How to Plan a Trip to Niue
Niue: it’s the world’s largest raised coral atoll, the world’s first Dark Sky Nation, and one of the world’s least-visited countries. For anyone travelling or living in New Zealand, the island is a must-visit, offering a trip that’s essentially a tropical extension of Aotearoa. The only flights to get to this island paradise are from Auckland and you won’t have to swap your currency for this country which is a self-governing state of New Zealand.
Don’t mistake the island for a beach holiday, however, as Niue is nicknamed the “Rock of the Pacific” where limestone chasms and coral sands replace your typical sandy shores.
Location: Niue is an island in the South Pacific Ocean located between Tonga, Samoa and the Cook Islands. It is approximately 2,400km (1,491 miles) northeast of New Zealand.
Climate: Daily average temperature: 25°C/77°F, yearly average rainfall: 1,955mm/77″. Find out more about the weather on NiuePocketGuide.com.
Time zone: UTC/GMT-11
Size: 269km2 (104mi2)
How to get to Niue from New Zealand: Flights travel twice weekly to/from Hanan Airport (Niue’s airport) from Auckland.
Top Attractions in Niue
Most of Niue’s experiences revolve around natural and cultural experiences. There are both independent and guided activities available. Some of the highlights include:
Whale and Dolphin Swimming
Niue is one of only a few places in the world where you can legally swim with humpback whales, available between July to September. Year-round also poses the opportunity to swim alongside playful spinner dolphins.
Just one example of the many sea tracks on Niue, the Togo Chasm walk takes you through the island’s Huvalu Forest Conservation Area to pinnacled clifftops. There is a runged ladder down the chasm to a sandy oasis with coconut palms.
Snorkel in the Limu Pools
With little surface run-off from the island, the tropical waters of Niue are crystal clear. One of the top snorkelling spots is the Limu Pools, safe for all ages.
Nature and Uga Tours
Learn how Niueans traditionally lived on this isolated tropical island with coconut demonstrations, fire-making, food-gathering and more on one of the island’s nature tours. Seeing uga (coconut crabs) is often also a feature.
Experience the excitement of big game fishing on one of the many fishing charters available on the island.
For more information on all of the above activities and more, head on over to Niue Pocket Guide‘s 101 Things to Do in Niue.
How to Get Around
Getting around is all part of the fun in Niue. At 269km2 (104mi2) in size, the island is small enough to explore in just a few days.
We don’t recommend that you come to Niue without a plan to get around, however, as there is no public transport and only one taxi. Most travellers either hire a car or an electric bike to explore the island. Cycling around the island on a normal bike can be tiring, so is only recommended for the fit and determined, but are still worth hiring for the dedicated cycling trails.
See the Transport Guide on NiuePocketGuide.com for more information on getting around.
Dining in Niue
Despite being a small secluded island, Niue has a surprising array of eateries to indulge in. Enjoy the freshest South Pacific ingredients in an array of international and local dishes at the following cafes and restaurants.
There are many reasons to book a table at Kaiika at least a couple of times during your stay in Niue (and yes, booking at this popular restaurant is necessary!) Enjoy fresh sushi prepared by a Tokyo chef, New York-style pizzas, Morrocan rotisserie chicken and premium ice creams.
The restaurant of the island’s only resort, the Scenic Matavai Resort, is well worth it for their impeccably presented plates on their a la carte menu. Alternatively, book in for one of their entertainment or cultural evenings.
Only open on Sundays at Avatele Beach, the Washaway Cafe operates as an honesty bar where patrons write down their own order for the kitchen and serve their own drinks!
Wok on the Rock
Wok on the Rock has an ever-changing menu of Asian cuisine, from the likes of beef noodles to fresh tuna poke to fish curries. All food is served in biodegradable takeaway containers.
Again, more information on Niue’s restaurants and cafes can be found on NiuePocketGuide.com.
Sample Itinerary for Niue from New Zealand
Niue is a country that can be easily enjoyed at a relaxing pace, but there’s plenty to do here to fill up days if you have itchy feet. We recommend a minimum of five days to enjoy Niue and a maximum of two weeks. For something in between, check out our sample itinerary for one week:
- Day 1 – Arrive in Niue and check-in at your accommodation
- Day 2 – Explore Alofi (Niue’s capital), its museum, shops and sea tracks. Pick up a driver license (if needed)
- Day 3 – Drive to Avatele, its beach, the Washaway Cafe and Pofitu Sea Track
- Day 4 – Swim at the Limu Pools or jump on a whale swimming tour
- Day 5 – Trek to the Matapa Chasm and Talava Arches
- Day 6 – Learn how to survive in the wild on Misa’s Nature Tour
- Day 7 – Explore the east coast sights, like Togo Chasm and Anapala Chasm
- Departure day – Get prepared for departure on an iconic Niue “plane day”.
More Travel Itineraries for Niue
Niue Pocket Guide has much more itineraries for all types of travellers ranging from three days to two weeks. Check out more travel itineraries on NiuePocketGuide.com.