LENNOX HEADS, NSW

 

LENNOX HEADS

 

Another trip down Northern NSW again to Lennox Heads. The weather was superb and we had good company exploring the Heads, Beach, Lake, Café’s, Byron and Markets
We stayed in a modern two storey cabin boasting an impressive covered entertaining deck. The property was positioned on the eastern slopes of Figtree Hill.
Despite its many attributes, Lennox Head is often overlooked, as it’s located roughly 20 minutes south of iconic Byron Bay and 10 minutes north of the much larger town of Ballina. I’m sure that’s just how the locals like it too, particularly as it’s also home to interesting history, pristine beaches, fluffy meadows, tea tree lakes and a town packed with good cafes and shops.
Situated at the northern end of town is Lake Ainsworth, a tea tree-stained dunal lake that’s named after early settler and sugar cane grower James Ainsworth. It’s a superb spot for a swim or, a canoe and it’s great for kids as it’s virtually always calm. The lake is considered by many to have healing properties. It’s also a favourite with stand-up paddle boarders and there’s picnic and BBQ facilities near the shore.
At the southern end of Seven Mile Beach, out the front of Rayner Lane, lies the remains of an old tea tree fence. This was built sometime in the early to mid 1900s by Fred Hutley to stop the sea spilling into the lake during tempestuous weather
.
Saturday morning we found WilliamsBurg perched quite aptly on the corner of William St and another street that I can’t remember the name of (but if you’re super curious it is the one that runs along the beach front) of Lennox Head. We made our way inside, sat down, looked at menus and ordered some breakfast. After visiting WilliamsBurg for the first time we declare on other social media that there was not one single thing about our experience that I did not love. The bacon and egg burger were to die for.
We dropped into the Lennox bakery and ordered and couple of rolls for lunch, drove to the caravan park and picked up permits and beach passes and headed to Seven Mile Beach for a day of fishing, swimming and relaxing. The dogs had a blast, the fish weren’t biting and later in the afternoon the wind picked up so we headed back.
That night we headed to Lennox Head’s original pizza and pasta restaurant for dinner. Wings, garlic bread, pasta and pizza were on the cards. All fabulous and was a great night out.
The Sunday we headed into Byron Bay’s Community Market, which is held at the Butler Street reserve. It is one of the best in the region. Covering several acres, the market offers a vast array of handcrafted wares, locally-grown produce, and artworks of every kind. It’s best to get there early and allow a few hours to take in all the stalls, indulge in some fresh food and culture. We left the girls explore and the guys with the dogs headed into town to find the best coffee in Byron. An espresso bar, Barefoot Brew Room was tucked away down a small laneway in central Byron Bay. Coffee found, time to pick the girls up and make way for breakfast. We dropped into Twisted Sista. I won’t go into it because it’s not worth rating at all. Too expensive, crap food, crap service. We then headed and made and afternoon looking and the hang gliders at Pat Morton lookout.

 

Monday morning we dropped into Lime Café, Lennox Head.  This innocuous little cafe was a real gem. Service was friendly and attentive. Breakfast was amazing (serves were actually too big) but perfect poached eggs.  We then took the scenic drive past Potsville, Kingscliffe and back home. 

 

Advertisements

PALM COVE, QUEENSLAND

PALM COVE


(This was 10 years ago, some things may have changed)

Named for the beautiful palm lined beaches along the city’s picturesque coast line, Palm Cove in Northern Queensland is one of Australia’s most popular holiday resort areas. Just a short 15 minute drive north of Cairns International Airport, this oasis on the Coral Sea boasts beautiful hotels, scenic drives and a long list of area attractions. Palm Cove has just about everything that a family or couple could want in a getaway haven – warm, sunny weather, beautiful resorts and spas, lush tropical scenery and ocean views that just won’t quit. For this reason it’s not surprising that this quaint little beachside hamlet has become one of the most popular places in Australia to get married. Palm Cove instantly turned on the charm with everything you want in a beach town: quaint coffee shops and stores, a few good pubs, great restaurants and a palm-tree lined beach. The enormous Paperbark trees that line the main street and meld with shop fronts, give the strip a unique character that also struck us. We stayed at Hotel Grand Chancellor. Set in over 3 hectares of lush tropical gardens, Hotel Grand Chancellor welcomes you to the tranquil seaside village of Palm Cove, gateway to the Far North Queensland’s top heritage attractions such as the Great Barrier Reef and Daintree Rainforest.



