Virus far from minds of American couple in Samoa

While the world is hunkering down and shutting borders to contain the spread of COVID-19, American couple, Ryan and Marisa Whitman, are lapping up some sunshine and the best of what Samoa has to offer. 

The visitors from from California, United States of America, have been in Samoa since last week and say they could not have picked a better spot.

"We rented a car for the first couple of days that we got here and we literally drove around the island," Mrs. Whitman said.

Among some of their favourite stops were the Piula Cave Pools and the To Sua Trench in Upolu. 

The couple also plan to visit the big island of Savai'i.

"We saw the the cave pools, all the waterfalls, the trench. It is fantastic, everything we have seen has been breathtaking. We haven't been to the big island though. We actually want to go there because we know there is a ferry that can take us there," she said.

The couple plan to experience the local Samoan life and are interested in seeing more of the Samoan culture as they have seen the culture and traditional dances during their stay at Taumeasina Island Resort.

"We met some people that lived here and they are going to show us around and so that we can experience the local life here. We saw some of the Samoan culture and dances here at the resort we are currently staying at and it was fantastic," she said.

Mr. Whitman loves Samoa saying that it is absolutely amazing.

"Samoa is absolutely amazing. Its so beautiful and the people are so wonderful and friendly," Mr. Whitman said.

He is amazed of the hospitality of the Samoan people.

"We have driven around the whole island and every village that we have passed we would always be greeted by friendly people. They would always smile, wave and give us a thumbs up. The food here is so delicious," he said.

Asked what they would tell any of their friends if they were to recommend Samoa as a place for their vacation, Mrs. Whitman said, "Do it!"

"Save your money, find a way and spend as much time here as you can," Mr. Whitman said.

Mrs. Whitman expressed that Samoa might actually be their home. 

She stated that she couldn't wait to explore Samoa ever since the first time she saw the country from the plane's window.

"Everyone here says welcome home and then I thought, this might actually be our home. The animals here are so amazing, I have been taking pictures and videos of them running around. Just by looking at Samoa from the plane when we arrived, I just couldn't wait to be there. The water is a perfect temperature, its like a mixture of warm and cool. You can also see the fish swimming around you in the sea," she said.

Mr. Whitman added that Samoa has made them feel welcome because according to him they feel like family everywhere they go.

"The island and the people are so wonderful." 

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