When visiting the Apia area you might try taking a hike up to the top of Maunga Vaea
which the final resting place of Tusitala which is a Samoan word for Storyteller
also better known to us as the famed author Robert Louis Stevenson.
Stevenson began his travels from his native Scotland after contracting TB
and wanted fresh air so he traveled across to the United States and lived in St Helena California
for awhile the ventured on to Hawaii where he met with Hawaiian royalty
and became friends with Princess Kai'ulani during her teenage years
after Hawaii traveled to the present day Republic of Kiribati to the island of Abemama
where he met with it's fierce chief Tem Binoka and became friends with him
After leaving Abemama traveled on to Samoa and settled there and lived many years there
and recuperated from his TB but died from a massive stroke in his old age.
It took several big husky Samoan men
to carry his coffin up to the top of the mountain where he is laid to rest
It's about an hour and a half climb to the top of the mountain.
Apia is... cute!
"A "walkable" capital city :-)"
Apia is walkable - that's for sure. And it is cute, that's for sure too. It's so small you can easily walk around and see everything.
And that's a bit relative, even: there's not all THAT much to see, but it's a great place for a half day visit.
What you should definitely visit are the markets. They are massive - and you can find about everything you need - from sarongs (seriously, there's heaps!) to paintings, local crafts, foods, everything. And it's all relatively cheap too! There is a great atmosphere and bargaining can definitely bring the price down quite considerably. Also a great place to find South Pacific Style jewellery if you are into that kind of stuff.
Another nice thing to do is to just stroll along the little harbour - entertainment guaranteed! We walked for about 15 minutes and saw at least 5 or 6 pick-up trucks (or for the Aussies amongt us: utes) passing by loaded with people, all singing the most beautiful songs! That's one thing that Samoans are good at: singing! Absolutely fantastic voices they have!
"The Tourism Office"
The Tourism Office in Apia looks like a giant fale: the standard hut-type accommodation of the average Samoan. A great idea though: it's basically four walls and a roof, but the greatest thing is that the walls are made of palm leaf sheets or something alike. They just open them during the HOT days and lower them again at night.
They don't seem to mind you looking into their houses during the day (as obviously most fales are open during the day).
The tourist office is impressive from the outside, but we didn't exactly find a lot of information on the inside; that's rather a pity. There are a few people that are more than willing to help, but to pick up brochures, I think you're better off in your hotel or resort. They don't seem to stock a lot. It's an impressive building though, amongst the lushest green I've ever seen!
"Central Apia Church"
This church is massive! Samoa is a very religious country with several people going to multiple church services a day. They all dress up for it too: a lot of people seem to wear white to church.
This church is big - you can wander in. We thought the inside looked quite interesting - there's a lot of tiles on the wall which is rather unusual - so it made us think of a giant bathroom almost - with all due respect of course.
Apia, Western Samoa
I am currently living in Samoa as a volunteer. When I arrived, I couldn't get over the beauty of the island nor could I breathe when driving along the ocean. I've never seen water so blue, so clear. The way of life in Samoa is relaxing. Stress is non-existent unless you are the hare in a society filled with tortoises. Samoans are the friendliest people I've ever met, always laughing and poking fun at one another. They are truly one the most talented cultures on earth when it comes to song, dance, performance, anything related to the arts. They are great hosts, offering their homes to anyone interested in learning about their culture. They are proud people, proud of their country, their culture, and proud of their way of life - and they should be.