Guys, you know when you just yearn to go back somewhere? One of those places where all you have is amazing memories and just a feeling of utter calm? Yeah, well that was Byron Bay for me. Don’t get me wrong, I loved the other places we went in Australia too. But Byron Bay, that was just what I needed.
After about 10 days in Australia, we headed on the road to drive up to Byron Bay from Canberra. This was the perfect time as I had spent the other 10 days seeing loads of friends, getting ill and still thinking about work and life. I was finally starting to chill out and just totally relax. After the long drive up the coast, we pulled into our home for the next 6 nights – Elements of Byron.
Elements was pretty much one of those dream destinations, alongside Byron itself. But I’ll get to Byron Bay in another post. For this one, let’s focus on the hotel. The hotel is made up of little villas all set out in the greenery. This meant we got a villa with two bedrooms and en suites, then a lounge room and kitchen in the middle joining the two. I much prefer staying in a set up like this when travelling with friends and family as it means you have a place to relax that isn’t stuck inside one of the bedrooms. It was the ideal place to base ourselves for the week.
We spent a good couple of days just chilling out in the hotel itself, because, why not! It had a huge pool area surrounded by sun loungers and big covered beds, perfect for relaxing in the sunshine. And the bar did pool side service which made it all so much better. But that wasn’t the best bit, if you wandered down from the pool and a minute away from our villa, well you got to this…
Ahhhh. I mean can anything be better than that view? I really don’t think so. The hotel had sun loungers near by so you can sit and watch the crashing waves. Plus from 4-7pm they did sunset beach cocktails, which I have to say we managed to attend pretty often in our stay there! I think my favourite thing ever may be sitting on that beach with my family and Paul drinking cocktails (as I sit in a cold, dark London flat, it is literally a world away!).
As for the food at Elements, it was pretty fab. They include continental breakfast as part of your room rate. It was a pretty impressive continental though, full of croissants, pastries, different types of bread (banana – yes!) along with heaps of meat and cheese. I definitely didn’t miss a full English in the warm mornings. The main eating area in Elements is really open plan with giant windows out to the pool area so it feels like you’re eating outside. If you did fancy a bigger breakfast then you could order off the menu which I did a couple of times, as apparently I can’t go more than about 3 days without avocado on toast.
We ended up being in Byron for New Years Eve. We weren’t tempted by the street party in Byron town centre, though we did have a little wander round the stalls during the day. So we decided to keep in simple and stay in the resort to bring in New Year. We went to the main restaurant for a late dinner which ended up being really lovely – a crispy flavourful salmon (alongside avocado, I pretty much ate fish and seafood for the entire trip!). We also hit up the cocktail list which was fabulous. There was a firework ban in Byron for New Year so although we didn’t bring in the New Year with fireworks, a gorgeous sparking shiraz from the Canberra wine region was a pretty good alternative.
One of the highlights of the trip was then dragging myself out of bed at 6.30am to head to sunrise yoga. As it’s the middle of summer, by 7am the sun is very much risen. But it’s still relatively low in the sky so it is a perfect temperature in shorts and t-shirt to do some yoga. The yoga took place where they hold the weddings at the hotel, with the view out over the beach and to the sea. It was a mix of yoga styles and included some yin yoga which I’ve not done much of before. I even managed to drag mum along for her first taste of yoga and she definitely enjoyed it.
On our last day at Elements, I decided that it was time for something special… a trip to the spa of course! The spa at Byron is so gorgeous. Each of the treatment rooms is able to open up to the outside garden where there is a small bench to sit on. This then links into a main room with the bed and a bathroom with a waterfall shower. My treatment started outside with a foot ritual whilst sitting on the bench and choosing an intention for the treatment – mine of course, was destressing (though I have to say by this point in the holiday I was pretty chilled!!).
This was then followed by a body scrub which I always find a bit odd. But then it’s also kind of like a painful massage so is strangely satisfying?! You then have to shower the scrub off before continuing with the ‘floral hydrating cocoon’. This basically means slathering on a gorgeous moisturing cream before being wrapped in a big muslin cloth. While that sinks in, the facial begins, always a favourite with various concoctions being popped on the face. It was the first facial I’ve had where they used quartz rollers which were lovely on the face, I’m tempted to buy one! It was also nice and soothing on my very small spots of sunburn.
Overall, it was honestly such an amazing week at Elements of Byron. I have nothing but fond memories of white sand, cocktails by the pool, many a croissant and a gorgeous room. The staff there were fantastic all week – helping with all of our food bookings and giving some fab recommendations. If you are going to Australia then you definitely need to stop in Byron Bay – more about the town and things to see and do coming up on the blog soon!
Have you been to Byron Bay?