Blessed with warm azure waters, breathtaking beaches, and a balmy climate Byron Bay has long been a haven for sun-seeking holiday makers. Yet while Byron may be one of the world's most sought after summertime destinations, with the average daytime temperature in winter sitting at a moderate 22C it's also one of Australia's hottest winter retreats.
You may like to fan your creative flame by attending an art therapy or pottery class and/or take part in the 15th annual Byron Bay Writers Festival from 5th – 7th August. Kamal performing poems of passion; Paul Kelly live in concert; James Redfield on the Celestine Prophecies, Louis de Bernieres reflecting on films and fiction and Bill Leak's hard-hitting cartoons. These are just a few of the amazing writers, performers, musicians and wordsmiths appearing at the literary festival through lectures, lunches, panels, conversations, performances, launches and readings.
Winter in Byron is the perfect time to rediscover your inner Zen. Take time out for you. Go on you deserve it. There's yoga, meditation, mud-baths, day spa's and array of therapeutic massages to choose from that will help you unwind and rejuvenate – body, mind and soul.
For the adventurous you might like to go hot air ballooning, skydiving, hang-gliding, tempt fate and kayak with dolphins and migrating whales or even scuba dive with grey nurse sharks in the marine reserve off Julian Rocks. And let's not forget the famous 5km Cape Byron Walking Track! Stretch your legs and keep the adrenalin pumping along this uplifting coastal walk. The track begins on Lighthouse Road and circles the peninsula on which the Cape Byron Lighthouse sits at Australia's most easterly point, taking you high above the coast for a sensational view of pristine beaches then swoops down to sea level. In the background is the dramatic peak of Mt Warning, surrounded by rainforest – clad mountains that are part of the World Heritage listed Central Eastern Rainforest Reserves of Australia.
If you'd rather hibernate inside during the winter months then you can snuggle up with your favourite glass of wine at one of the numerous hotels, guest houses or intimate B&Bs such as The Byron at Byron, Abachi Beach House, Atlantic Guesthouses or La Vista Byron Bay, that abound in the Byron Shire. Visit our Byron Bay Accommodation Guide for a comprehensive list of all your accommodation options.
Warm your heart and tantalize your taste buds next to a crackling log fire this winter where you'll soon learn the secret to being faithful to local, farm-fresh produce. That's the call of Harvest Café nestled away in the quaint village of Newrybar near Bangalow. Their winter signature dish, house-made fettuccine with braised rabbit ragout and a hint of star aniseed, is indeed a culinary delight not to be missed.
If you don't want to let the fireside glow fade at the end of the day, don on your winter woolies and head to Byron's main beach where you'll find earthly drummers and fire twirlers entertaining gatherings of people smiling, laughing and dancing the night away.
There's all this and so much more on offer in Byron Bay to warm you up this winter.
…today as I draw the curtains and step outside, the grey clouds and cold rain of past winters seem all but a distant memory. Instead I'm greeted by the familiar sight of clear blue skies and t-shirt warm sunshine – you've gotta love Byron in winter!