How to do Byron Bay on a budget

Think Byron might be out of your budget? Think again with these savvy suggestions.

Crowds on the sand and in the water on a hot day at Main Beach, Byron Bay. Image credit: Destination NSW
  • Jetstar
  • July 2021

Byron Bay’s popularity has gone through the roof and the recent influx of celebrities can make it feel less than budget-friendly. But it’s still easy to have a good time without dropping major coin if you know how. Visiting outside of major holidays or festivals will make things more affordable, as will choosing hostels over boutique yoga retreats. And, it’s one of the most naturally beautiful places in the country. It doesn’t cost a cent to take in a spectacular sunrise, hike a rainforest or dive into the crystal clear waters at Main Beach. Here’s how to have a Byron break without breaking the bank.

Walk the track at sunrise

Walking the Cape Byron Lighthouse Track is a signature Byron experience with views worth a million. Get there for sunrise, when the views really knock your socks off. Then hit the track, a 3.7km coastal walk that loops through boardwalks, bush tracks and beaches. There are a bunch of lookouts along the way. Stop for an early-morning coffee at The Pass Café and sit on beach to drink it. (FYI you can take a volunteer-run tour of the lighthouse for a gold coin donation.)

A couple in silhouette on a walking track against a sunrise with Cape Byron lighthouse on the left. Image credit: Hugh Stewart, Destination NSW
It’s worth getting up early for this sunrise. Image credit: Hugh Stewart, Destination NSW

Explore the hinterland

Tear yourself away from Byron’s beautiful beaches and explore the hinterland. This emerald-green swathe of country is an epic wonderland of birdlife, sub-tropical rainforests with rockpools and waterfalls, rolling hills and sensational views. Take a daytrip to check out the scenery, the quirky villages and the sensational local produce. Hike to the summit of Wollumbin Mount Warning or the top of Minyon Falls. Grab a few things for a picnic then head to the tables at Rocky Dam.

Aerial view of misty green rolling hills in Byron Bay’s hinterland. Image credit: Destination NSW
Spend a day – or more – exploring Byron’s hinterland. Image credit: Destination NSW

Hang out at the Market

If you’re on a budget, hanging out at Byron’s famous community market is a perfect way to spend a day. This bustling market is bursting with atmosphere – there’s live entertainment, artisan wares, and a lively community spirit. Grab yourself a snack or an armful of local produce to feast on later – who needs expensive restaurants, anyway?! The market is usually held on the first Sunday of the month. There’s also a quarterly beachside market, and on Saturday nights over the summer months, a twilight market.

People browsing stalls framed with trees at Byron Community Market. Image credit: Destination NSW
Byron’s markets are a budget-friendly must-do. Image credit: Destination NSW

Tour the Farm

The Farm, just outside Byron is a foodie hotspot, famous for its gorgeous cafe situated right within its working farm. If the budget doesn’t stretch to an epic lunch, a good alternative is the free self-guided tour. You’ll see the crops they grow, the beehives and all the farm animals. Just pick up a map at the entrance and go exploring. If you visit in the morning, you’re welcome to join the farmers as they head out to feed the pigs (a great activity if you’re travelling with the kids).

A wooden information sign pointing to different areas of The Farm, Byron Bay. Image credit: Destination NSW
All signs point to something gorgeous at The Farm. Image credit: Destination NSW

Get to the galleries

It’s no surprise that creative Byron is home to many an artist, so go on a gallery crawl to check out the local scene. There are plenty of small galleries to explore but Lone Goat Gallery is Byron’s big one. You’ll find it within the Byron Bay Library building, where it hosts exhibitions, artists talks and workshops. The gallery focuses on artists of the Northern Rivers region, but also showcases national and international works. Photography lovers should head to award-winning ocean photographer Craig Parry’s gallery on Jonson Street.

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