Citrus Holidays
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“Byron Bay may be the best holiday destination on the planet – but Ballina has better fishing!” say the locals of the northern NSW town of Ballina. Indeed, there are a plethora of pleasures to be experienced in Ballina, Byron Bay and the surrounding area. Creative types are particularly attracted to this region and there are many authors and film-makers that seek their inspiration alongside surfers and sun lovers. Ballina originally gained its reputation as a fishing and timber port on the wide Richmond River. Then road transport took over, and with it came one of the craziest moves in town planning history. That is, Ballina’s main street ’River Street’ was set way back from the river, with buildings on both sides of the street now blocking all river views. However this has now changed with the development of the river foreshore area. Only three decades ago, Byron Bay was a small sleepy enclave unaware of the hustle and bustle it would later see. Nowadays, the local authorities even have to close off the town for its New Year’s celebrations each year, because so many people flock into town. Byron Bay has that small town charm mixed with a cosmopolitan – yet alternative – lifestyle that attracts mainly people from all over the world. There are no high-rise hotels here but plenty of kilometres of unbroken sandy beaches and heaps of great surf waves to catch. Furthermore, Byron Bay is surrounded by an abundance of pristine nature and wildlife. Due to its location as Australia’s most eastern point, the majestic humpback whales pass by twice a year on their travels. You will never be short for a local market here and all through the year annual festivals take place. This is another attracting factor to lovely Ballina / Byron Bay, where most travellers find themselves staying much longer than they had originally planned. Despite the coastal town’s reputation of being laid back and alternative, it is anything but boring and visitors have the time of their lives in Ballina and Byron Bay! The Ballina region is mind-blowingly diverse, a quiet retirees’ world not far from the surfing Mecca of Lennox Heads, the funky hilltop village of Bangalow, and much, much more!
There are great beaches along the coastline if you want to enjoy a day on the beach. The freshwater Lake Ainsworth is superb for kayaking and camping and in the hills you can find the heritage villages of Bangalow and Newrybar. These villages seem to not have changed for the last hundred years while the surrounding region grows Australia’s finest coffees, avocadoes and macadamia nuts. Visitors will have more than enough to do when visiting these lovely towns.
The Ballina/Byron Bay region has some top restaurants, highlighting the region’s fine produce. This rich harvest includes Arabica coffee, the world’s best macadamia nuts, great seafood and the uniquely flavourful Bangalow Sweet Pork.
Byron Bay rocks like jelly in an earthquake and has gained a reputation as one of Australia’s very best music venues. Major world-class groups will often tour the major state capitals of Australia ’plus Byron Bay’. There are many places to kick back and relax in Byron before you head off elsewhere!
Ballina is widely known as a regional hub for bargain shoppers and there is a brand new Ballina Central complex offering a retreat from the world of surf. Get some good deals for yourself and shop souvenirs for friends.
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