New Caledonia Off The Beaten Path

  • Inside the center, explanation in kakak language
    Inside the center, explanation in kakak...
    by drmjalba
  • Lifou in the midday sun- Perfect
    Lifou in the midday sun- Perfect
    by Liberty2008
  • Statue of Yeiwéné Yeiwéné at the entrance
    Statue of Yeiwéné Yeiwéné at the...
    by drmjalba

New Caledonia Off The Beaten Path

  • Go to La poule de Hienghene / Brooding...

    Close to Hienghène at the northest of Grande Terre about 350 km from Nouméa is a strange looking little island looking like a brooding hen. Hienghèneis the cultural center of the east coast, mostly Kanak. To get there the most easy is renting a car, there is once in a while a bus, hitchiking was quite easy. For a nice hotel try the Koulnoue...

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  • Stray dogs alert

    When off the beaten track on Lifou be very aware of stray dogs! They are everywhere. They sleep on the beach, hang around in packs and go nuts if you cycle past them on rented bikes from hotels.As you will, no doubt, not want to be spending your time in New Cal in a hospital being stiched up after a dog has caught you make sure you have secure...

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  • Mount Panié

    At 1628 metres the highest mountain in New Caledonia, Mount Panié forms the heart of a lush nature reserve housing some of the richest flora and fauna in the territory.It's a rather steep and strenous climb to the top, and a permit is required - available from the Hienghéne Tourist Office for free.Very few people seem to bother with the climb - I...

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  • Balade

    North of Pouebo, the area of Balade is connected with several important events in New Caledonia's early history.Captain Cook anchored here, the first Catholic mass in land was held under a banyan tree near the beach, and there is a beautiful church commemorating these historic events.There is also an ugly monument for France's rule over the...

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  • Pouébo

    The northernmost real township on the east coast, Pouébo has an old church and a windswept beach with free camping.However it is mostly worth visiting for its yearly Mwata Festival, held in honour of a traditional banana cake. It features Kanak and Polynesian dances and a fair of local produce.

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  • Tao Waterfall

    7 kms north of the ferry crossing, the highest and most famous waterfall in the territory is actually visible from the road.It is nevertheless well worth paying up the 200 francs to use the trail up to the falls' base through the jungle.The track is very slippery so wear proper shoes!

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  • Ouaiéme River crossing

    One of the most dramatic landmarks along the North-East coast is the mouth of the Ouaiéme River. The river itself is the last one left without a bridge in New Caledonia, and is crossed by a ferry.

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  • Hienghéne Valley

    Inland from Hienghéne, there is a string of Kanak tribal villages stretching into the mointainous interior along this valley. The special thing about them is that they encourage tourism by offering programs like horse-riding and even accomodation in traditional Kanak huts.This can be a good way to experience everyday life of the Kanaks if you speak...

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  • Touho

    A small town on a pretty bay with a good beach, Touho also has an old mission attached to it.For budget travellers, it offers some of the best and cheapest campsites in New Caledonia - a good reason to make it a base for exploring the surrounding countryside.

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  • Cross-island road to Koné

    There are several roads across Grande Terre from the west coast to the east, but the most beautiful yet least known one, not desribed in any guidebooks, is the one that branches off between Poindimié and Touho to go across the mountains to Koné.It passes beautiful lakes and forested hills with very few signs of human habitation, but has several...

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  • Tié Mission

    Just north of Poindimié, this small mission settlement is typical of many others up the north-east coast. They are all centred on an old, quiant church and were established to concentrate the surrounding Kanak population who were losing their lands to French settlers in the 19th century.

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  • Poindimié

    Poindimié is the main urban centre of the North-East coast.Much to my pride, its main tourist attraction according to both English-language guidebooks on the country is this somewhat simple mosaic by Hungarian abstract artist Vasarely.It decorates the town's swiming pool.There is some good hiking to be had around the town, but most people head...

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  • The North-East Coast

    The North-East is Grande Terre's most beautiful region.It is dominated by steep hills covered in lush, green forests, which overlook beautiful stretches of coast with Grande Terre's great barrier reef within sight.The population here is mostly Kanak, with the Caldoche only living in the few small towns scattered along the coast.

