Samoa Overview

Samoa is located in the southwestern Pacific Ocean, between Fiji and the Cook Islands, and is about the size of Blekinge. The country consists of the two larger volcanic islands Savai’i and Upolu, as well as seven smaller coral islands.

Samoa flagSamoa 2

Capital: Apia
Biggest city: Apia
State: republic
Language: English, Samoan
Religion: Christianity
Surface: 2 944 km²
Population: 195 500 (2013)
Population density: 75 residents per km²
Life expectancy: 72 years
Illiteracy: 0%
Currency: tala (WST)
1 tala = 3.28 kr
GDP per capita: $ 5,600 (2010)
Time difference: +12 hours
Electricity: 110 V AC, 60Hz
National Day: June 1st
Country area code: 685
2-Letter country abbreviation: WS (See more abbreviations on Abbreviationfinder)
Business: agriculture 65%, service sector and tourism 30%, industry 5%
Climate: tropical; rainy season from December to April; cooler dry season from May to November

The Samoa Islands – today divided between Samoa and American Samoa – were inhabited by Polynesians during the latter part of the 1000s BC. In 1722, the Dutch explorer Jakob Roggeveen became the first European to visit the Samoa Islands. During the 19th century, the islands were colonized, and a treaty in Berlin in 1889 between Great Britain, the United States and Germany stated that the whole of Samoa would become a neutral area.

The treaty was repealed in 1899 after internal conflicts broke out in Samoa. The archipelago was then divided between the United States, which received the eastern parts, and Germany, which received Samoa. When Germany lost its colonies after the First World War, New Zealand took over the administration until independence in 1962.

Polynesian culture is well preserved in Samoa. Most live in traditional and highly self-governing village communities, where clans and their leaders have much power. The male heads are city councils, which distribute land and fishing water between households. They are also responsible for ensuring that everyone, including the elderly and the sick, has a secure livelihood. There are also strong Christian values ​​in society. The church and the pastor play an important role in the village’s social life. In the Samoan lifestyle, Fa’a Samoa, obedience to authority and to the elderly is a matter of course.

The economy in the country is relatively undeveloped. Most live on agriculture and fishing for household needs. Foreign currency comes mainly from Samoans abroad who send money home to relatives. Tourism is also an important industry that today brings in far more than exports of goods.

Until 1997, Samoa was called Western Samoa. When they changed their name to Samoa, a conflict arose with the neighbor American Samoa, who believed that the name affected the Samoan’s identity. In American Samoa, the country is still called Western Samoa.

The author Robert Louis Stevenson, who wrote the books “Treasure Island” and “Dr. Jekyll and Mr Hyde”, lived in Samoa during his last years. His home is now a museum, and one of the country’s most visited sights. Author Alberto Manguel wrote the book “Stevenson Under the Palm Trees” in 2003, which is about Stevenson and his time in Samoa.


Electricity and electrical outlets in Samoa

Voltage: 230 V

Frequency: 50 Hz

Type of plug: I

Need an adapter: Yes, Swedes need an adapter.


Weather in Apia

Climate Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Christmas Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Average temperature °C 29 29 29 29 29 28 28 28 27 27 29 29
Day °C 31 31 31 29 29 30 29 30 28 29 31 31
Night °C 25 24 24 24 25 24 23 24 24 25 25 24
Rain (mm) 333 300 269 240 197 147 134 77 112 114 119 205
Rainy days 5 4 5 6 6 7 9 9 9 6 5 6
Soltim / day 7 7 8 8 7 7 7 7 7 8 8 8


According to Countryaah, Apia is the capital of the Pacific island nation of Samoa, and has about 58,800 residents (2001). Apia is the main port of Samoa and also the only city in the country.

The center consists of the area around Pulenunu Clock Tower and Beach Road where there are banks, shops, restaurants and some hotels. There are three major markets in the city, the Fish Market by the harbor, the Maketi Fou (Fruit and Vegetable Market) on Fugalei Street and a large flea market.

There are few historic buildings besides the churches Catholic Church, Anglican Church and Congregational Christian church as well as the courthouse Apia Courthouse and some houses built during the colonial era. In the city there is the small museum “Samoa Museum” with a small collection of Samoan cultural objects and artifacts. A short distance outside the city is “Vailima”, the home of the author Robert Louis Stevenson, which is now a museum.

On the Mulinuu Peninsula in the northern part of Apia is the Parliament Fono building “Maota Fono” and an old observatory.