14-Day Budget Itinerary for Niue
Two weeks is the ideal time to explore all of Niue’s top sights, which incidentally are free to visit, and have some time to relax. This Niue budget and backpacking itinerary for 14 days is for the backpacker or budget traveller that wants to explore, see and do it all! If you prefer something more relaxing, scroll to the bottom of this article where we give an alternative budget itinerary.
Note that some activities on this Niue budget and backpacking 14-day itinerary are only available on certain days of the week. This itinerary is based on if you arrive in Niue on a Friday (local time), but days can be moved around accordingly should you arrive in Niue another day. See flight schedules in Which Airlines Fly to Niue?
Overview: Niue Budget and Backpacking 2-Week (14-Day) Itinerary
- Day 1 – Land in Niue, Check-in at Your Accommodation
- Day 2 – Explore Alofi
- Day 3 – Explore the East Coast
- Day 4 – Check Out the Limu Pools, Matapa Chasm and the Talava Arches
- Day 5 – Visit Avaiki and Palaha Caves and Do Some Whale Watching
- Day 6 – Free Day
- Day 7 – Hit the Bike Trails
- Day 8 – Visit a Niuean School
- Day 9 – Sample Tropical Treats on the Maala Garden Tour
- Day 10 – Experience Church and Avatele Beach
- Day 11 – Spend the Day in Alofi and Snorkel at Utuko Reef
- Day 12 – Go Beach-Hopping
- Day 13 – Check Out the Niue Market and the Women’s Council Weaving
- Day 14 – Free Day
- Departure Day
How to Get Around Niue in 14 Days on a Budget
Niue is one island with 123 km (76 mi) of paved roads, 64 km (40 mi) of road circling the island and no public transport… For this reason, we strongly recommend hiring some sort of vehicle to make the most out of this 14-day budget and backpacking itinerary for Niue.
Budget car rentals are readily available in Niue, just make sure to book your vehicle in advance to get the best deal. We give advice on What You Need to Hire a Car in Niue, including the Niue Driver’s License. For money-saving tips, check out 10 Ways to Save Money on Car Rental in Niue.
Certainly cheaper than hiring a car, but more exhausting to ride in the tropical heat, cycling around Niue can be a fun way to explore for the right people. Both bicycle and electric bike hire are available in Niue. Find out more about this transport method in The Guide to Cycling & Mountain Biking in Niue.
If you have a motorcycle license, motorcycle rental could be a more affordable motor-powered way to get around Niue. Find out more about the advantages and disadvantages in our guide, Motorcycle Hire in Niue: Where to Rent, Cost & More.
For alternative transport in Niue, including airport transfers and motorcycle rental, see the 11 Ways to Get to (& Around) Niue. Plus, compare the most popular methods in Should You Rent a Car or a Bicycle in Niue?
Day 1 – Land in Niue, Check-in at Your Accommodation
Travel time: 5-10 minutes drive.
Your Niue adventure begins! On arrival, you will go through the airport customs and biosecurity process, as outlined in Everything You Need to Know About Arriving in Niue.
Visit the appropriate kiosk for your chosen car rental company or your chosen accommodation will either have its own kiosk for accommodation transfers or simply a representative with a sign ready to pick you up. You may also want to pick up your Niue Driver’s License from the Police Station since it’s so close to the airport.
Because Niue is so small (it takes around two hours to drive around the whole island), it’s more convenient to stay in the same accommodation for the entire two weeks.
Budget Accommodations in Niue
- Heleni Jessop’s Fatahega
- Kololi’s Motel (Guesthouse)
- Peleni’s Guesthouse
- Aleki Guesthouse
- Damiana’s Holiday Motel
- Lialagi Dorm & Units
- Aliutu Guesthouse
- Yolos Accommodation
- Vinnie’s Guesthouse
- Kaliki Lodge
For more details on our top picks, see the 10 Best Budget Accommodations in Niue.
Self-Catering in Niue
Almost all budget accommodation on the island has self-catering facilities, so we recommend picking up supplies on your way to your accommodation. The largest supermarket, Swanson Supermarket, is just outside of the airport. Alternatively, there are a few grocery stores in Alofi. Check out The Guide to Supermarkets & Food Shopping in Niue to learn more.
