Bay is a town in the state of New South Wales
on the eastern most point of the mainland of Australia.
The town is the nucleus of Byron Shire, which
has in excess of 30,000 people (ABS est. 2003).
Captain James Cook named Cape Byron after circumnavigator
John Byron, grandfather of English poet Lord Byron.
Bay is located 600 km north of Sydney and 140
km south of Brisbane. Cape Byron, a headland adjacent
to the town, is the most easterly point of Australia.
The Cape Byron lighthouse was opened in 1901,
and has the most powerful beacon in Australia
(2,200,000 cd, visible to a range of 27 nm).
town has several beautiful beaches with fantastic
surf and it is a resort popular with both domestic
and international tourists, including backpackers,
who travel along the Australian coast and the
magnificent scenery attracts sky divers. The area
is also noted for its wildlife, with the whale
watching industry a significant contributor to
the local economy.
Bay is the place where the temperate and tropical
waters merge, making it one of the top spots to
go scuba diving and snorkelling in Australia.
Most diving happens at Julian Rocks, which is
now part of the recently established Cape Byron
Marine Park and only a few minutes boat ride from
town is popular with visitors and residents from
all socio-economic backgrounds and walks of life.
It is famous for its laid back and alternative
lifestyle, but also has a higher proportion of
Baby Boomers (27%) than any other town in Australia.
Bay is a small part of an ancient shield volcano,
the Tweed Volcano, which erupted 23 million years
ago. It formed as a result of the Indo-Australian
Plate moving over the East Australia hotspot 23
million years ago, and is now part of the giant
shield volcano's eroded caldera.
it became a renowned surfing
and tourist spot, Byron Bay had a history of primary
industrial production (dairy factory, abattoirs,
whaling until 1963, fishing) and was a significant,
but hazardous, sea port. The town was established
in the 1870s and was originally known as Cavanbah.
The lighthouse was built in 1901 and at that time
was relatively inaccessible from the town. The
beginning of Bryon Bay's modern shape occurred
in the late 1950s and early 1960s when surfers
from Sydney 'discovered' the warm blue waters
and good quality surf. In following years, the
attractions of the area became more and more widely
known, with an attendant increase in tourism.
Progressively the notoriously smelly whaling station
and abattoirs closed down, as did the Norco dairy
factory, which was once the largest such facility
such as yoga retreats, pagan gatherings and music
festivals, including the East Coast Blues &
Roots Music Festival and Splendour in the Grass,
are based in Byron Bay.
Annual events links
East Coast Blues & Roots Music Festival (During
* Splendour in the Grass
* The Byron Bay Writers Festival
* Byron Bay Film Festival
* Byron Underwater Festival (2008 - 30 April to
The Byron Shire Echo The Byron Shire Echo (Independent
* The Byron Shire News (APN weekly A3)
* The Northern Star (APN daily)
* The Saturday Star (Independent A5 monthly)
* 2LM 900 AM (commercial)
* Triple Z FM 100.9 (commercial)
* Triple J 96.1 FM
* ABC Radio National 96.9 FM
* ABC Classic FM 95.3 FM
* ABC Northern Rivers 94.5 FM
* Bay FM, (community). (Credit:
Byron Shire, covering an area of 566 square kilometres,
is located at Australia's eastern-most point,
180km south of Brisbane, 800km north of Sydney.
are a number of towns and villages in the shire, which
has a population of 30,724 (Source: ABS, 2004), 30%
living in rural areas. The annual growth rate is 2%,
with a rate base of 13,800.
is sourced largely from tourism and agriculture. An
estimated 1.7 million tourists visit each year. Thriving
home-based businesses focus on alternative, cultural
and knowledge industries, with a growing population
of artists, writers and filmmakers.
area is famed for its rural beauty and its beaches.
Body and Spirit