Without the commitment of work or children, you’re probably enjoying a new lease of life. The best part is, as a mature traveller, you’ve got the freedom to do what you want at any time of the year (and for as long as you like to).
A trip to Samoa is a great choice for people travelling in later life because apart from the year-round warm climate, there are so many ways to enjoy the islands, you can be as relaxed or active as you like during your stay. And no matter how you choose to spend your time, you’ll always leave feeling enlightened and re-energised.
If you’re thinking about a trip to Samoa, here’s some inspiration around the types of activities on offer and how you could spend your time in this island paradise.
Starting with the basics, you can’t visit Samoa without spending plenty of time relaxing at the beach. There are many beaches around the islands and while some of them are more secluded than others, all of them promise to deliver the pristine white sands, turquoise waters, and elegant coconut palm backdrops Samoa’s islands are known for. Imagine spending the days reading your book in peace with nothing else to hear other than the sound of waves lapping at the beach and palm leaves flapping in the breeze.
Some of the calmest and most peaceful beaches on the island of Upolu include Lalomanu beach, Vava’u beach, Paradise Beach, Matareva Beach, Namua Island Beach, and Manono beach. Meanwhile, some of the most secluded waterside spots in Savai’i include Manase Beach, Lagato Beach, Ananoa Beach, and Satuiatua Beach.
Thanks to the islands’ gentle topography, shady rainforests, and cool highland regions, exploring some of the most stunning and remote parts of Samoa on foot doesn’t have to be a strenuous day out. All around Samoa, there are walking trails for people of all abilities from multi-day hikes to short walks where all you’ll need is a good pair of shoes and some water.
The Coastal Walk in O Le Pupu Pu’e National Park is a popular short walk that takes you along cliff tops and through the Pandanus forest to a lava field where you can spot smaller islands. Other walks that can be done in under two hours include Mt Vaea and Robert Louis Stevenson’s Tomb, Tafua Crater, and Mt Fiamoe – all offering stunning views and the chance to catch rare glimpses of Samoa’s native wildlife.
Joining a tour is a great way to get more out of your time in Samoa because it gives you peace of mind that you’re in the safe hands of a knowledgeable local guide and your food and transport between the sights is all taken care of. You can explore the islands in a variety of ways with guided tours ranging from fishing charters and coastal boat tours to half and full-day bus tours around Upolu and Savai’i, and bike and kayak tours.
Many of the beachside resorts around Samoa include bars serving delicious cocktails by the beach or pool and restaurants with impressive menus boasting traditional and international cuisine. While spending time at your resort watching the sun go down with a cocktail in hand is what holidays in the tropics are all about, there are also waterside bars and restaurants dotted all around Apia for an alternative experience. From pizza and pasta to Indian and traditional Samoan seafood, and from a cold beer to an icy margarita overlooking the lagoon, there is a huge selection of relaxed and casual dining and drinking options around Samoa.
Arduous exercise and breaking a sweat might not be your thing, or at least, it might not be the way you imagine enjoying your holiday on a paradise island, but you can keep on top of your health and fitness in Samoa in a much more relaxed and enjoyable way. While you could either choose to stay at or visit some of Samoa’s most exclusive resorts offering a range of spa treatments, you might even decide to participate in a yoga session or two at resorts like the Samoan Highland Retreat, Sa’Moana Beach Bungalows, or Salani Surf Resort – and there are plenty more.
Housed in a historic colonial building in Apia which used to be a German school, The Museum of Samoa contains a huge collection of artefacts and images which together tell the story of Samoa’s history and rich culture. The museum is also home to a pottery and stone adze which was discovered in Samoa and thought to be an incredible 3,000 years old.
On your trip to Samoa, you can’t miss the opportunity to visit the Robert Louis Stevenson Museum in Apia. In the well-preserved former home of the famous Scottish author, the museum is dedicated to the life of Robert Louis Stevenson whose most popular works include The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, Treasure Island, and Kidnapped.
If you feel like a break from the sun and sand for a day or two, perusing the markets and shops of Apia for some retail therapy could be a relaxing way to spend a few hours. Around Apia in Upolu and Salelologa in Savai’i, you’ll find shops and stalls selling giftware, souvenirs, and clothes – and you’ll even be able to enjoy some refreshments along the way. The markets are awash with appetising smells and flavours with plenty of vendors around selling fresh native fruits and local dishes with seafood, meat, and vegetables.
Making the most of Samoa’s rolling hills and lush landscape, the Faleata Golf Course is the ideal place to get some steady exercise while having fun at the same time. The golf course is the only public golf course in Samoa offering a perfectly maintained 18-hole course and driving range. Better still, you’re free to enjoy these beautiful surrounds even if you’re not a golfer by walking around the course or using the other facilities offered by Faleata.
Whatever activities you decide to do, it’s easy to immerse yourself in the local culture in Samoa. While you could ride around the islands on colourful buses to experience how the locals live, many family-run resorts, especially fales, will offer you the chance to see how traditional food is prepared as they cook for you and share their stories.
Importantly, Samoa is a friendly and safe place to visit, and easy to navigate. Everywhere you go, you’ll be greeted by warm smiles, incredible hospitality, and maybe even some local chat.