Day 2 – Explore Alofi
Travel time: 5-15 minutes drive.
When the rest of Niue’s visitors rush to the top attractions, take the time today to get acquainted with Alofi. That way, you’ll understand what services and restaurants are available, make any bookings you may need at the Visitor Information Centre, and do some fun free stuff too! Yes, Alofi is home to some of its own free sea tracks leading to amazing coastal scenery. There’s also a cheap museum, an art gallery, gift shops and whale-watching sites!
Free/Cheap Things to Do in Alofi
- Watch whales and dolphins from Tomb Point
- Check out historic sites, like Tomb Point and Opaahi
- Walk Alofi’s sea tracks
- Play a round of mini golf at the Vaiolama Cafe
- Scout out the cheap eats
- Admire the paintings in the Tahiono Art Gallery
- Visit the Fale Tau Taoga (Niue National Museum)
For more details and suggestions, check out the 10 Free & Cheap Things to Do in Alofi.
While self-catering will always save you more than eating out, if you have the budget to spare, treat yourself to a panini at the rustic cliff-top eatery of the Crazy Uga Cafe (Alofi). For dinner, cheap eats can be found at Buk Buk Chicken (behind Alofi Commercial Centre). See more recommendations in The Top Cheap Eats in Niue.
Day 3 – Explore the East Coast
Travel time: 1 hour drive.
It’s time to get off the beaten track (as if you already weren’t in Niue) and explore Niue’s rugged side, the east coast! Hire a car, if you already haven’t (if today falls on a Sunday on your itinerary, hire a car the day before), and hit the road to Niue’s quieter coast. We have a full-day itinerary you can follow in A Self-Guided Day Trip in Niue: East Coast Itinerary. Otherwise, some highlights include…
Starting from south to north, head to the village of Hakupu and the Anapala Chasm Sea Track. The 15-minute one-way walk takes you through lush rainforest and down some steep steps to the bottom of an awe-inspiring chasm. If you’re not too spooked, you can swim in the cold freshwater at the bottom.
Your next chasm fix comes with a 30-45-minute walk to Togo Chasm. After walking through the tropical rainforest of the Huvalu Forest Conservation Area, you’ll emerge on a rocky coastline with limestone pinnacles as far as the eye can see. Follow the track down a ladder and into a sandy-bottom chasm dotted with coconut palms! You can scramble over the rockfall at the back of the chasm to watch waves breaking against the rocks. Needless to say, you won’t want to venture further, so return the same way.
Laufoli Umu Pit
Easy to miss, keep an eye on the east side of the road, north of the Togo Chasm for a quick stop at the Laufoli Umu Pit. You can see the distinct ditch in the ground that was used as an earth oven which it is said that a great warrior created in order to end his life there – learn more in the 10 Best Historical Sites in Niue.
Hikulagi Sculpture Park
Have a quick browse around this outdoor sculpture park with works of art created out of recycled materials.
Uluvehi Sea Track
Park up on some steep clifftops where you’ll be able to look inside a couple of shallow limestone caves, see fishermen’s vaka (canoes) and enjoy amazing views of the Pacific Ocean.
While the suggested free attractions will keep you busy for the day, there are many more nooks and crannies along the east coast to explore should you be a fast explorer. See the 8 Best Sea Tracks on the East Coast of Niue for more inspiration.
Sunday is Washaway Cafe (Avatele) day! Pick up some affordable burgers and focaccias at the end of your road trip.
Day 4 – Check Out the Limu Pools, Matapa Chasm and the Talava Arches
Travel time: 10-30 minutes drive.
There’s so much to see on the calmer side of the island, including snorkelling hotspots, that you might want to take your exploration on the west coast a little slower. First, head north to the villages of Hikutavake and Namukulu, which have a whole bunch of amazing coastal attractions. Note that these attractions for snorkelling are tide-dependent, so change the order you visit them according to the tide – get more advice in Tide Times in Niue: Essential for Your Trip!
An oasis for swimming and snorkelling, the Limu Pools is a must-visit. Follow a short sea track down to the main pools, where swimming is best enjoyed at half-to-full incoming tide. Otherwise, the water tends to be a little too shallow at low tide. There’s also a small side track to another snorkelling spot with an archway which is generally better to snorkel at low tide.
