Monday, May 21, 2007

Australia - Byron Bay

I flew up to Ballina on a cheap Jetstar flight from Sydney on Wed 9th May. From there I took a shuttle bus about half an hour to the coastal town of Byron Bay. Byron is a real alternative, hippy, surfer chill out kind of town. Excellent! I checked into the Arts Factory Lodge, and stayed in a surf schack ( The plan was to hang around until my sister Rhian and her other half, Peter, arrived to meet me. The waves in Byron are perfect for surfing, so I went and hired a board and shortie wetsuit. Due to the strong rips, potential shark threat and heavy break, I decided to go with a group rather than on my own. After about 4 hours in the water I had caught a few good waves, but the rips were so strong that we had to keep getting out and walking back up the beach to start again. Exhausted, I called it a day and went back to the accomodation. Rhian and Peter arrived in the evening after a mammoth 29 hour journey from Belfast to Sydney, and then on to Byron. We spent the evening in the Arts factory bar catching up and having a few beers ;) It was great to see them and I couldn't believe how strange it was to see them, so far away from home.

The next day Peter and myself both went down and hired out the surf boards and wetsuits and again went with the group. The same thing happened as the previous day, but with sorer muscles for me! Later that day the entire afternoon was spent organising the trip up the coast to Cairns.