Centred on an island at the mouth of the Richmond River, Ballina is the social and commercial hub of the region, loved for its relaxed seaside location and mixture of both river and surf beaches. Our region is one characterised by great bio-diversity, with a laid back lifestyle and friendly, diverse communities.
Ballina Beach Village is just a 10 minute ferry ride from the town centre – which is brimming with boutique retail shops and quirky cafes.
A popular holiday destination with plenty of waterside attractions, including beautiful beaches, delightful river cruises and exhilarating kayaking tours. Watch the fishing boats head for sea at sunset and taste the catch of the day at the town’s restaurants and cafes.
Ballina is a unique blend of tranquil country hideaway and vibrant seaside resort, where holiday-makers of all ages and from all walks of life are welcomed by an equally diverse local community.
The streets of downtown Ballina are lined with stylish cafes and restaurants, classic country pubs and modern clubs that offer first class dining and entertainment. There are pools, parks and entertainment centres offering loads of fun for the kids, and you can visit museums, galleries, expos and festivals bursting with the vibrant works of local craftspeople. There are antique and curio shops and, for the dedicated shopaholic, a mind-boggling choice of boutiques and designer stores.
The coastline is a beach lovers dream with sheltered coves, vast ocean beaches and some of the world’s finest surf breaks. The beach fishing is legendary and if you wet a line from the North or South Wall, you’ll be in for a reel treat!!
Tourism, fishing, sugar cane, macadamia nuts.
Summer 28 degrees C (82 degrees F).
Winter 21 degrees C (70 degrees F).
32 kilometres (20 miles) in Ballina Shire.
About 1200/1500 mm a year (50/60 inches).
Located on the Pacific Highway Ballina was established on the northern shore of the Richmond River near Cape Byron, Australia’s most easterly point, in the 1840s. Ballina boasts some of the most beautiful surfing beaches and picturesque headlands on the east coast of Australia, such as Angel’s Beach. It is approximately 750 km (466 mi) north of Sydney and 205 km (127 mi) south of Brisbane. It is home to the World’s Largest Prawn (made of concrete and fibreglass).
Ballina is situated on the mouth of the Richmond River, the river and its estuaries abound with marine wildlife and are used for recreational fishing and water sports.
Ballina has a number of famous “landfalls” associated with it. In 1928, Charles Kingsford Smith’s plane, the “Southern Cross”, crossed the coast over Ballina after its epic journey across the Pacific. Ballina had a festival associated with the event during the 1970s and 1980s, and a school in East Ballina bears the name “Southern Cross”.
In 1973, the Las Balsas rafts were towed into Ballina by fishing trawlers after their journey from Ecuador. They had planned to arrive in Mooloolaba in Queensland, but currents forced them off their course. Their journey was almost twice as long as the Kon-Tiki expeditions of 1947 and proved that people could have travelled across the Pacific in ancient times.
A branch railway line connected Ballina with the Casino-Murwillumbah Railway at Booyong. The line was opened on 24 August 1930 and closed on 12 January 1949.
‘Ballina’ – believed to have been derived from the Aboriginal word ‘Bullinah’ meaning ‘place of plenty or big stomach, plenty to eat’. The town certainly lives up to it’s name with a wide variety of food and drink experiences on offer.
Take a stroll around Ballina’s Farmers Market, on every Sunday from 7am-11am to taste the wholesome local produce and food stalls. We are known for our Macadamia oils!
The Point Bar & Restaurant provides a vibrant dining experience right on the river and in the heart of Ballina – boasting spectacular sunset views, open all day through to the evening. Perfect place to meet for cocktails on sunset!
Head to Seven Mile Brewing Co. if you’re in the mood for some beer tasting! They are a family owned and operated brewery, with a simple mission – to craft the best beer possible, no compromises. Visit them Friday, Saturday and Sunday afternoons for a cold tap beer!
Chef & Suka Cafe is one of Ballina’s newest cafes but already proving popular with the locals! Situated in the main CBD, Chef & Shuka serve middle eastern inspired food and delicious coffee. Definitely a cafe to check out for breakfast or lunch.
The Ballina Gallery Cafe is set in a 1020’s heritage building – now houses both the Gallery Café and the Northern Rivers Community Art Gallery. They use fresh local produce where possible, this is a perfect place for brekkie or lunch. Enjoy the peaceful surrounds, and whilst there take in local artworks.
Be sure to pop-by Richmond Oysters – enjoy the view over North Creek with natural, mornay or kilpatrick rock & pacific oysters in season. Richmond Oysters is a local business who has been supplying quality oysters to the public and many restaurants and seafood outlets for over 40 years.
Check out Discover Ballina’s full Great Food Guide here: www.discoverballina.com.au/visit/greatfoodguide