You’ll find the best coffee in Byron at this shack on the top of a hill abutting some of Byron’s grandest homes. A post-surf-or-swim breakfast burger is non-negotiable and if you don’t nab a table (it’s busy from 6.30am), do as the locals and sit on the grass by the road for a makeshift picnic.
At the entrance of a camping ground in a converted weatherboard cottage is Folk, a secret well kept until now. The nourishing bowls are top notch.
Love Byron Bay
Stop by this tiny chocolate shop for locally-made artisanal treats, which will serve your sweet tooth and make great souvenirs. Order crepes or decadent raw desserts to go.
Three Blue Ducks at The Farm
Drive 10 minutes out of Byron town to The Farm, a co-op on the edge of the highway. There you’ll find an outpost of Bronte’s famous Three Blue Ducks restaurant, headed by chef-owner Darren Robertson (he was there flipping burgers on the outdoor BBQ the day we visited), where all the ingredients are sourced on the farm. While you wait for a table, stock up on fresh produce, pick up a bunch of flowers, order some takeaway desserts for later or enjoy a tour of the property.
The hardest-to-book table in the region – a reservation must be made weeks before – and with good reason. Fleet is a 20-seater in the sleepy town of Brunswick Heads, 20-minute drive from Byron, but what it lacks in size, it makes up for in originality.
When it’s not booked for weddings, Fig Tree serves an always-changing Australian-Japanese hybrid degustation meal using local-only ingredients. The restaurant is in the original farmhouse, while a walk between courses is encouraged to admire the gardens.
Harvest Newrybar, a 20-minute drive from Byron, combines a restaurant, bakery and deli in three restored cottages overlooking beautiful grounds. The sourdough and pastries are baked on-site and most produce is locally sourced. Don’t miss Newrybar Merchants across the road.
As one of Byron’s busiest breakfast and lunch spots, the service at Bayleaf can be slow (call it ‘Byron time’) but the throwback tunes and super-satisfying meals compensate generously. Our favourite touch is the vegemite salt. Oh, and if you’re in a rush to get to the surf, there’s a takeaway counter next door.
Barrio opened in December 2017 within the new Habitat retail complex, neighbouring Byron Bay’s Arts and Industry Estate. It has since become the place to go for flavoursome Mediterranean fare and arguably the best charcoal chicken on Australia’s East Coast. Before or after your feed, browse the complex—you’ll no doubt leave with more than just a full stomach so irresistible are the beautiful boutiques.
Roadhouse, on the outskirts of town, is the scene-iest drinking hole in Byron Bay. Whisky is their speciality but the excellent and uber-healthy food menu (daily raw cakes, steamed greens, tasting boards, bone broth, mushroom shakes) is equally worthy of your hardest-to-please taste buds.
In the heart of Byron Bay, Miss Margarita is a colourful, crowded Mexican cantina with straight-off-the-sand vibes. Expect queues from 5pm when Happy Hour starts.
A café by day (Downtown) and a degustation-only restaurant by night (Uptown), Town is in the centre of Bangalow, a quaint hinterland town 20 minutes drive from Byron.
Punch and Daisy
For the best baristas in Mullumbimby, visit Punch and Daisy, roughly 25 minutes from Byron Bay. Sit in the homely gravel courtyard out the back for lunch (highly recommended: the haloumi burger) and you’ll probably stay for a slice of cake.
100 Mile Table
Central to this small café in the Byron Bay Arts and Industry Estate is a long communal table piled high with books and locals dining on its famed curry over lunch meetings.
Real food and real gelato are the drawcards at Milk Bar in Brunswick Heads. If it’s a sunny day, cool off in Simpsons Creek – you won’t be the only one.