With bountiful seafood straight from the ocean, freshly harvested distinctively Pacific fruit and vegetables, and the incredible flavours of a traditional Samoan umu (ground oven), Samoa offers authentic island cuisine to suit any palate.
Join a cultural experience, or a fiafia night at your resort or hotel, to enjoy the rich flavours of food cooked in a traditional umu. Or visit a local restaurant or cafe to indulge in the catch of the day, straight from the sea.
Resort restaurants along with a raft of great quality cafes and restaurants, particularly in and near Apia, offer a blend of delicious local and international cuisine that will make your taste buds sing.
Samoan cuisine is based around fresh tropical fruit and vegetables, locally grown meats and - of course - plentiful seafood straight from the ocean.
Traditional island food includes root vegetables such as taro (talo) and breadfruit (ulu), which is prepared using quintessentially Polynesian flavours such as coconut cream.
A favourite dish with visitors to Samoa and locals alike is palusami: Baked coconut cream cooked inside coconut leaves in the umu (earth oven). Another local staple is oka - raw fish marinated in coconut cream, lemon juice, chilli and onions.
Samoan dishes often include pork, chicken (moa) and fish (i’a). Of course, being an island nation, seafood features widely on any Samoan menu. Sample freshly caught crayfish, octopus, snapper, tuna or whatever else happens to be the catch of the day, often served with locally grown tropical fruits such as papayas, mangos, pineapples, star fruit and bananas.
Enjoy a true Samoan feast paired with locally brewed beer to experience the real and unforgettable flavours of the Pacific.
Fishing has been central to Samoan life for thousands of years, with the sea traditionally providing the family’s daily meals.
Today fish (i’a) such as dog-tooth and yellow-fin tuna, along with other seafood such as crayfish, masimasi, and octopus, are still caught every day and form an important part of modern Samoan culture.
Visitors will find fresh seafood on most restaurant menus, or see the mornings’ catch at Apia’s fish market. The bounty of the ocean provides crayfish, wahoo, masimasi, octopus, tuna, and much more.
Visiting in October/November? Be sure to ask for the Samoan delicacy of palolo - it's a highly sought-after treat, available only once a year when the palolo worm 'rises' - usually one week after the October full moon.