The resort was a perfect spot for a relaxing holiday, featuring 2 swimming pools, restaurant, bar, alfresco dining, massage, beauty and hair salon, games room and is within 5 minutes walk to the beach.  The weather of course is nice and warm, the pace much slower than in Brisbane, and you are definitely closer to nature than on your average day.

We dropped our bags and with the sun warming up we retired to a shady sun lounge beside the lagoon pool. Oozing beachside chic thanks to pastel colours and lush tropical gardens, plantation shutters that screen wide open terraces, ancient melaleuca trees that filter the tropical sun and an adults only lagoon pool make Hotel Grand Chancellor a romantic hideaway made for lovin. Chilling out poolside, it’s a bit early for a cocktail but persuaded by a long tall mojito packed full of refreshing mint leaves – it’s 5 o’clock somewhere.



We then took a Wander along the path that dips and dives around the coconut palms it’s pretty obvious how this place got its name. Because we’re still feeling a little giddy from the chocolate tart sugar rush we decide to count the palm trees lining Palm Cove’s Esplanade. Easily distracted by music and a sandwich board advertising Happy Hour cocktails, we give up at 37. After a few drinks we headed to Nu Nu’s.  Nu Nu’s is the best restaurant in Palm Cove. It’s probably the best restaurant in North Queensland. It’s definitely the only one that has absolute beach frontage so we planned ahead and made reservation weeks before we arrived.  Nu Nu’s makes regular red carpet appearances on ‘best of’ lists so we’ve come with high expectations. We allow Chef Nick Holloway to unleash his creativity and surprise us with a 7 seven course tasting menu.

…………………………



The next day was market day. Once a month during the dry season cars are banished and market stalls take over the beachfront. It’s absolutely one of the best days to linger in Palm Cove. We spend hours poking through the stalls picking up a trinket here, some handmade soap there. A freshly squeezed mango and lime juice clears away the cobwebs from last night’s over-indulgence. We wandered, we shopped, and we ate a little more. We chilled out on the grass and people-watched.  A swim in the ocean followed by a walk along the beach was a soothing balm to shopping and eating. Then another swim, walk, eat, and repeat. In the afternoon a massage was called for.  I left to play a round of golf, while Kim enjoyed a 90 minute hot stone massage and some foot pampering. Its a few hours since our last meal so it’s definitely time to indulge again. After last night’s Nu Nu feast we took it easy with a casual BBQ on the beachfront.  Early night was in order.


…………………………



After a lie in and a late breakfast we were picked up from our hotel at about 11.30 for our day trip to Kuranda.  The trip was run by Glenn a very nice chap and there were only 7 other guests, the coach journey took about 40mins along the beautiful sea coastal road to the Skyrail Station just outside Cairns. The Skyrail system was installed above the protected rainforest over a distance of about 15km with the tallest tower being over 40m high. There were 2 stops enroute to Kuranda Village, these being for rainforest board walks and a waterfall lookout point. It was a strange feeling gliding over the tops of the trees, but the views were sensational.

We arrived in Kuranda village which is located upon the Atherton Tablemountains, this village was known as the hippy village, who were credited with the successful fight to save what was left of the rainforest. Kuranda is a lovely little village in the rainforest at the top of the mountain about 300 metres above sea level. The main street is only a few hundred metres comprising of cafes, restaurants and shops hosting arts and crafts. The village has 3 lots of markets, a Butterfly Sanctuary, Bird world, Koala Gardens, mini crystal museum (with a full-scale dinosaur skeletal replica), mini put put golf and much more.




We left Kuranda by the scenic train which took 1 hour and 45 minutes weaving through the mountain rainforest with a short stop at the Barron Falls. We weren’t very impressed until we reached some local communities where the properties looked very good.   
……………………………………….