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  • The North-West Coast

    The North-West coast of Grande Terre is the most desolate part of the island. The plains are here mostly grasslands used for grazing cattle and the hills are marred by mining. The population is mostly Caldoche, but there are Kanak villages, too - especially in the interior. There are a few interesting towns on the way up north, but otherwise this...

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  • Koumac

    The last real township up the west coast of Grand Terre, Koumac's main landmark is its curiously shaped church that started life as an aircraft hangar. This church has some fine woodcarvings inside, and during my stop here was also the scene of a very impressive religious procession.There are also some interesting caves and beaches out of town.

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  • Bourail

    Up on the west coast of Grand Terre, New Caledonia's second largest town Bourail with its majority Caldoche population has the flavour of a typical small town in rural France. It is an almost inevitable stop on a tour around Grande Terre and is by no means unpleasant, althought sights are limited to a museum.There are also some good beaches nearby.

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  • Riviére Bleue Provincial Park

    New Caledonia's premier nature reserve preserves some fine rainforest in the hills and valleys surrounding a large, ugly artificial lake in the south of Grande Terre.It is the best place to spot some of the territory's unique fauna, notably the famous kagu bird.Once popular with noisy groups of picnickers, these days the closure of the main road...

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  • The North Coast

    If you have time in NC I would definately reccommend visiting the northern part of the island. The southern part of La Grande Terre has most of the Resorts, the white population and the Capital, Noumea - but the lesser visited Northern Part, I think is pretty cool as well. On My last trip we hired a car , and drove basically around the whole island...

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  • Go to the country !!!Noumea...

    Go to the country !!!Noumea is only a fraction of what makes New Caledonia..visit Lifou, check out Isle Of Pines and travel up the coast - guareenteed you'll be the only non-local on the bus (an experience in itself)

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New Caledonia Hotels

  • Le Lagon

    143 Route de l'Anse Vata, Noumea, Grand Terre, 98845, New Caledonia

    Satisfaction: Excellent

    Good for: Couples

    Hotel Class 3 out of 5 stars

  • Oure Hotel

    Kanumera Bay, New Caledonia

    Satisfaction: Very Good

    Good for: Couples

    Hotel Class 4 out of 5 stars

  • Quality Resort Rivland

    Paita Rue De Gadji, PAITA, New Caledonia, 98890, N

    Satisfaction: Average

    Good for: Business

  • Best Western Premier la Promenade-Noumea

    109 Promenade Roger Laroque, Anse Vata, BP 8142, Noumea, Grand Terre, 98807, New Caledonia

    Satisfaction: Excellent

    Good for: Solo

    Hotel Class 4 out of 5 stars

  • Le Meridien Ile Des Pins

    Lovely bar lounge where you can relax and unwind........with a $10 cocktail !!

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  • Le Meridien Noumea

    Pointe Magnin, BP 1915, Noumea, Grand Terre, 98846, New Caledonia

    Satisfaction: Very Good

    Good for: Solo

    Hotel Class 4.5 out of 5 stars

  • Hotel Kou-Bugny

    Baie de Kuto , Ile Des Pins, 98832, New Caledonia

    Satisfaction: Very Good

    Good for: Solo

    Hotel Class 3 out of 5 stars

  • L'Escapade Island Resort

    Ilot Maitre, Noumea, 98847, New Caledonia

    Satisfaction: Average

    Good for: Couples

    Hotel Class 4 out of 5 stars

  • Kodjeue Hotel

    Baie de Ouameo, Gadji, BP 75, 98832 Vao, New Caledonia

    Satisfaction: Poor

    Good for: Families

Top New Caledonia Hotels

Nouméa Hotels
102 Reviews - 175 Photos
Île des Pins Hotels
54 Reviews - 85 Photos
Lifou Hotels
13 Reviews - 26 Photos
Païta Hotels
1 Hotel
Nouville Hotels
See nearby hotels
Hienghène Hotels
14 Reviews - 23 Photos
Bourail Hotels
12 Reviews

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New Caledonia Off The Beaten Path

Reviews and photos of New Caledonia off the beaten path posted by real travelers and locals. The best tips for New Caledonia sightseeing.
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