BASED IN KORORA, JUST A FEW KILOMETRES NORTH OF COFFS HARBOUR, CAROBANA IS COFFS COAST’S REAL-LIFE WILLY WONKA FACTORY… AND YOU’VE GOT THE GOLDEN TICKET.
Renowned as Coffs Coast’s leading confectionery supplier, Carobana has developed a wide range of popular carob confectionaries, such as carob-coated banana, rocky road, coconut rough, rum and raisin fudge, ginger, nut brittles and their famous honeycomb. But there is so much more than irresistible sweets that make Carobana so unique.
The Early days
What started as a banana drying plantation in the late ’70s, Ian Hamey and his wife, Jean, quickly realised by coating their bananas in carob, they possessed a unique, healthy treat to offer the Coffs Coast, and thus, Carobana was born! Over the years, Ian’s brilliance has led to technique and machinery improvements, allowing Carobana to expand its range of confectionaries. Whilst being the brains behind the operation, Ian has a strong affinity for sharing his passion and the memories he has made over the years with all of those who visit.
Like Father, Like Daughter
Whilst Ian and Jean are still very much involved in Carobana, their daughter, Wendy, and her husband, Rob, now run the day-to-day. As a family-run business, you can get a sense of togetherness as soon as you enter the factory. You will be warmly greeted by Wendy, who will provide you with a free information handout and offer a detailed tour of the factory. On this tour, you will be shown the confectionery production lines whilst Wendy flexes her wide knowledge of production techniques and ingredients used. Along the tour, you will stop by the honeycomb kitchen. This is where you will meet Rob. Rob is the head honeycomb chef, who can face large orders of up to 288 kgs of honeycomb. This may seem like a huge task, but Rob makes it look easy as he entertainingly explains the entire process in a light-hearted and engaging manner.
sO, WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR!?
From the moment you drive down the natural driveway, through the lush greenery that holds a beautiful picnic area for the whole family, to the moment you walk through the factory doors and become mesmerized by the heavenly aromas of fresh carob and honeycomb, Carobana provides a delightful sensory overload you won’t soon forget. Only a hop, skip and jump from the famous Big Banana and the gorgeous waters of Diggers Beach, an entire day can be made around a trip out to Carobana.
Whether you’re visiting for the delicious confectionary, to watch the skilled confectioners at work, or for the enticing aromas, you will leave Carobana feeling like you have satisfied your childhood dreams of being Charlie in Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory. And the best part? No need for the golden ticket; entry is free for all!