The next day I thought what better way to experience the Aussie bush, rainforest and spectacular views than on horseback with Blazing Saddles. The horse-riding trails meander through beautiful bushland and rainforest, allowing you to get in amongst nature and experience it firsthand. Blazing Saddles began operation in Jun 1992. Proprietor Peter Trout, a very experienced horse handler, relocated his half-day horse riding adventures from Mungalli Falls on the Atherton Tablelands, to Palm Cove which is an incredibly beautiful and diverse place only 20 minutes north of Cairns. In December 2005, he moved again to a bigger ranch just west of Kuranda west of Cairns and now since 2012, they operate on a property at Yorkeys Knob only 10 minutes from the Cairns City and Northern Beaches. It was the first time Kim rode a horse. She handled it okay, but you could see the fear in her face the whole ride. She came good towards the end and is looking forward for another go. Dropped back off at the resort we chilled the afternoon away in the spa and pool with many of cold ales.


……………………………….





The next day we explored the Great Barrier Reef. We woke up early, as we had to be at the pier by 7:30 to check in. We will be exploring the reef with a local company called Seastar. We ended up choosing them because they had the best reviews on Trip Advisor and they have a relatively small boat.  We loaded the boat and found out that there are 36 of us plus 5 crew on the boat. Once we were loaded on the boat and they have done the safety briefing we were off. It’s well over an hour to the first place we will be snorkeling at. We get the choice to do an introductory dive for an extra $75 each but decide against it. The first stop is an area of the reef near a small island that is a bird sanctuary. The birds are small black birds. We have no idea what they are but they are loud and annoying. We didn’t come here to see birds!

We dropped anchor and we get a view of the underwater playground we are about to explore. But first we have to go through another safety briefing. I think this tour caters to a lot of people that don’t know how to swim and aren’t really familiar with the water. They are pretty strict about where you can and cannot go and what signals to give if you are having trouble and need to be rescued. I have snorkeled many times before so I wasn’t too worried about needing help. We hopped in the water as soon as we can to explore the Great Barrier Reef.

The ocean is very clear today. It is not windy at all and we have great visibility in the water. As expected, we see thousands of fish of all sizes and shapes. We also see what appears to be a stingray drifting about. We swam around for about an hour observing the fish and the coral and the large clam shells. It’s funny to think that all of these coral are actually living creatures. They really look like rocks or plants. Seastar tells us that coral is actually clear and that the beautiful colors come from algea and plants that attach to it. Whatever the reason is that these things exist they look pretty cool. We snorkeled around in the water for about an hour before heading back to the boat.

After a lunch of chicken wings and pasta salad we move to our second snorkeling spot. This spot is about 15 minutes away and is a true ocean reef – as in there is no land nearby. Once we hopped in the water we realize that this spot is way better than the first spot. The reef here is crazy. It’s huge and full of colorful coral and fish. Some parts are so thick that they almost reach the ocean surface, making it tough to swim by. Then all of a sudden the reef will stop and we will be in clear blue water looking for the next reef.

We are in the water for just over an hour, thinking about heading back to the boat, when Kim spots a turtle. We swim to catch it but didn’t get too close – we don’t want to startle him. But this turtle does not seem prone to startling. He is eating away and doesn’t seem to care about us at all. He’s quite big, probably because he eats a lot. We look around for his friends, but he is all alone today. He swims around eating and coming to the surface for air and we follow him around for about a half hour. After we say goodbye to the turtle we head back to the boat. We have snorkeled nearly three hours today and we are quite tired. Back on the boat it’s time to head back to the city after a successful day on the Great Barrier Reef.  Back to resort for a Barbie and night swim.

