Non-riders tour

Non-riders tour

Join your riding partner and participate without riding

This is the holiday for groups or couples, where some people want to ride and others prefer to enjoy the best beaches in Samoa and absorb some of the local culture.

Distance: - From none to 200 kms depending on your goals

Duration: - 10-11 days (5 riding journey days)

Difficulty/Challenge: As little or as much as you want

Cycling Beaches Comfort Adventure Culture
Fales, Motels
Cycling
Beaches
Comfort
Fales, Motels
Adventure
Culture

“What a great trip! I would love to bring my daughter along next time, but she can’t ride because…”

Good news! Your non-riding family members or partners need not miss out on this holiday. This trip has been expressly designed to cater for riders and non-riders (and occasional riders).

Everyone gets to enjoy the best beaches in Samoa - beside tranquil lagoons with great swimming and snorkelling. The trip also encompasses the major attractions of Savaii, taking in the spectacular blowholes and Afu Aau waterfalls as well as many of the less well known, but equally special activities, such as tapa cloth making, a plantation tour and lessons in basket making.

For riders, the core journey involves five days of cycling and covers about 160kms. Those that are less confident ride just as much as they want (the van is always nearby to take you and the bike). On riding days you are normally at your destination for lunch, plenty of time to enjoy the beach and snorkelling and bar together for the afternoon.

This trip is similar to the Savaii Escape, but with more emphasis on activities for non-riders.

Electric Bikes

We are testing a electric bike this year and if there is sufficient interest combined with the bikes being reliable and capable of the distances, we expect to offer them from 2015.   If this even vaguely appeals - let us know and it will help our planning.

02 IMG 1081

Falealupo Beach at sunset


The sample itinerary below is based on leaving New Zealand or Australia on a Thursday and returning on the Sunday 10 days later. However the trip can depart any day and can easily be extended. There is a support van on transfer days, so those not riding travel by van, get to see the regular attractions along the way and enjoy the company of the host/drivers Peter and Sarah.

Day 1. Arrival

If you have chosen to come on a Thursday you will have enjoyed a daytime flight with Air NZ and probably land about 8:30pm. However regardless of what day and what time you arrive we will meet you at the airport and transfer you on 10 minute van ride to our base at Airport Lodge.

Day 2. Introduction to Savaii

After the riders get their bike fitted it’s 3kms to the ferry terminal. The crossing takes a little over an hour and then it is a 19km ride to Lano. The road winds along beside the lagoon and is a delightful introduction to village life. Your arms will get tired from waving to the kids and calling out “bye-bye” as you pass. Along the way there are several good swimming spots on beaches and in fresh water pools.
Take the optional plantation tour to understand a bit more about village life. Tend the Taro, watch coconut palms climbed, learn to make a basket and enjoy a lunch of traditional food.

Lano is a coral sands paradise beach with very good coral in shallow water. It is the perfect place to practise your snorkelling, or just laze in the warm water for an hour or two.

Day 3 Lano

Awaken to the sun peeking through the matting sides of your fale, take 3 steps and dive into the crystal clear water of the lagoon.
If you can resist the enticing water and snorkelling for long enough, lie around and read a book on this idyllic beach.
Saturday night is often fiafia night and as Lano is home to one of the world's top fire dance team, for a small extra payment you may have the chance to experience a cultural dance night and umu feast complete with suckling pig.

Day 4. Ride to Manase

Look forward to a 32km ride on mostly flat roads. The middle section of the ride is through a jungle corridor before winding over the lava fields. There is time to inspect the LMS church with a metre of lava on the floor from the 1905 eruption. Relax at the Manase fales(some motel upgrades available), where again the water laps within a few metres of your feet. 
If you’re riding this on a Sunday you will be welcomed at any of the churches along the way. Many are large and ornate, but the experience at the small family fale ones can be quite special. What ever church you visit the singing will be magnificent.
Swimming with the turtles is a very popular attraction at a pond just off the coastal road, but keen swimmers will usually encounter them in the wild if they snorkel every day.
We normally stay in pleasant shady fales beside the water, but there are several upgrade options available including Savaii Lagoon Resort, our favourite up-market resort in Samoa with a stunning beach, private rooms and a good restaurant.

Day 5. Manase

Another tough day of choices: stay at your resort and enjoy the coral sand beach or get out and explore. For snorkelling there is a colourful coral garden within easy walking distance of Manase or a guided boat trip from beside Savaii Lagoon (with dive option). There are also several good rides including to Mt Matavanu (to meet Da Crater Man) and the Dwarfs Cave (a pool and drop lava tube).

