20 Interesting And Fun Facts About Samoa [Explained]

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Are you looking for a place with the most pristine beaches, cascading waterfalls, rainforests, cultural sites, and outdoor adventures? Samoa will prove to be a paradise for you. If you are thinking of visiting, here are some fun facts about Samoa that showcase why this is one of the most beautiful destinations. 

Historical Facts About Samoa

Samoa’s history is all about ancient culture and rituals, but there are also many recent changes in modern society that impact the place. 

In 2009, The Driving Side Was Changed

In 2009, the country decided that it would change from left-side driving to right-side driving . That’s because they wanted to match the driving side to the rest of the countries in the Pacific Ocean. If you are planning to rent a car while visiting, this is something to take note of.  

In 2011, The Country Drew The International Date Line Once More

New Zealand and Australia are important trade partners for Samoa.  In 2011, the country actually skipped the entire 30th of December. That’s because they wanted to align their International Date Line with these two countries. It helped with easier coordination when it comes to international trade. 

It Used To Be Part Of New Zealand

Yes, Samoa used to be part of New Zealand. In 1962, Samoa became a self-governing country, and the country still celebrates its independence from this country each year on the 1st of June.

Cultural Facts About Samoa

The culture of Samoa is rooted in history, ancient practices, symbolism, and more. Here are some fascinating Samoan culture facts that will blow your mind.

A Rite Of Passage For Men Is A Tattoo From The Waist To The Knee

Tattoos are an important part of the culture that holds a lot of significance for men. They go through a rite of passage where they get a tattoo, known as ‘Pe’a’. These intricate geometric patterns that cover them from the waist to the knee are a sign of their bravery.

The Men Are Responsible For Cooking In The Home

The men are just as responsible for cooking in the home as the women. Every Sunday, the men prepare the Umu, an outdoor oven made by volcanic rocks, and cook food on it.

Fa’afafine Is A 3rd Gender In The Country

Fa’afafine refers to males who are more feminine than others. It’s kind of a third gender in Samoan society, and 1 out of 5% of Samoans identify as this gender. As of 2016, there were around 3,000 Fa’afafine living in Samoa.

Panipopo Is A Crucial Part Of Samoan Cuisine

You have to try the Panipopo whenever you are in Samoa. It’s usually served as a dessert or a pastry in the morning for breakfast. Most of them are served in shallow bowls that come with milk or a hot beverage.

Simple Facts About Samoa For Kids

Samoa is an important country that the young ones can learn more about to boost their knowledge. Here are some interesting Samoa facts for kids. 

Forests Make Up 60% Of The Country

More than 60% of the country is covered in forests. Because of this, the weather is great, and there’s greenery all around. There’s also a lot of natural wildlife, which all constitute an important part of the country’s biodiversity.

There Are Active Volcanoes

There are various active and young volcanoes in Samoa. However, the last volcano eruption happened more than a century ago. Therefore they are not considered very active relatively and  the people have not had any problems over the last few years

It’s Home To Over Nine Hundred Fish Species

Many people don’t know this, but Samoa is surrounded by coral reefs on the islands. Because of this, there are over 200 unique corals and over 900 unique fish species. Make sure that you check out these beauties when you visit the country.  

Useful Samoa Facts For Travelers

These Somao fun facts are helpful for anyone planning a trip to this stunning country.

It’s A Tropical Country With The Sun Out All Year

If you love the sun, then Samoa will be the perfect place for you because of the weather. It has a tropical climate that is relatively warm all year round. This is one of the main reasons why it attracts many visitors during winter seasons in other parts of the world. 

There Are 10 Islands Throughout The Country

There are 10 islands in Samoa, and 4 of them are inhabited by humans. The remaining 6 islands have incredible wildlife that makes up the island. You can visit some of these islands on your trip, including Apolima, Sava’ii, Manono, and others.

It’s Not That Big On Tourism, Yet

More than 180,000 tourists visit Samoa each year, which is a big leap from a few years ago. The tourism industry has been growing in recent times as more people get to know about this country. If you want to enjoy some peace and tranquility in nature, Samoa is certainly one destination to consider. 

Common Facts About Samoa

There are some general facts about Samoa to know before visiting. 

Most Of The Citizens Live Outside The Country

It is estimated that more than 300,000 Samoans live abroad, while only close to 200,000 locals live in the country. Opportunities are restricted in Samoa, which is why people leave the country for a better life and send money back home each year.

It’s The Burial Place Of Robert Louis Stevenson

Robert Louis Stevenson used to be a Scottish novel writer, and he fell in love with the beauty of Samoa. He decided to live in a huge mansion on Mount Vesa, which has now been turned into a museum. When he passed away, his remains were buried at the summit of Mount Vesa.

Locals Play A Unique Form Of Cricket Here

Kilikiti is the Samoan version of cricket, and you’ll find many locals playing this sport. It has the same rules as cricket, but the team has between 10 – 20 players. 

The people are passionate in cheering for their teams using chants, songs, and dances as they participate in an intense game of Kilikiti.

Other Interesting Facts About Samoa

Here are some other interesting facts about Samoa that you probably didn’t know about this country.

Traditional Houses Here Don’t Have Walls

There are traditional houses all over the country, and these villages are known as ‘fale’. The open design of these houses represents the open nature of the families in Samoa. The cookhouses are also separate from the main house. 

Fish And Coconuts Are An Important Part Of The Economy

Coconuts and fish are an important part of the Samoan economy because they are the primary agricultural products of the country. 

These are exported to other countries because of their abundance and high quality. Agricultural products comprise at least 90% of the total exports of the country.

Fire Dances Are Highly Popular

Both visitors and locals love to watch the fire dances that take place in Samoa;  they are a vital part of the entertainment in the country. 

Back in ancient times, these dances were performed to various songs and chants. However, now you’ll notice that these dances are done to the beat of drums to satisfy the tastes and interests of the modern tourists that visit Samoa.

Most Young People Don’t Have Employment

Most of the young people in the country don’t work, and the rate of unemployment has increased in recent years. The main reason for this is the age imbalance prevalent throughout the country. 

As such, most young people decide to leave the country in search of a better life and opportunities.

Discovering More Fun Facts About Samoa

These were just some of the interesting facts about Samoa but there is plenty more to explore. Tourism is increasing in the country, and you’ll understand why when you visit this country and experience it all for yourself. Despite being an off-the-path destination, there are endless things to do in Samoa and you are bound to uncover more amazing Samoa facts on your adventures.



Book Your Flight

I usually use a combination of 2-3 of the following search engines to find cheap flights: Skyscanner, Momondo, Google Flights

Find Your Accommodation

Booking.com is my usual platform for finding accommodation options as they have one of the largest selections. Hostelworld is great for booking hostels. For more private or long term accommodation, Airbnb is my go-to platform.

Travel Insurance

Travel insurance is important for to protect yourself against unforeseen circumstances. I usually look at a few insurance companies depending on my travel needs.
  • SafetyWings for Travel Health Insurance
  • IMG Global for added Insurance when doing activities outside of usual coverage
Packing for your trip? Check out the packing list for ideas on what to bring

For more travel resources, check out my resources page for best platforms and companies to use when you travel.

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Welcome To NomadsUnveiled
This is Rax. For over a decade, I have traveled to over 60 countries - from a budget backpacker to a business traveler, expat and then a digital nomad. You can find insights and perspectives from myself and other world travelers that will inspire your journey of discovery.


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