2017 is a big year for Samoa. Not only does it mark the 55th anniversary of its independence, it also celebrates the International Year of Sustainable Tourism as designated by the United Nations.
As a small island state, Samoa's ecosystems are particularly vulnerable to environmental challenges brought on by climate change and natural disasters and it recognizes that sustainably managed tourism development plays a key role in addressing these threats through enhanced climate change adaptation and risk reduction, strengthened community resilience, and environmental conservation.
“Tourism is a key driver of social and economic development and sustainable tourism is at the core of what we do” said Sonja Hunter, CEO of the Samoa Tourism Authority. Hunter also highlighted that Samoa continues to be a regional leader in sustainable tourism and advocates for ongoing destination stewardship among tourism businesses and visitors. Further added Hunter, “Samoa was the first South Pacific destination to establish its sustainable tourism indicators and it was fitting that we were part collective efforts at the United Nations which ultimately lead to this year being designated the International Year for Sustainable Tourism for Development”.
With an average temperature of 27 degrees, Samoa offers the ultimate and authentic South Pacific experience. From powder soft beaches to warm tropical seas and colourful coral reefs alive with marine life. The rugged, lush mountainous rainforest interiors reveal endless wildlife, waterfalls and lagoons. Samoa is a haven for those wanting a relaxing holiday or honeymoon complete with spas, pampering and secluded beaches. For the more adventurous, Samoa offers hiking trails, cycling routes, world class snorkelling and diving as well as some of the best surf locations in the South Pacific.
Governed by Fa'a Samoa (the Samoan way), the Samoan culture and way of life is over 3000 years old and follows complex cultural code. Fa'a Samoa is a guideline for every Samoan on how to lead their lives by celebrating and embracing traditional values, their culture and environment. It is an integral part of Samoan life, evident in the time-honoured traditions, warm hospitality, as well as the cultural practices and customs of the Samoan people.