What is Easter Like in Niue?
Public holidays are always one for confusion when travelling anywhere in the world. What are the local celebrations? Will businesses still be open? Basically, will you be able to do anything?! Although Niue is a religious nation that celebrates the Christian holiday of Easter with enthusiasm, the Easter public holiday shouldn’t disrupt too much of your Niue getaway. If anything, it will likely enhance it! Check out how the locals celebrate Easter, what there is to do for visitors and more in this guide to Easter in Niue.
When is Easter?
For those unfamiliar with the Christian holiday, Easter is in either March or April each year. The date is determined by being the first Sunday after the paschal full moon. In other words, it happens after the vernal equinox. If the full moon falls on a Sunday, Easter will be celebrated on the following Sunday. Easter can occur on any date between March 22 and April 25 but the date is recognised well in advance each year – so just do an online search for “Easter date [year]” and you should find your answer.
Note that the public holidays observed in Niue for Easter are both Good Friday (the Friday before Easter Sunday) and Easter Monday (the Monday after Easter Sunday). Easter Sunday is not an official public holiday, but that’s mainly because Sunday is observed as a day of rest in Niue anyway.
How Do Niueans Celebrate Easter?
As a Christian nation, Niue’s locals celebrate Easter as a religious holiday by going to church. Sunday church services are a part of the weekly routine in Niue, but the Easter service is always noteworthy in the church calendar. Good Friday marks the memorial of the death of Jesus Christ and Easter Sunday celebrates his resurrection.
Niue has at least one church in every village, where the harmonious singing from the locals is reason enough to check one of these church services out, especially at Easter.
Check out our recommended churches to visit for Easter, along with their service times, in the 5 Best Churches in Niue to Experience as a Visitor.
Learn more about Niue and Christianity in The Guide to the Religions in Niue.
What Easter in Niue Means for Tourists
The weekend of Good Friday to Easter Monday is observed as a long weekend of public holidays in Niue. Although only Good Friday and Easter Monday are the official public holidays, many businesses change their opening hours from Friday to the following Monday. In short, you might find that a lot of the restaurants and services are closed during the Easter break.
To give you an indication of what businesses are closed in Niue during Easter, some of the businesses that historically have either closed or had limited business hours include:
- Niue Bond Store (airport duty-free open Good Friday for plane days)
- Vaiolama Cafe
- Niue Tourism Visitor Information Centre
- Katuali Coffee House
- Ali’s Hardware
- Swanson Supermarket
Although many tourism businesses still operate their usual hours during the Easter break, note that the Sunday observances still apply, such as no boating activities on a Sunday. Find out more in the 10 Things to Do in Niue on a Sunday.
Easter Events for Visitors
During Easter, tourist accommodations like the Scenic Matavai Resort usually put on special deals at their Dolphin Restaurant. In the past, they have done two-for-one pizzas, for instance. It’s worth checking what they have going on during your visit to Niue at Easter. Note that any dinner events usually need to be booked.
The Niue Arts and Culture Festival
The Niue Arts and Culture Festival is a biannual event that often coincides with Easter making for a big celebration on the island. There are often events happening in the Alofi Commerical Centre, from the opening ceremony to cultural performances. There is sometimes a Village Show Day in the mix, as well as cultural art exhibitions, handicraft demonstrations, uga presentations and much more happening in various villages around the island. See the Niue Tourism Events Page for the latest schedule of entertainment for this event that typically occurs in April every other year.
Other Public Holidays in Niue
Easter is just one of many cultural and Christian public holidays the country observes. Other public holidays in Niue include:
- January 1 – New Year’s Day
- January 2 – Takai Commission Holiday
- February 6 – Waitangi Day
- Friday before Easter Sunday – Good Friday
- Monday after Easter Sunday – Easter Monday
- April 25 – ANZAC Day
- First Monday in June – Queen’s Birthday
- October 19 – Constitution Day
- October 20 – Constitution Day Holiday
- October 21 (or October 22 if falls on a Sunday) – Constitution Day Holiday
- October 22 – Peniamina Gospel Day
- December 25 – Christmas
- December 26 – Boxing Day
For more information on Niue’s holidays, see Public Holidays in Niue (& Other Important Dates).