Quick Facts

About the Northern Rivers Region – NSW, Australia


An intriguing blend of old and new, the Northern Rivers is where the world’s largest expanse of subtropical rainforest meets mountains forged from ancient volcanoes, overlooking 300 kilometres of spectacular coastline.

Situated on the far north coast of NSW, the Northern Rivers covers an area of 20,895 sq km, extending south from the Queensland border along 300 kilometres of spectacular coastline, and inland from the Pacific to the Great Dividing Range.

The region is renowned for its beautiful beaches and rainforests, its warm sub tropical climate, and its creative communities, such as Byron Bay, Lismore, Murwillumbah, Nimbin and Yamba. Endless beaches offers surfing, whale-watching, frolicking dolphins and flocks of seabirds. Inspiring surroundings attract creative personalities – artists, writers and musicians. Colourful local festivals brim with arts and crafts, kites, crystals and local produce.

The Northern Rivers is crossed by three major river systems – the Clarence, the Richmond and the Tweed and home to 14 World Heritage listed areas and many more National Parks and State Conservation Areas.

Filming in the Northern Rivers

In the first instance, please contact Northern Rivers Screenworks for all filming enquiries.

Screenworks will be able to provide extensive advice about filming in the region, connect  you with locations and professional screen practitioners, discuss local council requirements and put you in contact with the film liaison officer for each local government authority.

Northern Rivers MapStatistics & Economic Facts

  • Population: 277,284
  • Average age of residents is 39 years
  • The population is expected to grow to 319,100 by June 2017
  • Annually the region receives more than 4.7 million visitors a year

Major Cities / Towns

  • Grafton
  • Casino
  • Ballina
  • Lismore
  • Kyogle
  • Byron Bay
  • Murwillumbah
  • Tweed Heads


The region lies within a subtropical zone on the eastern seaboard of Australia. Temperatures are generally mild all year round. Mean minimum and maximum temperatures range from 13.2 and 25.5 degrees Celsius. Mean annual rainfall is 120mm and mean number of clear days is 109. (source: Bureau of Meteorology at www.bom.gov.au)

About our Local Government Areas

Tweed Shire Council

Tweed is an ideal filming location for shooting short films, documentaries, major feature films, television series and commercials. It is also a popular location for still photography shoots. Tweed has been the location for film productions happening north of the border at the Gold Coast and south as far as Melbourne. Tweed is ideally located between Gold Coast and Byron Bay and offers a broad range of scenic rural and natural locations that are quiet and attractive to filmmakers. There are several headland coastal locations, as well as broad beach landscapes with mountains, rainforests and national parks in the hinterlands. Rural villages and farmlands have featured in a wide variety of films and photography projects. Murwillumbah, Kingscliff, Salt Village, Duranbah and Tweed Heads on the NSW/Queensland border have all been featured particularly in sporting telecasts but also documentaries and dramas.

Council encourages filming in the Tweed and recognises all of the benefits that come from hosting filmmakers in our unique destination. Along with major film producers from Australia, UK, Europe, USA and increasingly from Asia, Tweed welcomes local filmmakers, students and small scale projects. Council is required to monitor film production and it is necessary for filmmakers to fill in an application form with accurate site mapping of intended locations, times and dates of shooting, size of production and certificates of insurance. Council wants to ensure the benefits to the Shire are maximised and that film producers consider their impact on the community, residents or businesses and that public safety and environment health is well protected.


Byron Shire Council

The Byron Shire is a wonderful location, with coastal and hinterland diversity. Locations include villages and hamlets, pristine beaches and estuaries, rivers, sub-tropical rainforest, agricultural farms producing coffee, macadamia nuts, blueberries, bananas and many other products. The Shire features a ridge-line approximately 2 – 5kms from the beach which provides an amazing backdrop of spectacular views over the coast. The Shire is also the centre of an area where there are many interesting locations as filming alternatives including tourist attractions, farming communities, coastal townships and lush countryside views.


Ballina Shire Council

Welcome to the Ballina Coast and Hinterland, jewel of the Northern Rivers of NSW. Three major river valleys traverse the region connecting over three hundred cities, towns, villages and small communities; each with its own distinctive style and character.

