What is Niue Famous for?
Admittedly, Niue isn’t known for much. The tiny island in the South Pacific is a country that flies under the radar, making those who discover it all the more pleased they have. But is there anything that Niue is known for? Let this article enlighten you!
Quick Things Niue is Known For
While we’ll get into the more serious stuff in the section below, here are some quick reasons why you might have heard of Niue.
- There’s more Niueans living outside of Niue than in Niue
- The Niuean language is an endangered language
- Niue used to have a Pokémon currency
- Niue’s prison is located on its only golf course
- Niue is one of the last countries in the world to see the sunset each day and celebrate the New Year each year
- The country has one of the highest rates of politicians per capita
- Niue has no traffic lights
- Niue is the world’s largest raised coral atoll
- The country was named the first Dark Sky Nation
- It’s one of the least-visited countries in the world.
We’ll go through the final three points in the section below. However, if you have to know more about the other points, head to the 10 Fun Facts About Niue.
The World’s Largest Raised Coral Atoll
Niue is famous for being, quite simply, different from its South Pacific neighbours. Instead of being an archipelago of sandy shores or volcanos, Niue is a raised coral atoll – the world’s largest!
A coral atoll is created when a coral reef forms on top of an underwater volcanic peak. Find out more about how the island came to be in our article, How Was Niue Formed?
Due to Niue’s unusual formation, the island is full of chasms, caves, arches and other limestone features. This makes for some impressive sights in Niue. The rocky shores and lack of beaches also contribute to the island’s famous nickname, “The Rock” or “Rock of Polynesia”.
The World’s First Dark Sky Place
Another thing that Niue is known for is being the world’s first country to become a Dark Sky Place or “Dark Sky Nation”.
The International Dark-Sky Association (IDA) accredited the island as both an International Dark Sky Sanctuary and International Dark Sky Community, which therefore made the entire country covered under Dark Sky protection to create the first Dark Sky Nation.
The status formally acknowledges Niue to have some of the darkest and clearest skies for stargazing.
Find out more about Niue’s Dark Sky status in A Guide to the Dark Sky Nation of Niue D206.
One of the World’s Least-Visited Countries
Niue often crops up in media outlets year after year for being one of the world’s least-visited countries. Interestingly, however, the country plans to keep it that way.
Despite a fast-growing tourism industry (Niue was named one of the top 10 fastest growing tourism destinations in 2017 by the United Nations Tourism Organisation), there’s talk of capping the number of visiting tourists to 15,000 a year to preserve the reasons why many wish to visit. Discover those reasons for yourself in our article, Escape the Crowd: Guide to the Lesser Travelled Island of Niue.