Article from Conde Nast

There’s magic at work in Byron Bay on Australia’s east coast. People who go there tend to have life-changing experiences. So what makes this small seaside community so special? David Leser, a resident, explains.

“This is a story I swore I would never write. It’s about a little jewel under a lighthouse, where the rainforest meets the sea, where pods of dolphins frolic in turquoise waters and migratory whales breech and sigh out in the Bay, where surfers, hippies, musicians, writers, farmers, teachers, artists, film-makers, fishermen, stockbrokers, you name them; where all these and more have gathered for some great modern-day experiment in living.

“Who’d believe such a story? A New Jerusalem on the most easterly point of Australia with the perfect wave, the perfect climate, the perfect soil; with sunkissed, friendly people; with a Green mayor and a politically conscious community; with fine dining, smart cafés and bookshops; with music, arts and literary festivals, with a goulash of massage and alternative health therapies so diverse you could spend an entire month floating from one to the other.”

“It is also a sacred Aboriginal meeting place. A woman’s place. A healing place. A place where the counter-culture rubs up against the city. A place where Australia first meets the sun and the streets are named after poets and the plumber takes his shoes off at the door.” …

Paradise Found

With our sublime accommodation and Byron’s phenomenal culinary moments and incredible experiences, the stage is set for an unforgettable stay at a spectacular setting.

Choose from great rainforest and beach-track walks only footsteps away from The Cape, then Surf the best waves Australia has on offer on your doorstep.

Go for a swim in crystal clear waters and sparkling white sand beaches at Byron Bay’s iconic Wategos’s Beach infront of our property or take it easy and relax on your outdoor deck, watching whales and dolphins and surfers catch waves.

That’s what we call Lodging in Paradise!

We have compiled some of our favourite suggested experiences to inspire you on your stay

Spend a day at the Cape learning to surf at the beach infront of our house, enjoy whale watching from the comfort of your outdoor deck, kayak the bay, hike the rainforest, beach or lighthouse tracks around our property or go for a drive in the country past lush farms and cows to Harvest restaurant in picturesque Newrybar for a county lunch. Then venture on to Nimbin for a bit of fun and jump into one of the many waterfalls on the way.

For the adventurists there are also many outdoor activities on offer such as Surfing, Kite boarding, Ballooning, Paragliding , Horse riding & taking off at a magical spot right beside the iconic Byron Bay lighthouse, Diving and snorkeling around Julian Rocks, Cycling the hilly hinterland, Golfing, Stand up Paddle boarding, Kayaking, Horse riding or enjoying all that Byron Bay has on offer such as exploring the area.

A bonus is that most of these activities are around Wategos Beach, making our location so convenient.

Or simply take it easy on your holidays, shopping or dining at some of Australia’s best restaurants.

We have also compiled our favourite restaurants under the Dining section on the website


What are some must-see iconic sights ?

Probably the boardwalk leading towards The Pass on the Lighthouse walk, or the lookout at the Pass all footsteps from Wategos Beach.

Favourite Beach:

We love our local beach, little Wategos. (on the eastern conrer side of Wategos beach)

We also love a walk on Tallows Beach (Cosy Corner end) as its so secluded and wild and it feels you are a million miles away from everything.

Cape Byron Lighthouse Walking Track

Explore the beautiful Cape Byron Lighthouse just behind our Property. The magical Walking Tracks showcase the beauty of our region.

See Whales, Dolphins, Turtles and the crystal clear waters with white sand Beaches and surfers catching the world famous surf.

(walking track depicted is from book showcasing many more walks around the region, Byron Coast. Just ask us for a copy if you would like to explore more walks)

If you’ve got a few hours – or just laze at little Wategos Beach or The Pass under an umbrella and call it a day.

48 hours in Byron Bay, what are the must-dos?

The Cape is perched above the golden sands of legendary Wategos Beach and is centrally located to experience some of the finest that Byron Bay has on offer, as well as world-class restaurants, superb wellness facilities and activities for the whole family

A must do is certainly an early morning walk through the Rainforest past spectacular Wategos Beach to the iconic Cape Wategos lighthouse.

Swim at Wategos Beach after the walk, which is so refreshing.

