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11th Annual Byron Latin Fiesta

The 11th Annual Byron Latin Fiesta (4-6 November 2016) is set to ignite Byron Bay with the passion and energy of Latin music and dance once more this November! After a successful relocation to the Byron Community Centre and feeder venues to celebrate the 10th Anniversary in 2015, the event is happy to say it will continue to be held in its home, the heart of Byron Bay.

The 2016 event, to be held 4th – 6th November, is excited to announce International Kizomba Artist Anais Million (France) and Bachata Artist Edwin Ferreras (New York), both coming to the event for the first time, together with an impressive line-up of national and local dance instructors and performers. Live bands feature Chukale, Australia leading Afro-Cuban Salsa Ensemble and the fresh new sounds of Bombolaye, an industry favourite.

Run over 4 nights and 2 days the event includes more than 40 dance workshops plus parties with performances, live bands, and Latin DJs. There is something for everyone. Beginners and experienced dancers are all invited to learn from the vast array of talent on offer while party guests are encouraged to watch, listen and enjoy! You may even decide that you always wanted to learn to dance!

Don’t miss out on one of Australia’s longest running and most popular Latin dance events. Tickets are selling fast.

Tickets and further information at www.byronlatinfiesta.com.au.

See the Sea Like No One Else

Pangea Maps release 3D wooden contour map of Byron Bay and partner with local nonprofit Clean Coast Collective.

Not your typical maps... Pangea creates an experience with the water by showcasing the ocean floor in stunning detail. 10% from sales of the unique artworks will fund local Byron Shire clean­ups and initiatives for a cleaner coast.

Pangea Maps have released a new map to add to their collection of iconic Australian coastlines. Byron Bay was the obvious choice for designer and creator Tom Percy, who has already crafted and sold maps of Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane for the past 2 years. The new map will feature the most easterly point of Australia, Cape Byron, as the centerpiece, with the surrounding ocean floor revealed. Partnering with local nonprofit, Clean Coast Collective, 10% of all sales will go towards preserving the beauty of this region by supporting initiatives such as local clean­ups and a campaign for Plastic Free Byron.

The maps are handmade from laser cut plywood. They depict accurate bathymetric data (“topography for the water”). Made from 13 layers of 1.5mm plywood, each layer represents 4­5m of water depth. The maps come framed and ready to hang. To celebrate the Byron Bay Launch, a number of limited edition maps will be made using a higher grade wood with a darker finish, and these will be available in a larger size.

Tom Percy is an Industrial Designer who began Pangea Maps as a side project in 2014 and is now working full time mapping the whole Australian coast. He enjoys anything related to the water and wanted to create a 3D representation of the world that lies below the surface. Tom sees the maps as a way of combining modern surveying techniques and CAD technology with the art of cartography.

Pangea Maps accept requests for custom maps from all around the world.

For further information and sales, visit the Pangea Maps website www.pangeamaps.com.

10th Byron Bay International Film Festival

Spring is synonymous with festivity and with a 10th anniversary to celebrate as well as new dates the 2016 Byron Bay International Film Festival will see NSW's Northern Rivers abuzz with this world-class event from the 14th to the 23rd October.

BBFF is considered by many to be one of Australia’s most dynamic film festivals and is renowned for its diverse and entertaining program of compelling and thought-provoking films as well as its glamorous red carpet parties. The Festival's 10th Opening Night will be the most dazzling to date - a glittering night at the Byron Theatre where the stars won't just be in the sky.

As it's grown over the past decade the festival has become a valuable platform for local and international filmmakers - bringing together passionate and aware audiences with emerging and esteemed industry professionals, connecting the film-loving and filmmaking communities together through conversation and collaboration within a wide array of screening sessions, Q&A's, panels and gala events.

The program is packed with variety and satisfies all tastes - over 10 days BBFF screens everything from films for or made by kids to surf and action, animation, emotionally charged documentaries and outstanding dramatic features from around the world. Providing audiences with cutting-edge storytelling experiences has always been at the heart of the BBFF experience and this year the festival is giving audience members the opportunity to dive into new dimensions with a selection of the world's best Virtual Reality experiences.

The Festival's full program will be announced in September, for more details visit www.bbff.com.au.

