If you ever find yourself in Coffs Harbour, NSW (Australia), I must recommend The Big Banana as a sight to see. The name pretty much says it all: it is indeed a large, concrete, roadside attraction banana. (To be exact, it is 43 feet long, 17 feet high, and 8 feet wide.)

Brief history: In 1964, a fruit salesman by the name of John Landi saw a similar attraction (a big pineapple at the Dole cannery in Hawaii), and figured that the basic idea could be tweaked to suit the needs of the Australian banana growers. Engineer Alan Chapman based the design on the proportions of that year's Coffs Harbour Agricultural Show award-winning banana. Since then, the Big Banana has undergone some ownership changes, and now has a 43-acre horticulture center around it.

Located about 565 kilometers (350 miles) north of Sydney, the Big Banana is definitely a great place to stretch one's legs during any lengthy drive on the Pacific Highway. Aside from the banana itself, there's also a tour of the banana plantation, an alpine slide (a fiberglass sled track, for those who have never experienced one), Cockatoo Cafe and Ice Creamery (offering both banana and non-banana food), a banana-themed souvenir shop, a craft gallery, and a small candy factory.


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