up a reliable and affordable Local Rental Car from the arrivals terminal of the Ballina Byron Gateway Airport.
By road: If you are travelling by car the following times will give you an idea of how long the trip will take factoring a couple of short stops.
- 1 hour from the Gold Coast
- 2.5 hours from Brisbane
- 9 hours from Sydney
By coach: There are a number of coach services that pass through Ballina and Byron Bay and they sometimes pass through Lennox. If you travel by coach to Ballina you can either catch a cab or take the local bus service to Lennox and then Byron Bay. The bus trip from Sydney takes around 11.5 hours.