Ballina holiday homes open up a host of possibilities at this “Gateway to Byron Bay” in the Northern Rivers region of New South Wales. Known for its fishing and seafood, the town is actually situated on an island in the Richmond River, although you’d never know it. East Ballina beach houses (many with coastal views) are separated from the West Ballina riverfront by the North Creek, but both areas offer great places to stay.
There’s something for families, couples, walkers, surfers and history lovers to appreciate from Ballina holiday homes and beach houses. The town probably got its name from the Bundjalung word bullinah, which means “place of many oysters”, although today the town is better known as the home of the Big Prawn attraction! The historic port town with its impressive architecture dates back to the 1840s and the original Richmond River Lighthouse was constructed in 1866. Ballina’s fascinating history is told in the excellent Naval and Maritime Museum, one of the best in the country.
Ballina holiday homes are served by the nearby Pacific Highway and the expanding Ballina/Byron Airport, making it very easy to enjoy a weekend getaway at this thriving coastal resort.
Things to do in Ballina
East Ballina holiday homes put visitors within easy reach of beautiful surfing beaches and scenic headland viewpoints. It’s the ideal place for those who love hiking and cycling as there are 25kms traffic-free trails for exploring the waterways and coastline. These include the 11km Ballina Loop which connects Lighthouse Beach, Angels Beach, Chickiba Lake and Prospect Bridge. Maps and information are available at the Ballina Visitor Centre on River Street.
The Richmond River is a haven for fishing boats and Ballina visitors can pick up the freshest seafood, crabs, fish and prawns from the riverside co-operatives for cooking back home on the BBQ. Hankering for crispy battered fish and chips? This is the place to find it!
Nature lovers will be thrilled with the local marine wildlife and birds. As well as being a fisherman’s paradise, Ballina is a great place for dolphin spotting and whalewatching, either by boat or from the Norman Sharp Rotary Lookout. The sparkling Richmond River is ideal for sailing, boating and watersports in a sheltered environment. However, most visitors want to spend time on beautiful Ballina Beach, swimming and surfing. More experienced surfers may want to visit nearby Seven Mile Beach at Lennox Point, now a National Surfing Reserve with a formidable right hand surf break.
Families enjoying holiday accommodation in Ballina will find plenty of places to visit in the surrounding area including Killen Falls swimming hole, Lumley Park play area, the beachfront Fawcett Park and the extraordinary tea-tree-lined Lake Ainsworth.
It’s worth checking out what’s on in Ballina during your holiday as it frequently hosts wine and food festivals, music events and craft markets. The North Coast Village Market is held on the 2nd Sunday at Ballina Public School.
Further afield, visitors based in Ballina holiday rentals can explore Ballina Shire including the fertile hinterland and the charming village of Alstonville. Be sure to take your camera and capture its beautiful purple-flowering tibouchina trees!