Savaii Taster

Savaii Taster

Savaii highlights by bike and van in 4 days

100 kms 4 Days/3 Nights From 900 NZD

Explore the best parts of Savaii over 4 days

Explore the beaches and lagoons of Savaii and visit Afu Aau falls and the blowholes. Travel is by bike and van or just by van. Savaii is the big island of Samoa. Bigger than Upolu, but lacking the international gateways of Apia port and airport it is a place where life continues at a slower, more traditional and relaxed pace. It also has the best beaches in Samoa and with the blowholes and Afu Aau falls has some of the best natural attractions of Samoa. Highlights include:

Over the 3-4 days and 2-3 nights you will circumnavigate Savaii (200kms) stopping regularly at villages, freshwater pools and beaches to swim. There are opportunities each day to snorkel in safe lagoons where we often encounter turtles. The tour can be undertaken as a van tour only, but we encourage everyone to ride some bits as it is the best opportunity to experience Samoa and meet the locals.

Cycling

Ride as much or as little as you want

Fully guided

Vehicle based guide will support riders and transport non-riders while providing introductions and explanations of events, locations and culture.

Beaches

Stunning white-sand beaches with safe swimming in coral lagoons.

Packages Available

Regular departures for groups of up to eight. Or get your own group together and book a private trip for 2-16 people.

Trip Itinerary

Needs updating for Escape!!!!

Arrival (Day 1)
Most people will tend to arrive at Faleolo (Apia) Airport on the Friday afternoon or evening where you will be met by our representative and transferred to the Tua O Maauga Motel. If you are arriving earlier or would prefer an upgrade to a resort, please contact us for options.
Day 2 - Introduction to Savaii
After getting your bike fitted, ride the 3kms to the ferry terminal. The crossing takes a little over an hour and then it is a 19km ride to Lano. The road meanders beside the lagoon and is a delightful introduction to village life. Your arms will get tired from waving to the kids and calling out “bye-bye” as you pass. Along the way there are several good swimming spots on beaches and in fresh water pools.

The fale resort is on a sandy beach beside the lagoon at Lano. It’s the perfect place to practise your snorkelling, or just laze in the warm water for an hour or two. Lano sometimes has a Siva show and umu feast. Dependent on numbers staying and availability of the dance team.
Day 3 -Ride to Manase
Look forward to a 32km ride on mostly flat roads. The middle section of the ride is through a jungle corridor before winding over the lava fields. There is time to inspect the LMS church with a metre of lava on the floor from the 1905 eruption. Relax at the Manase fales(some motel upgrades available), where again the water laps within a few metres of your feet.
Day 4 Over the hill
This is the big ride day. Although it is only 40kms to Vaisala, the 500 metres of climb can get a bit warm, so start early. If you stay with the van there is no compulsion to ride the hills, just throw your bike in the van and enjoy the company of your support crew. The ride starts with a gentle meander through seaside villages before gradually heading inland and climbing through forest to avoid the lava cliffs.There are now two lava tube cave tour locations along the way offering the opportunity to see the swiftlets pretending to be bats as they echo-locate to their nests as well as a chance to admire the geology of the caves. The road climbs steadily to 200m before heading across the lava fields in a series of undulations* and down to Asau. Swim in the freshwater pools at the bottom of the hill before riding the last 3 kms to Vaisala Hotel or Va-I-Moana Resort. Stay at either Vaisala, with its Somerset Maugham atmosphere and great beach or Va-I-Moana Resort with its great atmosphere and vibe.
Day 5 Explore Asau
Snorkel at the beach at Vaisala, Kayak to the island from Va-I-Moana, Visit the cocoa factory where Whittakers get their Samoa ingredients or just laze on the beach and relax at the bar. Local outrigger canoes (paupaus) are available for hire at Vaisala. School visits and plantation tours can be arranged.
Day 6 To the western edge of the world
This is a gentle 20km ride to Falealupo with a number of attractions along the way: climb a giant banyan tree, realise the power of cyclones at the church (ruined in 1990) and hear stories about surviving cyclones at the House of Rock. Falealupo is a beautiful isolated beach at the western edge of the world; the sunsets across the coral sands are memorable and the swimming in the small lagoon refreshing.
Day 7 South coast ride
There are numerous villages on the 40km ride around the coast to Satuiatua. The road winds along the cliff tops and beside beaches through many villages. Stop at Lovers Leap for a nui (drinking coconut) and to admire the view. Satuiatua Resort is located right on the beach under giant banyan trees. When the tide is right (greater than half) there is wonderful snorkelling amongst dense schools of fish and we have often seen whales breaching while we were enjoying a beer on the restaurant balcony. There is an opportunity to attend a tapa making session to see mulberry bark turned into cloth and a good plantation tour is offered by the resort, but the beach usually wins out as the best spot for the afternoon.
Day 8 R&R
Enjoy a day at the beach at Satuiatua. Snorkel, take in the cultural activities or just chill out and look for the whales. There is some surfing available nearby, but this is for experts only as its onto the reef and subject to strong currents at the lagoon entrance. There is no resident surf guide.
Day 9 Blowholes and waterfalls
It’s the last big cycling day and while it’s 45km, the ride is mostly flat and with a lot to see on the way (there is so much to see that some groups elect to take the van for part of this day). The blowholes seem to perform in almost any sea condition and tide but can be huge in a good southerly swell. The waterfalls at Afu Aau are probably the second most visited attraction on Savaii, and for good reason. Set in a shady, leafy valley the pool beneath the falls provides a very refreshing swim for all, with opportunities for the more confident to leap from the surrounding cliffs. Depending on your flights and preferences your last night will normally be at Florence’s place, a small homestay with very interesting and entertaining hosts.
Day 10 Departure
Catch the ferry back to Upolu after an easy 10km ride, wave your sad farewells to this uniquely hospitable country and fly home (or if you are simply not ready to leave, stay a while longer).