Breakfast at Rae’s footsteps away from the Cape, or “The Beach Byron Bay” or Bayleaf.

If you love Pastries then make sure to try Masa Bakehouse.

Another must see destination is Harvest in Newrybar or the Woods in Bangalow as well as our favourite Ciao Mate, followed by shopping at Island Luxe.

For lunch drive up to Harvest in Newrybar or alternatively grab some some fresh oysters or smoked trout from the Fish Co-op and some bits from the gourmet deli next door and set up your own picnic on the beach.

Have a mid afternoon break at The Byron at Byron and book yourself into the Spa followed with some drinks and barfood on the veranda

Drinks at Belongil Beach Italian followed by dinner there, or

Book a table at the local and exclusive Rae’s Restaurant at Wategos (30 meters from the Cape) for dinner or go for a spontaneous sunset Cocktails and Barfood at Rae’s Cellar Bar (50 meters from us)

Explore the hinterland and head out to Doma Cafe which is a Japanese Beergarden in Federal, book ahead for a lazy lunch at Frieda’s Field or sample some incredible Italian Food at Ciao Mate or The Hutt.


A small town with a deli, Newrybar Merchants, and Harvest restaurant. Cute excursion


Just 20 minutes’ drive from The Cape is Bangalow, a small village packed with beautiful boutique stores. Visit ROWIE to discover another talented local designer (she also has a store in Byron), and Millar & More for irresistible fashions and homewares and the Island Luxe shop

FederalDoma café- Japanese restaurant for lunch

Mullimbimby – Markets on Friday and “Milk and Honey “for great pizza

Brunswick heads – Brunswick river and township, make sure to have dinner at La Casita

Cape Byron Distillery

Located at 80 St Helena Rd, McLeods Shoot, NSW, 2479

Local distillery that also makes muesli

Around the corner. Famous Rae’s , amazing food, great views. Open for Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Byron bay ballooning

Fancy a balloon flight to view Byron Bay’s beauty? We can highly recommend it!

contact Byron Bay Ballooning for more infos.

Kayak Tours

Kayak tour to see Whales and Dolphins

Learn to surf

Byron is worldfamous for its surf. Don’t miss out.

Byron boasts some of the world’s most spectacular surf beaches. The pace of life is easy-going, the local welcome genuine and the location out of this world.

Surfing is an exhilarating, healthy and fun experience. Private lessons offer one-on-one instruction. They will cover a range of topics from surfing fundamentals to ocean safety. Each lesson is tailored to your skill and experience level.

Horse Riding on The Beach

See whales and dolphins off the coast of Byron Bay

Venture offshore from Byron Bay and you will get a great perspective of the coastline and cliffs and verdant rainforest in Arawkal National Park. During the Winter months, you will also be perfectly positioned to see whales cruising past in the open ocean (between June and October), and pods of playful dolphins onboard a Whale Watching Byron Bay Tour.

The tour departs directly from Cape Byron in a unique purpose-built whale-watching RIB (rigid-hull inflatable boat), a Zodiac-style vessel that offers 360-degree views so everyone has a ringside seat

Enjoy a Romantic Picnic on the Beach

Spoil yourself with a quintessential Byron Bay ‘Boho Picnic‘ where everything is organized and set up for you designed to include everything you need for a relaxing afternoon by the beach. Nestle into designer rugs and cushions for a morning brunch or afternoon grazing board full of fresh, local produce.

Cycling tours around the Byron Bay Hinterland

Take a ride and experience the best this beautiful region has to offer. Some of the local tour operators are passionate about cycling and want to share with you what we love about riding, and life, in Byron Bay. For more information on a cycling tour

Replenish your wardrobe at Spell Byron Bay.

Enjoy a Sunday Live Music session at the Beach Hotel

Gather at the popular drinking haunt on a Sunday afternoon and you will be joined by a captivating crowd of locals and tourists who gather here to support live music and enjoy a drink with a view over the beach.

There’s a reason why most visitors end up at the beer garden at the iconic Beach Hotel.

