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This is one of my favourite things to do in Ballina. A breakwall is an artificial wall, commonly built of stone, which protects a harbour from lake waves. Ballina's version of this is especially pretty when some of Ballina's 100 strong fishing fleet go out to sea between them. It is quite a sight especially as dusk or dawn sweeps in. The fact that you can walk out onto the wall and feel as if you are in the midst of everything is a fantastic feeling. This feeling is usually compounded when you glance to your left and see the surfers amongst the waves and the sound of water crashing against the rocks. Perfect!
Updated Sep 15, 2006
Shaws Bay is a peaceful, waveless salt water beach only a couple of minutes from the city centre. Because of the gentle nature of the water here it is perfect for young children and those who don't enjoy the surf beaches.
There are picnic and barbecue facilities and also the opportunity to rent out paddlers to take out into the bay which is always a little bit of fun. Shaws Bay Caravan Park, Shaws Bay Hotel and a little take-away shop to but fish and chips are situated right at the waters edge. How conveinient! The Ballina breakwall starts from this point and is a beautiful leisurely walk out into the ocean. Mind the occasional burst of wind of course!
The water turns quite serene at times and I snapped this pic of my Mum and baby sister in a pose where they are seemingly contemplating life. Not a bad spot to do it!
Updated Jun 16, 2005
Address: Compton Drive, East Ballina
Shelley's Beach is basically main beach in Ballina. It is a surf beach which features some rock pools to the right of the main break as you look out to sea. If you dont feel like going for a swim (and even if you do in fact!) I recommend going for a paddle through the pools and discover beautiful sea life and shells there. It is very safe and the thrill of the occasional big wave splashing against the rocks which sends you scurrying back a few metres is fantastic. And so be it if your clothes get a little damp! If you look at the piccie I have uploaded you will see a beautiful starfish and sea snail sitting side by side that I discovered on my last trip there. It was lovely and my little nephews who were there with me could hardly contain their excitement at being there. Very nice and cheap day out for the whole family and one of the 'small things' in life that are extremely precious.
Written Aug 8, 2005
Address: Shelley Beach Rd
Without a doubt one of the main sights in Ballina is 'the Big Prawn' - upon glancing at the corresponding photo I'm sure you can understand how it got its name! Situated on the Bruxner Highway above a service station it is an eyesore albeit a very humorous one. What is the Australian fascination with things on a large scale?? I have no idea but you'll find them scattered throughout this weird and wonderful nation of ours.
You can actually climb up into the prawn free of charge and peer out its clear eyes. Not much to see really but at least you can say you've looked out a prawn's eyes - and let's face it, you don't get to say that every day.
Written Jun 15, 2005
Address: Big Prawn Complex Ballina, New South Wales
Well, the first time that I had that done was in 2001 and it was predominantly red and yellow then, this time it was a different story. Quite painless ........ I didn't have to disrobe or anything like that you just sit and place your hands on a hand shaped devise and hold steady for a moment. Hey presto out comes your aura.
I became interested in auras when the Biologists started talking about the energy radiating from plants and were showing photos of this to support the philosophy many years ago. I often used to wonder about dogs and cats awareness and hearing being more sensitive than ours too. So it wasn't much of a step for me to agree that just because most people don't see some things with the naked eye doesn't necessarily mean that this energy doesn't exist. Read more through the link below.
Updated Nov 3, 2005
Address: Crystal Castle
I had never seen a labrynth up close and personal before and was intrigued to discover what makes it so special to people. The site for reference speaks of a labrynth as being an important aspect of many ancient cultures. I took my lead from Jan, the only other person in my group to actually 'do the walk', but her experience was different to mine. I guess that under other circumstances and with unlimited time I would have completed the circuit in a tai chi meditation walk but with time constraints I just walked it..........slowly. I was about half way through when I became aware of a shift of consciousness if you like.......I almost teetered over but I realise now that there was never any risk of that. It, the feeling was one of being adjusted or rebalanced or attuned, if you like. It was a lovely experience and next time I will take the time to do it properly.
Written Nov 3, 2005
Address: At the final entrance to Crystal Castle
Perhaps the most famous exhibit at the Ballina Maritime Museum is the 12-metre long and 6-metre wide Las Balsas which landed at Ballina on 21 November, 1973. The balsa wood raft floated across the Pacific from Ecuador, a journey of 3760 nautical miles which it achieved in 178 days in an effort to prove that historical journeys could have been made during the past. It was originally planning to land at Mooloolaba in Queensland but coastal currents swept it south to Ballina. By the early 1980s more than 15,000 people a year were stopping in Ballina to see the raft. It is open seven days from 9.00 a.m. - 4.00 p.m. Contact (02) 6681 1002 for more information.
Beyond the Maritime Museum the road crosses the mouth of North Creek on Missingham Bridge. On the far side are two attractions: Fenwick House and the Pioneer Memorial Park. Fenwick House was built by Captain Thomas Fenwick in the style of a Scottish manor house. It is characterised by an English mahogany staircase, a slate roof and stained-glass windows. Today it is known as Shaws Bay Hotel and is a prominent landmark.
