Meet Ruth and Arthur Banks from Tasmania, Australia.
The couple flew into Samoa with the intention to learn and experience the Samoan culture and lifestyle, but they have been surprised with what Samoa offers.
The authentic island life and their stay at the Sa’Moana Beach Resort have made their stay a memorable one so far.
It is their first time in Samoa and they wanted to travel to a place less touristy and relaxing.
“We looked at two other islands making the decision where to go but we chose Samoa because we thought it wasn’t mainstream tourism and it would give us the opportunities to actual interact with some of the Samoan people and to observe their culture and how they live.
“We read about Samoa before and as well about the level of tourism here, we thought we would be pretty comfortable with and we are,” Arthur said.
“Because it isn’t mainstream tourism, it is just very laid back, island time, friendly, nobody rushes you. I am really pleased that we came now because I think in 10 years’ time it will be quite different.
“An island like Samoa I think has to develop tourism as part of its economy and I hope they develop it carefully so they don’t lose the Samoan culture and especially Samoan friendliness and relaxation.”
They said there needs to be more street signs along the road to direct new visitors.
“We are in a very small resort and so we know many of the staff by their personal name, we talk to them, they teach us some Samoan and we have lots of laughs, which are good,” Arthur said.
They believe Samoa offers everything for any tourist.
“I think it is pretty well paid for because if you want adventure you can go scuba diving, waterfall sliding, Samoa has a lot of activities,” Arthur said.
“Then there are resorts if you just want to go to a resort,” Ruth added.
On Samoa’s agriculture potential, Arthur said: “I thought in the tropics the tropical fruits would be very fairly available, even in the supermarket there is very little.”
They leave next week but they plan to see more of Savaii first.
The people and culture are what will bring them back to Samoa.