Explore the Hinterland with Guides

small personalized Tours including Paddock to plate, girls days out, boys days out, boozy days in the bay etc

walking Tracks

Couple at Byron bay lighthouse walk

Elements has compiled some great walking track suggestions around Byron Bay:

Hinterland hills, endless beaches and tranquil trails that reconnect you to yourself and nature all around – walking in Byron Bay is a year-round pleasure.

Nature Walk and Bird Watching: Enjoy a hike to explore the extensive wilderness around The Cape at Wategos and get up close to local flora and fauna.

Whether you prefer a flat beach stroll or challenging rainforest summit climb, there’s a walk for everyone in and around Byron Bay. Each is accompanied with near faultless scenery that will have you stopping regularly to stare (and snap a few photos!)

If you can’t get enough of witnessing nature’s magnificent waterfalls, Byron Bay is within reach of some pretty memorable ones.

The Northern Rivers region is home to an incredibly diverse range of stunning waterfalls. Here we list some of our favourites within driving distance of Byron Bay, on the traditional land of the Bundjalung People, some of which have swimming holes to enjoy, and others that are just about admiring the falls from afar. There are even a couple of waterfalls that are best experienced at night. Add these to your list for your next Byron Bay holiday (and remember they are always best visited after a decent rainfall). Please also remember to leave no trace behind – respect the land, and always take your rubbish with you.

minyon falls aerial

Minyon Falls

13km (3-4 hour return trip) – dirt track, some basic scrambling and steep insections

One of the Byron Hinterland’s real gems, Minyon Falls, offers a range of trail options. From a short stroll connecting the car park (directions) to the viewing platform (about 15/20 mins return) to the longer hike we’ve featured below, there’s a whole host of ways to access these 100m waterfalls surrounded by stunning rainforest.

The longer hike begins at a trailhead located around 1km before the main viewing car park (directions). The road up to both is a well-maintained dirt road suitable for most cars.

Head down into the forest and descend via switchbacks for around 1km to reach Repentance Creek. Continue along this path which, with a short section of rock hopping, leads you directly to the foot of the falls. After a quick dip (no sunscreen, please), cross the creek and continue along the loop track as it climbs up towards the escarpment.

As you ascend, enjoy the views of Condong Falls. At the Quandong Falls fork, keep to the Minyon Falls Loop Track (on the right) and follow the escarpment to the top of Minyon Falls. This section is exposed, so ensure you have sunscreen ready-at-hand. After taking in the spectacular views about the falls, head back down the road to the trailhead.

You can read more about the falls and watch some gorgeous footage of this hidden gem in our Minyon Falls article.

Explore Local Killen Falls with Lunch at Harvest

You can either go for an easy hike down to the waterfall (appx 30 minute walk) or Enjoy a 4 hour private, luxury hinterland tour to the beautiful Killen Falls, including a breakfast picnic hamper with designer picnic rug, towels and cooler bag. Followed by lunch at Harvest.

Killen Falls Tintenbar

Protestors Falls

Distance from Byron Bay: One-hour drive
Where: Nightcap National Park (west side)
Parking: Yes, a big car park
Difficulty: A short, easy 1.5-kilometre return stroll
Swimming: No

This would have to be our favourite one of all. Protestors Falls, nestled perfectly into the World Heritage rainforest of the Nightcap National Park, takes its name from a protest that happened back in 1979 by a group of conservationists who were trying to stop the area from being logged. They were thankfully successful. To access the falls, make use of the car park (there’s plenty of space) and take a peaceful stroll along the lovely timber boardwalk through this magnificent rainforest until you reach the falls. It’s a 1.5-kilometre return trip.

This spectacular waterfall plunges 25 metres into a natural pool below in an incredibly magical setting. As tempting as it may seem, swimming is not allowed here however due to it being an important habitat area for a range of endangered frogs, including the threatened Fleay’s barred frog. In any case, it is the most stunning place to sit, listen to the birds, listen to the water, and soak up the magical energy of this ancient land. You can also enjoy a picnic at the nearby Teranian Creek picnic area, or if you are adventurous enough to come back at night time, you will be treated to the most incredible light show by thousands of glow worms and bioluminescent mushrooms that light up the forest – it’s a truly astonishing sight to behold.

