Cheap Flights to Ballina

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Ballina overview

Ballina lies south of Byron Bay in the Northern Rivers region. While Byron Bay is the more popular of the two towns - it's a stop on the international backpacker trail for one thing - many visitors looking for a quieter time will take cheap flights to Ballina, base themselves there, and take day trips to Byron.

Ballina's wonderful climate, its location at the mouth of the Richmond River, superb beaches (South Ballina Beach is the star) and hinterland, offer lots of options for holiday makers. There are the water-based attractions - swimming, scuba diving, surfing (at Lennox Head, between Ballina and Byron Bay), fishing (river and beach), boating, whale-watching (between June and November) and dolphin watching (all year) - and the seafood is, naturally, wonderful.

Close to Ballina, the Victoria Park Nature Reserve is one of the remnants of the Big Scrub. The reserve covers 17.5 hectares, with eight hectares of untouched rainforest, and clearly marked walking trails.

This Ballina should not be confused with the town in Mayo, Ireland, although it is a sister city.

Ballina climate

As in the rest of this part of New South Wales, the climate is sub-tropical. Summer temperatures hit about 31 degrees and winter temperatures are just ten degrees lower.

When to fly to Ballina

This part of New South Wales is a year-round destination. There's really no bad time to take cheap flights to Ballina. 

Peak Season: 

November (the Rivafest takes place), December (Christmas and the Boxing Day Races) (Schoolies weeks fall in November/December), January and February are the busiest months. Easter is also a popular time with families. Whale-watching season runs from June to November. Ballina will also be busy when Byron Bay holds its many festivals. Accommodation in Ballina and Lismore is often booked-up to handle the overspill from Byron. Its major festivals include East Coast Blues & Roots Festival around Easter time, the Underwater Festival in April, the Byron Bay Writers Festival in July/August, and the Byron Lighthouse Run in October. 

Off Season: 

Low season rates for accommodation kick in after the Easter hols and last until the September/October school holidays.

Getting around Ballina

A rental car is essential if you're planning on getting around this part of New South Wales. Bus and coach services in the Ballina, Lennox Head, Byron Bay and Mullumbimby areas are operated by Blanch's Bus Company.

Ballina insider information

  • The Thursday Plantation has a fine sculpture park and a “Spirit of Australia Maze”. 
  • A three-hour cultural tour of Ballina and the surrounding areas take in middens, Bora rings, fertility sites, initiation grounds and hunting grounds. The full tour takes in morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea. 
  • The best, patrolled, beaches in Ballina are Lighthouse and Shelly beach. Sharps Beach has an occasional Life Saver presence. 
  • One of the best markets in the area is the Channon Craft Market in Lismore. There are more than 250 stalls every month selling fresh produce, therapeutic goods and services, art, craft and bric a brac.

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