Nina's living a model life at Byron
NINA HILL, writer, model and now television presenter, lives and works in Byron Bay.
"I was born in Sydney, in the heart of the inner city. My mother was a single mother and I was an only child, living in Redfern - and if you know Sydney, it's a pretty full-on area. We were living in government housing, so the things I saw were very real. Looking back, I didn't have a sheltered childhood.
"Then my mother met my stepfather and he had two sons, so I ended up with two stepbrothers. Not long after my mum got together with my stepfather, he got ill.
"Understandably he wanted to get out of the city, at heart he was a bit of an old school hippie. My parents bought a property in Nimbin and we all moved there.
"Coming from Redfern to living in the bush was just the most amazing thing. From the tough streets of Sydney to spending my time swimming in waterholes and creeks was just the most amazing change of lifestyle. Looking back, I spent most of my time outside, we were totally bush kids and we went to the local school in Nimbin.
"My mother worked at SCU, so when it came to me going to high school, she wanted me to leave Nimbin, so we moved to Lismore.
"Once I finished high school, I couldn't wait to get to the city, so I moved to Brisbane with my first boyfriend. My first job after school was working in fashion. Even though I still love fashion, I began to realise I wanted to study media and I applied and got into SCU.
"My boyfriend's family had a house in Byron and that's how I ended up living in Byron. It was the perfect solution, we had a house, I could study at SCU and I was still pretty close to my mother in Lismore.
"When I finished my degree I wanted to go Sydney. But then I met my current boyfriend and he somewhat swayed my decision to stay here in Byron Bay.
"I have spent a lot of time travelling all over the world with my boyfriend, Jeff. He's in the band Parkway Drive and they're really big in a lot of countries. I've only toured with the band three times, the rest of the time it has been just us, travelling as a couple.
"All the travelling has given me perspective on just how special Byron is. We have a house in Byron, so we are pretty settled here. But I do spend a lot of time in Sydney. While it's great to go to Sydney for work, it seems to take an hour to get anywhere and it's great to come home.
"I still have a connection to Sydney. But I now really feel like Byron is my home town. Most of my work is here, but I'm trying to broaden my skills and to network, so I have to commute.
"My life is all about lifestyle. I surf almost every day and I'm really into fitness, so life here suits me perfectly.
"I know I'm really fortunate to live in Byron and travel. The travelling gives me gratitude for how lucky we are to live here."
When in Byron, do ...
- the lighthouse walk
- learn to surf
- enjoy the beautiful food in the area.
- respect the environment.