Couple at Protesters Falls, Nightcap National Park, Northern Rivers

Whian Whian Falls

Distance from Byron Bay: One-hour drive
Where: Near the Nightcap National Park
Parking: Yes, a car park with plenty of parking
Difficulty: An easy five-minute walk
Swimming: Yes

Whian Whian Falls is another favourite in the Northern Rivers. It’s a beautiful place for a swim located in the Whian Whian Falls Conservation Area near Nightcap National Park. To reach the falls from the car park, look out for a clearing and a little track on your left-hand side. From there, you follow the fence around until you arrive at the lookout, just a short five-minute walk. There are two different swimming holes to choose from. Getting down there can be quite slippery and muddy if it has recently rained, but otherwise, it is generally fine. There is also a lovely picnic area to enjoy. Our tip: go early, it can get busy.

Hanging Rock Falls

Distance from Byron Bay: 1.2-hour drive
Where: Near the town of Nimbin
Parking: Yes, for a small fee
Difficulty: The path down is narrow but well-worn. Access to the water is by climbing or jumping in and climbing out and the rocks can get slippery.
Swimming: Yes

Hanging Rock Falls offers an incredibly magical setting for a rainforest swim in a very beautiful and large swimming hole that is more than seven meters deep (in parts). The water is crystal clear and you will be surrounded by the lush greenery of the rainforest and the cascading waterfall beside you. It is quite something. High up on the cliffs, you will find a rope that is very fun for swinging off, and there’s also a fallen log that is perfect for jumping off (being careful of course). This one can get quite busy as well, so go early.

See Byron Bay from an Indigenous perspective

Delta Kay is a local Arakwal Bundjalung woman who is a respected elder in the Byron Bay Shire. Join traditional custodians of the land on an Explore Byron Bay Guided Aboriginal Tour that aims to connect participants with Indigenous culture. Delta includes Dreamtime stories about the significance of Nguthungulli (otherwise known as Julian Rocks) an important cultural site to the local First Nations people. Delta also guides visitors around Currenba (The Pass) and points out a 1000-year-old midden with archaeological evidence of her ancestors gathering here to feast on everything from fish and pippies to pademelon.

Enjoy a brewery & distillery crawl

Enjoy the top-notch tastings and district views on offer at the microbreweries dotted around the Byron Bay Shire.

Craft beer devotees and amateur homebrewers and distillers will enjoy the fact they can bump elbows with the local artisan brewers and distillers on a Behind the Barrell tour. Highlights of a Full Barrell Tour include pit-stops at Stone & Wood, Seven Mile Brewing Co, Cape Byron Distillery and Husk Distillers.

Beach Walk from Brunswick Heads

Time and distance variable – flat all the way

If a beach stroll is what you’re seeking, you’re spoiled for choice around Byron Bay. There’s Byron’s Main Beach and The Pass, Suffolk Park’s Tallows Beach and the (almost) unbroken stretches south to Ballina and north to the Gold Coast.

TEQ_TourismandEventsQueensland_Cooloola Sandpatch.jpg

Park in the fishing village (directions), which boasts a great range of cafes, shops and plenty of grass areas perfect for a picnic, then wander out towards the sea wall. From here, turn right and head out along the beach, bordered on one side by coastal bush and on the other by breaking waves.

This beach continues unbroken all the way to Byron Bay—though that’s a little over 10km away—so it’s perfect for a stroll of any length. Just remember to turn around and head back to Brunswick Heads before dark!

Three Sisters Track

1.6km – 30-45 mins – gently undulating dirt track

The Three Sisters Walking Track gives quick access to spectacular ocean views and a non-challenging coastal bush trail to the south of Byron Bay. It’s a great place to escape the crowds and enjoy some serenity.

The walk begins at Broken Head car park (directions). With the beach to your left, spot the trailhead tucked up a small grassy rise and under the canopy of coastal flora. Follow this track to its logical end, where it dives down steeply to the right to meet Kings Beach (this is the start an alternative loop route that’s only available at low tide).

En route, take time to read the aboriginal history of the Three Sisters and enjoy a little picnic on the grass overlooking the ocean.

Walk in Arakwal Bundjalung Footsteps 

Walks of various lengths – Aboriginal cultural activities and guide

Australia is home to the oldest culture in the world. Walk alongside local Arakwal Bundjalung elder Delta Kay through important cultural sites, taste bush food you’ve picked yourself or make your own ochre body paint.

