A Secret To Share31 August 2017 Go back
There are some treasures in life that are meant to be uncovered, experienced and shared. And the island of Nuie has been one of life’s best kept secrets, until now. Discovered en-route from Bora Bora to Tonga by the Oyster World Rally fleet, Nuie’s magnificence is certainly worth a mention. Described as one of the smallest countries, and one of the largest raised coral atolls on earth, this little gem has captured the hearts of those blessed enough to have visited, and who better to tell the story than one of our very own World Rally participants who has recently encountered the nautical nature of Nuie and all its treasures…
“A shaft of light streams through the open cabin hatch, hardly a breath of wind, it’s 4am and the moon is full. A whale sings… We are anchored in 30m of crystal clear water in Alofi Bay, Nuie, (‘Behold the coconut’) 250nm east of Tonga. It is the time of the migration of whales with their calves through these tropical calm waters.
“An unremarkable low-lying island from afar, this coastline holds secret treasures, deep chasms, limestone caves with their impressive stalagmites, turquoise lagoons, vertical cliff walls and arches, ancient coral paths wind through dense undergrowth… Unsurpassed beauty.
“The people are lovely too, just 1700 living simply in stone and wooden square houses with tin roofs. They are NZ citizens too but choose to live in tranquillity amongst the lush green bush, surrounded by coconut palms and the azure waters of the South Pacific.
“The churches are simple but large, well maintained grave stones lie at the roadside or in the family gardens and a large population of wild chickens roam freely. Life is unhurried and there is a calm about the place.
“One unusual thing here is that due to the coral plateau near the shore our dingy has to be lifted out by crane (not with us in it I hasten to add!) which requires some careful manoeuvring back in the water after a night ashore!
“A lovely island which will be fondly remembered. “
Thank you, Annie, for your words which have sparked such imagination and no doubt the island of Nuie will well and truly be on a few more ‘bucket lists’ after reading your story.
Words by Annie Longstaff – Oyster 45 Vela