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Travel Guide: Samoa Getting Around

12th Oct 2011 2:01am | By Editor

Take the colourful local bus or dodge dogs on your bike.

Getting there

By air

Samoa's Faleolo International Airport is serviced by airlines including Polynesian Airlines, Air New Zealand, Qantas & Air Pacific.

There are direct flights from New Zealand, Australia, Fiji, and Hawai'i or Los Angeles in the US.

By sea

Plenty of yachts cruise the South Pacific in the winter months. Apia is the official entry point for private yachts coming to Samoa. In Savai'i, there are safe anchorages at Salelologa Wharf and Asau Harbour.

Getting around

By ferry

Once a week you can catch the Samoa Shipping Corporation ferry from Apia to American Samoa. Regular ferries ply the 22km distance between the main islands of Upolu and Savai'i as well.

By bus

Bus is definitely the most interesting and colourful way to get around Samoa. The local buses are brightly coloured and rarely run to a timetable, though they tend to start early and finish running after dark. To remote villages or areas, there may only be one bus a day, so it pays to ask. Most visitors come to love the adventure of using the local open-windowed buses — the music will usually be blaring and often you'll have to sit on someone's lap, or offer your own lap to a fellow passenger.

By hire car

The roads in Samoa are fairly decent and a standard hire car is a good way to get around, except after heavy rain when a four-wheel drive is essential.

By taxi

Taxis in Samoa are relatively cheap but are not metered and it is advisable to agree on a set price beforehand.

By bike

Cycling is a good way to get around at a gentler pace. Don't be surprised to here shouts of 'hello palagi' as people shout to you as you walk past their houses – just watch out for barking dogs that have a habit of attacking bicycle tyres.