Visit This Polynesian Island For One Of A Kind Swimming Adventures

In addition to the lush forests on the island, and the idyllic sandy shores, you have a whole world of wildlife to explore underneath the water's surface around the beautiful Polynesian island of Niue. Snorkeling, swimming, and diving are taken to a whole new level. Many places have opportunities for you to swim with dolphins, or witness coral reefs and colorful fish, and while all of them are fantastic and worthwhile endeavors, Niue offers something rarer – swimming with whales.

Every year, hundreds of humpback whales pass through Niue for mating season before returning to Arctic waters. During this unique time when the whales are passing through, you're legally allowed to swim as close as 100 feet away from them. This experience of swimming with humpback whales is legal in Niue if you go with a licensed operator. You get the rare opportunity to witness the gigantic mammals, which can grow up to 60 feet in length, up close.

How to swim with the whales

To swim with the whales, you'll need to find a licensed operator that will take you directly to them. Luckily, there are two main options for you to choose from. The first is Niue Blue Island Experiences, which is an especially great choice if you're interested in hearing whale songs in addition to swimming alongside them. They have a hydrophone speaker that enables this, so you'll hear the whales loud and clear from both the boat and the water. They charge $260 per person for the trip, which is pretty affordable for a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

The next is Whale Swim Niue Island, which is perfect if you're looking to embark with a small group. They only take six people out at a time and also highlight the opportunity to swim with spinner dolphins. They offer half day trips that set out in the morning in afternoon, both of which include snacks and snorkeling gear. 

Lodging and timing

As for where to stay, there are options to suit every preference. If you want all the fun and luxury a resort offers, then Scenic Matavai Resort is your best choice. You'll find beautiful views from almost every window, air-conditioned rooms, and included breakfasts that feature plenty of fresh local fruit. You're right on the coast when you stay here, so getting to the beach for your whale adventures will be an easy trip. Next, there's Breeze, a collection of air-conditioned beachfront cottages with great views of the ocean. If you're lucky, you may even be able to spot some whales from your room, so bring your binoculars.

Make sure you plan to visit between July and October if you want to observe or swim with the humpback whales. Also, know that swimming with them is not a guarantee, but many tour operators offer partial refunds in case you don't get a chance to take a splash with the mammals.

If you're looking for a unique ocean adventure, take a dive into the waters of Niue. It's one of the least visited countries in the world, meaning it won't be crowded during your stay. You'll be able to spend time in nature, uninterrupted.