When you’re on vacation, it’s difficult to know which are the best pubs in Byron Bay; after all, no one wants to waste money or be stuck in a bad bar all night. So we did the research for you and have compiled a list of the best Byron Bay pubs to enjoy a cold brew with your friends.
After a long day at the beach – surfing, swimming, or simply soaking up some sun (safely, of course! ), gathering with your fellow holiday mates at one of the Byron Bay pubs is the perfect way to end the day.
We have tallied what we believe are the best pubs in Byron Bay and a selection of MUST visit pubs if you are going for a holiday in the Byron Bay region.
The terrace is one of the reasons this pub, located in the hotel and known as Top Pub to locals, remains on the list of the best pubs in Byron Bay. It’s one of the best places in Byron Bay to sit, have a drink, and gaze out at the ocean (the location opposite Main Beach helps with the scenery).
The large beer garden has grassy areas as well as shaded tables and bar tables. Plus, if you stay on a Thursday, Friday, or Saturday night, the atmosphere will change as the live music or DJ begins. The best of both worlds – a great spot for a cold one and a fun night out!
The Northern front bar overlooks Byron’s main street in the heart of town, making it ideal for people watching and taking in the diversity of the Bay. During the day, heritage features and old-school traditional charm provide a relaxed atmosphere, while at night, the region’s best blues, rock, and folk performers grace the stage. Come in for a locally brewed ale, stay for dinner, and then party until the wee hours of the morning on the dance floor.
If the walls in the Northern’s famous Backroom could talk, they would say a lot about Australia’s live music scene and the musicians who keep it alive. The Backroom exudes undeniable energy as a result of over 30 years of rock n roll antics, huge personalities, die-hard fans, and musical highs. The Backroom has hosted everyone from the White Stripes to Bloc Party to PJ Harvey, while also supporting young local talent and having a philosophy that aims to bring Byron Bay quality free music with unrivalled sound and production.
This independent brewery was founded in 2008 by three locals and has since expanded to Murwillumbah. While the majority of the beer is now brewed in the second location, the pilot series and other limited release beers are still produced at the Byron brewery.
The brewery produces four beers all year, as well as seasonal, limited edition, and the most recent addition, the pilot series. Visitors can take a tour and sample the beers after seeing how they are made. The tour lasts approximately one hour. It costs $20 and must be reserved.
Stop by the brewery and ask for a tasting paddle if you’d rather just sit and try a few beers. You can also stop in if you’re on your way to the beach or back to your campsite.
4. The Railway
Once a railway station, now a drinking hole, the pub’s aesthetics haven’t changed much, featuring a ticket window that now handles beer orders and a beer garden overlooking decaying railway tracks.
Yes, it’s only a six-minute walk to the main drag of Byron Bay’s beach, but that’s not really its selling point. Railway Friendly Bar has been hosting live music seven evenings a week for 30 years. They’re also not finicky about genre, so if Monday’s funk doesn’t appeal to you, perhaps Tuesday’s blues or Friday’s rock sessions will.
Have you ever had an ale in Australia? Don’t worry, with over 20 beers on tap, the bar staff is well-versed in locating something to suit your tastes. The chef’s distinctive beef patties are a local favourite, but if you’re feeling adventurous, request the smoked kangaroo.
Amazing pubs a short drive from Byron Bay
The Suffolk Park Hotel (The Park) – Suffolk Park
The Suffolk Park Hotel is regarded throughout Byron Bay as “the spot where locals prefer to gather,” and it is the ideal place to unwind with friends and family. This family-run hotel, located just 5 kilometres south of Byron Bay, welcomes tourists from all around Australia and beyond.
Choose from their twin, triple, or family rooms for a relaxing stay in our modern accommodations. With so much to see and do nearby, The Suffolk Park Hotel will be your home away from home as you enjoy the natural beauty of the Byron Bay area.
The Eltham Hotel – Eltham
Enjoy a rural stay in one of the five large rooms at the Eltham Hotel. Each has its own bathroom, a queen-sized bed, and an optional double couch.
Take a scenic trip through the countryside to this charming rural tavern, located 15 minutes from Lismore and Bangalow. Under the elegant jacarandas, in the snug dining room, or the huge outside undercover area, up to 80 people may enjoy live music and a combination of innovative Australian meals and wood fired oven pizzas.
The hotel itself was erected in 1902, when the town was a lively railway settlement, and has since become a popular meeting place for residents.
Quench your thirst with a selection of 16 different beers on tap from local, national, and international sources.
Relax in the beer garden under the lovely Poinciana trees and enjoy classic pub dinners, seasonal specialities, and foreign dishes. Our fresh, local seafood is taken off the shore and delivered by Freckle, our fish man…who only keeps the best for the Bruns.
Our Kids Back Yard is a safe, entertaining area for kids to play. It is shaded by giant sails for sun protection and has a misting system for temperature control.
Take a drink at the Hotel Brunswick… a traditional Australian pub
Billinudgel Hotel – Billinudgel
Welcome to the old Billinudgel Hotel, our home. A location where residents and visitors alike may sip a refreshing drink, fill their bellies with home food, and dance until their legs are tired.
Our historic bar was founded in 1898, and its unique charm has been carefully kept in both its character and the people that frequent it. A family-owned and run business with a rich history.
The Shaws Bay Hotel (Shawsy) – Ballina
Local landmark located in East Ballina on the beautiful Shaws Bay beach.
A popular neighbourhood hangout known for its pleasant, casual vibe. Our priority is to provide a family-friendly dining experience while also making the most of our unique setting. We can not wait to meet you!
Alstonville’s renowned Federal Hotel, affectionately known as ‘The Fed’ by locals, has welcomed residents and visitors alike for more than 100 years.
The Fed is more than just a favourite hangout; it’s a location where the community gathers and friendships blossom. Despite several renovations over the years, the Hotel’s original federation character is balanced alongside the important characteristics of a modern venue.
Inside the original historic structure, there’s a warm, convivial atmosphere, an all-weather eating space, and a shaded beer garden where families can relax and enjoy live entertainment on Friday nights (and most Sunday afternoons in summer!). Our restaurant is well regarded as having the best modern pub fare in the area.