11 of the Best Byron Bay Winter Activities
Visiting Byron Bay during the colder months won’t limit your ability to do anything. In fact, there are a great many Byron Bay activities that are available in the winter, like whale watching or some of the big festivals. We’ve put together this list of things to do in Byron Bay during the winter to help you plan your time here.
While there are certainly lots to choose from, this guide touches on many of the must-dos. You can always deep dive into each one by checking out our related blog posts, or find other activities by reading through our blog.
1. Whale watching
One of the best places in the country to view migrating whales, Byron Bay gives you a front row seat to catch sight of these magnificent animals during the winter (May to November). There are several excellent vantage points in the area from which to catch the whales in action.
First off, head to the historic Cape Byron Lighthouse—in particular, the Lighthouse or the Captain Cook lookout have the best chances of seeing the whales. Another option for whale watching is right in our Byron Bay holiday park’s backyard—the Broken Head Nature Reserve where you can follow the Three Sisters walking trail to a lookout where people often spot whales.
Or turn over the whole experience to the experts by taking a whale watching tour. These guides are so confident that you’ll see a whale that many of the tours guarantee a sighting. There are many tour options, but the largest are Whale Watching Byron Bay and Blue Bay Whale Watching. Both Byron Bay activities run about two to three hours.
2. Check out the festivals
Among the many reasons to take a holiday in Byron Bay is the great selection of festivals that the area hosts. Several of the most popular happen during the winter, from the Splendour in the Grass to the Byron Bay Writers Festival. There are also smaller ones like the Ballina Fine Food & Wine Festival or the Sample Food Festival. Because these are annual events, we have posts that have covered a couple of the big ones in the past that go into detail about what to expect, or you can visit the festival’s website itself.
3. Take a walk
If this is your first time in Byron Bay, you’ll need to start with the Cape Byron Lighthouse walk. The Cape Byron Bay Lighthouse is located on the most easterly point of Australia, so guidebooks and locals alike will suggest that the best time to come is sunrise, making you among the first in Australia to see the sun rise that day. While you’re there, make plans to stay for awhile and either spend about two hours completing the 3.7km walk or relax on one of the beaches, such as The Pass, Wategos or Tallows.
From your Byron Bay holiday park, you can do the Three Sisters Walking Track. If you do the whole walk, you will have gone 2.6 km. Be sure to check for migrating whales, as you’ll have an excellent vantage point. It also provides an excellent spot to bird watch.
There are much more in the way of walks and hikes in the Byron Bay area. Check out the following blog post for more ideas.
4. Visit the markets
If you’re in town on the first Sunday of month, then you’ll be able to visit the Byron Bay community market at Butler Street Reserve. It opens at 8am and runs until 3pm. Spend your time checking out the vendors’ stalls where you’ll find a wide variety of wares from jewellery to house products. In addition, the live music will make it even more festive.
Every Thursday you can visit the Byron Bay Farmers Market, also located at the Butler Street Reserve. From 8 to 11 am, you can find an excellent range of fresh produce. This market is a good way to pick up fresh ingredients for meals you can cook back at our Byron Bay holiday park. You can still feel like you are experiencing all that Byron Bay has to offer while saving some cash by cooking at your campsite.
Also, keep in mind, there are other markets in nearby towns like Bangalow, which holds its Farmers Market every Saturday from 8 to 11 am behind the Bangalow Hotel. And, as you read further, you’ll find that we recommend Bangalow among other destinations as fun places to take day trips from Byron Bay, so you could pick to go on a Saturday and visit the market as part of your excursion.
5. Try out a yoga class
If you’re taking a holiday in Byron Bay, which is considered to be Australia’s unofficial yoga capital, then it seems only natural that you should try out this popular activity—whether it’s winter or any other time of year.
A great starting point is Byron Yoga Centre, considered one of Byron Bay’s best yoga studios. John Ogilivie, considered a top yoga instructor in Australia, opened this studio in 1988, and it is one of the longest running schools in the country. It is located at 6 Byron Street. In addition, the centre now has the Purna Retreat Centre at 50 Skinners Shoot Road where there are additional classes offered and a café where you can grab breakfast, lunch or dinner. Drop-in classes run from $10-18, depending on location, time and teacher.
