The Best Samoa Beaches for Swimming, Snorkelling, Scenery, Surfing and Fun in the Sun
You didn’t travel all the way to this remote country in the South Pacific not to get in some beach time. Luckily, Samoa has many lining the shores of its two main islands, Upolu and Savai’i. With some sloping into tranquil lagoons full of fish life and others providing easy access to surf breaks on the reefs, there are beaches to suit all vibes in Samoa. Discover some of the best ones, right here, in this list of the best beaches in Samoa.
Paying for Beaches in Samoa
As with any natural attractions in Samoa, beaches are owned by local families and communities who provide infrastructure like beach fales and access roads for the public to enjoy these beaches. To help fund and maintain these sites, however, you are usually charged a customary fee, either to access the beach and its facilities or to hire a day fale.
Expect fees to be approximately ST$5-$10 per person or ST$20-$30 per vehicle. Resorts may charge more if you want to hire a resort room for the day. Sometimes purchasing something from their resort restaurant, for example, is enough payment. When in doubt, ask if it’s Ok to use the beach.
Guests of resorts and beach fales are not charged an extra fee.
For tips about respecting Samoan customs, check out our guide, Samoan Etiquette: Samoa Customs & Traditions.
1. Vavau Beach (Upolu)
Vavau Beach offers a secluded and stunning beach destination on the south coast of Upolu. Exclusively for day visitors, there are a number of fales set back from the white sands. Enjoy picturesque islands dotted around a shallow lagoon and soak in the scenery of the bush-clad environment that tops the coastal cliffs on all sides. Pay your entry fees at the access road; the community does a good job of keeping this beach clean.
Location: Vavau Beach Road, signposted off the Main South Coast Road between the villages of Lotofoga and Vavau on the south coast of Upolu.
2. Falealupo Beach (Savai’i)
Sweeping white sands and glorious snorkelling await at Falealupo Beach on the island of Savai’i. Either stay the night or hire a day fale at Falealupo Beach Fales or Se’eti Beach Fales with more than a kilometre of sand to enjoy. Snorkelling gear is available to hire where the snorkelling is fine from the beach. The best parts, however, are further out so you can hire guides from Falealupo Beach Fales if you want to check it out. Discover more about Samoa’s beach fales in the 20 Best Beach Fale Accommodations in Samoa.
Location: Falealupo village off Falealupo Road on the northwest coast of Savai’i. Turn off the main road onto Falealupo Road at Falealupo-utu village.
3. Lalomanu Beach (Upolu)
White sands, a turquoise lagoon, island views and breathtaking at both sunrise and sunset; Lalomanu Beach has it all. Located on the southeast corner of Upolu, Lalomanu boasts excellent views of the slanted Nu’utele Island. Although the coral within the lagoon is recovering from 2009 tsunami, there’s still plenty to see within its marine reserve. Beach fales here include Taufua Beach Fales, Liti Sini Beach Resort, Lululosa Beach Fales, Siegi Ropeti Beach Fales, Valegina’s Beach Fales, Anita’s Beach Bungalows and Lalomanu Beach Fales. For more excellent beaches to see the sunrise, check out the 10 Best Places to Watch the Sunrise in Samoa.
Location: Lalomanu village, along Main South Coast Road on the southeast coast on Upolu.
4. Saleapaga Beach (Upolu)
Another sublime stretch of sand on the south coast of Upolu, just next door to Lalomanu, Saleapaga benefits from much of what Lalomanu has but is much more underrated. Backed by dramatic bush-clad cliffs and leaning into an aqua-blue lagoon, Saleapaga Beach is definitely a scenic beach option. Beach fale options include Manusina Beach Fales, Faofao Beach Fales, Jaymy Beach Fales and Sarai Seluia Beach Fales.
Location: Saleapaga village, along Main South Coast Road on the southeast coast of Upolu (just before reaching Lalomanu if coming from the west).
5. Manase Beach (Savai’i)
One of the most popular beaches on Savai’i and one of the best places in Samoa to see turtles in their natural environment, Manase Beach is another area that entices. The beach fales just beg for you to stay longer, so either stay overnight or just for the day at Tailua, Tanu or Jane’s Beach Fales or opt for the resort options of Stevensons at Manase. Bring your own snorkelling gear otherwise, Tanu Beach Fales has some for hire. Be careful of tidal conditions, and avoid swimming near the reef passages. For more turtle endeavours, take a look at the 10 Places to See Turtles in Samoa.
