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Samoa Family Itinerary: 3 Days / Weekend
Samoa Family Itinerary: 3 Days / Weekend

Samoa Family Itinerary: 3 Days / Weekend

© Samoa Tourism Authority

3-Day Family Trip to Samoa!

Only have three days in Samoa? Although we can’t stress how much you’ll be robbing your family of experiences (not to mention, relaxation) by only spending three days in Samoa, you can still sample family-friendly adventure, culture and fun in Upolu, as well as explore the vibrant capital Apia! For the family who prefers to holiday together, this Samoa itinerary for three days might be just the weekend escape you were looking for…

While you’re here, don’t forget to open The Complete Travel Guide to Samoa for Families; your complete family holiday bible to Samoa!

Overview: Samoa Family 3-Day Itinerary

  • Day 1 – Arrival in Samoa + Apia
  • Day 2 – Upolu East Coast Day Tour
  • Day 3 – Explore Apia + Departure.
Samoa Family Itinerary: 3 Days / Weekend©

How to Get Around Samoa in 3 Days

This Samoa family itinerary for three days includes travelling to various destinations on the main island of Samoa, Upolu. Here’s a quick rundown on how to get around Samoa in three days.

Road Transport in Samoa

Upon arrival in Samoa, you can either get your rental car delivered to the airport or this itinerary allows for the option to take an airport transfer and have your vehicle delivered to you for free in Apia once you’re ready to hit the road on Day 2. See airport transfer options in the 10 Best Airport Transfers in Samoa.

For travelling around Upolu, car hire offers the most flexibility and convenience. Get advice on car hire, including family car hire, from What You Need to Hire a Car in Samoa. Alternatively, this itinerary is doable by taxi in Apia on Days 1 and 3, while Day 2 can be achieved by hiring a private driver; see How to Hire a Driver in Samoa, or jumping on day tours from Apia; see the 10 Best Day Tours of Upolu.

For all of your transport options across the islands, not limited to the most family-friendly options, check out our Samoa Transport Guide: 14 Best Ways to Get Around Samoa.

Samoa Family Itinerary: 3 Days / Weekend©

Day 1 – Arrival in Samoa + Apia

Welcome to Samoa and the start of your escape to paradise! After the arrivals process of going through customs and biosecurity, you’ll step outside of the arrivals area to where your airport transfer to the capital, Apia, will be waiting, whether it’s organised through your accommodation or simply a taxi transfer (see your options in the 10 Best Airport Transfers in Samoa).

Since it’s your first day in Samoa, take it easy and get settled at your chosen accommodation. After check-in, relax by the pool, have a paddle with the kayaks provided if staying at a resort, perhaps catch a fiafia night, and transition to “island time”. We’ll go over a few things you can do in Apia tomorrow.

Apia Family Accommodations

Get details on all of our recommended stays in the 10 Best Family Accommodations in Apia.

Dining Recommendations

Accommodations such as Taumeasina and Tanoa Tusitala have their own reputable restaurants to make things simple. Apia is also one of the best places to experience a fiafia night, should your arrival coincide with one of these weekly events. Discover your options in the 10 Best Fiafia Nights in Samoa, as well as in the 10 Best Restaurants in Apia.

Samoa Family Itinerary: 3 Days / Weekend©

Day 2 – Upolu East Coast Day Tour

Travel Time: 2 hours.

It’s time to hit the road and discover the real Samoa! Get a rental vehicle delivered to you in Apia (if you haven’t done so already) and take the Main East Coast Road along the scenic coastline with cliffs and villages to admire.

Your first stop is the freshwater spring and family-friendly swimming spot of Piula Cave Pools, signposted between the villages of Saoluafata and Faleapuna. Afterwards, choose whether to continue on the Main West Coast Road or take a 20-minute return detour to another mesmerising swimming spot, Sauniatu Falls signposted from Saoluafata. Learn more about both of these attractions in the 10 Best Swimming Spots in Samoa.

Once you’re ready to get back on the road, make a waterfall stop at Falefa Falls with its attractive picnic area. Then, it’s onward to one of the most scenic drives in Samoa, Le Mafa Pass. Enjoy the views of the jungle-clad mountainous scenery, which is sure to get the imaginations of the little ones running, as you wind your way across the island.

Fuipisia Waterfall is another optional detour. However, a stop at Sopoaga Falls is mandatory, arguably the most scenic waterfall viewpoint and where you can watch coconut husking demonstrations to inject a bit of island culture into your journey. Learn more about the waterfalls discussed in the 10 Best Waterfalls in Samoa.