Another terrific option is to combine Byron Bay activities. If you visit Main Beach during your holiday, then you can stop in for a class at Beachside Yoga & Massage, located above the Byron Bay Surf Club. Here you can drop in for a class without even bringing along a yoga mat as mats are provided. Drop-in classes cost $18.
However, these are just two of the many studios in the Byron Bay area, so check out our guide for more options.
6. Hot air ballooning
Take to the skies to see the area from a unique vantage point—hot air ballooning! This Byron Bay activity really will give you an once-in-a-lifetime memory as you glide through the skies viewing the town from above. Places like Byron Bay Ballooning will take you on a one-hour sunrise tour that includes a gourmet champagne breakfast after the ride. While on the higher end of prices for activities ($350 per adult), you certainly won’t soon forget how it felt to be riding high above the world in the open air.
7. Embark on a day trip
There are lots of fun towns to visit in the area that make for great day trips from your Byron Bay caravan park. Set up camp, and then make a plan to hop in the car to visit places like Bangalow, Brunswick Heads or Mullumbimby.
- Only a 15-minute drive southwest of Byron Bay, Bangalow is one of the must-stop recommendations for day trips. This quaint small town offers visitors an opportunity to stroll down the historic streetscape, visit some great shops and so much more.
- Brunswick Heads, 20 minutes north of Byron Bay, is a beautiful coastal village located at the mouth of Brunswick River. Due to this location, this town makes the perfect day trip for exploring the outdoors, especially water activities from canoeing to fishing.
- Mullumbimby, yet another 15-minute drive but this time north, is dubbed the “Biggest Little Town in Australia.” When you get there, you’ll discover great dining options, fun retail shops and even a cool old-fashioned chocolate shop. (We do suggest coming Monday-Saturday as many shops close on Sundays.) This fabulous little town also is home to one of Australia’s best music festivals, the Mullum Music Festival.
Check out more day trip ideas in our blog post.
8. Indulge in good eats
Quite a few people look forward to meals when on holiday, and Byron Bay won’t disappoint a certified foodie or even someone who just likes a good meal out. We keep abreast of the many excellent eateries in Byron Bay, and we have several guides to help you. Whether you are looking for a more high-end experience or just want some cheap grub, we’ve got you covered.
- Foodie Guide to the Byron Bay Area
- Discover These Off-the-Beaten-Track Restaurants in Byron Bay
- 10 Best Byron Bay Restaurants, Cafes & Bakeries
- Best Cheap Eats in Byron Bay
9. Discover the hinterland
Beyond the beach and Cape Byron Lighthouse and city centre, the beautiful green space surrounding Byron Bay offers plenty of opportunity to hike and see waterfalls, wildlife and gorgeous views.
Minyon Falls, part of the World Heritage Nightcap National Park, is a popular choice because of the 100 metre falls. Another beautiful waterfall, one of the tallest in the country, is Protesters Falls. While visiting this waterfall, be sure to look around for the Fleay’s barred frog, an endangered animal. Yet another great hinterland destination is the 1,100m high Mt. Warning. Located in Wollumbin National Park, Mt. Warning is about an hour from Broken Head Holiday Park, but many people say it’s worth the trip, especially if you do it at dawn so you can be among the first to see the sun in Australia from the top.
10. Sip on a coffee
Part of the fun of a holiday lies in having time to relax and do things at a slower pace. Since we Aussies love our coffee why not try one of the many cafes in the area to combine with relaxing Byron Bay activities?
There are ton many options to list here, so we recommend checking our post devoted to the best coffee shops in Byron Bay for a guide to getting your caffeine fix while on holiday here. You could even turn this activity into a daily adventure, trying out different places each day. At the end of the holiday, you could even rate them so you’ll remember which ones to head back to on your next stay.
11. Hang out at the beach?!
Byron Bay is blessed with a climate that keeps it warmer during the winter and thereby making a visit to the beach an option almost anytime of year. If you hit on an unusually cool day or a rainy one, you might try a different time, but otherwise spending time at one of the many gorgeous beaches in the area is a good activity no matter what time of year.
Come stay at Broken Head Holiday Park this winter
Try out any or all of these winter Byron Bay activities while staying at Broken Head Holiday Park. Our accommodation provides the perfect base for you while on holiday—good prices, a variety of places to sleep and excellent facilities. Plus, by saving money on your stay, you’ll be able to participate in more of these awesome Byron Bay activities. So don’t delay and book today!