the light at the end

The final day of our holiday was the best, I think. 
The most relaxing - the kids + Sam / me all a bit wound down from our previous tension moments. {Loosing the car keys while packing the car may have helped. I found the final walk up the hill to be particularly breath-taking - in many ways; beautiful and a big hill to walk up!}
We stopped off at Byron Bay. One of the most visited places in the whole of Australia. (I imagine, not going to bother looking for stats or anything. It really is a big draw card for International and National tourists. Photos will show you the reasons).
We checked out all the skate-type shops in town. Which really were just surf and street wear with a few out-of-date skate boards hanging off the wall.
There were two interesting shops - but no photos as I always feel too self conscious photographing people's shops. Same thing for the quirky, trendy, tasty sushi train. I'd say it's the best looking sushi train I've ever been in. Really modern, yet with beautiful traditional Japanese aspects as well. And the vegetarian plates were clearly labeled - which always makes it much easier to try new things.
Then we headed up to the beautiful, landmark Byron Lighthouse.
The lighthouse keepers buildings date from 1901. 
We missed the tour to walk up the lighthouse by about 45mins (which Ari says wouldn't have happened had we not gone to all those boring shops). But we had a wonderful look around. 
The weather was perfect - look at those clouds. The light shinning on the water was divine - it simply couldn't be captured in all it's gloriousness in photos. 
Friendly people to chat with and smile at. Japanese tourists wanting to take our photo - they said we looked like a lovely family. What do you think?
The little museum inside the lighthouse was really interesting. Collections and old things. Lots of blown bulbs and maps. And this fantastic shelf of flags all folded. I wanted to unfold them all, and look at the great fabric.
*For those of you non-Aussies :: Byron Bay is the most easterly point of Australia. It gets the first light - well actually Mount Warning near Murwillumbah does. Byron is a thriving, bustling town. I spent many wonderful memories there as a child with my (extended) family, and haven't been for years. The beaches are some of the best in - dare I say it - the world. This is my thought anyway; though of course I admit I haven't trialed that many worldly beaches. They really are beautiful waters, none-the-less. 
Dolphin + whale spotting is a regular activity, depending on the day or time of year.
The lighthouse still shines every night, to warn passing boats of the perils of the rocks along the coast.