Monday, March 17, 2014

Foneymoon in Byron Bay

Yep, that's not a typo. Foneymoon, as in a honeymoon with your family. It could of been funnymoon as in haha funny, but there was nothing to laugh about spending your first week as husband and wife with your in laws as well. Others were maybe laughing, but we were just happy to spend the relaxing time with them since they had travelled so far to see us.

The morning after the wedding Gaffa and I enjoyed our buffet breakfast at the Sofitel. Even after a yummy 4 course reception lunch at Limani's followed by an 8+ course chinese banquet for dinner, we were still able to fit in breakfast. Who can resist real honey, french toast, gluten free options, fresh fruit and juice.... mmm...

Anyway, The Spot was kind enough to drop us off at the airport and we arrived in Ballina to collect our rental car for the week.

We hired a holiday house from just outside of the main Byron Bay town, at a cute little village called Suffolk Park. The beach was a short walk across the road and through the trees, and the house had a pool, bbq area and even better: Gaffa and I got the master bedroom complete with ensuite and rain shower :)

The week was spent lazing around at the local beaches, exploring the main town, getting massages, enjoying the local organic and gluten free foods, bbq dinners, a kayak trip to find dolphins, a trip to Crystal Castle, and watching the sun rise at the lighthouse.

The best places that I recommend in Byron Bay are:

Top Shop. This place has delicious burgers and coffee. Yep, I drank their coffee and enjoyed it! (It was a mocha though). Their breakfast burgers and lunch burgers are great. They have quinoa and gluten free buns as well.

Bay Leaf. Nice place for brunch and coffee too. Gaffa preferred the coffee here to Top Shop.

Naked Treaties. Across the road from Bay Leaf,  this organic, gluten free, sugar free, vegan cafe sells raw treats that are just so moreish. Yum yum. We went there almost every day. Fresh coconuts and a slice of cake to end the day: bliss!

Massage: there are a lot of massage therapists in Byron and we drove around to find a nice one that was available, but some were closed, relocating or busy. We found one upstairs from Surf Dive & Ski. (Sorry can't remember the name). It was quite good and they did a special deal for 2 people,  so we went back again the next day.  Normally I don't like massages because they tickle or hurt. But the lady went gentle on me and it was quite relaxing,  so much I fell sleep both times.

Crystal Castle.  Only a 40 minute drive from Byron Bay,  it's well worth the visit. Filled with beautiful gardens, peaceful surroundings to meditate and reflect and pretty crystals to chanel your inner self.

Lighthouse. Byron Bay is the most easterly point of Australia,  so you can be the first person to see the sun rise over uninterrupted views of the vast ocean. Get there early because the car park does fill up and it is a bit of a walk. We brought some breakfast with us and watched the sun rise from the park bench. It was beautiful!

Any of the beaches in Byron are good. A beach is a beach to me. As long as it's not overcrowded and has nice sand to sunbake on. Obviously during summer the main beach car parks were packed and hard to find parking. But there's a whole coastline of white sand to explore, some great for surfers and others with calmer waters.

Gaffa, his cousin and I decided to spend one morning kayaking and dolphin watching. It was great to get out onto the water and do something different. Unfortunately we didn't see any dolphins but it was still good. We stopped off at small beach mid way and Gaffa and I capsized the kayak riding it in. Oopsies. But we had tim tams to make us feel better. They do let you go out again if you don't see dolphins the first time. Gaffa's cousin went again and was third time lucky at seeing them. 

I would definitely go to Byron Bay again. There are loads of running/walking tracks around the coast that we wanted to explore but didn't have time to and markets as well. It's a really chilled out place, great to get a way from it all, relax, learn to surf, enjoy some organic food. The flights to Ballina are relatively inexpensive. I think we only paid $79 per person one way. We were thinking of driving up but we didnt have enough time. But there will definitely be a next time :)

Until then,, peace out bro!

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