From budget backpacker hostels to bed and breakfasts, quaint cottages to cool cabins, Byron has all sorts of accommodation to choose from. But if you want to push the boat out and pamper yourself, here are five of its finest boutique options.
Set in a perfectly quiet pocket of the Bay, Raes on Wategos is a Byron institution – and after a recent refurbishment, it is dreamier than ever. The most private of all the local hotels, Raes is rightly so a favourite with local and international celebrities alike. The Spanish Mission-inspired complex features one villa, two penthouses and four suites, meaning it’s quite the low-key affair. The service is personalised and discreet, and it won’t be long before the staff know your name, your coffee order and, by the evening, your favourite cocktail. Its award-winning restaurant overlooks Wategos Beach and is all about contemporary Australian with a Mediterranean influence, showcasing local and seasonal produce.
The larger and newer kid on the block, Elements of Byron Resort & Spa has quickly become one of the Bay’s favourites. Located along Belongil Beach and surrounded by 50 acres (20 hectares) of native bushland, Elements of Byron is a place of true respite and tranquility. And it’s big on style. The spacious villas are airy, with timber floors and all the mod cons you could need. Meanwhile, other highlights of the hotel include its swim-up tequila bar at the adults-only pool and beach lounges surrounding the gorgeous lagoon pool, which is the jewel in Elements’ crown.
A strong contender for Australia’s best luxury resort, Byron at Byron is the benchmark five-star hotel in the area with its 92 suites, infinity pool, award-winning day spa and restaurant. It’s pure luxury at its core while still at one with nature, being in the middle of the magical subtropical rainforest for 45 acres (18 hectares). It’s a must-visit for foodies as well, with new executive chef Matt Kemp bringing his Michelin pedigree to the Asian- and European-style menu.
The Bower is built on one of Byron Bay’s original properties and founded on the pillars of beauty and simplicity. With a grey and white colour palette running throughout, it’s a minimalist’s paradise and a place of serious home inspiration. When not soaking up and snapping pictures of the interior, its mineral swimming pool surrounded by tall palms is where you’ll want to spend the bulk of your time. Keeping it casual, there’s no sit-down restaurant, but gourmet breakfast, lunch and dinner hampers are prepared on request with goodies like goat cheese and pumpkin frittatas.
The perfect mix of style and comfort, The Villas of Byron is a private oasis – designed and furnished to a modern Balinese theme. Located right in the heart of Byron among the natural rainforest, you’ll find private courtyards and heated mineral pools, pop-up candlelit dinners prepared by a personal chef and signature pamper treatments. The Villas offers an unparalleled guest experience, making it the perfect place to retreat and recharge. And for something extra special, there’s even a Romantic Turndown service, in which staff will light 100 candles, run a rose petal bath and serve up champagne on ice. Cue Marvin Gaye…
Destinations Unlocked:Let our travel expert Stefano help you find your perfect Culture trip
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.
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Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
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.