Souvenirs from Niue
Souvenirs from Niue reflect the country's hundreds of years of isolation, resulting in a very specific style to the island. Tapa cloth is made from mulberry tree bark, and is colored and styled into unique decorative pieces, some with historical and religious meaning. Niuean weaving uses the Pandanus leaf to create intricately woven baskets, mats, baskets, bowls and wall hangings. You can even arrange to take a class from an expert weaver, and make your own Niuean souvenir, perhaps a picture frame to hold a postcard. Jewelry made from shells, stones and seeds are quite lovely to decorate yourself with, and make charming presents. Essential oils, made from local spices and flowers, are a way to capture a vacation in a bottle, and can scent linens, potpourri, and candles. Wooden statues of deities and animals are another option for home decor, or you may choose a refrigerator magnet or key chain for a bit of island flair.
Nicknamed the Rock of Polynesia, Niue is a south Pacific coral atoll, between the Samoan and Cook Islands. About 1400 people live on the island, enjoying the beautiful weather, and interestingly, free Wi-Fi since 2003. Most of the population lives in the west/ southwest region, near the two largest bays. Niue is self-governing, but it has a free association with nearby New Zealand, relying on it for diplomatic relations. Due to the International Dateline, the countries, though relatively close, have a 23 hour time difference! The oval shaped coral atoll is one of the world's largest, marked with cliffs and caves throughout the surface, and is further surrounded by a coral reef, teeming with life. Blowhole Point, named for the many whales observed there, is a peninsula near the southwest town of Avatele. Another interesting Niuean fact deals with the sand. Created from coral that has been weathered for over 120,000 years, it contains mild levels of radioactivity.