At Samoa Tourism, we often get people emailing us and telling us how they have planned their holidays to Samoa using our Instagram account as a guide – even bridesmaids have made their entire wedding party create Instagram accounts so that they can follow us and then plan an island wedding in Samoa!
Whether you’re a professional photographer, a selfie queen, or a GoPro groupie, this page will point you in the right direction to capturing the best of Samoa. After all, holidays are as much about sharing your adventures with the folks back home as they are rest and relaxation. Here are just a few of our top spots around #BeautifulSamoa for you to get a big dose of #wanderlust from!
1. The churches in Samoa are striking – stark white against a bright blue sky. The Immaculate Conception of Mary Cathedral in Apia is a must-visit spot and makes for a beautiful picture. Make sure you go inside – take in the highly skilled craftmanship of the interiors and the stained glass windows, created in uniquely Samoan style. If you are lucky enough to be there on a Sunday morning, put the camera down and enjoy the beautiful singing and the welcoming friendliness of the people.
You'll see other beautiful churches as you travel around Samoa, mostly lovingly cared for by volunteers and devout attendees. Samoa has a mix of denominations, with Christian churches mostly represented. However, the Baha'i' Temple of Worship is one of only eight in the world, and its gardens alone are worth spending some time and Instagram posts on.
2. Samoa is blessed with a number of stunning waterfalls, all of which seem more beautiful than the last. Have a swim and stand under the falling water, or get a great shot from a vantage point high above. Two of the best in the country are Sopoaga Falls and Afu Aau Falls. Sopoaga Falls on Upolu are best viewed from a point above looking across to the falls where the mass of water seemingly comes out of nowhere.
If you're after a cool dip on a hot day, Afu Aau Falls in Savai'i is an accessible and picturesque waterfall – have a refreshing, cool swim, and then climb up behind the falls for a friend to take a unique holiday shot.
3. Every visitor to Savai'i must visit the excellent Alofaaga Blowholes. These blowholes have been formed by lava flows pushing through a flat top of lava rock. When waves break, water comes up through the holes at high pressure creating an awesome display and a brilliant photo opportunity.
4. This is another must-visit – the dramatically beautiful To Sua Ocean Trench is a giant swimming hole on Upolu with sheer foliage-covered rock walls falling about 20 metres to the blue waters below. Climb down the ladder, or – only at high tide – jump in and cross it off your #bucketlist. Be sure to take an iconic photograph. The grounds around the Trench are also well-maintained and make for a beautiful backdrop for a #selfie.
5. Visit Mother Nature's waterslide only a 15 minute drive from Apia. Grab a photo of you or a friend zooming down one of these naturally formed smooth rock slides into crystal clear water below. There's one for kids and one for adults so everyone can join in.
6. Samoa's colourful, brightly decorated buses look fantastic, and the fact that the drivers appear to make their own rules about what music they play and what interior and exterior decoration there is, makes a trip on a bus around Samoa even more of an adventure.
7. The Saleaula Lava Fields are a fascinating geological site worth a visit in Savai'i – see where villages were buried after a volcanic eruption at the beginning of the 1900s, and the striking visual effect of the lava against the buildings that remain. Ruined church: check; jungle engulfed lava fields: check; perfect instagram photos: check.
8. Spending the night in a beach fale is a must-do when in Samoa – waking up to the golden sand and blue sea right outside your roll-up walls will convince you that you’ve found #paradise.
9. Hike up Mount Vaea to take in beautiful views of Apia. The summit is also home to Robert Louis Stevenson's resting place and tomb. When you're back at the base of Mt Vaea, visit the Robert Louis Stevenson museum and Villa Vailima homestead and have a cool dip in the author's swimming hole.
10. Piula Cave Pools are located in the Theological College grounds about 45 minutes’ drive from Apia. A swim in the crystal clear freshwater pool and cave is an absolute Samoa must-do. The clear water is perfect for doing some semi-submerged underwater photos with the #gopro.
Phew! That is a lot of beauty to capture! And we haven't even mentioned all the #instafood shots, the pictures on the swing bridge above the tree canopy in Savai'i, the Samoan Cultural Village, the swoon-worthy #SamoanSunsets or even the most idyllic beaches of Return to Paradise Beach, Lalomanu and Manase! You'll just have to follow us on Instagram to get more inspiration, or tag us in to your Samoan adventures using the hashtags #samoatravel and #beautifulsamoa.