Pigs of Tonga

Nursing piglets

Most people go to Tonga to swim with whales or just enjoy the beach. For us, a highlight of Tonga was the pigs and piglets. I took many photos of the pigs of Tonga, mostly in Vavau, so here is a short post compiling those images.

I like to document the different animals we see on our travels. The pigs of Tonga are nowhere near as dramatic or diverse as the animals of Panama or Colombia, but I never got bored of stopping to watch and photograph them.

Where to see Pigs in Tonga

We spent a lot of time in Vavau, and more than a week in Haapai, and saw pigs everywhere. Many live outside of town and spend their days wallowing in mud and eating whatever they can find in the grass and roads. Some of the pigs who live more remotely even venture into the sea, like the swimming pigs of Bahamas, only these pigs catch fish!

These pigs are well fed.

Pig, Tonga
A big pig in Tonga.

Pigs in the Road

Pigs crossing the road, Tonga
Pig crossing in Tonga!

One thing we noticed is as we were approaching some pigs on the side of the road, they would run, but instead of running away from us, they would cross in front of us and into the street. Fortunately we never saw any accidents. The Tongans are used to it.

Pig crossing
Pigs crossing the road in Vavau

Some of the pigs looked too big to run, but they surprised us!

Fat pig, Tonga
One of the biggest pigs we saw in Tonga

Mama Pigs

Some of the adults are huge and kind of scary and they will defend their babies. We saw a lot of big mama pigs, sometimes walking around, often trailing several piglets. Sometimes more than several!

drifts of pigs
A herd of pigs is called a drove. I think this counts.

A few times we saw a few piglets violently nursing on their mamas. At least this one got to lie down.

Hungry piglets in Tonga. This video is not sped up!
Pigs in Tonga
Another mama and baby pig

If you’re in Neiafu, check out Coffee and Tees, which sells an assortment of clothing, including tees and tanks printed with beautiful graphic art related to Tonga like whales and sharks. I bought one with a pig because some of my best memories of Tonga are the pigs and piglets.

Pig graphic tee Coffee and Tees vavau Tonga
Pig graphic from Coffee and Tees

Like animals? Read about the cats of the Caribbean


When the piglets run, they wag their tails very fast. It’s adorable.

I love this piglet giving us a tough pose
piglets, Tonga
These piglets tried to blend into the dirt

Because the piglets run way too fast, I didn’t always get great photos. Trust me: they’re super cute to watch. Walking around Tonga looking for pigs – and finding them – always put a smile on my face. I hope this post and the photos did the same for you!

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Author: Mel

Living aboard a sailboat, blogging about the places we visit and the adventures we have. Love hiking, cycling, scuba, animals and adventure.

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