Once you’ve made it to the south coast of Upolu, you can stop for lunch at Saletoga Sands Resort before visiting the iconic To Sua Ocean Trench (not suitable for those under 10 years old).

Make your way west now, passing through the bush-clad O Le Pupu Pu’e National Park with another amazing swimming hole, Togitogiga Waterfall, and the family-friendly Ma Tree walk. Maninoa presents another opportunity for lunch at various resorts beside its white-sand beach and turquoise lagoon.

Finally, head north on the Cross Island Road, stopping by the awesome free viewpoint of Papapapaitai Falls, and then check out the gorgeous grounds of the Baha’i Temple – one of only eight in the world.

Your journey ends back in Apia with time to freshen up before dinner.

For an alternative tour of the east coast, check out A Self-Guided Day Trip Around Upolu: East Coast Itinerary.

Dining Recommendations

Between Apia and the South Coast, there are no real restaurant or cafe opportunities until you reach the south coast resorts. Saletoga Sands Resort will be the first option you come across, good for New Zealand cuisine in a convenient location between Sopoaga Falls and To Sua Ocean Trench. Alternatively, resorts such as Sinalei Reef and Coconuts Beach Club in Maninoa provide an upscale dining experience, while Ocean Club‘s beach bar and cafe provide a more relaxed ambience. Learn more in the 10 Best Restaurants on Upolu.

As for dinner in Apia, Paddles Restaurant brings the culinary know-how of Italy and the Pacific charm of Samoa thanks to its dynamic Italian and Samoan owners. With a very friendly yet unpretentious ambience, as well as a kids’ menu with much more thought than your average “chicken and chips”, it’s certainly a top choice in Apia for families. See more dine-in eateries listed in the 10 Best Restaurants in Apia.

Samoa Family Itinerary: 3 Days / Weekend©

Day 3 – Explore Apia + Departure

Travel time: 50 minutes drive.

It might be your last day in Samoa (see, three days isn’t enough!) but depending on your flight time, you may be able to squeeze in a day tour of the capital before making your way to Faleolo Airport.

Family Activities in Apia

Take your pick of some or all of the things to do in Samoa’s capital with kids:

  • Experience cultural and crafting workshops at Samoa Cultural Village
  • Have a stroll through Friendship Park
  • Go to Apia’s natural waterpark, the Papase’ea Sliding Rocks
  • Snorkel at the Palolo Deep Marine Reserve
  • Explore Vailima Botanical Garden.

We go into detail on all of those points and more in the 10 Things to Do in Apia with Kids.

Dining Recommendations

For lunch, enjoy the creative menu of Milani Caffe & Cakes while the kids are treated to mind-blowing milkshakes and sweet treats. Note that those who visit the Samoa Cultural Village will have a traditional Samoan lunch provided. Get much more cafe inspiration from our 10 Best Cafes in Apia and Upolu.

If you need dinner plans, be transported to the Mediterranean and among the attractive patio gardens of Giordano’s Pizzeria. Giordano’s combines family-pleasing Italian cuisine with a gorgeous garden setting. Otherwise, Faleolo Airport has a few basic dining options should you need to refuel the family – see our guide to the Samoa Arrival Airport for details.


After an exciting and dynamic three days in Samoa on a family getaway, it’s finally time to say goodbye to the islands. Remember to arrive at the airport a couple of hours before your scheduled departure so that you have enough time to check in, go through security and browse the retail offerings, as listed in The Guide to Shopping in Samoa + The Best Places to Shop.

For anything else you need to know about leaving Samoa, it’s all listed in our guide, Leaving Samoa: Departure Tips & Checklist.

And it’s “Tofa Soifua” from Samoa!

Alternative Samoa 3-Day Itineraries

Is this three-day family itinerary for Samoa not quite speaking to you? How about checking out our alternative itineraries for three days:

Finally, if there’s anything we’ve missed from this Samoa family itinerary, you’re likely to find it in The Complete Travel Guide to Samoa for Families.


Laura S.

This article was reviewed and published by Laura, editor-in-chief and co-founder of Samoa Pocket Guide. Since arriving solo in the South Pacific over 10 years ago with nothing but a backpack and a background in journalism, her mission has been to show the world how easy (and awesome) it is to explore a paradise such as Samoa. She knows the islands inside out and loves sharing tips on how best to experience Upolu and Savai’i’s must-dos and hidden gems. Laura is also the editor of several other South Pacific travel guides.

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