………………………..
The next day we headed into Cairns. We walked down to Cairns Central first. Cairns Central is one of the biggest shopping centres in the far North Queensland that offers an extensive variety of shops and services. We found marvelous fashion and charming novelty items to special products and services. We then headed to The Pier at the Marina. The Pier was home to a number of excellent fashion and specialty shops where you can found special gift items for families. Kim indulged in shopping for some stylish clothes and accessories.
We decided to head to the Cairns Wildlife Dome, which is a spectacular all-weather wildlife exhibit, encased by a 20-metre high glass dome on the prominent rooftop of The Reef Hotel Casino, right in the heart of Cairns. You can immersed yourself  in a rainforest environment whilst parrots, cockatoos, lorikeets, and other birds native to the Wet Tropics region fly freely around, with the opportunity to observe free-roaming rainforest wallabies and view bettongs, curlews, frogmouths, kookaburras, frogs, turtles, pythons, crocodiles and lizards.
We took a free guided tour and animal presentations, providing an interactive Getting on late in the afternoon we headed to Marina Point, next to the new Cairns Yacht Club facilities. We earlier made a booking for dinner at Salt House, which is a unique dining, bar and entertainment venue offering a panorama of the ocean, marina and city on the waterfront in Cairns.
Salt House has been designed by renowned Sydney designer Michael McCann of Dreamtime Australia Design and the fluid space allows uninterrupted views of the changing colours of the ocean and mountains that encircle the city.



After dinner we walked the main street in the opposite direction of the boat habour. The restaurants are busy and everyone is sitting outside. The weather here allows for outdoor dining all year round. Even in the wet season, all the outdoor areas are covered so people can still sit outside and watch the rain pour down. There is a really lively vibe in the air and we love it. Everyone is friendly and looks like they are having a good time. As we wander down the street we see the lights of the Esplanade. There are colored lights everywhere. They light the trees red, green, and blue. A simple thing like this just makes the place so attractive.

Eventually we find the Cairns Night Market. This has a food court with cheap meals and tons of little shops with very affordable prices. We wander around the night market and even buy a few things. It’s just so damn cheap! We headed back to the resort late.

…………………………………….


The next day was a sleep in, and breakfast by the lagoon. We pretty much chilled by the pool all day because being our last day we booked into the Tjapukai experience for dinner.
The evening came and we went to a place called Tjapukai, an “indigenous cultural experience”. We were there for the Night Fire event.
The evening started with champagne and canapés in the foyer. There were slices of kangaroos on small pieces of toast topped with spicy beetroot and then my favourite, little boats of sweet potato covered with slow cooked emu.
The entertainment started with a welcoming ceremony where music was provided by a didgeridoo player and someone using two boomerangs as a percussion instrument. This was accompanied by authentic Aboriginal singing and dancing.
Following the welcome we were taken to a large auditorium. Here the lights were dimmed and the dancers performed traditional dances honouring the cassowary (a large, almost extinct, flightless bird) and the kangaroo. They also acted out the hunting of a kangaroo. Then it was time for the fire lighting ceremony. For this the audiences were called on to participate. We were split into two teams, each with a different part to sing and an accompanying dance. I wish I could say that I remembered either the song words or the dance.  As we were singing and dancing one of the Aboriginal hosts was using a notched fire stick to create a fire in a pile of dry grass. The way he made fire was very similar to a technique I learned in the scouts and was fascinating to watch.
Once the fire had been made, we were led out over a bridge where torches were lit with the flame. Then it was the group’s turn to make fire by the lakeside in the cool evening air. We danced and sang again and a couple of volunteers we called upon to light the fire.
Once the fire had been made we were taken to the restaurant for a world buffet meal. The food was very nice but we were quite disappointed for three reasons. Firstly the advert had said that the food would be prepared in an underground oven and taken out in front of us. This was an experience we were really looking forward to. Secondly, aside from roasted kangaroo there was very little authentically aboriginal food. We enjoyed eating Asian salads and European desserts but we were hoping for something more typical of the culture we were trying to explore. Finally, the group was small and we had all been singing and dancing together so it would have been great to have eaten together and to have shared our meal with the indigenous singers and dancers, however we were seated at intimate tables as couples. We felt the evening was somewhat let down by a lack of thought about the centre-piece meal.

After we had eaten there was a short closing ceremony of singing and dancing from our Aboriginal hosts and then we posed for photos with them. The Night Fire celebration was over and we were led out though the gift shop.  Back to the resort and get ready to leave for Brisbane. Holiday over back to work.

