3-Day Family Itinerary for Niue
Let’s address the elephant in the room: If you are arriving in Niue on a Friday and leaving on a Monday, that technically gives you four days in Niue, but with the departure day made up of spending most of your time checking in bags and hanging around, you only really get around three days to enjoy what the world’s largest raised coral atoll has to offer.
Note that due to Niue’s reduced flight schedule, this itinerary may not compatible with current flights – check the flight schedule in Which Airlines Fly to Niue?
While three days is not the recommended length of stay to make the most out of Niue, families can still enjoy some of the island’s best swimming holes, snorkelling hotspots and nature tours within this time. This Niue family itinerary for 3 days is designed for the family that wants to explore, see and do as much as possible. For a more relaxed holiday plan, see What to Do for 3 Days in Niue on a Family Vacation.
Before we jump into this 3-day family itinerary for Niue, be sure to bookmark The Travel Guide to Niue for Families for even more family vacation advice.
How to Get Around Niue in 3 Days
Niue is a small island with attractions scattered throughout but little-to-no public transport. For convenience, we recommend hiring a car for your entire stay in Niue. Alternatively, airport transfers and one taxi is available, and you could just hire a car for Day 3 of this itinerary – be sure to book well in advance in the high season.
To drive a car in Niue, you will need a Niue Driver’s License, available from the Police Station in Alofi and costing around NZ$22.50.
Day 1 – Arrive in Niue
Fakaalofa Lahi Atu! Welcome to Niue, your home for the next three days!
On arrival at Hanan International Airport, you’ll go through the airport arrival process as outlined in detail in Everything You Need to Know About Arriving in Niue. Give it a read so you can transition into Niue seamlessly!
Once you’re outside of the arrival area, head to the kiosk of your chosen car rental company or, if you have organised airport transfers with your accommodation, a representative will be waiting for you. Wherever you’re staying on the island, it will be a short drive to your accommodation…
Family Accommodation in Niue
- Scenic Matavai Resort
- Namukulu Cottages
- Matapa Guest House
- Scenic Matavai Apartments & Villas
- Stone Villas
- Heleni Jessop’s Fatahega
- Kololi Motel
See the 10 Best Family Accommodation in Niue for more information on our top recommendations for families.
Self-catering and Dining in Niue
Most accommodation in Niue is self-catering. We recommend picking up supplies on the way to your accommodation, either at the largest supermarket on the island, Swanson Supermarket, just outside of the airport (turn left when you leave the airport) or from one of the convenience stores in Alofi.
Alternatively, celebrate your first day in Niue as a family with a meal out! Family-friendly options include Jenna’s Restaurant and the Dolphin Restaurant at the Scenic Matavai Resort. Check out more recommendations in The Guide to the Best Eats & Restaurants in Niue.
Day 2 – Do a Nature Tour/Explore the Alofi Sea Tracks
Head to the island’s capital, Alofi, to see what services and restaurants are available, pick up your Niue Driver’s License, and book tours through the Visitor Information Centre, such as Misa’s Nature Tour. Admittedly, you should book at least a day in advance, but that doesn’t make quite the same segway onto our next point…
Misa’s Nature Tour
Misa’s Nature Tour is located just up the road that turns off at the Police Station and opposite the high school. There, Misa will teach you and your family how to survive in the wild, which really gets the imaginations of the little ones running! Taste coconut through its different stages, see tribal weapons and hunting gear, see if dad can make fire, hold an uga (coconut crab), hold a flying fox, and so much more!
The tour lasts approximately two hours and involves a little bit of walking at a slow pace, making it an ideal family-friendly tour.
Things to Do in Alofi with Kids
After grabbing a spot of lunch at one of the 6 Best Cafes in Niue, explore some of the fabulous sea tracks accessible from Alofi. You can also challenge each other to a game of mini golf on the clifftops!
- Get some beach time and do a reef walk at the Utuko Reef
- Snorkel in the rock pools and discover the cave on the Vaila Sea Track
- Get competitive with a round of mini golf at the Vaiolama Cafe
- Visit the Fale Tau Taoga (Niue National Museum)
- Check out the vaka (canoes) and rocky coastline on the Opaahi Sea Track
- Explore the rockpools on the Togalahi Sea Track
- Check out a cute swimming hole on the Togalupo Sea Track
For more details and more activities, check out the 10 Things To Do in Alofi with Kids!
Dining in Alofi
Be sure to hang around for dinner in Alofi, where most of the island’s restaurants are, as listed in The Guide to the Best Eats & Restaurants in Alofi.
Day 3 – Visit the Limu Pools, Matapa Chasm, the Talava Arches and More!
If you’re staying in Alofi, now is a good time to hire a car for the day. If staying elsewhere, you probably already have a car and are now ready to hit the road and explore Niue’s breathtaking coastline. The best side of the island for families to explore is the west coast, where you’ll find safe swimming spots and amazing places to snorkel.
On your agenda should be the Limu Pools. Located near Namukulu, a short sea track leads down to a large sheltered cove with crystal clear waters. The pools are best visited at mid to full incoming tide for older kids that want some deeper water for snorkelling and cliff-jumping. Otherwise, if you have little ones, visit the Limu Pools at low tide when they are nice and shallow!
Matapa Chasm and Talava Arches
Travel a little further north to Hikutavake where there’s a large grassy area for parking. There, you’ll find the Matapa Chasm and the Talava Arches sea tracks. If the tide is still low or at mid-tide, we recommend heading to the Talava Arches first. The Matapa Chasm can be enjoyed at any tide.
The Talava Arches Sea Track is a 30-minute venture through the forest along a rocky path, where sturdy shoes are required. You’ll finally approach a limestone cave to scramble through where guide ropes lead the way (of course, keep an eye on enthusiastic children). The cave opens up on a viewpoint of a magnificent coastal arch. Walk on the reef under the arch at low tide to admire its majestic size and snorkel in the narrow channel at the bottom of the reef, lined with beautiful coral.
Return on the Talava Arches Sea Track the same way, then head down to the Matapa Chasm Sea Track just next door. The walk is an easy seven-minute walk to another amazing swimming and snorkelling spot that can be enjoyed at all tides.
Relax at the Hio Cafe
After an adventurous day, reward yourself and the kids to a fresh-fruit smoothie at the Hio Cafe & Bar! The cafe also does burgers, nachos and a Niuean buffet on a Thursday night (book ahead for the latter). If you have some energy left, take the sea track next to the cafe down to Hio Beach to watch the sunset.
Leaving so soon?! Three days might have only given you a taste of Niue but you still have managed to do some of the highlights of the world’s largest raised coral atoll.
On departure day, after you have packed up your bags and checked out of your accommodation, it’s time to start the slightly unusual airport departure process.
Due to the small airport with limited staff, you will need to check in your bags in the morning and check yourself in for the flight later in the afternoon. Be sure to read Leaving Niue: The Niue Airport Departure Process for a full guide on what to expect. If you have hired a car, you will need to also park it up at the airport at the “Car Rentals Only” signs with the keys in the car.
You’ll then depart on your flight to Auckland.
More on Family Itineraries for Niue
That’s it for the Niue family itinerary: 3 days. Get more trip-planning inspiration from our itinerary compilations: The Best Niue Itineraries for 2 Weeks, The Best Niue Itineraries for 1 Week, The Best Niue Itineraries for 5 Days and The Best Niue Itineraries for a Weekend.