06 September, 2011

Celebrate Samoa

The Samoans have something more to rejoice– it is the year to Celebrate Samoa - where the nation celebrates key sporting and cultural milestones and anniversaries!

The celebrations kick off the first week of September with the 20th Anniversary of the Teuila Festival – one of the biggest cultural festivals in the South Pacific. The festival showcases numerous cultural activities such as choral exhibitions and traditional entertainment such as the Siva Afi (fire knife dancing). There is also the Fautasi (long boat) regatta, wood carving demonstrations and tattooing. The celebrations culminate in the annual Miss Samoa pageant.

One of the most exciting events in the nation is the annual Palolo Rise. Twice a year, summoned by the waning moonlight, the palolo reef worm rises from the coral to spawn. The palolo is deeply embedded in the Samoan cultural and culinary history and its short lived annual appearance during spawning is celebrated during the last quarter of the moon in October and November.

On a sporting level, the rugby crazy Samoans want you to cheer with them at the Apia Park International Stadium. This multi-function sport complex is home to Samoa national rugby union team, Manu Samoa and will play host to the Marist Samoa 7s and Oceania 7s Championships in October.

2012 starts the most unusual way when on 29 December 2011, Samoa officially travels in time and changes time zone to be in line with Australia and New Zealand. Samoa will jump from the 29th to the 31st of December and will be one of the first nations to greet the New Year. From Saturday 31 December, Samoa will be an hour ahead of New Zealand and three hours ahead of Australia.

Celebrate Samoa culminates in the 50th celebrations of Samoa’s Independence. Expect some amazing activities during this week-long cultural celebration in the country’s capital.

According to Adele Leathan of Samoa Tourism Authority, “There really is no better time to go to Samoa than in the next twelve months”.

“There is something happening almost every month catering to every kind of traveler. We have events that the whole family can enjoy such as the Teuila Festival, we have the 7s rugby championships, Samoa Open Golf Tournament, Judo World Cup and International Game Fishing Tournament for the sporting buffs plus Palolo Rise and the International Tatau Festival for those craving a cultural experience.

“The 50th Anniversary of Samoan Independence will be one of the biggest events in the Samoan event calendar. We are expecting families and friends from all over the world to come to our island and join in on the celebrations so make sure you book early to avoid disappointment!” says Adele.

Source: Samoa Tourism Authority