Ballina has 32km of golden sands, sheltered coves, spectacular surfing breaks and vast open beaches.... the coastline is simply stunning and you are sure to find a beach that suits you.
LIGHTHOUSE BEACH, East Ballina
Lighthouse Beach is one of Ballina’s main beaches and is patrolled in school holidays, making it the perfect spot for families. Approximately 500m in length, there are plenty of walking tracks either end to give you great views of the beach – North Wall and Ballina Headland. The northern end is perfect for when the northerly winds blow as it is protected from the headland. It is also the end that is patrolled in school holidays and on weekends in the summer months. There is plenty of car parking and if you forget your lunch or need a coffee, you can grab a bite to eat at the kiosk under the Surf Club. Popular for surfing and swimming and close to accommodation properties such as Quality Hotel Ballina, Discovery Parks Ballina and Grandview Apartments. Bonus is there are toilets and shower facilities at either end of the beach.
SHELLY BEACH, East Ballina
Shelly Beach is a family favourite in East Ballina. The next beach north of Lighthouse Beach, the southern end of Shelly Beach is full of rockpools to explore and has a man made pool that's thigh deep making it great for younger children. On low tide there is still shells to discover (they once covered the southern end) but not as many these days. North of the rockpools is the surf beach for those that want to body surf, take out the boards or catch waves in the shores. The beach is patrolled in throughout the spring, summer and autumn school holidays. Shelly Beach Café and Belle General are within walking distance if looking for a cold drink, bite to eat or coffee and we can highly recommend either of these cafes. There are plenty of carparks either end but they can get very busy in summer holidays. There are also toilet and shower facilities at the southern end near the main carpark.
Photo: Leonie Howard
ANGELS BEACH, East Ballina
Angels Beach is quite a long stretch of beach that is generally uncrowded making it perfect for beach walkers. It is beautifully bordered by natural vegetation growing on sand dunes, giving plenty of privacy. The beach is not patrolled so be mindful about rips and strong currents in this area. Angels Beach can be accessed from the coastal path and carpark to the South or from the coastal path or Flatrock carpark from the North. It is generally a quiet stretch of beach and very peaceful.
The beach is dog friendly but dogs MUST be on the lead.
FLAT ROCK, East Ballina
Flat Rock is a rocky outcrop located North of Angels Beach and South of Sharpes Beach in East Ballina. The Rock pools are home to lots of marine life and are great to explore when the tide is low making this beach popular with families. The eastern rocky outcrop is home to a lot of birds so you often see bird watchers looking for specific species. It is also a very popular surfing spot for new and experienced surfers due to the rocky outcrop creating a surf break. Flat Rock Tent Park is located just behind the dunes making it a perfect place to camp for beach and fishing lovers. Toilets and showers are available in the carpark and a roving lifeguard patrols in the school holidays.
Flat Rock beach is dog friendly but they MUST remain on the lead at all times.
SHARPES BEACH, East Ballina
Another popular beach for the families due to its accessibility and conditions. Easily accessible from the Coast Road, Sharpes Beach is patrolled in the holidays and is a great beach for a daily swim. Located to the North of Flat Rock Beach and South of Skennars Headland, Sharpes beach is a long stretch of dog-friendly beach (leash required) and a popular surfing spot. A little tip – keep an eye out for dolphins here as pods of dolphins love surfing the waves. Sharpes Beach is patrolled in lifeguarding season and has a large carpark where you will often find a local coffee cart. It is also a great start point for the coastal walk heading towards Lennox Head.
SEVEN MILE BEACH, Lennox Head Off Lead, north of kiosk only
Seven Mile Beach is a pristine stretch of sandy beach from the Lennox Point headland with the national surfing reserve including the famous right hand surf break - one of the top ten breaks in Australia. It is an iconic beach and mecca for surfers, swimmers, fishermen and beach lovers. The Boat Channel just off Rutherford Street in Lennox Head is a safe haven for swimming and snorkeling. On a high tide it is perfectly protected from the waves. Out front of the Lennox Surf Club they run learn to surf lessons and the freshwater tea tree lake is located just behind the club making it a popular spot for picnics and families. Experience the secluded northern end of Seven Mile Beach via 4WD. You can purchase a 4WD permit from the self register machine located on Camp Drewe Road and drive along this surf and fishing beach. To access the 4WD track follow Camp Drewe Road and follow the signage. This section of the beach is also an off leash dog area so we ask that all users be mindful of activity around them
SOUTH BALLINA BEACH, South Ballina
As the name suggests, South Ballina Beach is located in South Ballina which is accessible from Ballina via the Burns Point Ferry that operates 7 days a week. Alternatively, you can take the Wardell exit from the highway and head along South Ballina Road. We don’t recommend swimming at South Ballina Beach because it is not patrolled and the ocean can be rough. Fishing is a popular activity though and the quiet, long stretch of sand makes it a great beach walk. For more information on things to do in South Ballina visit Discover Ballina - Exploring South Ballina
PATROLLED BEACHES www.beachsafe.org.au
- Lighthouse Beach, Lighthouse Parade, Ballina
- Shelly Beach, Shelly Beach Parade (pictured)
- Sharpes Beach, The Coast Road, Skennars Head
- Seven Mile Beach, Pacific Parade, Lennox Head
Patrolled from September to April in NSW School Holidays.
IPHONE BEACH SAFETY APP
Beachgoers are urged to download the new, free MyBeach info app providing ready access to beach conditions in Ballina Shire at their fingertips. How it works is: a map of the coastline displays icons of beach openings, closures and caution.
- Angels Beach - leash required
- Sharpes Beach - leash required
- Seven Mile Beach (North of Lake Ainsworth) - off leash, effective control
- The Spit (behind waterslides to Missingham Bridge) - off leash, effective control
- Patches Beach (500m north & south of access point) - off leash, effective control
Dogs are prohibited on all other beaches in the Ballina Shire
HORSE RIDING ON BALLINA BEACHES
Horses are permitted on Seven Mile Beach, Lennox Head north of Lake Ainsworth with access from the rear of the lake. Please read the code of conduct:
1. Exercise caution at all time near other beach users
2. Only enter and exit at designated access tracks
3. Do not enter any other walking track or dune
4. Only walk your horse on the beach
5. Do not tether to any native vegetation
VEHICLES ON BEACHES
Seven Mile Beach - Vehicles with 4WD permits are permitted on Seven Mile Beach, Lennox Head north of Lake Ainsworth with access from the western side of the Lake on Camp Drewe Road. Permits are available from the automatic kiosk that is located opposite the Lennox Head Surf Club approaching Camp Drewe Road. Payment by Visa, Mastercard or debit card.
Information regarding fees and guidelines can be found on Ballina Shire Council website 4WDs on Beaches
CODE OF CONDUCT
The following Code of Conduct outlines the conditions of use of 4WD's on Ballina Shire Beaches. It provides guidelines to public safety and the protection of local flora and fauna and must be adhered to at all times.
1. Only enter and exit the beach at designated 4WD beach access tracks
2. Do not drive on any other dune area or track
3. Do not drive within 10km of any part of the vegetated dune
4. Drive only on firm sand below high tide
5. Do not exceed a speed limit of 30kph on beach, or 15kph within 50m of any other beach user.
6. All drivers must hold a current drivers licence
7. All NSW road rules apply
Vehicles are prohibited on all other beaches in the Ballina Shire
- Standalone Operators