Niue — Shopping and Leisure
Nearly everything on Niue is more expensive than on the mainland as so many goods must be imported from New Zealand. The notable exceptions to the rule are tobacco products and fresh produce. The Customs and Bond Store sells the island’s cheapest alcohol to tourists who bring their boarding passes, but is only open on weekdays and closes at noon.
Kumara, passion fruit, taro, and cassava are just some of the tropical fruits regularly sold at Alofi’s twice-weekly market, the island’s only supermarket, and roadside stalls throughout the island. The Double M Butchery sells spices, vanilla beans, and fresh cheeses alongside meats, while the Garden of Nur Bakery offers two pool tables alongside its freshly-baked bread. Coconut porridge is the preferred breakfast at Alofi’s market, held adjacent to the visitors’ center on Tuesday and Friday. Freshly-caught coconut crab and tie-dyed handicrafts are among the market’s most popular items.
Niue’s only shopping mall is the Alofi Commercial Center, which is also home to the island’s only bank. This small shopping mall contains an art gallery, a souvenir shop, a butcher’s shop, and a stationery store. Visitors can purchase local stamps next to the commercial center’s post office, at the Niue Philatelic and Numismatic Bureau. The Alofi Commercial Center also contains Hinapoto Handcrafts, which sells hats and baskets that local women have woven from pandanus.
The island’s many village show days offer the greatest variety of souvenirs outside of Alofi. Most shops open an hour earlier on Saturday than on weekdays, but are closed on Sunday. However, even the tiniest of Niue villages usually contain at least a handful of small shops which open outside of regular business hours. Many rare shells and types of coral cannot be exported off the island.