Learn about the stories and traditions of the Arakwal Bundjalung people and connect with this truly unique place.

byron bay lighthouse walking trail

Byron Bay Lighthouse

5km – 1-2 hours – undulating paths, some steep

The Cape Byron Walking Track, known locally as the Lighthouse Walk, is a loop trail that takes in beach, lighthouse and rainforest, as well as some of Byron’s most spectacular views. It involves a paved path, stairs, a stretch of sand and some trail.

There are many variations on this trail, but our recommended route begins and ends at Clarkes Beach car park (directions). Head down to the beach via the staircase alongside Beach Byron Bay, then turn right along the sand, away from the town centre. Walk to the Fisherman’s Lookout then head up to and through The Pass car park, up the stairs that lead over the cliff and down to Wategos Beach.

At the far end of this idyllic cove is a paved path rising to your left. These lead directly to the iconic Byron Bay Lighthouse.

Take time to enjoy the views en route, including those from Australia’s most easterly point. After pausing at the top, continue past the cafe and toilets, and follow the curving road until the pavement’s end.

Disappear into the forest up the steep paved path, passing the hang gliding launch point, and follow this trail as it undulates to its end. You’ll re-emerge by Captain Cook’s car park. Turn left and wander back down the road to refind the trailhead.

Your reward for this Byron Bay walk? A host of cafes and restaurants ready for you to refuel, share and reflect all those views. Looking for more walks in Byron Bay? Check out the Byron Trails book.

Fly Byron

Fly Byron is a luxury helicopter business, specialising in seamless transfers and ‘money can’t buy’ experiences.  Fly Byron love what they do and it is their philosophy to give our guests a memorable Byron tour holiday experience.

East Ballina to Lennox Head Coastal Walk

13km – 3-4 hours – undulating paths, some steep

Get ready for the drama! Sheer cliffs, long stretches of beaches, 150-year-old surf clubs and sweeping views – this recreation path is 13 kilometres in length and takes approximately four hours one-way. We recommend driving to Shaws Bay in East Ballina to begin the walk as it’s easy to catch the bus back from Lennox Head afterwards.

Some of our favourite elements of the walk include historic Fenwick House and the Lighthouse Beach Surf Club, the volcanic red cliff tops on the path up to Whites Head and then into the town of Lennox Heads.

A significant portion of the track is open which allows for wonderful views, but please ensure you come prepared with sunscreen, hats, water and snacks.

Want more inspiration for things to do in Byron Bay? Check out Element’s Ultimate Guide to Byron Bay.

Drinks & Nightlife

Rae’s Bar

Around the corner from The Cape at Wategos –– our Local favourite:

Start the night with cocktails at Rae’s Bar and some snacks

The Balcony Bar & Oyster Co.

Located at Byron Bay, NSW, 2481

Great Bar with cute decor, nice food to enjoy the Byron Township

Byron at Byron

Start the night with cocktails on the verandah overlooking the pool

Ciao Mate

One of our Favourites- incredible Byron inspired Italian food at Bangalow

La Locura

Mexican cocktails and snacks in town

Top Byron Shops

Island Luxe in Bangalow and Island Luxe Tribe in Byron are both a must;

Ahoy Trader (both are also great for kids)

Nikau for flowers and homewares

Hendrix and Harlow or Hope & May for homewares,

Spell & The Gypsy – Modern boho fashions, designed right here in Byron Bay and loved around the world.

Take a stroll around Centennial Circuit, Banksia Drive and the numerous small streets that make up this revitalised shopping district.

St Agni – Handmade leather footwear and women’s clothes with a distinctive Mediterranean style.

Stitch and Hide– Leather goods that beautifully blend the fashions of Australia and Southern California.

And, of course, a short stroll north is arguably the most recent exciting recent addition to shopping in Byron Bay – Habitat.

This minimalist complex has curated a selection of the best local designers’ latest creations. There’s a delicious eatery, Barrio, across the courtyard and a whole host of health and wellbeing spaces, such as the boutique pilates studio, either Body Mind Life in Town or at the Industrial Estate BENDE Byron Bay, MCM homewares, Allpress coffee for great coffee.

