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Exciting updates for the Gold Coast Airport, just 45 mins from Byron Bay

The Gold Coast Airport is the airport of choice for many visitors to the Byron Bay area. Located just 45 minutes north of Byron, and with hundreds of flights arriving and departing every day, the Gold Coast Airport truly is the gateway to the region.

Over the last couple of years, the Gold Coast Airport has been expanding its services and facilities, both to cater for the growing number of visitors to Northern NSW and South-East QLD, and the upcoming 2018 Commonwealth Games.

These expansions have seen a record-breaking number of travellers hit the tarmac. In fact, January 7 set the record for the highest number of passengers, with an incredible 24,585 individuals arriving and departing.

January also set the record for the busiest month in the Gold Coast Airport’s history; more than 650,000 travellers passed through the terminals. That’s an increase of 4.2 per cent on January 2017.

As passenger numbers increase, so to have the plans to reimagine and renovate the airport itself. Plans for a brand-new onsite hotel have now been drafted, offering a convenient slice of luxury to the Gold Coast Airport precinct.

The $50-million Rydges branded hotel will feature up to 200 rooms, a roof-top bar, a resort-style swimming pool, a restaurant, and meeting and conference facilities. Construction is set to begin before the end of 2018.

Between April 4 and 15, the Gold Coast will play host to the highly-anticipated 2018 Commonwealth Games. As the official airport of the Games, the Gold Coast Airport has been working hard to give athletes and their teams a unique experience as they arrive and depart.

Recently, the airport has unveiled plans to create a purpose-built lounge for athletes and associated officials. An amalgamation of laid-back beach vibes and a lush rainforest theme, the GC2018 lounge will give visitors a taste of what the stunning Gold Coast and surrounding regions have to offer.

Learn more about the Gold Coast Airport at 

Byron Bay's Most Popular Social Posts of 2017

Social media gives us more ways to highlight the region to all the people who love Byron.

Here are's most popular Facebook posts from each month in 2017 - a great snap shot / re-cap of the year. Please enjoy.


January, Circus Arts Byron Bay posted a video of their flying trapeze near the Beach in Byron Bay.


February, The Australian newspaper posted a nice little clip of dolphins surfing the local beaches.


March, our Byron Insider blog post on the World Naked Bike Ride in Byron Bay was hugely popular.


April, visiting photographer Remi Bedora captured this perfect shot of The Pass.


May, traveler with the Instagram name my_endless_summer posted this classic sunset over Belongil clip.


June, there are always plenty of buskers in Byron. Tom Banks took this short video.


July, whale season with Migaloo the white whale story featured in the regional newspaper The Norther Star.


August, a clear winters day at the beach captured by local riephiniji.


September, time-lapse moon-rise over the lighthouse by local photographer Rod Evens. This was our most popular post of 2017!


October, local shop Barefoot Blvd was quick to capture some heavy rain on Lawson Street.


November, Buzfeed Mates highlighted the popular Crystal Castle in this fun video clip.


December, drone footage of some summer fun in the surf by visiting interior designer derlot.


We are very active across Facebook, Instagram and Twitter - be sure to join us.

2018 Starlight Festival

Have a Byron Bay experience, discover your light and reconnect with your true essence at the Starlight Festival.

Join us for a festival of awakening and a celebration of infinite connection. This annual festival captures the essence of Byron Bay with a space for sharing information a bringing together of a community of like minded people. Starlight Festival is a diverse event, with live music, chanting, workshops and Yoga. It is the perfect opportunity to ignite your soul and celebrate conscious living.

The event attracts people of all ages and is a family friendly event. With renowned practitioners and specialists across a variety of fields including massage, yoga, natural products, beauty, sustainable goods, soulful food and healing. The Starlight Festival also offers connection with practitioners of ancient shamanic wisdom, soulful sound journeys and psychic knowledge.

Join us at the Byron Bay Starlight Festival in Bangalow from January 4th to 7th 2018 for four days of spiritual growth, enlightenment and expanding consciousness.

