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Niue - The Rock of Polynesia

22 May 2012


Niue - The Rock of Polynesia
Tuesday, 22 May, 2012

Niue has an area of just 100 square miles, which is 2/3 the size of the Isle of Wight in the UK, the home of World Cruising Club. Niue is often referred to as the "Rock of Polynesia" or locally as "the Rock". Its geology and geography is unusual amongst all the other Pacific Islands. It has steep rocky slopes with a reasonably flat plateau and so should offer a different landscape for World ARC participants to explore. The isolation of the island - there is only 1 international flight a week - means an interesting culture and a good interest in visitors that arrive to explore the islands.

The central plateau rises to just 60 metres above sea level and a coral reef surrounds the island. The only major break in this reef is to be found in the central western coast close to the capital, Alofi. However approaching Alofi Bay from the sea there is little other than an isolated communications mast to indicate that the island is inhabited at all! Niue has a population of just 1300 living in 14 widely dispersed villages. It is self-governing and is fully responsible for it’s internal affairs. Each village is represented in government. Niue is it seems has the smallest democracy in the world.

Not  23 May 2012all about Niue is small. The island is one of the world's largest coral islands. It is made from porous limestone it has no lakes or streams, and all the rainwater filters quickly through the rock into the sea. On one side the rainwater has carved out an exquisite & unique environment to explore with caverns, caves and cathedrals a plenty. On the other, the sea has shaped rocky coves, coral platforms, underwater caves and caverns providing a Mecca for swimming, snorkelling and diving.

Each year Niue Yacht Club provides visitors with up to 20 robust moorings. Carefully designed, these moorings consist of 2 large concrete blocks, a mooring line and spring. There are perfect for the strong swells in Alofi bay and a safe place to leave a yacht whilst exploring this interesting island.



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