Just 20 minutes’ drive from The Cape is Bangalow, a small village packed with beautiful boutique stores. Visit ROWIE to discover another talented local designer (she also has a store in Byron), and Millar & More or Bisque traders, for irresistible fashions and homewares, Island Luxe and many other great boutiques. Our favorite place for Dinner or lunch is “Ciao Mate” for incredible italian food, right next door is “You Beauty” a modern Australian restaurant. For a casual breakfast or Lunch head to Woods Bangalow.

And while you’re grabbing a coffee at Harvest, stop in at artisan collective Newrybar Merchants – it’s become a bit of an institution.

Don’t miss out on the Honesty food stalls in the hills around Bangalow and Midgen Flat Road.

Creature Yoga. It’s an institution, get there early because it fills out.

Habitat at the industrial estate.

Health, Massages and Fitness

Start the day with a Walk up to the lighthouse on The Cape Byron Walking track leads from our local beach, Wategos Beach, then up to Cape Byron Lighthouse.

En route, you’ll pass Australia’s most easterly point, a side trail leading to Little Wategos beach and near constant stunning views of the ocean and coastal bush.

Then head for breakfast to “The Beach” , Topshop or Bayleaf, by walking on the beach for 20 minute walk towards The Pass .

There’s even an exhilarating forest track that makes this a loop route and makes this a varied experience including road, stairs and trail.

If you like to run in the monrings you’ll find a plethora of paths, not to mention beautiful beaches, to enjoy in Byron Bay. (Our favourite would be Cosy Corner on Tallows beach for a long beach run with nobody in sight.)

If you prefer yoga or fitness classes in the morning then you might be interested in

BENDE Byron Bay – (yoga/ pilates classes)
Suite 35 C2, 1 Porter Street, Byron Bay

  • From $25/class. Holiday packages available (book online)
  • Classes start at 6:30am most days

The Academy
74 Centennial Place, Byron Bay

  • From $20/class. Holiday packages available (inquire online)
  • Morning Conditioning classes | 6-6: 45 am Mon – Fri

Day Spa at the Byron at Byron Or Rae’s

One of our favourite past times and a perfect way to start your holiday is to book in a lazy afternoon at the Byron at Byron for a Spa and massage treatment.

The lovely setting is truly relaxing and will ease you right into holiday mood.

Follow your Spa treatment with drinks and food on the veranda watching the sunset and overlooking the majestic Rainforest & Pool.

Make sure to book in early, as they do get booked out.

Its a great option also for a rainy day.

Another more casual massage Spa is Comma

but the most convenient and glamorous location is of course the Spa at Rae’s just a mere 30 meters from us.

Parks & Nature

Cape Byron Walking Track

Located at Cape Byron Walking Track, Byron Bay, NSW, 2481

Great hiking trail behind our property

Mt Warning Rainforest Park

Located at 153 Mt Warning Rd, Mt Warning, NSW, 2484

Known for State & National Park

Old and beautiful National park with some restaurants such as Mavis kitchen.

Minyon Falls lookout

Located at Minyon Platform Track, Whian Whian, NSW, 2480

Beautiful Waterfall and Track through the National Park

Massages and other In House treatments

Book in advance to make sure you don’t miss out.

Enjoy a range of Beauty and massage treatments in the comfort of your suite or the outdoor deck.

Road Trip Ideas

Mallanganee and Richmond Range

From Casino in the Northern Rivers region of New South Wales, drive west to Mallanganee, stopping at the lookout for spectacular views over the Richmond Range. On a clear day you can see the distant volcanic plug of Mount Warning. Travel into Tabulam, where you can grab a bite to eat at the Tabulam Co-Op, before driving north to the historic village of Bonalbo. This is the gateway to the World Heritage rainforest of Richmond Range National Park. Walk past rare spotted gums at the Cambridge Plateau picnic area and follow the 30-minute Culmaran loop trail through tall woodlands along the rainforest edge. Back on the road, continue north through the Yabbra State Forest, a popular place to fish and 4WD. From Urbenville, you can do a loop through the village of Woodenbong to Tooloom Falls and Tooloom National Park, home to ancient Aboriginal sites and 10 species of kangaroos and wallabies.

