Tourists find more to Samoa than beaches and palm trees

By Nefertiti Matatia ,

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TOPNOTCH TRIP TO SAMOA: Good friends loving Samoa, Tracey Christiansen and Rachel Ansley.

TOPNOTCH TRIP TO SAMOA: Good friends loving Samoa, Tracey Christiansen and Rachel Ansley.

Two fulltime working mothers find solace in everything that defines Samoa. Tracey Christiansen and Rachel Ansley are from New Zealand. 

They have only been in Samoa for six days and they love every moment of it.

“I think people will be surprised of how much there is to do in Samoa,” Tracey said. “People think that you come to tropical islands and just lie around and swim, but there is so much more to do, like going to the waterfalls and cultural performances which is pretty awesome to watch.”

“It is different with advertising and things like that, you just see the beaches and palm trees, but there is a whole culture behind it. The laid back atmosphere of the people, they are very friendly.”

“As working mums, sometimes we need to have time out and do something for ourselves, so for this week, it is all about me. It is a break for me, it is always important to have a ‘me time’, girls trip.”

Rachel explained: “For me, I am a fulltime working single mum and so everything is up to me, but now the kids have to take responsibility for them, which is good they get to step up, while I get to sit back for a change.”

To breathe and feel the warm weather, Samoa has given them new perspectives of continuing their roles as fulltime working mothers.

“Coming here is like recharging my batteries and probably when I go back home, I will appreciate my husband and children even more,” said Tracey.

“My kids really appreciate me and they have told me I deserve it, my daughter contacted me this other night and she said I won’t talk to you too long mum because you need to relax and enjoy yourself.”

“They are learning something with me not being at home, but at the same time I am learning something else, they are now going through the experience of life without mum so that they can appreciate me,” said Rachel.

They are here through the recommendation of one of their friends, who is also travelling with them, and so far they’ve not regretted their choice. 

“We have learnt about how hospitable and friendly the people are. There are four of us travelling together, we are all girlfriends.” 

“One girlfriend has been here before and it is her seventh time in Samoa, but for the rest of us, it is our first time here. We all live in west Auckland. We all know each other through a walking group in Auckland. We decided to come to Samoa to do some hiking, like the Riverwalk.”

“It is a very relaxed and very safe place for women who are travelling on their own. Even if I travel on my own I would have no problems coming back,” said Tracey.

Talking to the Dear Tourist team, they shared about some of the sites they’ve visited in Upolu.

“Highlight for us would be Lalotalie the river hike, the Tosua Trench and the giant clams, they were amazing.”

“I love the seas, the temperature of the water, whenever I had the opportunity to be out there when the sunrise and there is no one in the sea, and it has been lovely. In New Zealand the water is not this warm, like swimming during night time with the moon shining on the water,” said Rachel.

Rachel added the only challenge which they faced was the lack of street signs, but once when they knew the streets, it was easy for them to find their way.

They are here for nine days and they are planning to take a one-day trip to Savaii to explore more about the country.

“We were supposed to go Savaii today (yesterday), but that has now been postponed to Saturday. A day trip with Chef John tour as well.”

For them there trip would not have been this enjoyable without the service offered by the Taumeasina Island Resort staff.

“The service here at Taumeasina has been topnotch for us. We have been so well looked after. It made this trip special, from front desk to the cleaners, they are all amazing.”

“And we are tempted to come back next time and it is a lovely location for a holiday,” they said.

© Samoa Observer 2016

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