5 Byron Bay Beach Cafés Loved by Locals
Byron Bay on the East Coast of Australia is known for its golden sands and reliable waves | © David Young / Alamy Stock Photo
Byron Bay’s biggest draw is its beaches, enjoyed by sun-seekers and surfers who come from all over the world. In fact, Byron Shire has more than 30 kilometres of soft sand, split into tiny coves, dog-friendly beaches and surf haunts with huge waves. When you get peckish, here are five popular beach cafés in Byron Bay where you can grab a bite to eat.
Byron Bay’s beaches are a big draw for surfers © Ken Welsh / Alamy Stock Photo
Beach Byron Bay
Restaurant, Australian, $$$
This restaurant is one of Byron Bay’s best for oceanfront dining, co-owned by Byron restaurateurs Ben and Belinda Kirkwood and the lavish Fink Group. The eatery is set on the dunes of Clarke’s Beach, offering views of the Pacific, and was rebranded in 2016 with an Italian-inspired menu created by award-winning chef David Lovett. Top dishes feature slow-cooked Bangalow pork neck, handmade pasta, wood-grilled fish mains and Fremantle octopus. Visit the takeaway kiosk to pick up picnic supplies including fish and chips, a bacon and egg roll or spaghetti and tomato jaffles (toasties). The menu is based around local ingredients sourced from farmers’ markets in the area.
The Pass Café
Cafe, Australian, $$$
This café overlooks Pass Beach, known for its superb surf break, so you can order takeaway from the kiosk to enjoy by the waves, or stop to eat on the picnic tables. Pass Café is open for breakfast from 7am to 11.30am and lunch from 12pm to 2.30pm and is fully licensed to serve alcohol alongside hot drinks and fresh juices. The menu is heaving with breakfast staples like pancake stacks, eggs on sourdough and a hearty Brekky Burger, or you can opt for the healthy vegan Nourish Bowl, a mix of greens, roasted pumpkin and sweet potato. Lunch includes beer-battered fish and chips, salads and Wagyu beef burgers. There are also gluten-free and plant-based options for those with dietary requirements.
Restaurant, Seafood, $$$
Fishheads enjoys a prime position near Main Beach, with a deck overlooking Julian Rocks, Mount Warning and Cape Byron Lighthouse. True to its name, Fishheads specialises in the freshest seafood and operates seven days a week for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Once a bathers’ pavilion built in 1951, the building was refurbished over 15 years ago with a contemporary feel. There’s also an oyster bar and takeaway service so you can eat on the beach. The menu at Fishheads is full to bursting with seafood delights, including salt and pepper squid, a creamy seafood chowder, fish tacos, kingfish sashimi and, of course, fish and chips. If you’re feeling extra hungry, opt for the Fishheads ultimate seafood platter to gorge on prawns, soft shell crab, salmon, squid, oysters, mussels and Turkish bread. Stir-fry and Caribbean curry will satisfy veggies, and there’s a selection of other meat dishes if you’re not in the mood for fish.
Beach Hotel lies close to Main Beach and although the restaurant doesn’t have direct views of the sea, it’s just a couple of minutes from the sand. This Byron Bay institution has been operating for over 25 years and provides live entertainment, accommodation and a pub-style eatery: Beach Kitchen. One of the highlights is the atmospheric beer garden, where you can have breakfast, lunch or dinner. Choose from a range of burgers and salads, wood-fired pizzas, nachos, seafood and curry. The portions are big, and there’s an extensive drinks menu specialising in craft beers and cocktails.
Treehouse on Belongil
Restaurant, Fusion, $$$
Set just back from Belongil Beach, Treehouse is a great option for beach takeaways. There’s also a tropical garden where you can chill out with a meal, be it a breakfast of sourdough toast, a seafood lunch or nachos accompanied by live music every Thursday to Sunday. Treehouse also boasts a wood-fired pizza oven and a bar with all manner of beers, ciders, spirits, cocktails and a substantial wine list.
These recommendations were updated on April 29, 2020 to keep your travel plans fresh.