Last updated: September 12, 2021
The Byron Bay Lighthouse walk, otherwise known as the Cape Byron walking track, is a scenic 4 km track to one of the most iconic landmarks in the Byron Shire, the Cape Byron Lighthouse.
The track also passes the most easterly point of the Australian mainland, which is the perfect location to spot dolphins and whales.
In this article, we are going to share the highlights of this exciting walking track and where best to start.
|Byron Bay Lighthouse Walk|
|Distance:||4 km (circuit)|
|Time:||2-3 hours (including stops)|
|Grade:||Easy (some steep sections)|
How to Get There
A holiday break in Byron Bay is not complete without a visit to the iconic lighthouse on Cape Byron.
You can drive up Cape Byron to go and see the lighthouse from close by, but the best way to explore the natural beauty of this area is by doing the Byron Bay Lighthouse circuit walk, also known as the Cape Byron Walking Track.
Hiking to the top of the hill will give you the best views of the beaches in Byron Bay, the rainforest, and the cliffs around Cape Byron.
A good spot to start this beautiful must-do walk is on Bay Street (see map location here) at the Main Beach, from where you can follow the walking path heading east. This path turns into a comfortable boardwalk once it hits Lighthouse Road, offering great views of the long beach behind you.
Paid parking is available on the streets in Byron Bay. Unpaid street parking is available a bit further away from the town centre but still within walking distance.
Cape Byron Walking Track Notes
We are going to describe the Cape Byron loop walk in a clockwise manner, starting from Byron Bay’s main beach.
In the map below, we have marked the following highlights along the walk:
- Fisherman’s Lookout
- Wategos Beach
- Little Wategos Track
- Cape Byron Lighthouse
- Tallow Ridge Track
1. Fisherman’s Lookout
The first interesting stop along the walk is the Fisherman’s Lookout, which can be accessed by doing a little detour from the main track.
This detour brings you to the northern end of Byron’s Main Beach from where you can walk up the steps to the Fisherman’s Lookout.
While the views from the Fisherman’s Lookout aren’t mind-blowing by any means, it’s still a very pretty area to visit.
The lookout is located next to The Pass, a surfers hotspot with excellent surf breaks.
If you’re feeling a bit hungry at this point, The Pass Cafe is located just behind the beach on Brooke Drive. This popular cafe has a nice outside deck with great views, a nice spot to relax for a bit.
Otherwise, keep following the main walking track towards Wategos Beach.
2. Wategos Beach
The next section heading to Wategos Beach is perhaps the best part of the Byron Bay Lighthouse walk.
The track goes uphill, offering panoramic views of Byron Bay’s Main Beach and The Pass in the west, and Wategos Beach in the east.
Wategos Beach is a sheltered, family-friendly stretch of sand, one of Byron Bay’s most popular beaches with beautifully clear water and great waves.
The facilities are excellent too, with BBQs, picnic tables and toilet and shower blocks. Dolphins also love hanging out at this beach!
3. Little Wategos Track
Often overlooked, the Little Wategos Track is a nice detour that brings you to a rocky lookout point offering amazing views of Cape Byron.
Little Wategos Beach is Australia’s easternmost beach and is only accessible via this walking track. Although you can also walk or swim there from Wategos Beach when it’s low tide.
Only 150 metres long, Little Wategos is a quiet and well-protected beach, perfect for swimming and sun bathing away from the bigger crowds.
4. Cape Byron Lighthouse
From Little Wategos Beach, the main track brings you up the hill towards the lighthouse. This is where the path passes the easternmost point of the Australian mainland, from where you may even be able to spot some whales and dolphins.
Once you reach the lighthouse, you can have a peak inside and learn more about its history. The cafe next door serves great coffee, cakes and ice cream!
Completed in 1901, the Byron Bay Lighthouse (aka Cape Byron Light) is Australia’s most easterly as well as most powerful lighthouse. Still active today, the lighthouse became fully automated in 1989.
Accommodation is also available, at the heritage-listed Assistant Lighthouse Keepers’ Cottages next to the lighthouse. While not cheap, it’s a very unique spot to spend a few nights in the Byron Bay area.
5. Tallow Ridge Track
After visiting the lighthouse, it’s time to head back to town. Follow Lighthouse Road towards the south and enjoy the scenic views of Tallow Beach down below.
The northern tip of this beach, also known as the Cosy Corner, is a surfing hot spot with surf breaks protected from the northerly winds.
The last section of the Byron Bay Lighthouse walk is the Tallow Ridge track, a short but scenic walking track through rainforest.
The track connects with Lighthouse Rd from where it’s only a short stroll to the Byron Bay town centre where you can enjoy a well-deserved bite and a drink.