Suitable for swimming at any tide, the Matapa Chasm is a wide chasm harbouring all sorts of tropical fish in its safe swimming spot. Walk down a seven-minute rocky sea track through the forest to emerge at the chasm.
Enjoyed at any tide, but best at low tide if you want to walk across the reef and under the arch, the Talava Arches is what awaits after a 30-minute walk through the forest. The sea track is right next to the beginning of the Matapa Chasm track and leads to a series of limestone caves to navigate with guide ropes. You’ll emerge at a stunning view of the coastal archway and have the opportunity to snorkel in the coral-lined channel below.
Pick up breakfast or brunch to go from the hole-in-the-wall takeaway of Little Rock (Alofi), serving fresh wraps, hot rolls and fish and chips for a reasonable price.
Day 5 – Visit Avaiki and Palaha Caves and Do Some Whale Watching
Travel time: 10-25 minutes drive.
More amazing coastal scenery awaits on the west coast of the island, this time around the village of Makefu. Just before low tide, find the Avaiki Cave Sea Track down to a huge cathedral cave with a swimming pool at the base. After a bit of snorkelling, head back up the sea track and up the road to the nearby Palaha Cave for more magnificent viewings of grand limestone caves. Although you can walk between the two caves on the reef at low tide, we don’t recommend it, as it’s hard to avoid standing on fragile coral.
Top off your exploration of Makefu by setting up camp (not literally, but more like a picnic camp) at the Makefu Sea Track, which is a good place to look out for whales (July to September) and dolphins. See more spots like this in the 10 Best Whale & Dolphin Lookouts in Niue.
We don’t blame you if you’re tempted by the $10 lunch special of Kaiika (Alofi), usually 10 pieces of fresh or cooked sushi. Be warned, you’ll probably want to return for dinner!
Day 6 – Free Day
Be sure to set a day aside in your itinerary to either relax at your accommodation or do one of the slightly more expensive activities that we wouldn’t usually include in a “budget” itinerary. You’re only in Niue once (well, that’s in the unlikely event that you don’t fall in love with the place), so why not treat yourself to swimming with whales, scuba diving in crystal clear waters or one of the other 10 Must-Dos in Niue?
Alternatively, many accommodations on the island have their own attractions, whether it’s the host offering cultural tours or the accommodation having access to its own swimming spot (or swimming pool). At some of the budget guesthouses, locals are known to arrange last-minute uga (coconut crab) hunts or umu dinners, so always leave some room for the spontaneous!
Day 7 – Hit the Bike Trails
Travel time: See cycling times in The Cycling Times & Distances in Niue.
After your day of relaxation, you’re bound to have some energy to explore one of Niue’s fun yet not-so-strenuous bike trails. There are five official bike trails on the island, where much of the route takes you on old bush tracks deep into the inland forest. Compare bike trails in The 5 Best Bike Trails in Niue.
Mountain bikes are either free with some accommodations or affordable to hire from various tourism operators and the Visitor Information Centre. See Where to Rent Bikes in Niue to compare locations and prices.
During your ride, you may want to stop at Hio Cafe & Bar (Tuapa) for their irresistible fish tacos, wood-fired pizzas and Niuean tasting platters – not exactly a “cheap eat” but a worthy stop nonetheless.
Day 8 – Visit a Niuean School
Travel time: 10-20 minutes drive.
If you arrived in Niue on a Friday, today should be the following Friday when your morning can be spent visiting a local primary school. Watch the kids sing in an adorable cultural assembly. The assembly starts around 9 am at the Niue Primary School (Alofi-Liku Road). Note that the assembly only takes place every second Friday, so be sure to inquire at the Visitor Information Centre for the upcoming schedule.
After that, enjoy your day at leisure or do one of the activities you might have missed! See the 10 Free & Cheap Things to Do in Niue for more ideas.
Pick up some affordable Niuean snacks from the Friday afternoon market at the Niue Market, including nane or the famous Makfurly Burger (Alofi); the most island burger you’ll ever have! Find out more about markets in the 5 Best Markets in Niue.