Day 6, Over the hill

For keen riders this is a big morning with some good hills. For sometimes riders there are gentle coastal sections and some big downhills. For non riders the caves, gardens and pools along way make for memorable day.
The ride starts with a gentle meander through seaside villages before gradually heading inland and climbing through forest to avoid the lava cliffs.
At the top of the climb, just past the village of Aopo there is a long lava tube to inspect. The cave takes 3 hours to walk through, so most people spend only half an hour in the cave, time to see the swiftlets pretending to be bats as they echo-locate to their nests. The route to the cave is through an interesting forest and pineapple plantation. Even if you don’t stop for lunch (pre-booking essential) freshen up with a niu (young coconut) before heading across the lava fields and down to Asau. Swim in the freshwater pools at the bottom of the hill before riding the last 3 kms to the classic old Vaisala hotel beside one of the best snorkelling locations in the country.
The hotel is showing its age, but the Somerset Maugham atmosphere and great beach make this place a must. Enjoy a lobster dinner (it is usually on the menu and included in the price) on the balcony while being serenaded by the string band. Dance as much as you like to the band - its a rest day tomorrow.

Day 7 - Rest, fish or snorkel

The beach and snorkelling here is so good there is really no need to do anything else. However, nearby Va-I- Moana offers a great lunch and fishing trips. Big game options are available but many prefer sport fishing for Giant Trevali (GTs). Alternatively just have a lazy day and take the pontoon boat around to Asau and Va-I-Moana, stopping for a snorkel along the way.

Day 8- Remote South West

There are more options for today than most groups will have energy for (to avoid these on-holiday decisions - book an extra day). The direct ride to Satuiatua is 40kms and quite sufficient for many, but the 20km detour via Falealupo takes in many worthwhile sights. This coast was severely battered by cyclones Ofa and Val and the ruined church at Falealupo is mute testimony to the power of the storms. Along this side road you can also climb 30m into a banyan tree to a forest forest canopy walkway, take a guided tour through the house of rock where the village traditionally shelter during cyclones and visit the remote and wild western extreme of Samoa.
The rugged south coast is very picturesque with much of the road winding through villages set atop the lava cliffs. Stop at Lovers Leap and look for turtles and sharks in the bay below.
Don’t forget to ask your driver to look out for a women’s weaving group. These are fun to attend and while the weaving is fascinating the conversation is often hilarious and insightful. These may be the unofficial marriage bureaus of Samoa.
The ride finishes at Satuiatua, a fale resort built right on the beach under the banyan trees. It’s another of my favourite places with a good menu, spectacular sunsets and a balcony which looks out over the sea (several times we have seen whales spouting from here).

Day 9- Satuiatua

Another day with too many choices. If you can get beyond the beach and bar there is wonderful snorkelling amongst dense schools of fish. Attend a tapa making session to see mulberry bark turned into cloth or take the plantation tour if it is offered by the resort. Don’t forget to taste the flesh of the cocoa pods - delicious.

Day 10 - Blowholes and waterfalls

The last cycling day and it's a longer one at 55kms, but mostly flat and with a lot to see on the way. The blowholes seem to perform in almost any sea condition and tide but can be huge in a good southerly swell. The waterfalls at Afu Aau are probably the second most visited attraction on Savaii, and for good reason. Set in a shady, leafy valley the pool beneath the falls provides a very refreshing swim for all with opportunities for the more confident to leap from the surrounding cliffs. Salelogoga markets provide an opportunity to buy souvenirs and local fruit before finish at Lusia’s Lagoon Chalets just a km down the road. Here you can enjoy a comfortable motel room, a la carte dining and swimming, or just chill on the pier with your favourite tipple and a great sense of satisfaction.

Day 11 - Homeward bound

Cross back over the Apolima Strait, return the bikes and either catch the plane home or extend your trip with time on Upolu. 

Extensions

Like all our trips, this can be customised as much as you like: Stay extra days at any of the resorts, take accommodation upgrades (limited choice) or add on trips to the Upolu destinations including Manono Island, Apia, Kayaking, Giant Clams and luxury resorts.

 

This trip can depart any day.  The sample itinerary was designed to fit in with some of the most pleasant flight times from anywhere in NZ or Australia and so starts on a Thursday.