//s7.addthis.com/js/300/addthis_widget.js#pubid=ra-59a0a83bbefaf8c1

HERVEY BAY, QLD

HERVEY BAY

 

This trip was four years old, decided to put something together to share.
Ibiza, Rio and Cancun might be where you go to beach part-ay, but when you want a beach holiday that leaves you relaxed, tanned and more energised than a green juice with a double shot of spirulina, give me Hervey Bay any day. I should know, I’ve got more Hervey Bay stamps in my Queensland passport than most. I’m lured by its waterfront views, good coffee and promise of the freshest scallops in Australia.
If you’ve got a long weekend up your sleeve, I suggest you get yourself to the Bay for a serve of sun, sand and seafood. Only in Queensland would a highway answer to Bruce. Regardless of whether you’re coming from north or south to Hervey Bay, you’ll need to spend some time getting acquainted with Bruce in all his tarmac glory.
From Brisbane, it’s 290 clicks to Hervey Bay, but kilometre-counters should note, it will take closer to four hours once you factor in loo stops and snack breaks.

 

.

We checked into Mantra Hervey Bay, overlooking the marina and Great Sandy Straight. Aside from the normal Mantra comforts, we had a sizeable balcony to breathe in the sea air and take in a bird’s-eye-view of the yacht hardware bobbing around in the marina below.
We dropped everything and headed down to the Urangan Pier. Built in the early 1900s to facilitate sugar, coal and timber export, today the Urangan Pier pylons serve a much greater purpose, fishing. The abundance of fish cleaning stations and seagulls circling the pier is good evidence that your afternoon efforts won’t be fruitless.

 

If you’re not hooked on fishing, this is one of the prettiest walks in the Fraser Coast and there’s 2 km of flat, wooden boardwalk to meander down. We walked around till sunset and worked up an appetite for dinner.

 

 

The next day was why we holidayed on Hervey Bay. Costumes on, we headed on the bus to Maryborough for the Maryborough Pub Fest.
IN 2004, a plan was hatched to celebrate Maryborough’s 100th anniversary of being a city the next year by combining the annual Best of Brass competition with a ‘Back to the Banyan Tree’ celebration. Then-Chronicle staff, editor Nancy Bates and journalist Jocelyn Watts, came up with an idea to give the flagging pub scene something to celebrate too – a giant pub crawl. The council including then-Mayor Alan Brown were quick to get on board, and so the World’s Greatest Pub Fest was born.
The first event was held in 2005, with 1198 people calling bottom’s up at 16 Maryborough pubs. The event was so popular that even though it was originally planned as part of the one-off festival, it had to be run again. Crowds grew every year, but other cities soon took up the challenge.

 

 

Maryborough’s PubFest made international history in 2008 when more than 3000 entrants handed in their official entrance cards, raising thousands of dollars for charity. MARYBOROUGH didn’t beat its own record, but thousands of people still decked themselves out as their favourite superheros for the last ever Pub Fest. Oompa Loompas, Marvel characters, orange angels and hundreds of others lined Maryborough streets to have a drink and raise money for the local State Emergency Service.

 

In March 2009, New York drinkers managed to outnumber their Australian counterparts but Maryborough smashed the record books just months later in June 2009, with a massive 4718 people officially taking part – a number that still remains unbeaten. Proof of its popularity was shown in 2011 when hundreds of letters that poured into the Chronicle after the council announced the event would be cancelled due to lack of interest from participating pubs. Several more hotels agreed to take part but the council decided the giant crawl was not sustainable and 2011’s event was billed the “Last Shout”.
About 10,000 revellers turned up, and in the face of overwhelming public support for the event, the council decided to instead expand it to include a wider demographic, by adding a food and fine wine festival, now known as Relish, on the Saturday. The joint PubFest and Relish weekend now forms a major highlight of the Fraser Coast’s calendar, drawing thousands of visitors from far and wide.
More than 100 people entered the costume competition, which judges managed to narrow down to just three winners. A group dressed as Orange Sirens won the group costume prize, while the super-sized Super Lego man took out the best individual prize. The No Gary No team, dressed as characters from an anti-smoking ad, won the judges’ choice award. Groups came dressed as where’s Wally, prisoners, ninjas and a Captain Crawl. We had a total blast.
The next day was a much earned sleep in to sober up. (You do the math’s, 14 pubs = 14 schooners)  We then couldn’t  resist the opportunity to put the sand between our toes once more with an afternoon stroll along Scarness Beach. The sheltered conditions in the bay meant you can bob around like an apple in the calm water without any risk of Kim being dumped by a wave.
 

