Five Things First Time Travellers To Niue Should Know
- You don't have to pay your departure tax in person at the airport. Since July 2017, the NZD 80 fee is included in all airfare sales to Niue.
- Sunday is a day of rest in Niue. You won't be able to go fishing, kayaking or diving. Swimming is also prohibited, but you can do it if you're in a location away from any villages.
- The best way to get around Niue is with a car. To be able to rent one you'll need a local driver's license first. These can be bought at the local Alofi police station for NZD 23. Keep in mind that you can't drive at speeds over 60 km/hour and you need to stick to the left.
- Niuean is the official language. However, most of the locals speak English fluently, and you shouldn't have any communication problems.
- Niue is the only country in the world where you don't have to pay for internet. If you need to get online, most hotels have connections, and there is also an internet cafe in the capital city.
Best Time To Visit Niue
The best time to visit Niue is during its dry season. From May to October, the risk of cyclones has passed, and you'll have picturesque island weather most of the time.
If you're visiting Niue to see the annual humpback whale migration, plan your visit between July and September. June and July also see the least amount of rain, making it an ideal time of year for divers.
The wet season lasts from November to April. During this time cyclones are more common, and you'll definitely need a raincoat.
However, Niue's weather is also known for its unpredictability no matter the season. Even in the driest months, you might still stumble upon a full week of rain. Likewise, it's possible to go during the wet season and not see a drop of rain for an entire week.
But regardless when you decide to go, you won't need to worry about planning your trip too far in advance. Niue is a relatively unknown destination, and hotel rooms are never fully booked.
Alofi is the capital city of Niue and where the majority of the island's population live. With most hotels located here, it's a good place to base yourself while exploring the island.
Explore the nearby limestone caves, dive sites or hire a boat and watch the humpback whales nurse their newborn calves.
Avatele is a small village located on the southwest coast of Niue. It boasts one of the largest beaches on the island, and its shores are covered in white pieces of coral.
Its turquoise waters are perfect for swimming and snorkelling. There's also a nearby restaurant and bar that works of a payment system for its patrons.
Tamakautoga is one of 14 villages on the island of Niue and is surrounded by lush tropical vegetation.
The village is home to gorgeous hotels that will cater to your every comfort. It's also in walking distance from Niu Dive and two of Niue's most beautiful beaches - Avatele Beach and Tamakautoga Beach.
The village is the perfect destination for those that want to escape and enjoy the simpler side of life without sacrificing too many comforts.
Top Attractions in Niue
The Limu Pools are one of Niue's most visited natural attractions. Its crystal clear waters are teeming with fish, and there are small caves to explore nearby.
To get to the Limu, there's a marked trail from the end of Namukulu Village. It's an easy hike with scenic views to enjoy along the way. Once there, you can spend a few hours snorkelling to your heart's content, and when you've worked up an appetite, you can have lunch in the picnic areas.
There's also a second set of pools past the picnic area. Just follow the path and go down the ladder to find a secluded spot and an arch to the ocean.
Avaiki Cave is a landmark of great historical importance. It's where the first settlers landed on Niue, and its lagoon was used by Niuean royalty to bathe.
Today, it's one of the small island's most scenic attractions. Only accessible during low tide, it features large stalagmites hanging from the ceiling and a gorgeous natural pool.
If you're planning a trip here, make sure it isn't on a Sunday. Swimming is not allowed at Avaiki Cave on the day of rest nor during the koluama spawning season.
Huvalu Forest Conservation Area
The Huvalu Forest Conservation Area covers more than 20% of Niue's landmass. Its forests are teeming with diverse flora and fauna, and there are several excellent hiking trails.
The two most popular trails are the 5km Fue Track and the 7km Vini Vini Track. Just make sure you stay on the path as it's easy to get lost in the forest if you don't know your way around.
Keep a lookout for the coconut crabs, fruit bats and the 29 different birds that call Niue home.
Once used as a lookout point to watch for invading vessels, Talava Arch is now one of Niue's unique landmarks. Located near Matapa Chasm, it's a complex of caves and arches formed by massive stalactites and stalagmites.
To reach Talava, you'll need to follow a walking trail. It's an easy 30-minute walk through the tropical rainforest and breathtaking natural scenery.
No one is sure when the arch will collapse, so make sure this natural attraction is at the top of your Niue list.
From July to October, Humpback whales arrive in Niue with their newborn calves. It's one of the few places in the world where you can actually swim with these gentle giants.
While you won't be able to touch them, it's an incredible experience and one that very few people in the world have done.
If you don't want to get wet, you can view the whales from land. The pods are often only 20 metres away from the shore putting on a spectacular display of gymnastics.
Major International Airports in Niue
- Niue International Airport