Location: Manase village on the northeast coast of Savai’i.
6. Aganoa Beach (Upolu)
One of your more secluded beaches on Upolu, Aganoa Beach is well worth the journey (and 4WD/high-clearance vehicle). After an approximately 3 km (1.9 mi) rough dirt track through the forest with plenty of small hills – keep an eye out for kingfisher birds – you’ll reach the deep-water crescent-shaped black-sand Aganoa Beach. There are no facilities here (and often, not many other people), so be prepared to be self-sufficient and look after yourselves in case of strong currents. In fact, these conditions are what make Aganoa excellent for surfing between April and September – find out more in the 10 Best Places to Surf in Samoa. Note, this beach is not to be confused with the Aganoa surf beach on Savai’i.
Location: Signposted along Main South Coast Road at the western end of Sa’agafou village on the south coast of Upolu.
7. Lefaga Beach – Return to Paradise (Upolu)
The Samoa beach that has received the most screentime, Lefaga Beach, better known as Return to Paradise Beach, is the beach of the Return to Paradise Resort. The white-sand beach, scattered with rock pools and attractive lava rock formations, offers a picturesque place to relax for the day. The snorkelling is good at low tide but certainly not the best in Samoa due to not much reef protection making the water a bit choppy at times. Otherwise, visitors can get food and drinks at the resort’s restaurant. Find out more about why Return to Paradise is famous in the 5 TV Shows & Movies Filmed in Samoa.
Location: At the southern end of Cross Island Road, take the turn-off at the Return to Paradise Beach sign and continue past Matautu village all the way to the end of the road (the last part is a rocky unsealed road). Set your GPS for the resort; not the beach.
8. Lano Beach (Savai’i)
Crisp white sand, vibrant blue waters… This is your quintessential South Pacific beach. Either visit for the day using one of the day fales or join the friendly hosts of Lauiula or Joelan Beach Fales to stay in their ultra-spacious traditional-style beach fales overnight. With the reef quite far from shore, there’s safe swimming near the beach. Snorkelling gear is free to hire for Lauiula guests, while kayaks have a small hire fee. For more excellent snorkelling beaches in Samoa, check out The Best Snorkelling in Samoa: Top 10 Places to Snorkel.
Location: Lano village, along the main road on the east coast of Savai’i.
9. Na’mua Island Beach
Not just one of the best beaches in Samoa but one on an uninhabited island, Na’mua Island Beach offers a mini-escape from your island escape. Take the boat from the wharf in Mutiatele across the turquoise lagoon to this idyllic island with beach fale and bathroom facilities. There’s excellent snorkelling from the beach with the likelihood of seeing turtles. Meanwhile, on land, you can take a one-hour walk to the top of the island for amazing views. For more walks, check out the 15 Best Walks & Hikes in Samoa.
Location: Ferries depart from the wharf at Mutiatele (there is a signpost for Na’mua Island Beach Fales) along the Main South Coast Road on the west coast. Talk to someone in the shop opposite the wharf. Find out more about visiting this island in The Travel Guide to Aleipata Islands: Nu’utele, Namu’a, Fanuatapa & Nu’uala.
10. Maninoa Beach (Upolu)
Another popular resort and beach fale hub on the south coast of Upolu, Maninoa Beach offers safe swimming in a sheltered lagoon. Day fales can be hired at Ocean Club Maninoa, which also has a bar/cafe on-site and kayak and SUP hire, or stop by for lunch at Sinalei Reef Resort or Coconut’s Beach Club to enjoy more of this area.
Location: Resort/beach fale entrances are signposted off Main South Coast Road between Mulivai and Si’umu villages on Upolu. The best stretch of beach is just in front of Ocean Club, so take that access road.
More About the Best Beaches in Samoa
That’s it for our list of the best beaches in Samoa but that’s not all the wonderful natural attractions that the country has to offer. For more marvels of nature, including more ways to enjoy Samoa’s glorious beaches, check out the following: