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Tour du monde en autostop - Jeremy Marie

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 Travel Diary : Pleasant Niue

Duration of the stopover: 3 days

Before to start this Pacific crossing, I had never heard about the island of Niue (pronounce « Niou Hey »). Niue is one of the smallest country in the world and surely one of the less populated. With less than 1500 inhabitants, we can say that Niuean is an endangered species !

This is very few information that we arrived in the Bay of Alofi, the capital of Niue

The sailing boat « Khamsin » on the Bay of Alofi

First impression of Niue
At the first view, Niue looks very atypical. It looks like a big plateau coming out of the Sea level. I also had the opportunity to swim on its coast and to realize that the foundations of Niue look like underwater cliffs.

The coast of Niue

The island has many caves and rock formations. The geological history of Niue is without doubt very interesting. In some words, Niue is a kind of coral island, as an elevated atoll on several layers, created after millions of years of volcanic activity.
The island of Niue as an interesting geological heritage to visit. There are many caves all around the island. Some of them are breathtaking.

Some caves in Niue are breathtaking

With a view on the ocean like that, I could consider settle in there!

Here I am in the middle of all of those geological formations

A little bit further on the road, you can have a view on another kind of rock formation. As a natural pool in a valley of kings, the sea is coming in the middle of two cliffs while a river comes to crash against the waves.

A king's pool

Niue is an island with a tropical climate. Thanks to this fact, there is an important vegetation. The main colour of the island is green. The tropical weather is also sometimes attracting hurricanes, like the one of 2004 that toughly touched the island. Every inhabitant of Niue remember this event. Many houses and building have been destroyed this day.

The vegetation of Niue is tropical

The green colour of the island contrasts very nicely with the blue of the ocean


 

Who is the Niuean?

The Niuean seemed to me to be a very pleasant person. The life is very peaceful in Niue, the country is extremly safe and I believe the police must be close to be unemployed !

Hitchhiking in Niue is easier than taking the bus (there aren't any bus in Niue anyway). Indeed, I never raise my thumb in Niue because when I needed a vehicle, someone would everytime offer to give me a ride !

The commodore of Niue is giving me a ride in his vehicle

As soons as we arrived with our sailing boat, we were already invited by same local to enjoy some Niuean dishes in the NiueYacht Club. Those ones just come to let some local food on the table and leave just after that. This is a very kind welcome.

Some Niuean dishes brought by some locals, with some of the famous « taro » (tuber eaten in Niue)

The Niueans are mainly polynesians, eventhough a part of the inhabitants are coming from New Zealand. The official langages spoken in Niue are Niuean and English.

A sign in Niue, with polynesian names and their translation below in english

Niue is indeed a New Zealand protectorate. New Zealand spends millions of dollars every year to protect and develop this country. In consequence, eventhough Niue is independant, it is not souvereign of itself and in consequence not recognized by the UN.

The Niuean flag, with the Union Jack inside

Everybody knows everyone in Niue. Indeed, there are so few people living on the island that it is very difficult to not extend its social knowledge to all the inhabitants. Some social activities in Niue allow the Niuean to gather together. One evening, I heard a music coming from a building, followed by many laughs.When I go near the entrance, I realized that a hundred of locals were busy learning the choreography of a song of Mickael Jackson. Thinking about it, I realized that 10% of the Niuean population were able to dance on « Beat It », which is quite impressive !

The joy and the good mood coming from this place were a good picture of the way of living in Niue : Without problem and with a smile !

The choreography of « Beat it », surely know by at least 10% of the population of Niue !

I really like Niue and the Niuean. The country is safe, developed and nice to live in. The Niueans are surely on the Top 5 of the most pleasant population I met so far.

Niue is far from everything, difficult to access but the journey to there was satisfaying. If you have the chance to come in the island lost in the middle of nowhere, don't hesitate to go to great the Niueans, you won't be disapointed !

Now, I am going back aboard the Khamsin. Next destination : the Tonga !

See you soon,

Jeremy



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