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A Guide to Apia
Know Before You Go
- If you want to rent a car, you'll need a local license. You can buy one from the Ministry of Transport in town or from the car rental companies at the airport.
- Be respectful of the local culture by covering up. If you're attending church or walking through the villages and Apia, don't wear your bathing suit or revealing clothing.
- Don't walk around during the prayer curfew. Every evening Sa lasts for 10-20 minutes between 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Once you've heard three bells ring you can continue on your way.
- Sunday is the day of rest. While some attractions will be open, you'll need to be quiet while walking through the villages and travel slowly.
- Remember the correct etiquette when sitting inside a fale. Pointing your feet at others is disrespectful. Instead, cross your legs or tuck your feet away.
- You need to ask permission before exploring a piece of land as most areas are the property of the village or an individual.
Getting Around Apia
Apia is small enough to be explored on foot, but there are some public transport options to help you get around faster:
There are taxis in Apia, but they are not metered. You'll need to negotiate with the driver before you get inside the car. Trips around town shouldn't cost more than SAT 3 to 12 depending on your final destination.
Rental cars are available at the airport and in the city centre. If you're planning on driving outside of the city, be careful as most of the country roads lack guardrails and aren't in the best condition.
When is The Best Time to Visit Apia?
The best time to visit Apia is during the dry season. From May to October, the city is quiet as the end of year crowds have yet to arrive. It's also an ideal time for snorkelling and diving around the islands as visibility is at its clearest.
Apia has two high seasons: June to August and December to February. Kiwi and Aussie families flock to Samoa to make the most of the school holidays. If you don't mind the influx of people, you'll need to book your trip a few months in advance to lock in cheaper accommodation and airfare prices.
The island's wet season lasts from November to April. While cyclones are common and the weather isn't always perfect, you'll have better luck finding deals during these months.
Airports in Apia
Faleolo International Airport
Faleolo International Airport is 40 km from Samoa's capital city, Apia. It operates flights to and from New Zealand, Australia and the United States with major airlines like Fiji Airways.
Getting to and from Faleolo International Airport
There is a shuttle bus service that runs from the airport to the resorts and hotels in Apia. It's an affordable option, and it will take about 45 minutes to reach the city centre.
Another option to consider is the local bus. If you arrive before 5:00 p.m. you can hop on board for only SAT 5 per person.
If you'd prefer to take a taxi, you'll find the drivers waiting outside of the arrivals terminal. A trip into town will cost around SAT 80.