Byron Bay is quite an accentric seaside town as the vibe is sort of hippy/surfer and nearby there is a place called Nimbin where weed is a big thing there. Its still illegal to smoke but accepted more in Nimbin than other places as there are a lot of hippy/groovy people with their tie-dye clothes and mad hair! Its rather obvious that Vicky and I didnt go to Nimbin.
Byron Bay is a stretch of road that takes about 15 mins to walk from one end to the other. Full of little boutiquey shops, cafes and restaurants, clubs and bars, its a really chilled out place and we plan to spend over 1 week here.
We tried to book accomodation in Surfers Paradise but everywhere was full so Peter Hill called Holiday Village Backpackers as they are the sister hostel to see if they had any room. They hadnt but when they are full they open up the TV room to sleep 8 people so we managed to get a spot in there for the night. Its the communal TV room that converts into a bedroom at 10:30 with matresses on the floor. The Oz bus dropped us off at about 6:30ish, its only a 2 hour journey but then we had to move our clocks forward an hour aswell as we left Queensland and were in New South Wales, and all the poeple on the bus were meeting in Cheeky Monkeys so we planned to go there as we couldnt make the TV room our own with it being communal.
Cheeky Monkeys was mental. They were playing loads of weird games and giving away bar tabs, money, a frasier island trip and a skydive. It was very entertaining!
We planned to stay in Byron Bay so long as we only have Sydney left and we didnt want to spend alot of time there due to it being a big city and rather expensive. We stayed in the hostel for 3 nights, 2 of them spent in the TV room.
On the Monday we transferred to 1st Sun Holiday Park as we wanted to camp to save some money. We had already paid for the site the day before so we were commited and unfortunatly the day we had to set up camp was the day it started to rain, all day for the next 3-4 days. Unlucky! Setting up the tent was a nightmare and if it wasnt for our neighbours, Amy and Blake we would have been in right trouble. They lent us a tarpauling to put over the tent to keep the rain off as we now know the tent isnt waterproof and then gave us rope and pegs! They were so so helpful and they were our saviours!
As it was raining most of the time we couldnt spend time down the beach so we just mooched around the town and looked in all of the really cute shops.
November 18th (Sam's Bday)- I woke up in the tent on another rainy day and thought 'Oh well its my bday today and I'm in Oz!) Vicky and I went out for lunch and had some really good breaded mushrooms and she surprised me with loads of little gifts! I wasnt expecting anything but she did a really good job! In the afternoon we went out for coffee with Amy (the girl in the tent next to us) and then we bought the goon and started to get ready for a night out! We went to Cheeky Monkeys where dancing on the tabeles is allowed and they are made out of non slip metal for your safety!! It was a great night and we piled into the tent at about 2am as our feet were killing us. We hadnt worn heels for so long!
For the rest of the week we lunched quite alot and when it was sunny for the last few days we hit the beach and also went to see the lighthouse. We werent sure wether is was worth going as its such a long way to walk there and back so we asked a couple in the holiday park and they said that they would give us a lift which was so lovely of them. That was we only needed to walk back! Result! The view from the lighthouse was amazing. You could see for miles and it was all open blue water. We saw 2 sharks down below and walked to the most Eastery point of Australia. The views were gorgous as you could see all of Byron Bay! The walk back was hard as it was hot and sunny and most of it was uphill. When we hit flat ground on the beach it was nice to walk on and the sea was really warm. We were about a 45 minute walk from main Byron Bay and when we got back we were pretty exhausted so spent the rest of the day chilling out!
On one of the nights we went to the Beach Hotel with Amy, Blake and Blake's brother. Its a really cool hotel that plays live music untill 11pm. The night that we were there was probably the best as there was a band that was paying the didgaree-doo (We have no idea how that is spelt but that will do) with drums and a beat and all the lights were going and they were a really good band. I wasnt feeling to great so I left the guys to it and headed back to the tent. The week that we were in Byron it was Schoolies for most 17-18 year old aussi students who had finished school. They all head to coast for about 1 week to party, get drunk and be very noisy!! Apparently there were 25,000 in Surfers Paradise. So Byron was pretty packed. Vicky and the others went to a bar/club called Cocomangas where they sold there drinks in Jam-Jars, how cool! Vicky got back to the tent pretty late (or early) after a good nite and headed down to the beach for a bit and said it was nice to see the sun come up... yes thats right people she was out until 5:30am...dirty stop-out! (only joking)
There was one night where the weather was awful. It was after a really pleasent day where the sun was shining all day. The sky suddenly turned really dark and there was thunder and lightening, then massive gusts of wind and raging rain. We were having dinner up in the kitchens and suddenly wandered if the tent would be ok as its not the most stable of tents! When we got back to the tent the cover had blown out and the pegs had been ripped from the ground. The inside of the tent was soaked and we ended up having to move our stuff to Amy and Blake's tent and moping out the rain. What a nightmare, we didnt let it get us down though, even though our sleeping bags were soaked. It was a rough night as the rain and wind was so heavy and wild! The lightening was sheet lightening and lit up the whole campsite. It was so amazing yet scary. We half expected to see all our stuff scattered around the campsite! We were joking at dinner that this would be our last meal of bread and butter incase we got swept away by the storm..bad times!
We had to leave for Sydney at 8:00am and we had to pack up the tent aswell in the morning so instead of walking to the bus stop Blake kindly took us in his van.. honestly they are the nicest couple you could ever meet! For some reason it was 8:15am and the bus hadnt picked us up yet so we called Oz to tell them we were waiting and the bus turned around and came back for us and he couldnt find us.. Thank goodness!
Its a long old journey to Sydney so we are stopping at Surf Camp!