World’s Largest Crystals Move To Byron

This week Byron will become the permanent home of the two largest crystals in the world, a towering 5.5 metre smoky quartz geode and a 5.5 metre wide amethyst geode cave. The Crystal Castle in the Byron hinterland has purchased the natural giants in a monumental deal with a Uruguayan farmer and long term friend of the Castle. The acquisition marks the Crystal Castle’s 30 th Anniversary and they will join what is already the largest outdoor display of crystals in the world.


Naren King inside the enchanted crystal cave

“Thirty years ago we were seen as offbeat hippies out the back of Byron Bay” said Naren King, the Crystal Castle’s “Managing Dreamer”. From humble beginnings on their twelve acre property Naren and his family have guided the Crystal Castle, which encompasses the world renowned Shambhala Gardens, to their current status as a State Significant Tourist Attraction. In 2012 the Castle added the only Kalachakra Stupa for World Peace in the Southern Hemisphere, a project blessed by His Holiness The Dalai Lama. Thousands of visitors of all ages and faiths make the pilgrimage along the scenic escarpment to visit annually. Princess Mary of Denmark, Chris Hemsworth and his family, Katy Perry and Natalie Imbruglia were all enchanted. Kerry O’Brien is a regular.


Naren King and daughter Manya King with the world's biggest crystal

Both crystals, estimated to be 120 million years old, will be on display for visitors to experience. The amethyst cave, becoming known as the “enchanted cave” will also be available for group and private meditations, where visitors can sit inside the crystal for intensive inspiration. “Amethyst has many qualities, perhaps the most powerful being higher inspiration” said Naren King. “So we are creating a range of guided meditations that people can listen to whilst inside the crystal, if they choose. It’s an extraordinary experience to sit inside this cave surrounded by millions of sparkling crystals”.

The science behind crystals has long been accepted with clear quartz used in high precision surgery, computer chips, watches and electric guitars. “Amethyst and smoky quartz are clear quartz with certain minerals present” explained King, “So whilst clear quartz is programmable these crystals come with their own program, or specific healing energies. It’s no coincidence that the Pope’s ring is amethyst and the Queen’s crown is set with crystals”.

Naren King hails from globally renowned esoteric stock. To survive three years in Changi as a prisoner of the Japanese during the Second World War his father, Sydney Piddington (King changed his surname) developed an ESP show for the other prisoners of war to help maintain morale. Following the war Sydney and his young wife Lesley were signed to present a series of live radio broadcasts for the BBC “The Piddingtons”, which garnered 20 million listeners.

The broadcasts, which demonstrated the Piddingtons’ telepathic abilities, was the first BBC broadcast from the stratosphere and saw Naren’s mother as the only woman to be locked up in the Tower of London and get out alive. To this day the Piddingtons are considered to be one of the greatest two-person telepathy acts of all time.

Watch The Piddingtons Keep Millions Guessing (1950) on youtube.

“People have travelled to Byron for inspiration and dreaming for thousands of years” said Byron Shire Mayor Simon Richardson. “So it is only fitting that these beacons of hope should make their way here. I can’t wait to see them”.

For further information, visit www.crystalcastle.com.au.

Byron Beachside Markets

Next Beachside Market: 30 March 2018, 8am - 4pm, Main Beach Foreshore, Byron Bay.

Held four times a year in early January, Easter, July and late September, the Beachside Markets are a make it, bake it, grow it market held on the Byron Bay foreshore east of the Surf Club. The perfect location to experience some of the most original products by one of the worlds’ most famous beaches.

Open from 8 – 4pm this market showcases a diverse and exciting collection of high quality art, sculpture, ceramics, glass, home wares, fashion, craft, toys, clothing and music created by local artists and designers as well as an array of services offered by our health and well being practitioners.

The focus and emphasis of the Beachside Market is on authenticity and fosters both originality and sustainability. Echoing worldwide popularity and the growing demand for direct-from-the-artist-to-you handmade, high quality product. This Artisan Market provides an unparalleled opportunity for local artists, creators and healers to showcase their talents. With over 200 stalls stretching over half a kilometer of beachfront at Byron Bay Main beach, this market is the perfect location, right on the doorstep of one of the worlds’ most famous beaches and destinations to experience some of the best and most original products and services.

