Sunday, 4 August 2013

The best place we'd never heard of - Part Three

Niue is not about gastronomy or fine dining. There are a few café style places to eat but they open when they feel like it and the menu is limited. Catering for tourism is a new concept and one they have yet to grapple, we hope they take their time!

We went to one place, it had Fish Salad, Fish burger and Fish n Chips on the menu. The waitress came out and said we have everything on the menu but no fish! ha ha we laughed our socks off. I had the fish salad (minus fish), hubster had the fish n chips.... yep you guessed it. We shared.

That is Niue, the fishermen didn't catch anything and even if they did, the islanders would have had first dibs. Quite right.

Annoyed? Not at all, utterly charmed.

There is a little supermarket which has all the basics and oddly enough Marmite!!

Our Niue Afternoons

Anyway after whatever makeshift lunch we could muster our sights were set on exploring the surrounding waters.

We were greeted with crystal clear pools that have etched themselves into open mouthed caves teeming with infant fish, baby crabs and shrimps. A wonderful spot to chill.

We wondered at beautiful coral formations, yellow, purple, pink, blue and living amongst it all the incredibly healthy tropical marine life.

Sea snakes, octopus, huge moray eels, giant centipedes and of course nemo and all his fishy mates including the white tipped reef shark.

Hours dissolved and only the rising tide alerted us to the fact that we should try and pull ourselves away from our own personal aquarium.

En route back to Restoration Reef, it became routine to stop by Sails Bar. Sails is run by a New Zealander who married a Niuean lady, who set up a bar some 25 years ago and has many a story to tell about island life. Stafford Guest genuinely seemed happy to see us each day and we him. The free nibbles after hours in the water were always welcome. The stories we will never forget, thank you Stafford.

So what about the WHALES and what about the DOLPHINS?

Well we were blessed. We snorkelled with the spinner dolphins and we got up close and personal with the humpback whales.

What about the pictures?

Well you know, you have to make a choice when you are one on one with wildlife.

A. Spend all your time with a camera stuck in your face, trying to capture the perfect moment

B. Be totally present in the fleeting and wonderful moment that Mother Nature presents.

B obviously.

However, thanks to this chap, we can share with you what we saw.

 It was a beautiful sight, we had many like this. Lone males like the one above breaching, diving and singing at the bottom and pods of mums and aunties with calves. No words just pure awe.

With the Spinner dolphins we donned a dive glove each, snorkel and mask. We then launched ourselves off backward off the skiff and frantically held to the gunwale whilst bodysurfing the chop with our faces down in the water following the Spinners. With our free hand we signalled the direction the dolphins were heading.

It was exhilarating and exciting and thank god we had custom masks that fitted and snorkels with splash guards!

Wow that was sooooo exciting, beautiful and emotional.

You know when you've had a great holiday when 2 hours before you need to catch the plane you are still out on the water looking for whales and dolphins!

God bless you Niue, your people, your wonderful lack of tourism, your big heart, your bush chickens, your fresh paw paws that we could pick every day and everything else and more...........


you can keep your Vomit Fruit (Noni) however this wonderful lady can be on my team anyday!

Go Grandma and your CND glasses.

Niue - miss you already. xxx

The bush chickens have the final say. They far out numbered the humans and roam the island as free as, well as a bird! Islanders gather eggs wherever they find them and they happened to be the finest and healthiest free range we've ever seen.

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