A&I Hall Bangalow
Jan 4th-7th 2018

First Sun 2018: New Year’s Day in Byron Bay

Welcome the first sunrise of 2018 in Byron Bay at the family-friendly First Sun event. Held each year on January 1 at the Cape Byron Lighthouse from 5am to 8am, First Sun encourages all to set a positive intention for the new year.

Set against sweeping views of the Pacific Ocean, attendees with will be among the first in Australia to see the day break.

First Sun will kick off at 5am, with relaxing music as the first light of 2018 peeks above the horizon. After sunrise, the morning’s activities will include crystal bowl soundscapes, yoga, guided meditation, peaceful intent, and more. All activities are free, and suitable for all ages.

Please bring your own yoga mat, torch, sunglasses, hat, and water. Plus, don’t forget to dress warmly and bring blankets – it can get chilly early in the morning, even in the middle of summer.

Attendees are encouraged to park at the Clarkes Beach carpark from 4am, and then walk up to the lighthouse. A guided walk will leave at 4.15am. Please note, the walk to the lighthouse includes a lot of stairs.

For those that cannot walk, a free shuttle bus will run between 4.30am and 8am.

Parking restrictions will apply between Clarkes Beach and the lighthouse. And, Lighthouse Road will be closed off between midnight, December 31, 2017 and 8am, January 1, 2018.

The Cape Café will be open from 4.30am for tea, coffee, and chai. Later, it will also offer a light breakfast menu with options for all dietary requirements and preferences.  

Start 2018 with an intention for peace, health, and happiness surrounded by the natural beauty of Byron Bay. Visit to learn more.

Cheer Up, Slow Down, Chill Out with Byron Bay Merch

Byron Bay’s iconic “Cheer Up, Slow Down, Chill Out” sign is loved by all, locals and visitors alike. Spreading good vibrations to everyone who drives into town via Ewingsdale Road, the sign has become a landmark and popular photo spot.

Now, you can take Byron’s chilled out, laid-back attitude with you wherever you go. Our new organic T-shirts, stickers, and tote bags are perfect reminders of your trip to the Byron region.

Byron Bay T-Shirts

Share positive Byron vibes with everyone you pass with a “Cheer Up, Slow Down, Chill Out” T-shirt. Our tees are crafted from 100 percent fair trade, organic cotton, and are available in both men's and women’s fits.

Byron Bay Tote Bags

Say no to plastic bags Byron style with a canvas tote. Featuring our original sign graphic, this bag is made of 100 percent cotton canvas, and has reinforced shoulder straps.

Byron Bay Stickers

Decorate your car, laptop, fridge, notebook, desk, whatever with our iconic Byron Bay stickers. “Cheer Up, Slow Down, Chill Out” stickers are 14.6cm x 10cm, and made from durable vinyl with a laminate coating that protects against scratching, rain, and sunlight.

Shop Byron Bay Now with Free Shipping

Check out the range of Byron Bay merch at We offer FREE shipping Australia wide, and $5 international shipping.

Byron Bay New Years Eve 2017/18

Bring in 2018 Byron style at the family-friendly Soul Street party. Hosted by the Byron Bay Community Centre, the upbeat, colourful spirit of Soul Street attracts thousands from the local region and beyond.

The centre of town will be filled with market stalls, food vendors, face painter’s, four stages, numerous bands, buskers, circus performers, fire twirlers, drummers, and children’s activities. All the market stalls will run down the centre of Jonson Street from Byron Community Centre to Lawson Lane and throughout Railway Park. Jonson Street is closed, along with Railway Park from 4pm.

For this event, the Byron Community Centre partners with Byron Shire Council to promote a ‘Safe Summer in the Bay’. Soul Street New Year’s Eve in Byron Bay will be a fun, safe, community-driven, alcohol-free event!

Byron’s main street, Jonson Street, will be closed off (see details below) and transformed into a celebratory community hub.

The aim of Soul Street is to create an inclusive, immersive New Years Eve event in Byron Bay that everyone in our community – young and old – can enjoy. You and your loved ones will be safe and secure from start to finish.  