Come with family and friends to experience the vibrant atmosphere, enjoy a coffee, brunch or lunch while you listen to some fabulous live music and browse the stalls.

For further information, visit www.byroncentre.com.au/markets/beachside-market/.

Falls Festival Byron Re-Cap

The third Falls Music and Arts Festival Byron (Dec 31- Jan 2) at North Byron Parklands was a great success with organisers declaring it one of the best they’ve had at the venue.

With perfect weather, a festival site that is easy to get around and a couple new features including the Palm Springs water park and the air-conditioned Foxtel movie venue - it was no surprise everyone was having fun.

My favourite act was Courtney Barnett and my pick of the food was the Cuban Street Food (near the main entrance). Enjoy a selection of images captured walking around and watching the bands at Falls Festival Byron.









































































Byron Bay 2015 in Pictures

Look back at Byron Bay throughout 2015 via the most engaging posts on byronbay.com's Facebook page each month. Seems there is always something happening in Byron, looking forward to 2016 - join us www.facebook.com/byron.bay.nsw.

January:


Summer's in full swing - keep cool with coconuts on Main Beach Byron Bay.

February:


Celebrating V Day at Main Beach Byron Bay, so much fun! V-Day, February 14, is a global activist movement to end violence against women and girls inspired by Eve Ensler's play, The Vagina Monologues.

March:


Local photographer, David Young, captures Byron's participation in the World Naked Bike Ride.

April:


Well spotted australia.com. Looking out over the magnificent Tallow Beach in Byron Bay with @backpackerbanter - what a view! This shot was captured on the Cape Byron Lighthouse Walk, a 5km round trip from Wategos Beach that allows you to take in the sights of the breathtaking coastline and tranquil rainforest.

May:


Byron Bay flash flooding captured by @dougallp.

June:


Super-Cool image of Main Beach Byron Bay, captured by @mattdraperphotography.

"It's pretty amazing what you can create with a camera. I took this image about an hour ago. Perfect miniature waves at Main Beach, Byron Bay."

July:


Mighty Blue Moon captured by Surflife Australia Photography.

"I was very happy to capture this moon rising tonight, with perfect clear skies & enough daylight to show Byron Bay's lighthouse in detail & also all the people that were there to watch the moon rise from Australia's most easterly point."

August:


Plenty of bait fish in the water lately Byron Bay. Aerial image by @uniqueimages_australia.

September:


Whales in Byron Bay... WOW! This was the years most engaging image. photo Glenn Sanders: www.facebook.com/glegmo - or follow on insta www.instagram.com/glegmo/.

October:


Springtime afternoon in Byron Bay.

November:


Dolphins hanging out in Byron Bay. Captured by Sean O'Shea.

December:


Summertime Byron Bay - Cheer Up, Slow Down, Chill Out.

Byron Bay Local Media

Byron Bay's traditional media reflects the unique character and positive spirit of the Byron Shire. Have a read, or tune in for news coverage, discussion of community issues, and celebration of local arts and culture.

Byron Shire News

The Byron Shire News began in the early 1970s, and quickly became well-loved by local residents. Today, over 40 years later, the newspaper continues to be a respected source of local news, up-to-date sport information, and upcoming events.

The Byron Shire News covers major current news events from Byron Bay and surrounding areas. The paper often sponsors local events, charities and sporting teams, and prides itself on supporting the Byron community.

As well as news coverage, the paper highlights local opinions and Byron culture. The paper discusses community interests in an intelligent, unprejudiced forum.

The Byron Shire News also includes weekly sections detailing the fantastic experiences Byron has to offer, including entertainment and dining options. There is also a TV, sports and letters section.

The paper also has a popular website, which reports news stories as they unfold. Visit www.byronnews.com.au

The Byron Shire Echo

The Byron Shire Echo is a well-known, free, independent weekly publication that has long been regarded as the voice of the Byron Shire. Since the paper began in 1986, it has covered regional news stories, local opinions, and community events.

The Echo offers readers more than just news. The paper features Mungo MacCallum’s political commentary, Mandy Nolan’s entertainment coverage, and a variety of creative opinion pieces. The paper also highlights the best of the areas food and wine with respected restaurant reviews and restaurant guide in Good Taste, as well as classified ads, a service directory, and real estate listings.

