So I’ve been a bad blogger. I’ve left you for all too long, but please forgive me, I’m going to work back and fill in the gaps. I don’t know what happened… I guess travelling takes time? I’m having too much fun? Rubbish wifi everywhere? Who knows. But what I do know is I won’t let it happen again! I’m sorry! At the moment I am in beautiful Byron. The home of yoga, kombucha, tie-dyed clothing, live music, surfing and sunshine. It also happens to be full of vegan delights.
The first place I stumbled upon was Manna Haven. This is a church-run cafe which is a bit different to your norm veggie cafe owners but it’s just in the background really. It’s more about plentiful food, a large, welcoming space to eat and chat, and most importantly cruelty free food, thinking about the planet and your body. Not so much about the religion aspect which is way more my style. I ordered a lasagne which came piled with alfalfa shoots and with loads of amazing roasted veggie side salads. I mean what’s not to like about a vegan lasagne? Top marks!
I couldn’t resist the peanut butter cheesecake style dessert too. It was incredible; sweet, evenly textured and decadent with chocolate smothering the top. Yummy! This cafe also does drinks, breakfast and cakes to take away. All pretty awesome really.
The next day I was feeling kind of ropey. This was the beginning of a bit of gross illness for me. Having a cold in a hostel sucks FYI. I woke up and I knew I needed breakfast and plenty of it. In total failure of finding breakfast, I found a tofu burger instead at Fundies Wholefood Cafe. And it made me feel better. Tofu is totally ace. If you meet someone who disagrees with this, get some firm tofu, marinate it and grill or bake it. Put it in a burger bun and cover it with mayo, chilli sauce and with loads of salad. The bread has got to be good too. Or you could just go to Fundies and they will cook one for you.
Whilst in Byron my travelling buddies and I went for dinner at somewhere called Asia Joes. A restaurant that serves meat as well as veggie options unfortunately, but the vegan meals were clearly marked and there was no drama when ordering. My veggie Bikini Bowl (lame name I know… ) was tasty with a salty sauce, full of all kinds of vegetables and slightly grilled tofu. Although maybe not an award winner, it was a perfectly acceptable dinner and the pals I was with were happy. You can also bring your own beer here which is always welcome when you’re on a budget or have a particular favourite vegan beer or wine.
The rather aptly named Orgasmic is also a great place to head with your omni friends too. This place loads up your plate with falafel-like delights. I had one stuffed with falafels, hummus, baba ghanosh, salad, salsa, cabbage, sauerkraut, pickles and with a basket of warm bread. Really great. All washed down with glass of rosewater lemonade.
My favourite place in Byron Bay though has to be Heart and Halo. Primarily you pick a plate size and you are then loaded up with incredible curry. A small plate was only nine dollars and it was so much food! The curries are all gently spiced and full of goodies like lentils, beans, veggies, greens and tofu. The salads are generally all vegan, and the times I went, most of the hot dishes were vegan with only one non-vegan pasta dish there. You can also grab a vegan lassi if you’re that way inclined! Eat in or take away, this place is cheap, healthy and delicious. The perfect backpacker meal, comforting plateful or trusty local!
So as a whole it’s pretty good for veggies and vegans; loads of smoothies and juices everywhere, a good bunch of veggie cafes and shops and the market once a month is so full of vegetarian vendors you wouldn’t believe. Check it out yo! And after yoga maybe skull (using my new Australian phrases) some kombucha whilst wearing tie dye on a surfboard or something!
Or seriously, what you should do is go check out The Rails, an awesome live music venue that had bands on every night, and apparently has done every night for 30 years which is incredible! Sit down and get yourself a pint of Stone and Wood brewed in Byron after watching the sunset at the beach. That is the way to a perfect evening on the East coast.