MATES: Adam Prince, Brandon Darvell, Simon Kogan and Jeremy Pamamull from Melbourne, will be partying safely in Byron Bay on New Years Eve.
MATES: Adam Prince, Brandon Darvell, Simon Kogan and Jeremy Pamamull from Melbourne, will be partying safely in Byron Bay on New Years Eve. Mireille Merlet-Shaw

Friends’ safety in numbers on NYE

GROUPS of friends and families of all ages and sizes congregated around Northern Rivers beaches at the weekend for the start of the New Year celebrations.

As numbers usually mean safety, we asked groups of Byron Bay visitors how they were preparing to have a safe and fun couple of days.

First we found a group of school friends on their first unsupervised trip within Australia.

Adam Prince, Brandon Darvell, Simon Kogan and Jeremy Pamamull are four best mates from Melbourne, all 17 year-olds.

They assured us they were able to keep each other under control.

"Of course we take care of each other, that's what mates do," said Brandon Darvell.

The youngsters had a basic plan to visit friends and rove the streets of Byron tonight.

"We will go to a friend's place and we'll see what happens from there," said Mr Darvell.

It was their first visit to Byron Bay, and they were very impressed with the beach, the friendly atmosphere and the pretty girls around.

"We keep an eye on each other all the times, " said Adam Prince.

The next group we found was a bunch of European tourists ready to jump into the surf.

Cyril Lolier from France, Ronia Pleisch from Switzerland and Jildau Tuinhof from Holland just met this week, and were happy to welcome 2013 as a team of new friends.

"We assume there will be a party at the beach, we'll go out and see what happens," said Ronia Pleisch.

They confirmed that even if they did not know each other very well, being part of a bigger group and coming from Europe they felt safe enough to have a good time.

The third type of traveller we found in Byron Bay was an experienced loner.

At 20, Quentin Couissinier has been travelling through India and Africa for two years on his own, earning his keep by busking.

"I will be meeting some friends from New Caledonia here. Australia is very safe and people share their food with me. Everyone means well," he said.



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