The Echo aims to encompass the diverse personalities of the towns and villages in the Byron Shire, from Ocean Shores to Bangalow. The paper is distributed throughout the Shire, as well as surrounding towns, such as Lennox Head.

The Echo Net Daily is an online publication updated with local news and events every day. Visit www.echo.net.au

Bay FM

Bay FM – the most easterly station in the nation – is a community-owned, volunteer-run radio station based in the heart of Byron Bay. The not-for-profit station can be found on 100.3 FM, and has be live on air since 1992.

The station airs a variety of news programs, interviews, and music to keep the community up-to-date with local and global current affairs, events, and arts.

Bay FM aims to do three things: evolve according to feedback from the Byron Shire community, examine and discuss issues of importance to local residents, and showcase the Byron spirit by celebrating local talent.

The station’s diverse coverage and perspective make it an iconic member of the Byron Shire media. Visit www.bayfm.org.au

Swim, Cycle and Run in Byron

The tranquil waters, rolling hinterland hills and eclectic township make Byron Bay a fantastic place to swim, cycle and run.

Swimming in Byron

There’s no better feeling than diving into the crystal clear waters of Byron Bay – it’s no wonder a group of people come together every morning to swim between The Pass and Main Beach. Starting your day with a 1.5km ocean swim is invigorating, and many of the swimmers have been doing it for years.

They meet at 8am each morning at the Surf Club, and trek along the beach until they arrive at The Pass. Then the swim begins.

Less experienced swimmers take this opportunity to challenge themselves – being surrounded by experienced swimmers is much safer than swimming alone. And, the current is in your favour; it’ll help push you toward Main Beach.

If you are a more experienced swimmer, challenge yourself by entering the annual Byron Bay Property Sales Ocean Swim Classic. People come from across the country to attend this iconic event, which has been won by numerous Olympians since it began in 1988.

There are two courses to chose from: the Ocean Swim Classic, and the Ky Hurst Mini Swim. The Ocean Swim Classic is 2.2km long, and stretches from Wategos to Main Beach. The entire course is buoyed. The Ky Hurst Mini Swim is for less experienced swimmers and children 9+. The course runs along Clarks Beach and ends at Main Beach.

Learn more at www.byronbayoceanswimclassic.com.au

Cycling in Byron

Byron Bay is a cycling mecca. With the picturesque coastline, breathtaking hinterland, and unique townships, riders in the Byron Bay Cycle Club are spoilt for choice. The Byron Bay Cycle Club is one of the oldest in the country, and it encourages members to take part in both races and social rides.

Riders in the Byron Bay Cycle Club ride both road bikes and mountain bikes. The club facilitates a safe, social environment for experienced and inexperienced riders to reach their full potential.

Learn more at byronbaycycleclub.org.au

Running in Byron

If you love to swim, cycle AND run, the Byron Bay Triathlon is the sporting event for you. Each year on the second weekend of May the event attracts about 1300 people from around Australia and the world.

The course takes competitors on a 1.5km swim through the calm beaches of Byron Bay, then on a 40km cycle through rainforest, bush and farmland, and lastly on a run through the colourful town.

The Run for Mum mothers day fun run and family walk is a great way to get involved if you’re no athlete. Participants walk or run along a 5km loop, beginning at the Surf Club, heading down to The Pass, and then back along the beach.

This world-class triathlon, which marks the end of the QLD/NSW triathlon calendar, is the perfect excuse to come and spend a few days in Byron with friends and family.

Learn more at www.byronbaytri.com.au

2014 Sample Food Festival

2014 Sample Food Festival will take place from 8:00am – 4:00pm Saturday 13 September 2014, at the Bangalow Showground. Featuring food from local restaurants, local produce and farmers market stalls, plus entertainment, cooking demonstrations and children’s activities. Entry is free.

The fourth annual Sample Food Festival is shaping up to be the biggest one yet. The one-day event, held at Bangalow Showground, attracts over 10,000 visitors from all over the country. It is the premier food event in Northern with are over 200 exhibitors to browse and taste as well as all day family entertainment.

More information: www.samplensw.com

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