Tallow Beach

Arakwal National Park

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Overview

Tallow Beach is 3.2km from the heart of Byron Bay and a great place for swimming, birdwatching, whale watching, beach fishing, and just throwing down a towel to soak up the sun.

Where
Arakwal National Park
Price
Free
What to
bring
Drinking water, hat, sunscreen
Please note
  • Check the tide before you set out as this may affect your beach walking
  • The weather in this area can be extreme and unpredictable, so please ensure you’re well-prepared for your visit.

A scenic bridge between Cape Byron State Conservation Area and Broken Head Nature Reserve, Tallow Beach offers a terrific place to throw down a towel and soak up the sun. You could pull out binoculars for an afternoon of whale watching in spring and winter though, as whales migrate between the Great Barrier Reef and Antarctica.

Just 3.2km from the heart of Byron Bay, Tallow Beach is alive with osprey and white-bellied sea eagles scouring the coast in search of food. As you relax on the sand, pied oystercatchers wander past searching for pippis. Avid birdwatchers will find more to see behind the dunes adjacent to residential areas, where many paper bark trees provide plenty of hiding holes for our feathered friends.

Beach fishing is possible here, as well as surfing in the right tide. For swimming and surfing, please be aware of rip tides and keep an eye on children – Tallow Beach is unpatrolled. It is, nevertheless, very popular in summer, the school holidays and Easter, so arrive early for the best spot.

For directions, safety and practical information, see visitor info

Current alerts in this area

There are no current alerts in this area.

Local alerts

For the latest updates on fires, closures and other alerts in this area, see https://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/things-to-do/surfing-spots/tallow-beach-activity/local-alerts

General enquiries

Park info

See more visitor info

Visitor info

All the practical information you need to know about Tallow Beach.

Getting there and parking

Get driving directions

Get directions

    Tallow Beach is in the eastern precinct of Arakwal National Park. The beach is accessed from Cosy Corner picnic area in Cape Byron State Conservation Area. To get there:

    • Take Lawson Street east for approximately 2km from Byron Bay town centre
    • Where Lawson Street becomes Lighthouse Road, turn right onto Tallow Beach Road and follow to the end.

    Park entry points

    Road quality

    • Sealed roads

    Vehicle access

    • 2WD vehicles

    Weather restrictions

    • All weather

    Parking

    Parking is available at Cosy Corner picnic area. $4 per hour (pay and display machine), or buy an NPWS annual pass.

    Best times to visit

    There are lots of great things waiting for you in Arakwal National Park. Here are some of the highlights.

    Spring

    Watch from the beach as humpback whales pass by on their way home from the Great Barrier Reef to Antarctica, many with calves.

    Summer

    Take a dip at Tallow Beach to cool off from the summer heat.

    Winter

    Now, the humpback whales are heading north, migrating to the Great Barrier Reef for the cooler months. Don't forget the binoculars.

    Weather, temperature and rainfall

    Summer temperature

    Average

    20.3°C and 27.2°C

    Highest recorded

    35.1°C

    Winter temperature

    Average

    12°C and 19.8°C

    Lowest recorded

    3.3°C

    Rainfall

    Wettest month

    March

    Driest month

    September

    The area’s highest recorded rainfall in one day

    350.4mm

    Facilities

    • Toilets and picnic facilities are located at Cosy Corner picnic area
    • Drinking water is not available in this area, so it’s a good idea to bring your own.

    Maps and downloads

    Safety messages

    Beach safety

    Beaches in this park are not patrolled, and can sometimes have strong rips and currents. These beach safety tips will help you and your family stay safe in the water.

    Fishing safety

    Fishing from a boat, the beach or by the river is a popular activity for many national park visitors. If you’re planning a day out fishing, check out these fishing safety tips.

    Mobile safety

    Dial Triple Zero (000) in an emergency. Download the Emergency + app before you visit, it helps emergency services locate you using your smartphone's GPS. Please note there is limited mobile phone reception in this park and you’ll need mobile reception to call Triple Zero (000).

    Permitted

    Fishing

    A current NSW recreational fishing licence is required when fishing in all waters.

    Prohibited

    Pets

    Pets and domestic animals (other than certified assistance animals) are not permitted. Find out which regional parks allow dog walking and see the pets in parks policy for more information.

    Smoking

    NSW national parks are no smoking areas.

    Nearby towns

    Bangalow (11 km)

    Bangalow is a relaxed but stylish village close to Byron Bay. It's set in lush green hills near the coast.

    www.visitnsw.com

    Byron Bay (2 km)

    Byron Bay is Australia's easternmost town and 'style capital' of the North Coast. It's a place of outstanding natural beauty, set against lush volcanic hills.

    www.visitnsw.com

    Mullumbimby (37 km)

    Mullumbimby sits on the Brunswick River and is overshadowed by subtropical hills.

    www.visitnsw.com

    Learn more

    Tallow Beach is in Arakwal National Park. Here are just some of the reasons why this park is special:

    Animals on the move

    Vegetation of Arakwal National Park. Photo: N Graham

    Arakwal may be small from the outside, but its borders hold some important habitat for threatened plant species like the creatively-named stinking crypotocarya, and dark greenhood. Keen nature enthusiasts will find much of interest; bring the magnifying glass, but be careful not to damage what you see. The reserve is also a temporary home to a range of nomadic and migratory animals, which means it's never quite the same in any given season. During autumn and winter, for example, the growing, flowering and fruiting season attracts birds, flying foxes and micro bats. Then there are the humpback whales, drifting past out to sea as they cycle annually between Queensland and the freezing waters of the Antarctic.

    This is Aboriginal land

     View of Arakwal National Park. Photo: N Graham

    The reserve falls within the custodial boundaries of Bundjalung nation, with prime importance for the local Arakwal People who lend their name to the national park. The Bundjalung of Byron Bay (Arakwal) Peoples' connection to the reserve was recognised in 2001, with the signing of an Indigenous Land Use Agreement between the Bundjalung of Byron Bay (Arakwal) People and the NSW State Government.

    Plants and animals you may see

    Animals

    • White-bellied sea eagle. Photo: John Turbill

      White-bellied sea eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster)

      White-bellied sea eagles can be easily identified by their white tail and dark grey wings. These raptors are often spotted cruising the coastal breezes throughout Australia, and make for some scenic bird watching. Powerful Australian birds of prey, they are known to mate for life, and return each year to the same nest to breed.

    • Superb fairy wren. Photo: Ingo Oeland

      Superb fairy wren (Malurus cyaneus)

      The striking blue and black plumage of the adult male superb fairy wren makes for colourful bird watching across south-eastern Australia. The sociable superb fairy wrens, or blue wrens, are Australian birds living in groups consisting of a dominant male, mouse-brown female ‘jenny wrens’ and several tawny-brown juveniles.

    Environments in this park

    Education resources (1)

    Tallow Beach, Arakwal National Park. Photo: John Spencer/NSW Government