The Best Tours for Cruise Ship Passengers in Samoa
Looking to make the most of your limited time on the breathtaking main island of Samoa while your ship is at port? Sure, you could go through the hassle of organising a car rental (along with the temporary license application), or you could head straight on the road to the magnificent waterfalls, glorious beaches and that famous swimming hole. Before you opt for the first overpriced shore excursion your cruise is offering you, do your research into some alternative and perhaps more appealing tours in this list of the best shore excursions in Samoa!
Haven’t booked your cruise yet? See which cruises visit the islands in the 10 Best Cruises that Go to Samoa.
1. The Jewels of Eastern Upolu – Samoan Island Adventures
Specialising in off-the-beaten-track tours, as well as jam-packed itineraries providing real bang for your buck, Samoan Island Adventures is a good go-to for shore excursions in Samoa. “The Jewels of Eastern Upolu” is their tour specially designed for cruise ship passengers, accomplishing four different fresh and saltwater swims in one day! Take a dip in the refreshing Piula Cave Pool, relax at the pristine Lalomanu Beach, climb down the rung ladder into the To Sua Ocean Trench and swim under the falls of the Togitogiga Waterfall.
Included are port transfers, water refills (BYO bottle), fresh fruit, sandwiches for lunch and all of the attraction entry fees. For more tour options, check out their Volcanic Crater Lake Hike and Swim and National Park Lava Cliffs and Black Sand Beach.
2. Apia Highlights Tour – Tour Samoa
An easy-going tour exploring Samoa’s capital before crossing the island to a beautiful beach, the “Apia Highlights Tour” with Tour Samoa is also a great option for cruise ship passengers. From your cruise ship, you’ll be transported along the Mulinuu Peninsula awash in historical monuments and the striking architecture of the Samoa Parliament fale. Visit the bustling Fugalei Market for its tropical food, crafts and cultural ambience before stepping inside the magnificent Immaculate Conception Cathedral. Just outside of Apia, you’ll tour the fascinating Robert Louis Stevenson Museum before crossing the island for lunch and a show at Maninoa Beach.
Note that this specific tour requires a minimum of 15 people to go ahead. Alternatively, Tour Samoa’s Half-Day Island Tour or Full-Day Tour of Apia and Upolu is a good option if this tour doesn’t go ahead, with more details listed in the 10 Best Day Tours of Upolu.
3. Essence of Upolu – Samoa Scenic
Boasting one of the most extensive lists of tours in Samoa, Samoa Scenic is sure to have a shore excursion to suit. One of their most popular options for cruise ship passengers is the “Essence of Upolu” tour which lasts approximately six hours and will get you back to your ship on time.
The tour begins with a drive along the northeast coast of Upolu, stopping at a viewpoint before making your way inland through mountains, plantations and rainforest to Sopoaga Falls to see the magnificent falls and enjoy a coconut demonstration. Then, it’s onto Tafatafa Beach for swimming, sunbathing and a barbecue lunch. On the way back, you’ll also stop by Samoa’s tallest waterfall, Papapapaitai Falls.
The tour includes lunch and attraction entry fees. Check out more tours from Samoa Scenic listed in the 10 Best Day Tours of Savai’i, 5 Best Day Tours of Apia and 10 Island Day Trips & Island-Hopping Tours in Samoa.
4. Namu’a Turtle Island and Eastern Upolu Tour – Tai’s Native Experience
It couldn’t get more authentic than joining a Samoan high chief, Tai, for a tour around his native homeland. Not only will you get the endearing perspective of Samoa from a local, but full-day tours such as the “Namu’a Turtle Island and Eastern Upolu Tour” take you to the places you’ve no doubt heard of to, more intriguingly, those you haven’t. Of course, the famous swimming hole To Sua Ocean Trench is on the list, while the lesser-visited Vavau Beach with its islands jutting from the lagoon is a real highlight. Take your swimwear and snorkelling gear because you won’t want to miss the opportunity to swim with turtles from Namu’a Island.
Inclusions with Tai’s Native Experience are lunch on Namu’a Island, accommodation pick-up from Apia, and bottled water. Alternatively, check out Tai’s other full-day tour of Apia, the waterfalls and museums of the Cross Island Road and the Piula Cave Pool.
5. Taxis in Samoa
Eagerly awaiting cruise ship arrivals at port, taxi operators are available to transport cruise passengers around Upolu; either on personalised tours or to sites they know you’ll love. Hiring a taxi for the day is usually cheaper than taking one of the shore excursions listed above. However, there will unlikely be lunch and attraction admission fees included. Learn more about taking a taxi in Samoa in our guide, Taxis in Samoa: Taxi Fares, How to Use & More.
More About Shore Excursions in Samoa
That’s it for our list of the best shore excursions in Samoa. For more tours of the islands, as well as advice for cruise ship passengers, take a look at the following guides:
- 10 Best Day Tours of Samoa
- The Complete Guide to the Ports of Call in Samoa
- The Best Time to Go on a Cruise to Samoa
Finally, just so you know some of the sights you’re likely to see in Samoa, take a look at the 101 Best Things to Do in Samoa: The Ultimate List.