Day 9 – Sample Tropical Treats on the Maala Garden Tour
Travel time: 15-40 minutes drive.
Amazing value for money, the Maala Garden Tour (Liku) is certainly worth the venture to visit a tropical bush garden and come away with a wealth of knowledge about Niue’s unique produce, not to mention the taste of delicious fruit!
You will be shown the maala (garden) by your friendly and characterful hosts, John and Doris, and learn about growing food crops, tropical trees, herbs and much more. Like most of Niue’s guided tours, this is a very casual experience, so the more questions you ask the better! You can certainly pick up a few tips from your passionate hosts who have developed this garden out of a labour of love.
At the end of the experience, you will be treated to a spread of local fruits, nuts and a drinking coconut – many of which we feature in the 10 Exotic Fruits in Niue You Have to Try!
Learn more about what the tour entails and what you need to bring in the 6 Best Guided Tours in Niue.
John will keep you well-fed on the Maala Garden Tour, but if you need something else, the Vanilla Cafe (Alofi Commercial Centre) is open for lunch and dinner, serving up affordable rotis and average-priced curries.
Day 10 – Experience Church and Avatele Beach
Travel time: 5-15 minutes drive.
If you arrived in Niue on Friday, then today is Sunday and a day of sabbath for Niueans. An interesting and free cultural activity on the island is going to one of the Sunday church services. The spiritual experience with amazing harmonious singing is uplifting even for those who are not religious. Check out church recommendations in the 10 Best Churches in Niue to Experience as a Visitor.
After church, head to Avatele Beach where the Washaway Cafe is open on Sundays only! Enjoy swimming from the beach at low or mid tide on an outgoing tide (watch out for currents near the channel and boat ramp) and enjoy a drink and some food at the Washaway Cafe, which is a serve-yourself honesty bar! Learn more about it in The 20 Best Restaurants in Niue.
Day 11 – Spend the Day in Alofi and Snorkel at Utuko Reef
Travel time: 5-15 minutes drive.
One of our top recommendations is Utuko Reef, which is ideal for snorkelling at the low-to-mid incoming tide. Enjoy the amazing views of the beach, clear turquoise waters and the rocky cliffs on either side. There are easily accessible pools for swimming to the left of the cove, which is possible to swim at mid to high tide depending on what the swell is doing.
While you might have been doing some self-catering to save money, you might want to treat yourself at some of the local restaurants too! Check out The Top Cheap Eats in Niue to see which restaurants and cafes are the most affordable.
Day 12 – Go Beach-Hopping
Travel time: 5-25 minutes drive.
You’ve seen chasms, epic arches and caves, but you’ve yet to get in some beach time! Today is the day, where you can enjoy some of Niue’s attractive white coral beaches. Some of the beaches are ideal for swimming, snorkelling and reef walking, with one highlight being Hio Beach. Not only is it a highlight for its amazing reef pools to the right of the beach, but because the Hio Cafe & Bar is just above it where you can enjoy a couple of drinks with your travel buddies (if it’s open).
Otherwise, Tamakautoga and Pofitu Beaches are tiny pieces of paradise well worth discovering on the southwest coast.
See more beaches to hop to in The 5 Best Beaches in Niue.
Fish burgers with cream cheese and homemade wraps await at Cafe Tavana (Alofi Commercial Centre) – all for a reasonable price.
Day 13 – Check Out the Niue Market and the Women’s Council Weaving
Travel time: 5-15 minutes drive.
If you arrived in Niue on Friday, then today is a Wednesday and a day of bustling activity in Alofi! Wake up early to enjoy the fresh produce, crafts and souvenirs at the Niue Market, starting at 8 am until about 12 pm. The market is next door to the Visitor Information Centre.
Also happening on a Wednesday is the Niue Council of Women’s crafting group inside Makini Hall or Aliutu Hall. You are welcome to watch the women in action in all sorts of handicrafts, from weaving to fabric printing to making necklaces made out of yellow shells found in the forest. There’s also a little shop at the back of Makini Hall to see the finished works.
If you haven’t visited yet, Fale Tau Taoga Niue Museum is a worthy (and cheap) attraction to visit, where volunteers are on hand to provide a guided tour of the museum’s relics – learn more in the 5 Best Museums & Art Galleries in Niue.
While not exactly a “budget” meal, it’s still worth sampling some authentic Niuean dishes, from sweet takihi to lupe (pigeon) risotto, at the Manuiz (Alofi) island buffet. The bar serves well-priced drinks and your meal is enjoyed to the tunes of a local string band. Bookings are essential.
Day 14 – Free Day
Today is all yours to do anything you might have missed over the past fortnight (or anything that you thought was so amazing you want to do again)! Tours often get cancelled due to bad weather in Niue, so it’s always handy to have some free time for rescheduling.
We have plenty of inspiration for new experiences in our 101 Things to Do in Niue: The Ultimate List, so get scrolling and complete your bucket list for day 14 of your budget and backpacking itinerary in Niue!
If you arrived on a Friday, today is Thursday and happy hour at the Vaiolama Cafe (Alofi South) starts at 5 pm with DJ entertainment and irresistible (but not exactly cheap) grill-style cuisine. After you’ve wrapped up your meal, head across the road to Avi’s Ark (behind Kaiika) to try the island’s homebrewed craft beer, as well as get onto the karaoke if that’s what you’re into.
Timings change all the time in Niue, so be sure to pick up an entertainment schedule from the Visitor Information Centre when you arrive, as explained in our guide, Opening Hours in Niue: Odd Hours, Tide Times & Things to Know.
Departure Day – Check Out of Your Accommodation and Depart Niue
Travel time: 5-10 minutes drive.
Your time in paradise has come to an end, so say goodbye to your guesthouse hosts who, no doubt, have made you part of the family, and make your way to Hanan Airport to check in your baggage. The departure process in Niue is a bit of a lengthy one that’s worth getting to understand in Leaving Niue: The Niue Airport Departure Process. You’ll see that you will need to check in your bags earlier than usual before catching your flight.
If you still have your rental car, park it up at the airport and leave the keys in the ignition. Then it’s goodbye to Niue, as you make your way back to Auckland.
Alternative Itinerary: Niue Relaxing Budget and Backpacking 2-Week (14-Day) Itinerary
Below is an overview of a relaxed budget itinerary for Niue as an alternative to our more active itinerary above. In the below itinerary, you will be staying in the same accommodation. Plus, there is an extra day added due to the irregular flight schedule.
- Day 1 – Arrive in Niue and check-in at your accommodation
- Day 2 – Explore Alofi, its museum, shops and sea tracks. Pick up a driver’s license (if needed)
- Day 3 – Visit Avatele, its beach, the Washaway Cafe and Pofitu Sea Track
- Day 4 – Swim at the Limu Pools
- Day 5 – Trek to the Matapa Chasm and Talava Arches
- Day 6 – Visit the Niue Market and Niue Council of Women’s weaving group
- Day 7 – Explore the east coast sights, like Togo Chasm and Anapala Chasm
- Day 8 – Relax at Hio Beach and the Hio Cafe
- Day 9 – Explore Avaiki and Palaha Caves
- Day 10 – Experience a Niuean church service then enjoy an evening of stargazing in a Dark Sky Sanctuary
- Day 11 – Rent a bike and hit the cycle trails
- Day 12 – Enjoy Niue Primary School’s Friday cultural assembly for visitors
- Day 13 – A free day to do one of the more expensive activities on your bucket list, like swimming with whales, scuba diving, etc. – see the 10 Must-Dos in Niue for inspiration
- Day 14 – Visit some of the historic sites, like Laufoli Umu Pit and Taue I Fupiu on the east coast
- Departure Day – Get prepared for departure on an exciting and unusual Niue plane day.
Alternative Niue Two-Week Itineraries
Is this 14-day budget and backpacking itinerary for Niue not quite speaking to you? How about checking out our alternative itineraries for 14 days/two weeks:
- Niue Child-Free Itinerary: 14 Days
- Niue Food Itinerary: 14 Days
- Niue Honeymoon & Romance Itinerary: 14 Days
- Niue Family Itinerary: 14 Days
- Niue Luxury Itinerary: 14 Days
Finally, if there’s anything we’ve missed from this Niue budget and backpacking itinerary, you’re likely to find it in The Backpacking & Budget Travel Guide to Niue.