Supported bike ride.

Includes:

  • Support vehicle traveling at your pace
  • Services of driver as local guide on cycling sections
  • Participants can travel in van at any time for as much of the journey as they want

Bag carry service:

Your bags are collected each morning and dropped at your scheduled destination

Price includes:

  • Airport transfers on arrival and departure
  • Accommodation on all nights
  • 8 or 9 breakfasts (all breakfasts except last morning if flying before 8am), 7 Dinners (all but last night)
  • Bike hire (see pricing)
  • Savaii and Upolu transport while cycling (as per supported/bag carry only options)

Price excludes:

  • Ferry costs (22 tala pp inc bike)
  • Airfares
  • Additional recommended Tours (eg Dive Savaii 65 Tala)
  • Customary fees

Trips can be invoiced in NZ$ or AUS$. The NZ$ price includes an extra night (first night) at Airport Lodge.

 NZ$  - price includes an extra night (first night) at Airport Lodge.

  2 People 4 People 8 People
Per Person NZD 1,440 pp NZD 1,185pp NZD 964pp
Bike Hire if required (per bike) NZD 215 pp NZD 215 pp NZD 215 pp

AUS$  - Assumes early morning arrival on first day

  2 People 4 People 8 People
Per Person AUD 1,315 pp AUD 1,070 pp AUD 865 pp
Bike Hire if required (per bike) AUD 205 pp NZD 205 pp NZD 205 pp

Best family adventure experience I can imagine in the Pacific

So riding around the Island of Savaii in Samoa is about as good as it gets for a young family. Ross and Frances can arrange a range of trips from fully supported (including a guide and luggage transfer) to just doing accommodation booking. We opted for the accommodation only option as we used our own bikes and panniers, what it meant is that we always knew where we'd be sleeping each night. The accommodation options were nearly all excellent, and we ended up sleeping in a mix of beach fales, mini resorts and homestays - even tiny Manono Island off of Upulo. Savaii is an incredible island to cycle around - 10-12 days seems about the right length of time to be on the road giving heaps of time to explore the local sights. 

Ross and Frances were always on hand to tailor our itinerary to what we wanted and we had an amazing holiday with our two small children, 4 and 7. For anyone interested, we managed to ride the 200+km around Savaii with our children on tagalong bikes - and apparently it's been done with trailers and bike seats too. I really recommend the trip, but be aware that Samoa accommodation is not at the luxury end of the spectrum so expectations should be tailored accordingly - it's all more than made up for by amazing people, snorkelling, scenery, wildlife and general pace of life.

July 2013 - Trip Adviser

Fantastic way to see Samoa!!

We had the most awesome time cycling and kayaking in Samoa for 2 weeks! We would highly recommend this to anyone who would like a holiday with a bit of a difference. A fantastic balance between exercise and relaxation. Frances and Ross did an excellent job of creating a holiday tailored to our requirements. They know all the right places to stay and all the hints and recommendations in their guidebook were invaluable. The bikes were good quality and the cycling distances do-able (even for someone who rarely cycles). Cycling allowed us to get a really good feel for Samoa. The Samoan children always appeared thrilled to see us cycle through their villages and constantly put a smile on our face...we did get a little tired of waving to all of them though! The scenery was stunning and the snorkelling fantastic. 

We also managed to fit in a few days kayaking to the island of Manono to spend 2 nights at the wonderful Sunset View fales. This was lovely, very achieveable and fun both ways paddling for a couple of hours over the turquoise waters of the reef. A highlight to the holiday.

Everyone should do a cycle/kayak trip with Bike Samoa :)

Visited October 2013

Bike Samoa

A great trip for people who like to combine exercise with a beach experience! Frances and Ross organised an excellent itinerary with a good mix of accommodation from fales on the beach to more upmarket resorts. Bikes were in very good condition and the backup service run by Peter and his crew meant anyone who didnt want to bike the hills had another option! Definitely recommended for a biking adventure close to home on a beautiful island.

Visited June 2013

The sample itinerary below is based on leaving New Zealand or Australia on a Thursday and returning on the Sunday 10 days later. However the trip can depart any day and can easily be extended. There is a support van on transfer days, so those not riding travel by van, get to see the regular attractions along the way and enjoy the company of the host/drivers Peter and Sarah.

