In just over a month, my daughter will be three years old. It’s hard to believe really as it seems like just yesterday we were bringing her home and starting our lives together. The past three years have been as joyous as they have been tiring and while I’ve had many people tell me the importance of making time for myself, it’s something I’ve really struggled with. Firstly, because I genuinely love being around my daughter and staying away even for a night, fills me with dread; and secondly, because it’s near impossible to find the ‘right’ time.
So, when my friend Michele recently booked a trip to visit us in Byron, we decided to sneak off for a night to have some girl time—and I realised, you’re never too old to have a sleepover with your bestie.
We booked a night at Byron’s newest Air BnB, The Barefoot Bay Cottage, and honestly, we found it hard to leave. We had big plans for afternoon adventures in the beautiful bay followed by dinner, but once we arrived, we settled into the comforts of the cottage and opted for robes, pizza and good old Netflix.
The brains behind The Barefoot Bay Cottage is Melissa Bonney, owner of Sydney design studio The Designory and online store The Design Hunter and her partner, owner of a residential building business, so the attention to detail, styling and finishing touches are both luxe and considered. However as parents to a young family, the home is also welcoming and comfortable so you don’t feel guilty for kicking off your shoes and curling up on the couch, which is exactly what Michele and I did!
Situated in the heart of Byron Bay, it’s in the perfect position to get the best of the Bay. So, after spending our night chatting on the sofa for hours on end, Michele and I made the most of our time together and explored some of my favourite spots the following day.
Folk Byron Bay is a short drive (or walk) from the Barefoot Cottage and it does a really good, strong, delicious coffee to get you started for your day.
Start at The Pass and walk your way around the stunning coastline—past Wategos Beach and all the way up to the Lighthouse. You’re almost guaranteed to see whales and dolphins at this time of the year.
There are so many great options in Byron, but I tend to head back to Bayleaf Café over and over again. Always fresh, always tasty and the eggs are always perfectly runny.
A girl’s weekend wouldn’t be complete without a trip to Comma. This modern massage experience reminds you of the ‘sublime in stillness’ plus, the interiors are seriously inspiring—you’ll never want to leave!
Again, you’re spoilt for choice when it comes to dining options in Byron and its surrounds—from Harvest in Newrybar to Three Blue Ducks at the Farm to Doma in Federal, but for a relaxed lunch in the sun, nothing beats the bacon and egg roll at The Top Shop. Not the healthiest option, but it doesn’t ever disappoint.
Get inspired with a visit to some of the best homewares stores Byron has to offer—Pop & Scott, Pampa, Haveli— the Industrial Estate is packed with pockets of must-see shops that will leave you wanting to redecorate, stat.
Time for some fresh, salty air after a busy day of exploring. While there are options right along the north and south coasts—from Belongil to Captain Cooks, The Pass through to Wategos, my favourite spot is Broken Head. Tucked amongst the national park, and enroute to my home in Lennox, it’s not as picturesque as some of the other Bay beaches but has its own raw, natural beauty.
While heading to The Balcony for a vino followed by dinner at St Elmo would have been the perfect end to the perfect day, we opted for a rosè on my deck and a home-cooked meal by the hubby. Turns out home really is where the heart is, though a night away with my bestie was just the ‘me’ time I needed.