If you’re up for fun, fiestas and a fantastic time, you can’t go past Byron Bay in December. The place is positively buzzing!
Immerse yourself in the swirling end-of-year street crowds, watch the world go by as you tuck into a lazy gourmet brunch at a seaside cafe, or put your walking shoes on for a brisk and utterly glorious sunrise ascent to the Cape Byron Lighthouse.
With the promise of a never-ending summer ahead, December in Byron is nothing short of vibrant.
When it feels like it’s getting too much, there’s nothing better than retreating to the luxurious comfort of your private villa or indulging in a head-to-toe revitalisation at our premier spa.
With so many activities to choose from, we’ve come up with some of our favourite ways to enjoy the best of Byron in December. It’s a great mix of getting into the festivities, and finding those out-of-the-way places where you can avoid the crowds.
Enjoy our Top 5 Byron Bay for December.
1) Count Down to 2019
There is so much to do in the Christmas period in Byron Bay, it’ll make your head spin (unless that’s the bubbly talking).
We recommend checking out waves at the crowd-pleasing Main Beach, only an 11-minute drive from Elements of Byron. Or, if you’ve got the muscle power, there’s no better way to lap up the beauty of our beaches than walking from Belongil Beach down to Main Beach, or even beyond.
For a spot of retail therapy, mingle with the masses in Jonson Street, Byron’s unmissable main street.
For the more adventurous, the Arts and Industrial estate, a stone’s throw from Elements, is the perfect choice. Once a fairly uneventful zone, this area north of Byron town has been transformed into a hub of activity by some of Byron’s most creative folks, including artisans and designers.
Families will enjoy an evening out at the McGregor’s Family Carnival in Banner Park, Brunswick Heads. To get your dose of dodgem cars and fairy floss, head to the carnival, which runs over the Christmas and New Year’s period. It’s a tradition which has been going for more than 60 years.
Banner Park also hosts a Christmas Twilight Market from 3pm till late. This year, the date has been set for 19 December. It’s the perfect place to pick up your last minute gifts, locally made with love! Expect a 15-minute drive or so from Elements.
2) Discover Hidden-Gem Surf Spots
If the single most important item you packed for this trip was a surfboard, read on. Avoiding the crowds out there on the waves in December can be, ahem, challenging. But armed with a little local insight, you’ll be out there catching epic waves in no time.
With big swells, consistent sets and long, peeling right-hand waves, there’s no wonder surfers of all levels flock to the Pass. A visit to Byron Bay in December would not be complete without trying out this legendary spot, a 15-minute drive from Elements of Byron. To avoid the masses, get there early.
For exposed beaches that are completely different from the Pass, and considerably less busy, make a beeline for Tallow Beach. Known for having great waves when it’s flat elsewhere in Byron, this spot is a 13-minute drive from Elements. For experienced boarders as conditions can be unpredictable.
For a closer-to-home experience, step right out of the resort onto Belongil Beach. At the southern end lies a popular surf spot known as ‘The Wreck’, the shipwreck responsible for forming the sandback that consistently delivers epic waves.
Find out more about Byron Bay’s world-class beaches here.
3) Fine Dine into the New Year
If you think Byron Bay is all about sun, unspoilt nature and sensational seascapes, think again. There’s one thing the town takes extremely seriously, and that’s our gastronomic scene.
From fine dining restaurants helmed by award-winning chefs to more casual affairs where no-one will bat an eyelid if you wander in with a bikini on, you will be spoilt for choice!
Ready to lock in your new year’s eve reservations? There’s simply no better place than at one of these iconic restaurants.
For world-class contemporary Italian, head to the Italian at the Pacific, opposite Main Beach. This renowned restaurant plates up to-die-for faves such as slow-cooked lamb lasagne and truffle ravioli in a stylish beachside setting.
What could be more memorable than heading to the destination that is known as The Farm for a New Year’s Eve dinner, or a New Year’s day breakfast? A working farm, a nature experience and divine sustainable eating experience all rolled into one, it’s not to be missed.
Post dinner, grab a creative cocktail at a bar in town or simply revel in the feel of the sand between your toes as you take a stroll under the moonlight.
4) Greet the Sun on New Year’s Day
You don’t need to own a thai-dyed kaftan or bend yourself into lotus pose to enjoy First Sun at the Cape Byron Lighthouse.
During this free annual event, people from all walks of life and ages, locals and visitors alike, flock to the lighthouse to welcome the new year’s first rays of light.
The 19th century Victorian era lighthouse is perched on the most easterly point of Australia’s mainland, making it one of the first places to usher in the New Year. Magical, life-affirming and filled with camaraderie, First Sun’s list of awesome activities include soulful yoga, music and meditation.
A truly spectacular way to experience Byron at its best. Meet in the Clarkes Beach carpark at 4am, and either walk or catch a shuttle bus to the lighthouse.
5) Byron and Bangalow Farmers Markets
There’s no better way to soak up the ho-ho-hos of the season and get a taste, literally, of the Byron Bay culture than by popping in to the Farmers Markets.
Here, you’ll rub shoulders with locals as they catch up with each other over chai (everyone knows everyone in this tight-knit community), toe tap to live local music and sample some of the region’s freshest, most delectable produce.
If you want to stick around Byron, we suggest grabbing your towel and having an early morning dip before tucking in for a big gourmet brekkie at the market, on Butler Street Reserve.
For a hit of the picturesque hinterland, you’ll enjoy the easy 13-minute drive to Byron’s sister market, the Bangalow Farmer’s Market. After that, make sure to enjoy a refreshing pint at the beautifully preserved Bangalow Hotel nearby, before setting out to discover the town’s heady mix of excellent restaurants, vintage haunts and haute couture shops.