Lions Road

You’ll crisscross through the states of Queensland and New South Wales on this road, built by local Lions Clubs community groups in 1971. Start from pretty Kyogle in New South Wales, which sits on the Richmond River encircled by rainforest. Turn onto the Lions Road just north of Wiangaree and curve around Border Ranges National Park, part of the World Heritage Gondwana Rainforests. The Border Loop Lookout provides incredible views down Gradys Creek and the rail engineering feat of the Border Loop as it spirals up the mountain. From here you can also follow a 45-minute hiking track through the rainforest canopy, keeping your eyes peeled for koalas. On the other side of the Mount Lindesay Highway lie the rugged peaks of Mount Barney National Park. Stop into Rathlogan Grove in the small town of Rathdowney to visit its olive groves and enjoy afternoon tea at its family-run cafe.

Tamborine Circuit

Start from Nerang on Queensland’s Gold Coast and head south-west into Lamington National Park. Travel to Beechmont then follow the 10-kilometre (six-mile) rainforest drive to the Binna Burra section of the park – home to hundreds of waterfalls and walking trails – or continue on to Canungra. At Canungra turn off to O’Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat, where you can enjoy a picnic, join a glow worm tour or zip-line above the rainforest. Do short sections of the Gold Coast Hinterland Great Walk, or spend four days hiking the entire 54-kilometre (34-mile) trail. Back on the winding road, drive to Tamborine Mountain, where you can visit vineyards, hang glide off the mountain or browse art and antique shops on the Gallery Walk. Nearby Tamborine National Park offers scenic picnic spots and the enchanting 30-minute walking track to Curtis Falls.

Main Range Drive

Begin in the hinterland town of Beaudesert, less than an hour from both Brisbane and the Gold Coast. Drive west to Boonah, in the heart of this Scenic Rim area. Here you can drop into local art galleries, buy fresh produce from the roadside stalls and check out the distinctive heritage buildings. Just outside town try rock climbing on Mount French or canoeing on Lake Moogerah. Continue on the road to Main Range National Park and take the short circuit walk to the top of Queen Mary Falls. Continue past Daggs and Browns Falls towards Killarney and Legume, then head east to Woodenbong. Travel back to Beaudesert, stopping to hike to the Lower Portals (deep rock pools and small waterfalls) in Mount Barney National Park.

Wollumbin-Mount Warning View Circuit

Drive from the picturesque town of Murwillumbah to Wollumbin-Mount Warning National Park, where you can walk the short Lyrebird Track across Breakfast Creek and through palm forest to a scenic viewing platform. Jump back into the car to visit the thriving arts community of Uki, and tuck into handmade pies at the Uki Bakery. Drive past Mebbin National Park, where the one-kilometre (0.6-mile) return Byrrill Creek walking track takes you through subtropical rainforest to a stand of ancient fig trees. Head to the village of Tyalgum then onwards to Chillingham, where you can stroll through the bush tucker garden at Buck’s Farm. Head north to Springbrook National Park to visit Natural Bridge, a spectacular waterfall through the roof of a basalt cave. Head back through Chillingham to Murwillumbah. 

Minyon Falls

Explore the galleries, theatres and performing arts space around Lismore before driving east through Bexhill and a patchwork of farmland and forest to the small village of Rosebank. Follow the signs to stunning Minyon Falls, which plunge more than 100 metres (330 feet) into a deep, palm-fringed gorge. There are a number of designated walking trails to the bottom of the falls, including an eight-kilometre (five-mile) loop walk, or follow the Boggy Creek walk from the Rummery Park campground to the top of the falls (one to two hours each way). Head towards the village of The Channon, home to a famous monthly market, then travel through Nimbin, the cradle of Australia’s counterculture since the 1970s. See remnants of the area’s volcanic activity at Nimbin Rocks, drop into the Nimbin Candle Factory or stock up on organic produce at the Nimbin Farmers Market, held each Wednesday. From here you’re a one-hour drive to the quaint township of Bangalow and Byron Bay.

