Living and Working in Byron Bay
Byron Bay is a holiday destination and beautiful place to live. Whether staff choose to base themselves on the coast in Byron Bay or one of the nearby coastal or hinterland villages, life has a slower pace here and provides the opportunity to enjoy the subtropical climate. While this can mean a culture shock for those moving from a more hectic city lifestyle, those prepared for a change of pace tend to enjoy the peaceful and laid back vibe.
Some elements of city life are still available, for example great coffee and dining, while others such as large shopping centres and nightlife can be accessed in the cities of Brisbane or the Gold Coast, located 1-2 hours drive to the north. The area also boasts a strong cultural calendar, with festivals and events scheduled throughout the year.
Location and Getting There
Byron Bay is located on the easternmost point in Australia, on the far north coast of NSW. It is approximately two hours drive south of the capital of Queensland, Brisbane, 1½ hours drive south of Surfers Paradise, and 10 hours drive north of Sydney.
Dual carriageway upgrades will soon be complete from Brisbane to Byron Bay on the north-south Pacific Highway. Plans are advanced for the upgrade of the highway south to Ballina. East-west regional highways open the shire to hinterland destinations.
A range of private transport companies provide regional passengers services for the resident population as well as airport shuttle services for tourists. Flights are available from most capital cities in Australia to the Gold Coast Airport at Coolangatta and drive 45 minutes south to Byron Bay. Services are plentiful on QANTAS, Jetstar and Virgin Blue.
Alternatively fly to Ballina/Byron Airport from Sydney on Virgin, Jetstar or Rex Air (flights daily) or direct flights from Melbourne with Jetstar (three times a week). The Byron at Byron Resort and Spa is approximately 25 minutes north of Ballina/Byron Airport. Rental cars are available at both Gold Coast and Ballina Airports.
Byron Bay enjoys a pleasant climate with warm summers and mild winters. The average summer maximum temperature is around 27 degrees celsius with a minimum of around 20 degrees. Winter temperatures average around 20 degrees (maximum) and 12 degrees (minimum). Winters tend to be drier and sunny making this a pleasant time to participate in outdoor activities.
General hospitals are located at Lismore and Tweed Heads with smaller hospitals located in Byron Bay, Mullumbimby and Ballina. Gold Coast and Brisbane emergency and specialist services are accessible. Private hospitals are located in Lismore and on the Gold Coast.
Southern Cross University and the North Coast Institute of TAFE offer a wide-ranging menu of courses through a range of campuses. Distance programs are available through the full range of institutions. Byron Bay is well-served by a range of public and private schools within the region. Day care services are available at various locations throughout the shire.
In the 2006 Census (held on 8th August 2006), there were 28,766 persons usually resident in Byronshire: 14,146 (49.2%) residents were male and 14,620 (50.8%) were female.