Cape Byron Walking Track - Hike to the Byron Bay Lighthouse on a circuit trail
The Byron Bay Lighthouse sits high above town and once you’ve made it up to the base of it, you’ll get stunning views out to the ocean, the township and the several beaches that surround Byron Bay.
Although it’s possibly to drive up to the lighthouse, and you can walk up there on a short 700 metre trail, this won’t allow you to experience the stunning surrounding area, therefore it’s a great idea to take your time and head on Cape Byron Walking Track that’s about a 4 km circuit going up to the Byron Bay Lighthouse and past several stunning nearby beaches.
The official place to begin the Cape Byron Walking Track is at Captain Cook Lookout, which is on the road that’s on the way to the Byron Bay Lighthouse.
Putting aside the official starting point, there are a few different places that you can start the walk, and the best way to begin is at any of the beach car parks or close by, so that when you finish your hike up to the Lighthouse and back around, you’ll then be able to take a post-hike swim!
A great place to start the hike is at Wotego Beach, here you’ll find paid parking, but there’s also some free parking about a block back from the beach.
Walking from Watego straight to the lighthouse is also one of the shortest walking trails up to the Byron Bay Lighthouse from any of the beaches, as it’s about 700 metres each way, there’s of course even shorter tracks if you manage to find a spot at one of the car parks on the direct road up to the lighthouse.
Starting at Watego’s, head to the very north-eastern end of the beach (the part of the beach furthest away from town/the road in). Next to the road, you’ll see a track going into the forest and up the hill towards Cape Byron, Little Watego’s and the Byron Bay lighthouse (there’s a small sign post with this info).
Follow this track and about 700 metres later, you’ll make it to the lighthouse. On the way, you have the option of heading out to Cape Byron Lookout and Little Watego’s Beach, otherwise skip this part and continue up hill.
Close to the top, you’ll go past the most eastern point of mainland Australia, then just before you’ve made it up to the base of the lighthouse (about 15-20 metres before it), there’s a lookout that’s right on the cliff edge to your left where you can often see Dolphins, Sting Rays and the occasional Shark swimming around.
After you’ve soaked in the views from up at the Byron Bay Lighthouse, head along the footpath on the left side of the road, downhill. Not far after leaving the lighthouse, you’ll come across the hang-glider launch pad, keep following the track straight ahead. From here, the track goes through the dense forest, you’ll need to continue on it and eventually, you’ll walk along a long grass patch that’s at the back of a row of houses. Continue until you reach another road, where you’ll then go right for a short distance until you’re back onto the main road that heads towards Captain Cook Lookout, Watego’s and the lighthouse.
Once you’ve made it to Captain Cook Lookout, you can head down to the beach and walk along it most of the rest of the way! Once you see the small island and reach the end of Clarke’s beach, head up the stairs towards the road to “The Pass” parking, then take the walking track to Watego’s beach & head for a swim to celebrate finishing the hike!
It’s not a very difficult trail.
Other than the steep section from Watego’s Beach to the Byron Bay Lighthouse, the trail is on a formed track with little elevation increases for the rest of the way. Rather than a challenge, it should be seen as an enjoyable way to do some sight seeing around Cape Byron where you’ll go past some of the best beaches in Byron Bay.
If you go out to Cape Byron Lookout (between Watego’s and the Byron Bay Lighthouse) and walk along Clarke’s Beach at the end, it’s a bit over 4kms. If you just stay on the exact path, it’s 3.9 kms.
150 metres of elevation gained, if you head to Clarke’s Beach, otherwise it’s about 140 metres.
The elevation gained is mainly between Watego’s Beach and the lighthouse, then a small amount more between Captain Cooks Lookout & Watego’s.
Unfortunately dogs aren’t allowed on the Cape Byron Walking Track or up at the Byron Bay Lighthouse.