 

After a chilling day yesterday, today we headed over to Fraser Island for the day. For many visitors, offroad driving on an island where all the roads consist of sand is one of the main reasons to look forward to Fraser Island. Others are apprehensive, yet exhilarated once they’ve negotiated their first island track. Others again are quite happy to take a back seat and let others chauffeur them across the island. There’s no denying it’s an unusual way to get around, but driving on sand in Fraser Island is part of the adventure and partly what makes a trip to K’gari so much fun.
 

 

Our first stop on Fraser Island was Central Station. We enjoyed a guided rainforest walk to the historical logging station and meandered along the banks of Wanggoolba Creek flowing silently through lush rainforest. Up next was Lake McKenzie to take a dip in the crystal clear blue waters and relax on the sandy white beach. Picture perfect is the only way to describe this beautiful perched dune lake.

 

After a nice swim we headed back out to Seventy-Five Mile Beach hit the famous sandy highway of Fraser Island and take the opportunity to join the Air Fraser crew for a scenic flight over the island. We then headed up to Eli Creek and floated down the fastest flowing freshwater creek on Fraser Island or just enjoyed the serenity.
Just up from there we hit the Maheno Shipwreck and snapped a shot of this rusting wreck that washed ashore during an out-of-season cyclone in 1935.  Its rusted hull is perfect for photography enthusiasts. Just up from the wreck was The Pinnacles Coloured Sands. We were amazed at how these hued sand cliffs get there rich colours and heard the Dreamtime story of their origin. All tucked out we headed back to the barge and back to Hervey Bay.
The next morning we headed to Enzos for sunrise and breakfast. Then headed back home to Brisbane.

 

 

Fraser Island Attractions
Maheno Ship wreck
The grand Maheno was built in 1904, weighing a massive 5, 323 tonnes. After she was launched she held the blue ribbon in trans-Atlantic crossing. She then served as a hospital ship during World War 1.  Now this magnificent wreck rests on the Coast of Fraser Island providing a portal into the past.  Capturing a photo of your beloved 4WD next to this towering ship is a must.
Champagne Pools
These naturally formed shallow rock pools provide a popular swimming spot. The ocean crashes into the surrounding rocks and fills the pools with bubbly foamy water, hence the name ‘Champagne Pools’. The pools are located just north of Indian Heads, along 75 mile beach and are certainly worth adding to the ‘To Do’ list while on Fraser Island.
The Pinnacles
Out of all of Fraser Island’s beautiful landmarks, the Pinnacle Coloured Sands are one of the most breathtaking.  Best viewed in morning light, the sands are a photographer’s delight. They have formed over hundreds of thousands of years as the elements interacted with minerals on the exposed sand dunes.
Lake McKenzie
Lake McKenzie is one of the most iconic destinations of Fraser Island. This stunning fresh water lake with crystal clear water and perfect white sand makes for the ideal spot to relax and gaze in ore at the magnificent beauty Fraser has to offer.
Eli Creek
Eli Creek is the largest freshwater stream on the east coast of Fraser Island. It can be viewed via wooden walkways that snake around the edges of its immaculate natural beauty.  The swiftly flowing creek is a popular spot for walks, picnics and swimming. Swimming at the far end on the boardwalk can make for a very refreshing experience of a hot day.

 

 

 

BALLINA, NSW

BALLINA


We had decided to go to the Childer’s Festival, but a last minute change of plans, we decided to head to Ballina for four days.

Ballina is a bustling holiday town and home of the Big Prawn, one of Australia’s iconic big things. Situated at the mouth of the beautiful Richmond River, Ballina is also blessed with gorgeous beaches and great surf.

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 lover’s 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!!

With a quick couple of hours on the highway we took a detour and dropped into The Macadamia Castle, which has been the area’s most popular activity destination for over 40 years. We then headed back on the highway and over the South Ballina barge to Ballina Beach Village. 