*Undulations occasionally becomes a swear word as in – “another of Ross’s undulating climbs”. They are never very high, but they are repetitive and noticeable in the heat.

Fitness Required

The support van is always nearby and ebikes are available, so not much fitness is required. However you may enjoy the trip more if you are a bit fitter. There is also a non-riding option.

The beaches, lagoons and pools provide safe, easy bathing and opportunities to learn to snorkel, while there are opportunities for confident swimmers and snorkelers to extend out further.

Additions and ebikes

Add on kayaking days, a van tour of Upolu or upgrade accommodation. Just ask for ideas and a quote.

We have a limited number of ebikes available for an added charge.

If you want to have a larger group or want to add extra days within the itinerary we will happily do a custom tour quote.

Does this look like fun?

Dates to be added when travel to Samoa recommences

While we offer this tripas a shared group tour with standard departure dates, it works best as a custom tour where the group can easily agree priorities on what to see and how much to ride (four days is not enough to see everything that is well worth seeing)

[booked-calendar calendar=50]
"A fabulous holiday cycling around the beautiful Savaii thanks to Outdoor.co.nz".
Emma Tina

Day 1

Tua O Maauga (Outback Motel)

Tua O Maauga (Outback Motel) (1 night)

A simple motel about 20 minutes from Outdoor Samoa that is convenient for evening arrivals.

Meals: Breakfast included. For those on afternoon flights there is a basic dinner menu available for purchase. If arriving on the late flights ensure that you have eaten on the flight or have snacks with you.

Day 2

Savaii Overview

Savaii Overview

While the trip includes 200kms of cycling it is as much a beach holiday and cultural experience. There is so much to see that you will seldom ride for even an hour without stopping to chat or investigate the blowholes, waterfalls, village crafts (mat and Tapa cloth making), lava fields, volcanic cones, villages and remarkable beaches. Even on riding days, you will generally have the afternoons free to read, snorkel, explore or just enjoy a drink on the beach outside your fale or motel unit.

Dates and times are local time - Samoa is 1 hour ahead of New Zealand.

Savaii full support van included – On cycle days the van will transport gear and support the riders, giving lifts if required. It will travel at the pace of the slowest cyclist. The support driver will ensure that you see the scenic attractions and can explain the Samoan customs and culture. Filtered water and picnic gear available for the use of group on cycle days.

Generally, the driver will expect you to be ready to start riding at 8am each morning to avoid riding at the hottest time of day. The van will leap-frog the riders, stopping at points of interest and junctions. His focus is on the slower riders and people wishing to travel faster, may do so independently. The driver can organise picnic lunches for a small fee.

Touring Bike Hire (9 days)

Touring Bike Hire , 09 Days

Briefing

Briefing

Meet the Outdoor Samoa team, get your bike fitted and receive a briefing on cycling and your route.

Lauiula Beach Fales

Lauiula Beach Fales (1 night)

Lauiula Beach Fales are on a white sand beach beside a clear lagoon. This is a great place to learn to snorkel or brush up on snorkelling confidence as the shallow, sandy lagoon has regular coral outcrops, but plenty of places to stand up. To see turtles - take your eyes off the coral and tropical fish and look out towards the reef. In the 28 degree water you can stay in as long as you want.