Written Sep 12, 2011
I will freely admit that while I enjoy listening to Blues music, that I am not really into it or a huge fan. However, when it was announced that Bob Dylan would be playing at this years Bluesfest back in November 2010, that was it ..... I was going!!!!!!!!! At the time that Bluesfest tickets went on sale, no other concerts for Bob in Australia had been announced, so I thought this would be my only opportunity to see him this time around, and in fact my last opportunity to see him, as he does turn 70 in May!!!! Then a few months after Bluesfest tickets went on sale, concerts were announced around Australia, including Wollongong!!! So, as you do, I bought tickets for Wollongong as well on April 23rd and then Bluesfest on April 25th, so OMG I will be seeing Bob twice in 2 days - awesome!!!@!!
Bluesfest usually runs for 5 days over the Easter Long Weekend, with a variety of tents and acts playing on each day. Bob was due to play on the fifth and final day, so I got tickets online the day they went on sale! They cost I think about $165 per person for a day ticket. Obviously if you buy a whole 5 day pass it worked out cheaper, I think it was about $450 for a 5 day pass. They then added a sixth day to the Festival on the Tuesday, and Bob was playing on Day 6 as well.
There are 5 tents set up at Bluesfest, with Mojo Tent being the biggest one and housing most of the biggest names playing. Bob of course was playing in Mojo Tent, so our aim from the minute we got into the compound, was to find Mojo Tent, and mark our spot!!!! By the time we got there, we were second row from the front and pretty central and pretty happy!!! However .... this meant that either one of us had to stay in that same spot from 11am in the morning until 8.30pm in the evening, when Bob was due to play!!!!!!!!! It was gonna be one long and tiring day thats for sure. You were not allowed chairs in the front section of the Mojo tent, and you were able to sit on the ground, in between acts, but it was fairly cramped sitting!
Some general Bluesfest information for future festival goers!!!!
Gates usually open at 11am and close at midnight.
There are 2 entry points to the festival. The north entrance is mainly for day patrons, car parking and bike parking. The south entrance is for campers, drop-offs, buses and taxis.
Bluesfest is a 15+ age event. All people buying alcohol will need to show id. You cannot take any alcohol into the festival with you. People under 15 years are welcome, but must be accompanied by an adult.
Wristbands will be fitted on presentation of your ticket and must be worn the whole time. passouts are welcome for the whole 6 day festival and your wristband acts as your passout.
There are 3 bars and one VIP bar at Bluesfest. There are several water refill stations around the festival.
BRING WITH YOU- ticket, photo id (even though they did not check this for us), unsealed bottles, cash, food
DO NOT BRING WITH YOU- alcohol, drugs, unsealed bottles, glass, umbrellas, professional cameras
No smoking is allowed inside the festival tents, and no cigarettes are not sold at the festival.
Updated May 16, 2011
Address: Tyagarah Tea Tree Farm, Byron Bay
The obvious highlight of my time at Bluesfest was to see Bob, and we got there early and marked our spot so we were up close and personal! Being second row from the front was awesome, and even though Frank did not have a great camera, he managed to take some pretty good shots throughout the day, and im very grateful to him for that. The photos he took earlier on in the day were better, as there was more light, and you were not allowed to use flashes inside the tents. Towards the end of the day, as it got darker, the pics did not turn out as good.
Many people were disappointed with seeing Bob at Bluesfest, but Im glad to say that I was not. It must have been a special request of his to not have the huge screens on, both inside and outside the tent, so if you were not close to the stage, you could not see much at all, and this is the main reason people were disappointed. He had also requested that no press photographers be allowed to take his photos, I guess he is trying to preserve his privacy.
Bob also does not sing how you hear his songs on a cd, he likes to sing differently in concert and he has done the same thing at every concert Ive seen him at, well all 5 of them anyway!!!! Sometimes it takes me till half way into the song for me to actually work out what song he is singing! A lot of people are not happy with the way he sings his songs these days, also the fact that he does not seem to sing many of the older and more famous songs at all, like Blowin in the Wind, Tambourine Man etc. At the 2 concerts I saw him at in April I think I knew over half the songs he sang, the others were newer ones I hadnt heard or in fact older ones I hadnt heard or did not know and like.
It was simply amazing to be standing sooooo very close to my idol and the legendary Mr. Dylan and I shall treasure that memory for the rest of my life. Love you Bob xxxxx
Written May 16, 2011
Address: Bluesfest at Tyagarah Tea Tree Farm, Byron Bay
We were lucky to be given an interesting selection of performers in the Mojo Tent on Monday 25th April! Frank and I actually enjoyed all of the acts we saw, most of them we had never heard or indeed never even heard of!!!
Schedule for the day was this:-
12.00-12.45pm Bobby Long
1.15-2.00pm Michelle Shocked
2.30-3.30pm Clare Bowditch
4.00-5.00pm Tim Robbins and The Rogues Gallery Band
5.30-6.30pm - Buffy Sainte-Marie
7.00-8.00pm Warren Haynes and His Allstar Band
8.30-10.00pm Bob Dylan
10.30-11.30pm Elvis Costello and The Imposters
Bobby Long was a solo guitarist from England and his music was very enjoyable.
Michelle Shocked (Shell shocked!) was hilarious - she was from America, could belt out a tune and tell a good joke as well, plus she ended with a version of Blowin in the Wind.
Clare Bowditch is Aussie and an amazing beautiful voice.
Tim Robbins was awesome and YES indeed it is the same Tim Robbins from Shawshank Redemption and Susan Sarandon fame!!!!!! I had no idea he could even sing, let alone that he had his own band. His music was very bluesy and very easy to listen to - loved him a lot.
Written May 16, 2011
1 Review and 183 Opinions We had a Spa Room with beautiful river views, King bed, a very large bathroom. We hadn't booked, we...