It’s a region characterised by great bio-diversity, wide variations in climate, altitude and landforms. It is a playground for beach lovers, surfers, boaties, anglers and eco-adventurers.


Lismore City Council

Tucked away in the far north eastern pocket of NSW, Australia is Lismore, Nimbin & villages. An area renowned for its extraordinary natural beauty, amazing cultural diversity, relaxed lifestyles and quirky charms; a place where old school blends with new age and nature sets the pace.

Lismore and Nimbin are on the doorstep of several magnificent World Heritage National Parks offering easy access to walking trails, waterfalls that cascade into clear mountain pools and breathtaking lookouts. Ancient rainforests shroud the hills, ridges and valleys of the Nightcap and Border Ranges National Parks. There is even a rainforest remnant in Lismore’s City Centre.

At the southern rim of the ancient Wollumbin shield volcano, the rolling green hills are dotted with quaint villages, neat rows of macadamia and coffee and hidden valleys enshrouded with mystical rainforest.


Kyogle Council

Kyogle Council, with a pleasant year round climate, covers 3590 sq.km of exceptional natural beauty, characterised by fertile valleys surrounded by lush hills and vegetated mountains. It encompasses 3 World Heritage areas broken up into 10 identified World Heritage sites, as well as 4 National Parks and 12 State Forests.

Kyogle is within two hours drive from Brisbane and one hour from the Gold Coast and NSW coastal communities of Byron Bay, Ballina and Tweed Heads. This, combined with a superb climate and a close proximity to all services, education and recreation, makes the Kyogle area an ideal place to live and work. Villages within the area are:

  • Kyogle: Situated at the foot of Fairymount on the banks of the Richmond River with a population of 2850
  • Wiangaree: North of Kyogle along the Summerland Way, it is the gateway to the Rainforests. Population 140
  • Woodenbong & Bonalbo: Two rural communities of up to population 400
  • Tabulam: Oldest town of north NSW situated at the crossing of the Clarence River. Population 360


Richmond Valley Council

The Richmond Valley region is very diverse, extending from the Pacific Ocean at Evans Head through to the World Heritage Listed National Parks of the Border and Richmond Ranges.  Generally though it consists of rural and agricultural scenery nestled along the Richmond River Valley.  The bustling regional centre of Casino services the region.


Clarence Valley Council

We’re passionate about our local area. Yes we’ve got it all, from pristine beaches to country vistas, historic towns to contemporary coastal villages. And we know there are plenty of locations for you to get that hero shot.

Just like other destinations we think ours is the best and the most beautiful. So if you want what the others have – that’s great………..but we’re maybe just what you need. Clarence Valley Council welcomes filming and our helpful team has a plenty of local knowledge to assist and guide your production no matter how big or small.


Getting There & Away

Ballina Airport

Ballina Airport is the gateway to Ballina and Byron shires. Ballina is situated on the coast and at the mouth of the Richmond River, while Byron Bay is 30 minutes’ drive north past stunning beaches and headlands.
Ballina Airport website

Gold Coast Airport

The Gold Coast Airport at Coolangata is the starting point for a journey into the beautiful unspoilt Tweed area, just a few minutes away. Be seduced by stylish new resorts, great restaurants and bars combined with stretches of long, sandy beaches. Get out and explore the hinterland along the Rainforest Way, a scenic touring route that winds though national parks, rainforests, rivers and heritage towns.
Gold Coast Airport website

Lismore Airport

Rex and Lismore Regional Airport will treat you to the best in country hospitality and facilities on your next trip to the Far North Coast. From the time you board one of Rex’s 52 weekly flights between Sydney and Lismore until you’re sipping gourmet coffee in the airconditioned terminal, everything will be just perfect
Lismore Airport website

Grafton (Clarence Valley Regional) Airport

Located approximately 15 kms from Grafton, the Clarence Valley Regional Airport is convenient and local. Regional Express (REX) operates multiple daily flights between Grafton and Sydney via Taree.
Grafton Airport website.