Lauiula occasionally organise a traditional umu demonstration which you then eat for dinner followed by a fiafia evening. The small surcharge is well worth paying.

Meals: Breakfast and Dinner are included

Day 3

Tailua Beach Fales

Tailua Beach Fales (1 night)

These well run fales beside the beach are the ideal place to relax.

Manase has the biggest collection of beach resorts on the island and nearby Fagamolo has Le lagoto and Savaii Lagoon Resorts. Leap in for a swim before settling down with a well-earned beer.

Swimming and snorkelling from the sandy beaches are the obvious attractions, but for better snorkelling take the 3-4 hour Dive Savaii trip out to the reef and wreck (tide dependent), walk/cycle west to the next rocky bay or swim out from Fagamolo.

There are usually turtles around the small rock islands beside Reginas.

Ride 8km to Mt Matavanu crater, the source of the 1905 lava field. Admission is 15 Tala. It’s a tough ride up, climbing 550m to the cloud forest, but a thrilling descent.

Explore the Dwarfs Cave (take a torch each). This is a pool and drop lava tube cave. To explore the final section involves swimming across a pool, and coming back involves a short, steep climb, so go only as far as you are equipped/experienced and allow most of the day.

Meals: Dinner and Breakfast Included

Day 4

Va-i-moana Seaside Lodge

Va-i-moana Seaside Lodge (2 nights)

Va-i-moana is a popular seaside motel with good swimming from their private beach. Ride-on kayaks are available for guests to visit the nearby island and game fishing charters cn be arranged. The beachside rooms are often treated to a parade of turtles past their wooden balconies.

Those with enough energy to move beyond the beach and bar should arrange a tour of the cocoa processing factory that supplies Whittakers or ride to Vaisala to snorkel amongst the coral of their lagoon.

Meals: Continental Breakfast and Dinner are included

Day 5

Day 6

Falealupo Beach Fales

Falealupo Beach Fales (1 night)

Falealupo Beach is a beautiful isolated white sand beach set beside a small private lagoon at the western end of Savaii. The weather is nearly always clear with stunning sunsets while the shallow lagoon is always safe and inviting with a good variety of fish and coral. The fales are basic and facilities are limited, but the setting and hosts make this a special spot.

It is sometimes possible to get an upgrade on the day to an ensuite fale.

Meals: Dinner and breakfast included

Day 7

Satuiatua Beach Resort

Satuiatua Beach Resort (2 nights)

Satuiatua Beach Fales are located on a white sand beach in the shade of giant banyan trees.

A highlight is drift snorkelling through the marine reserve beside the Fales. Here you will see plenty of coral, a wide variety of tropical fish and the occasional turtle. The lagoon is only deep enough above half tide, so whale watch from the bar, swing from the banyans, or just laze and swim.

There is surfing at the reef entrance (the resort sometimes hires boards and paddle boards), but only attempt this if you are an experienced surfer.

Meals: Dinner and breakfast included

Day 8

Day 9

Florence's Place

Florence's Place (1 night)

Florence's Place is about 3kms past the Afu Aau falls in the village of Palauli so you can check in and ride back to the falls, or stop on the way. Florence’s Place is a homestay run by Kelvin and Ruth who are rebuilding the old family plantation. They have many interesting stories to tell and a tour of the plantation is well worth while.

Meals: Dinner and breakfast included.

Day 10

ACCOMMODATION

ACCOMMODATION

The fale resorts can be best thought of as camping style. They have good, waterproof roofs, solid wooden floors, matting sides, mosquito nets, bedding, pillows and mattresses. Bathrooms are shared and dining is usually from a limited or set menu. Allocation of specific fales for singles/doubles cannot always be guaranteed within your group during busy periods due to limitations with fale resort booking practices. The fale locations and the hospitality often make these the magic nights of your trip.

Motel standard accommodation provides motel/hotel like rooms with ensuite facilities.

CULTURAL SENSITIVITY - DRESS CODE:
As Samoa is a very traditional country and the people deeply religious we recommend a modest dress code when cycling through villages. Tight lycra shorts should be covered with baggy shorts (or even a skirt for women).
When kayaking it is appropriate for women to have a sarong/lava lava handy to cover up when landing. Respect is especially important on Sunday as it is traditionally a day of rest in Samoa.

Your experience and interaction with the Samoan people and their culture will be enhanced by showing this appropriate cultural sensitivity.

PRICING:
See accompanying email for pricing details

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