Once upon a time, back in the 60s, there was a dairy farm in an area known as the ‘Rainbow Region’, which is in part of The Great Dividing Range. This is a different part of The Great Dividing Range…
The dairy was struggling to make ends meet, there was a recession going on at the time. In the early 70s, the same area was chosen to host a free music event called the Aquarius Festival which was regarded as the Australian equivalent of Woodstock. Something like 5000 to 10,000 people attended this festival which was very much all about the alternative lifestyle; it was aimed at hippies.
They all had such a great time and many of them decided to stay. They purchased some land, formed a commune and they all lived happily ever after.
Welcome to Nimbin
Nimbin was just a short 20 minute drive from our weekend retreat in Kunghur, so we just had to take a look. We knew it was a big tourist attraction in the area and was pretty much regarded as Australia’s centre for counterculture and alternative thinking.
It was pouring with rain when we got there, so these aren’t the best of photographs, but I think you will get the idea…
‘Nimbin is notable for the prominence of its environmental initiatives such as permaculture, sustainability and self-sufficiency as well as the cannabis counterculture. Writer Austin Pick described his initial impressions of the village this way: “It is as if a smoky avenue of Amsterdam has been placed in the middle of the mountains behind frontier-style building facades. … Nimbin is a strange place indeed.
Nimbin has been described in literature and mainstream media as ‘the drug capital of Australia’, ‘a social experiment’ and ‘an escapist sub-culture’. Nimbin has become an icon in Australian cultural history with many of the values first introduced there by the counterculture becoming part of modern Australian culture.’ – Source Wikipedia.
Yes, it is definitely the drug capital of Australia. Despite that, it is an extremely friendly town that really does go against convention. Its heart is most definitely in the right place.
‘The prevalence of a drug culture in Nimbin since 1973 has been accompanied by a prevalence of collective and public creativity: colourful and spiritually motivated art (including large paintings above the shop awnings), music, poetry, craft and fashion can all be seen on the main street. The town is known as a hotspot for alternative social activities, grassroots political discourse, and the espousal of naturalist, humanist, anarchist, feminist, libertarian, permissive, new-age, mystical and radical social philosophies (which can all be seen as collective creative endeavours).’ – Source Wikipedia.
Nimbin: it really is Australia’s strangest small town.