A Small Island with Small Villages
Visiting “small towns” is kind of a buzz in travel at the moment, but what about a small island where the entire country itself feels like a small town?! Yep, Niue is your ultimate destination for not just small towns but mostly villages. Niue is not spoiled by over-urbanisation, where a community spirit still applies as locals wave to everyone they meet in their path. Charming towns and villages are totally Niue’s thing, where you’re bound to be satisfied by any of the 14 villages on the island. Nevertheless, if you’re looking for the villages with the most things to do, then let us guide you with this list of the best small towns and villages to visit in Niue.
For an overview of all of Niue’s villages, see Understanding the Niue Villages.
Niue’s Smallest Villages
While we dive into the largest villages in Niue in The 5 Biggest Towns & Villages in Niue, here are the smallest villages in Niue with their approximate population.
- Namukulu – around 15 people
- Toi – around 30 people
- Vaiea – around 60 people
- Hikutavake – around 65 people
- Liku – around 70 people.
This might be Niue’s third-largest settlement, but Avatele still has the small village vibe and has plenty going on. Head to Avatele Bay for a photogenic coral beach and a fantastic swimming spot at low to mid tide.
On a Sunday, the village green and church echo with harmonious singing for Sunday worship, which is well worth stopping by for a cultural experience.
Avatele also has a few more drawcards, including its stunning accommodations like Breeze, Lau’s Getaway and Aleki’s Guesthouse. The bay is also where dive operator, Niue Blue, launches their dive boats depending on the conditions. Finally, Taue Uga Tours, a must-do cultural tour, departs from Avatele.
Learn more about the villages in the 10 Things to Do in Avatele.
You’ll hardly realise this is a village, tucked away in the northwestern corner of the island. Hikutavake, however, holds some of the most iconic natural attractions in Niue, as well as boasts friendly locals.
Don’t miss the sea tracks to spectacular coastal formations like the Talava Arches and the Matapa Chasm, located at the back of the grassy parking area at the northern end of the village. There’s also the Hikutavake Sea Track, which provides access to some amazing pools for snorkelling. See 10 Best Sea Tracks on the West Coast of Niue for more information.
There is one accommodation in the village for visitors, the Matapa Guest House.
On the southeast corner of Niue, Hakupu is the southern gateway to the glorious Huvalu Forest Conservation Area. This protected forest is home to some of the east coast’s famous attractions, such as the Togo Chasm and the Vinivini Bike Track. However, Hakupu has its own attractions worth visiting, such as Anapala Chasm complete with 146 steps to get down to the bottom of this amazing formation.
To spend a little longer in Hakupu, stay at the Lalopine Rockhouse or visit the Ebony Studio where Ebony Rainforest Tours are available to provide a nature and culture experience.
Learn more about what to do here in the 5 Things to Do in Hakupu.
Mutalau is your northern gateway to Niue’s rugged east coast, which is best demonstrated with its scenic sea track lining the coast, the Uluvehi Sea Track. Explore the limestone caves here and admire the dramatic coastline.
The village is also a place of historical significance in Niue. For one, it was the village of Peniamina, the founder of Christianity in Niue. You can visit the traditional fortress, Taue i Fupiu, where warriors protected Peniamina. Uluvehi also has some significance, being a popular landing point for traders over the 19th Century, as well as Peruvian slave traders who took 109 young Niuean men in 1863 and were never returned to the island.
To dive a little deeper into the Niuean culture, A5 Tours is based in Mutalau, offering tours of local plantations and rainforest in a 4WD vehicle.
Blink and you might miss it. Tuapa might be one of the smallest villages in Niue, but it is conveniently located in the middle of several popular attractions, including the Limu Pools to the north and Palaha and Avaiki Cave to the south. See the 10 Best Sea Tracks on the West Coast of Niue for more information on these tracks.
The village’s main claim to fame, however, is Hio Beach, Niue’s largest beach and one of the most picturesque. At the top of the sea track to Hio Beach is the Hio Cafe & Bar, which is generally the place to eat, drink and be merry on this side of the island. They put on Niuean buffets on a Thursday and stay open later for happy hour on Fridays.
More About Small Towns and Villages to Visit in Niue
That’s it for our guide to the best small towns and villages in Niue. For more about Niue’s villages, check out more of our guides:
- The Best Villages to Visit in Niue
- 5 Best Churches in Niue to Experience as a Visitor
- The Guide to the Niuean Culture for Travellers
Finally, if there’s anything we’ve missed, you’re likely to find it in Understanding the Niue Villages.