Ballina lies south of Byron Bay in the Northern Rivers region. While Byron Bay is the better known town of the two, Ballina is great for visitors looking for a quieter time. Many people will base themselves in Ballina and take day trips to Byron Bay.
Ballina's wonderful climate, great location at the mouth of the Richmond River, superb beaches (South Ballina Beach is the star) and hinterland, offer lots of options for travellers. There are the water-based attractions, such as swimming, scuba diving, surfing, fishing, boating, whale-watching (between June and November) and dolphin watching (all year) - and the seafood is always fresh and wonderful.
Close to Ballina, the Victoria Park Nature Reserve is one of the remnants of the Big Scrub. The reserve covers 17.5 hectares (43 acres), with eight hectares (20 acres) of untouched rainforest, and clearly marked walking trails.