When the local Aborigines gave Murwillumbah its name it was known throughout their tribal area as the 'place of many possums.' Possums still abound in this stunningly beautiful region stretching from a pristine coast through the Tweed River Valley to the grandeur of the McPherson Ranges, but they have long since been joined by several thousand people who enjoy the relaxed, informal lifestyle so in rhythm with the natural environment. Murwillumbah is the administrative centre for Tweed Heads coastal strip and the river valley on the northern, coastal extremities of NSW. The town's location makes it the perfect base from which visitors can explore the mountains and their rainforest parks, the valley and a string of largely unspoilt beaches which run south from Tweed Heads. The better known surf beaches of the Gold Coast, of course, are just across the Queensland border. To the south of Murwillumbah lie the towns and grandeur of the national parks of the northern rivers and a chain of diverse resort towns including Byron Bay and Ballina. Regularly replenished in the run-off from floods, the fertile soils of the Tweed produce all sorts of sub-tropical produce including coffee, bananas, and sugar cane - aesthetically attractive crops which blend so well with the verdant natural vegetation of the region. Standing vigil, over the region is Mt Warning whose slopes are the first on mainland Australia to catch the rays of the rising sun.