Soul Street Byron Bay New Years Eve Details

Soul Street runs from 4pm to midnight, December 31, 2017. The event is all-ages, and alcohol-free.

Road closures

Jonson Street will be closed between Byron and Lawson St from 6am on December 31, 2017 until 8am on January 1, 2018.

There will also be no parking permitted in the Lawson Street South car park, the Main Beach car park, the Middleton Street car bark, or in Bay Street between Jonson and Middleton Streets from 6am on December 31, 2017 until 8am on January 1, 2018.

Free parking will be available at the Butler Street Reserve, which is located a short walk from the Soul Street festivities.

Signed detours will be available, but please expect delays.

You can download the road closures map here.

Taxi and bus services

Byron Bay’s taxi rank will be located at the main bus stop for the duration of the above road closures. The bus stop will relocate to the taxi rank near Marvel Street.

Taxis will offer the Nightrider bus during peak times. The Nightrider will depart from the taxi rank at a flat fee of $5 to Sunrise and Suffolk Park.

The Falls Festival Shuttle bus will run along Ewingsdale Road into town, and between Byron Bay’s centre and Suffolk Park. Non-festival-goers can catch the Falls bus for a flat fee of $5.

Plus, Blanchs Bus Lines will offer a 24-hour timetable during New Years Eve. Phone 6686 2144 or visit for timetable information.

Learn more at


New Age Lager reminds us to preserve the beauty of our backyard... 

Set to quench thirsts as the weather heats up, Big Scrub - Stone & Wood's refreshing new age lager is back. Only brewed from time to time, Big Scrub will be going on tap and hitting shelves across the country mid October.

Protect your local rainforest! With only 1% left of the largest sub-tropical rainforest on the East coast, the remnants of Big Scrub serve as a reminder to preserve the natural beauty of our backyard, and are the inspiration for our Beers from our Backyard limited release.

Our Big Scrub is a new age lager. It’s different to traditional lagers by being dry hopped, using new world hops and it’s left unfiltered. It pours golden with a slight haze from extended cold maturation (5 weeks), with a luscious, creamy head. Big Scrub balances floral aromatics, spicy herbal notes and hints of citrus from the dry hopping. It has a dry, firm bitterness that makes for a moreish finish.

We are lucky to live in one of the greatest places on Earth, with an incredible hinterland that needs to be protected and appreciated. Big Scrub is our local rainforest, that once covered 75,000ha prior to European settlement. It was the largest area of subtropical rainforest on the East Coast of Australia, and is an important part of Australia’s rich biodiversity heritage.

For us, we are conscious of treading lightly on earth and are inspired by the incredible regeneration and restoration work of our local community, work that has helped save our local rainforest. Leading the charge is Big Scrub Landcare, a not-for-profit we continue to support, working together to raise awareness and actively preserve our hinterland.

Learn more about Stone & Wood + purchase online, visit

Enjoy a Spring Break in Byron Bay

Winter is officially over – it’s time to celebrate.

Beat the summer rush and take a spring break in beautiful Byron Bay. Visit the region from September through November and experience warm and sunny weather, relatively quiet beaches, and the tail end of the whale season.

Spring Getaway in Byron Bay: 5 Places to Stay

Not sure where to stay? Here’s some springtime inspiration.

1. Byron by the Beach

Relax and unwind in the sunshine with the sweet sound of crashing waves at this stunning, open-plan holiday house. Situated a short walk from the centre of town, this 5-bedroom, 2-bathroom home features large French doors, air-conditioning, a BBQ, laundry facilities, an outdoor shower, and an idyllic verandah.

Quick facts:

  • 5 bedrooms: 3 queen rooms, one bunk room, one twin room
  • 2 bathrooms
  • Sleeps 8 or 10 if family with children
  • 3-minute walk to town
  • 1-minute walk to Belongil Beach

Learn more about Byron by the Beach.

