Zac Efron is "very happy" with Vanessa Valladares.

Zac Efron

Zac Efron

The 33-year-old actor met the 25-year-old beauty in Byron Bay, Australia, earlier this year, and he's "loving" life with his new girlfriend.

A source said: "Zac’s loving his life in Australia. He’s settled down and very happy with his girlfriend. It’s serious."

Zac - who previously dated his 'High School Musical' co-star Vanessa Hudgens - relishes the privacy he's been able to enjoy in Australia.

The actor's lifestyle has changed dramatically since he decided to relocate.

The insider told Us Weekly: "He’s living eight hours outside of Sydney. Nobody bothers him.

"He hangs out with the Hemsworths. He goes surfing. He’s coming a long way from partying in LA."

Zac entered rehab for alcohol and substance abuse in 2013.

However, the movie star is now sober and Vanessa is proving to be a really good influence on him, according to a source.

In September, an insider explained: "Zac and Vanessa are really good for each other. She has calmed him down a lot, and he’s not partying too much."

By contrast, Zac previously admitted that dating is extremely difficult for him.

The actor acknowledged that he faces a challenge to dispel the public's perception of him.

He said: "Dating is something I’ll never be able to do.

"As in the dictionary definition of dating, because one way or another I’ve impacted that person’s life and they’ll soon realise it. A date has to be very long to dispel whatever people think about me."

Zac also thinks it's important to be transparent with his fans about his past troubles.

He explained: "There’s a theory that actors should live like monks. You stay private, you make a great movie, then that’s all people see and you’re not a product of your struggle.

"But if you’re comfortable sharing your story, celebrate it. Most days I wake up excited now."