Boardwalk within Nightcap National Park on the North Coast of NSW
Boardwalk within Nightcap National Park on the North Coast of NSW
Minyon Falls, Nightcap National Park

Tweed Range Scenic Drive

From Kyogle, head north through Wiangaree to the World Heritage rainforest of Border Ranges National Park. The road is unsealed but suitable for conventional vehicles when dry. Follow one of the many walking trails from the Sheepstation Creek campground or trek through primeval rainforest on one of three trails to Brindle Creek. Look out for the red cedar tree believed to be 1000 years old on the 30-minute Red Cedar Loop walk. Or hike the Bar Mountain Circuit (three hours return) to the lookout, the highest accessible point of Border Ranges National Park. Enjoy a picnic at the Antarctic Beech picnic area, taking in views over the Lost World wilderness area out toward the Queensland border. Don’t miss the short walk to Pinnacle Lookout, which sits 919 metres (3,015 feet) above sea level, on the rim of the caldera. You’ll be treated to spectacular views of Mount Warning and the Tweed Valley below. Drive out of the park’s southern entrance onto Murwillumbah-Kyogle Road.

Explore ancient Gondwana Rainforest

The southern super-continent Gondwana was once covered mostly in rainforest. Now the national parks in the southern part of Scenic Rim are home to some of the most ancient type of vegetation in Australia. Many primitive plant families can be directly linked to flowering plants that existed over 100 million years ago. Head deep into Lamington National Park, Mt Barney National Park and Main Range National Park to discover it for yourself. 

Chase spectacular waterfalls

Morans, Elabana, Chalahn, Curtis, Bog Log, Coomera, Yarrabilgong, Mirror, Lips and Denham Falls – if there is anything the Scenic Rim doesn’t lack it is waterfalls. Head into one of the many national parks to seek them out for yourself.

Cruise between country pubs around the Scenic Rim

A big country region with towns rich in history equals lots of great country pubs. Stop into the Dugandan Hotel in Boonah, the Royal Hotel in Kalbar, Royal Hotel in Harrisville, Canungra Hotel in Canungra, Beaudesert Hotel in Beaudesert, and St Bernard’s Hotel on Tamborine Mountain.

Explore nearby national parks

Only around an hour and a half away from us you will find the wonders of the Scenic Rim region: Six national parks are ripe and ready for exploring. From the ancient Gondwana Rainforests in Lamington, to the easy walks in Tamborine, or the more inland rocky mountains of Mount Barney, Main Range and Moogerah Peaks parks, to last-but-not-least the Mount Chinghee National Park.

Glamp at Nightfall Camp or Ketchup’s Bank

Submit yourself completely to Nightfall Camp’s tranquil rainforest surrounds and opt for a private massage set alongside a crisp bubbling Christmas Creek and ancient rainforests of Lamington National Park. The three large architect-inspired, hand-built safari tents feature king-size beds, organic linen, rain-head showers, vintage meal baths, a wood fireplace and micro-kitchen.

At Ketchup’s Bank total relaxation awaits where your eco tent comes primped with the finest luxuries. Slip on your plush bathrobe and sit by your own personal campfire, complete with complimentary marshmallows for toasting.

Climb your way to the treetops

A short walk from O’Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat is the Tree Top Walk. Do not miss this walk while here, we repeat – don’t miss it! The easy 800m trail consists of nine suspension bridges up to 16m above ground, plus part way climb a giant fig tree to 30m above the ground and enjoy true treetop views of the area.

Stop by at Kooroomba Vineyard and Lavender Farm

Nestled in the Fassifern Valley at Mt Alford, Kooroomba Vineyards consists of a cellar door, restaurant and lavender shop that overlook a six-hectare vineyard and a breathtaking purple lavender field, with magnificent views of the Scenic Rim mountains – there’s even lavender ice cream available.

Private concierge Service

Make the most of your Byron Bay Experience by engaging the services of a private concierge service.

We can highly recommend the services of Caplice Concierge who will be delighted to help you arrange a most unforgettable Byron Bay holiday experience .

Experiences include Cooking Classes, Farmers Markets, Dining arrangements, airport transfers, Babysitting, personal errands and assistance, premium event tickets etc.

For further information and pricing please view this website or contact Chrissy directly under: +61 402 170 337 or