2. A Byron Experience

Experience the best Byron has to offer this spring – enjoy A Byron Experience. This self-contained holiday apartment is tucked away in the centre of Byron’s bustling town. Private and tasteful, this two-storey home-away-from-home is encompassed by a luscious tropical garden, and features 2 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms.

Quick facts:

  • 2 bedrooms: 1 king room, 1 twin room (can be pushed together to form a king)
  • 2 bathrooms
  • Sleeps 6
  • Located in the centre of town
  • 4-minute walk to iconic Main Beach

Learn more about A Byron Experience.

3. A Seventh Heaven

Soak up the springtime sunshine at A Seventh Heaven, a boutique, two-storey holiday apartment ideally situated in the centre of Byron Bay. This newly-furnished 3-bedroom home features a light, open-plan design, and a north-facing, sun-filled terrace overlooking lush gardens. Experience Byron’s gourmet eateries, or head to the beach – the choice is yours.

Quick facts:

  • 3 bedrooms: 2 queen rooms with ensuites, 1 double room
  • 3 bathrooms
  • Sleeps 6
  • Located in the centre of town
  • 2-minute walk to the beach

Learn more about A Seventh Heaven.

4. Beach Haven 7

Escape to Beach Haven 7 this spring, and experience penthouse living at its finest. Situated on the top floor of a small complex, this 3-bedroom, 2-bathroom holiday apartment is directly across the road from Clarkes Beach. Flooded with light, this comfortable holiday home features high-ceilings, an airy, open-plan living area, and a north-facing balcony.

Quick facts:

  • 3 bedrooms: 1 queen room, 2 twin rooms
  • 2 bathrooms
  • Sleeps 6
  • 7-minute walk to town
  • 1-minute walk to Clarkes Beach

Learn more about Beach Haven 7.

5. Three by the Sea

Celebrate spring Byron style at Three by the Sea. This recently renovated, island-luxe holiday apartment offers two bedrooms, two bathrooms, and a fully-equipped kitchen. The generous master bedroom features an ensuite bathroom and large, private deck. Enjoy a home-cooked meal al fresco, or head into town for a unique culinary experience. Take a dip in the complex’s heated pool, or take the short walk to picturesque Belongil Beach.

Quick facts:

  • 2 bedrooms: 1 queen room with ensuite, 1 twin room
  • 2 bathrooms
  • Sleeps 5
  • 15-20 minute beach walk to town
  • 2-minute walk to Belongil Beach

Learn more about Three by the Sea.

11th Annual Byron Bay Film Festival October 6-15


It’s time to answer the siren call of Byron Bay – to its beautiful beaches and bush, and to the rich cultural feast that is the Byron Bay Film Festival (BBFF).
Now in its 11th year, BBFF spans across ten days in six venues, featuring over 175 independent films, and attracting filmmakers and film-lovers from all over the world; it is the Australia’s most loved regional film festival.
Last year the festival celebrated its milestone 10th birthday, with celebrity endorsements from some of the film world’s top names – including A-listers Idris Elba, Chris Hemsworth, and Tom Hiddleston, who said it was “certainly the best film festival in Australia”. The festival had its stamp on the international calendar, and as it has done every year, increased its international reach.
This year the festival launched with a stirring video made by acclaimed Storm Surfers director and now local resident, Justin McMillan, with Director of Water Photography Stefan José joining other Byron locals to help out.
The video captures not just the glory of surfing on this part of the coast, but the freedom to be found in the Byron landscape, and embodies the high-quality aesthetic of the festival, and lights up the sensory experience of both the unique Byron Bay experience, as well as the immersive wonder of film. It captivates and offers the viewer ‘Cinema for the Senses’ – the perfect taster of what festival goers might experience in 2017. View the trailer now, via
Once again there is a unique and diverse line-up from around the world. This is truly an international event, with documentaries, drama and comedy from some of the most remote corners of the earth, as well as the best from young Australian filmmakers and their contemporaries overseas. Find out more about the Young Filmmaker Award via
Virtual Reality (VR) and other high tech of the moving image will be explored and shared. The Byron Bay Film Festival has been a pioneer and leader in the burgeoning Byron Bay innovation movement, which has created countless entrepreneurial and industrial opportunities for the creative industries and beyond. The Ncubat8 Program offers the opportunity for a young filmmaker to work on VR with a local industry professional. More information on this can be found on the festival website.
Move seamlessly from one world into another: dry off, brush the sand from your feet, and step into the infinite universe of the cinema, to be transported to another place and time.
Then there’s the parties, the meet-the-stars and film-makers events, the workshops, live music and action!
The Byron Bay Film Festival is illuminated with two dazzling red carpet gala events in the heart of town. Opening Night offers a chance for industry networking and a taste of the flavour of the festival to come, and features a highlight film screening. The culminating celebration event is an exciting night of recognition for filmmakers, the festival, Byron Bay, and the international film industry, and not to be missed. Early ticket purchases are recommended to avoid disappointment to these two popular events.
The 11th Annual Byron Bay Film Festival is held on Friday 6 – Sunday 15 October 2017 in multiple venues throughout Byron Bay and surrounding suburbs.
Program will be released over the coming weeks.

