Let’s get one thing straight, there’s no bad place to stay when you’re visiting the Northern Rivers. The region is dotted with countless little towns full of Australian character, and it’s easy to find that perfect spot, whether you prefer to chill by the coast or want to lose yourself among the rain forest canopy. But if we absolutely had to pick our 10 favourite places to stay, the list would look a little something like this.
This is perhaps the most famous place to stay in the Northern Rivers and for good reason. The beaches surrounding Byron Bay are some of the best in Australia. While it can get busy in this small town, almost everyone has a chilled vibe that’s perfect for a weekend getaway.
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Looking for an expert's perspective?Uncover my top 3 recommended places from each continent on the map.
1. GuatemalaAn express adventure for those with limited time off. Prepare yourself incredible experiences. You will hike a volcano, visit mayan temples and witness a ceremony and take in beautiful colonial Antigua.
2. BelizeA quick trip not too far away for those seeking a relaxing mini break. You will have plenty of free time to relax but also some awesome activities to experience the rainforest and the caribbean sea.
3. MexicoAn exciting mini trip exploring the lesser known colonial towns of central Mexico. This is hte perfect trip for someone with limited time off and still wants to turn on explorer mode and do something different.
1. EcuadorA remarkable 8 days adventure through the Andes and the Amazon rainforest. The best choice for adventure seekers wishing to visit the 2 most iconic areas of South America, in only 1 week and no flights.
2. PeruAn alternative itinerary to classic Peru, from Cusco to Arequipa. This itinerary is great combination of highlights Cusco and Machu Picchu with the lesser known Arequipa and Colca Canyon.
1. ItalyThe ultimate Italian experience from the vibrant streets of Naples to the breathtaking sceneries of the Amalfi Coast followed by Matera and down to Puglia with its golden beaches, intense flavours and fascinating destinations.
2. ScotlandEmbark on this great adventure starting from London all the way to Scotland with a true Scottish experience made of breathtaking sceneries, whisky tasting and ..lots of fun! Ideal for train lovers and explorers.
3. PortugalA wonderful train journey around Portugal, from the romantic city of Porto to the Douro Valley, to the beautiful Aveiro all the way to Lisbon and Sintra. The perfect trip to train, culinary and culture lovers.
1. South KoreaDiscover incredible temples, mountains and modern cities on this 10 day adventure. This trip is perfect for those seeking immersion in the cuisine, culture and natural wonders of South Korea.
2. ThailandFrom Bankgok to Angkor Wat to Ho Chi Minh City and everything in between - adventure through the heart of South-East Asia. Taste the delights, see history brought to life and unwind on a Mekong River cruise.
3. Sri LankaA fantastic adventure that showcases Sri Lanka's fantastic landscapes, wildlife and flavours. With 3 epic rail journeys, 3 UNESCO heritage sites and time to relax, this trip has loads to offer at a great price
1. MoroccoAn epic journey across Morocco: from Casablanca to Marrakech, through the blue city of Chefchaouen to the wonders of the desert and deep to the High Atlas Mountains - this trip has it all! Ideal for true explorers!
2. EgyptFrom Cairo to Aswan, this trip brings the land of the pharaohs to life. You'll visit the Pyramids, Valley of the Kings and Luxor Temple and cruise down the Nile in style. This is the perfect way to explore Egypt.
Depending on what scene you most identify with, you’ll either remember this hinterland region for being the hometown of homegirl Iggy Azalea, having one of the highest ratios of yoga studio to residents in Australia or being the home of Crystal Castle, the country’s most spectacular crystal-themed attraction.
Nestled between the rolling green hills at the base of the McPherson Range, you’ll find this quaint little town of art deco-style buildings. It’s perfect anytime you want a relaxed coffee while browsing an antique store. To really see the town come to life, visit the farmers’ markets at the showgrounds on Wednesday morning.
This little counter-culture gem has a reputation for being the cannabis capital of Australia, but you’re probably more interested in experiencing its environmental experiments in permaculture and sustainability, right?
With 11vbreathtaking beaches within reach, this coastal town is certainly a must-stay spot for surfers, swimmers and sunbathers. Like much of the Northern Rivers, there’s an eclectic range of accommodation on offer, from tumble-down surf shacks to resorts oozing Versace-level decadence.
There are two reasons to stay at this unpretentious fishing village. In the morning, find yourself a table at Bruns Bakery, and do not leave until you’ve sampled all their amazing treats. And, in the evening, if the odds and bookings are in your favour, perch on one of Fleet’s 12 stools and enjoy their unrivalled, locally sourced degustation experience.
This is another under-appreciated picturesque hinterland gem. Many people stop in for a coffee on their way to the coast and get swept up in the charm of the 19-century streetscape. It’s easy to spend the whole day here traipsing from one verandah to the next, enjoying coffee, antiques and more.
Right on the edge of the Queensland/New South Wales border, this is the perfect destination for anyone who wants to enjoy the glitz and glamour of the Gold Coast one day, and the more earthy, relaxed charm of the Northern Rivers the next.
Lismore is one of the largest, most established towns in the Northern Rivers. With the region’s most established university close by, the town has developed a thriving arts scene, so there’s always something happening in these heritage buildings.
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Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.