The Ballina Beach Village, Dolphin Bay at South Ballina is a relaxing eco destination and was dog friendly. We were able to take our dog Shari into a cabin.


We unpacked the car and decided to let Shari have a good run at the nearby dog beach. Patchs Beach is located 15 minutes south of Ballina and 5 minutes from the local township of Wardell.  The area is a popular seaside getaway and is famous for its ocean and river fishing with full 4WD access. Shari loved it and enjoyed the open space and meeting a couple of doggy friends on the way. We headed back after a couple of hours and played with Shari in the park, then cooked up and Barbie dinner.

The next day we were up bright and early with a drive to Ballina’s Big Prawn, which is one of Australia’s iconic big things.

Built in 1989, the Big Prawn has undergone a makeover and was reopened in July 2013. It now has a tail, and is situated adjacent to Bunnings Warehouse on River Street.


We then took a drive up to Lighthouse Hill and spotted some whales and dolphins swimming by. After a couple of photos of the lighthouse we headed back to the Spit at the dog friendly section. We saw many dogs running around and playing in the water, Shari was over excited on joining them. We let her loose and she bolted to see each dog as many times as she could. We spend a good couple of hours letting her run, because she wouldn’t come back to us anyway. Finally she tired enough to catch her and put the lead back on and we headed back to the car and into the centre of town so Kim could look at some shops. 



The main street is small enough and with a couple of boutiques to interest Kim into buying a couple of things. We then headed to the side by side main Shopping Centres, but no interest in them what so ever.  Back to the caravan park late afternoon, Kim played with Shari and I took a drive to the south wall. Great fishing spots with plenty of people lined up catching Bream, Whiting.

The next day we headed first to Lighthouse Lookout to spot more whales before heading to Boulder Beach. Boulder Beach can be found on The Coast Road, between Ballina and Byron Bay. There is a gorgeous headland where you can sit at sunset and watch the guys catching some waves in the water below. It is an unusual beach as the foreshore is covered in black, smooth boulders, which is an interesting element to add to your photos. At low tide you can explore the rock pools below the headland which also is a great spot for interesting foreground elements in photos. Generally this is a great spot for sunrise but it can be really beautiful at sunset too. 

We then headed to the top of Lennox Point, Pat Morton Lookout, which had extensive views especially to the North stretching up Seven Mile Beach.  We did a bit of whale watching and dolphin spotting. It is the best vantage point for watching the surfers at its famous right hand break. Many of photos we headed down into Lennox Heads. 

We bypassed the town and kept going onto Byron Bay. Byron is one of our favourite spots and we try to get there at least twice a year.  It is really a fabulous holiday destination for everyone. There is something to cater for everyone’s tastes. Although I have to admit when we go it is all about the beach, the pub and the organic donuts!  This is broken up with bouts of shopping for Kim. 


There is nothing better than shopping on holidays for Kim. New shops to explore and you usually have the time to browse at a leisurely pace, while Shari get pats waiting patiently outside. Shopping in Byron Bay doesn’t disappointfrom the array of unique shops and boutiques along Jonson, Lawson and Fletcher Streets, to the Arts and Industry Estate. 


After a few hours we headed back to the car and made our way back to Lennox Heads. Lennox Head is a quiet seaside village situated at the southern end of Seven Mile Beach between Ballina and Byron Bay. It’s named after the headland that stands sentinel at its southern gateway.

Lennox Head has a great coastal village atmosphere, with a main street full of boutiques, cafes, restaurants. We dropped into the markets first then back to the main streets for a look at the boutiques. The surfers know Lennox Head for its internationally famous right hand point break, and the hang-gliders love the place for the sensational views when they take off from Pat Morton Lookout. From the main street we spotted the hang-gliders and headed to the lookout.

Late afternoon we headed back and packed up, then next day we headed back to Brisbane. Was a fantastic weekend to get away from the traffic and noise. The soft sound of the waves breaking in the distance made the best nights sleep in ages. Looking forward heading back in a couple of months.


//s7.addthis.com/js/300/addthis_widget.js#pubid=ra-59a0a83bbefaf8c1