Tickets are on sale now via

2017 Destination Byron Tourism Symposium Re-Cap

The theme Beyond The Byron Boom, How to Ensure Our Visitor Economy is Sustainable, allowed the local industry to come together for a one day conference at the Elements of Byron Resort and share some detail on how different sectors are working sustainably.

The event began with an introduction by Cr. Simon Richardson, who did an excellent job as MC with insight and humour, followed by Delta Kay's engaging Welcome to Country.

The program started with Stephen Mahoney and Anthony Laver of Destination NSW, presented Projections and Updates, providing visitor statistics and outlining many of the services they provide to the region's industry and businesses. 

Vanessa van Uden, a past Mayor of Queenstown New Zealand, presented a real-life experience of Queenstown Avoiding Death By Popularity. She highlighted the importance of industries working together to come up with innovative solutions, such as using sewerage charges as a bed tax alternative by charging $612 per year for the first toilet, then $306 for each additional toilet. The larger hotels end up contributing over $100,000 per year.

Liz Price discussed the Strategic Master Plan for the Great Ocean Road, which until recently went without any central management. Liz highlighted the issues they face with a fragmented industry servicing 5 million (mostly day trippers) each year. 

The 140 or so attendees then enjoyed a Local Producers Morning Tea supplied by Nimbin Valley Dairy, Salum Australia, Brookfarm and Byron Bay Cacao.

The first panel discussion was Sustainability of the Events Visitor Economy, facilitated by Cr. Simon Richardson with Jane Magnus, Jen Murphy, Mat Morris and Chris Hanley. A mature industry pointed out that better regulation and better infrastructure would help the events industry. And, the importance of event managers sharing best practice improvements amongst themselves.

Before lunch, Anthony Laver, David Jones and Brenda Miley, facilitated by Cameron Arnold, discussed Defining Brand Byron. The consensus was it's the feeling of Byron that best defined the brand, as there are beautiful beaches, great restaurants, exciting festivals, etc. all over the world - but only one Byron Bay.

A quick lunch with time to stretch before Pam Brook facilitated the Heroes of Regional Tourism discussion with Tom Lane, Brooke Hudson, Sue Walker and Jasmin Daly. They each talked about change, collaboration and the importance of allowing staff to work to their own passion.

The program ended with Delta Kay, Vanessa van Uden, Liz Price and Carly Weiland discussing How Will Byron Tackle Quality vs Quantity facilitated by Jane Laverty. The lively discussion ended up with the idea that a quality service or experience will encourage the desired quality of visitor behaviour.

The attendees finished the day with a drink supplied by Brookie's Gin and Stone & Wood, and some networking.

Overall, the theme of people and collaboration ran through every discussion, with the best, simple idea coming from Delta Kay who suggested we all greet Byron's visitors with 'Jingi Walla' (Welcome).


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