Day 1. Arrival

If you have chosen to come on a Thursday you will have enjoyed a daytime flight with Air NZ and probably land about 8:30pm. However regardless of what day and what time you arrive we will meet you at the airport and transfer you on 10 minute van ride to our base at Airport Lodge.

Day 2. Introduction to Savaii

After the riders get their bike fitted it’s 3kms to the ferry terminal. The crossing takes a little over an hour and then it is a 19km ride to Lano. The road winds along beside the lagoon and is a delightful introduction to village life. Your arms will get tired from waving to the kids and calling out “bye-bye” as you pass. Along the way there are several good swimming spots on beaches and in fresh water pools.
Take the optional plantation tour to understand a bit more about village life. Tend the Taro, watch coconut palms climbed, learn to make a basket and enjoy a lunch of traditional food.

Lano is a coral sands paradise beach with very good coral in shallow water. It is the perfect place to practise your snorkelling, or just laze in the warm water for an hour or two.

Day 3 Lano

Awaken to the sun peeking through the matting sides of your fale, take 3 steps and dive into the crystal clear water of the lagoon.
If you can resist the enticing water and snorkelling for long enough, lie around and read a book on this idyllic beach.
Saturday night is often fiafia night and as Lano is home to one of the world's top fire dance team, for a small extra payment you may have the chance to experience a cultural dance night and umu feast complete with suckling pig.

Day 4. Ride to Manase

Look forward to a 32km ride on mostly flat roads. The middle section of the ride is through a jungle corridor before winding over the lava fields. There is time to inspect the LMS church with a metre of lava on the floor from the 1905 eruption. Relax at the Manase fales(some motel upgrades available), where again the water laps within a few metres of your feet. 
If you’re riding this on a Sunday you will be welcomed at any of the churches along the way. Many are large and ornate, but the experience at the small family fale ones can be quite special. What ever church you visit the singing will be magnificent.
Swimming with the turtles is a very popular attraction at a pond just off the coastal road, but keen swimmers will usually encounter them in the wild if they snorkel every day.
We normally stay in pleasant shady fales beside the water, but there are several upgrade options available including Savaii Lagoon Resort, our favourite up-market resort in Samoa with a stunning beach, private rooms and a good restaurant.

Day 5. Manase

Another tough day of choices: stay at your resort and enjoy the coral sand beach or get out and explore. For snorkelling there is a colourful coral garden within easy walking distance of Manase or a guided boat trip from beside Savaii Lagoon (with dive option). There are also several good rides including to Mt Matavanu (to meet Da Crater Man) and the Dwarfs Cave (a pool and drop lava tube).

Day 6, Over the hill

For keen riders this is a big morning with some good hills. For sometimes riders there are gentle coastal sections and some big downhills. For non riders the caves, gardens and pools along way make for memorable day.
The ride starts with a gentle meander through seaside villages before gradually heading inland and climbing through forest to avoid the lava cliffs.
At the top of the climb, just past the village of Aopo there is a long lava tube to inspect. The cave takes 3 hours to walk through, so most people spend only half an hour in the cave, time to see the swiftlets pretending to be bats as they echo-locate to their nests. The route to the cave is through an interesting forest and pineapple plantation. Even if you don’t stop for lunch (pre-booking essential) freshen up with a niu (young coconut) before heading across the lava fields and down to Asau. Swim in the freshwater pools at the bottom of the hill before riding the last 3 kms to the classic old Vaisala hotel beside one of the best snorkelling locations in the country.
The hotel is showing its age, but the Somerset Maugham atmosphere and great beach make this place a must. Enjoy a lobster dinner (it is usually on the menu and included in the price) on the balcony while being serenaded by the string band. Dance as much as you like to the band - its a rest day tomorrow.

Day 7 - Rest, fish or snorkel

The beach and snorkelling here is so good there is really no need to do anything else. However, nearby Va-I- Moana offers a great lunch and fishing trips. Big game options are available but many prefer sport fishing for Giant Trevali (GTs). Alternatively just have a lazy day and take the pontoon boat around to Asau and Va-I-Moana, stopping for a snorkel along the way.

Day 8- Remote South West

There are more options for today than most groups will have energy for (to avoid these on-holiday decisions - book an extra day). The direct ride to Satuiatua is 40kms and quite sufficient for many, but the 20km detour via Falealupo takes in many worthwhile sights. This coast was severely battered by cyclones Ofa and Val and the ruined church at Falealupo is mute testimony to the power of the storms. Along this side road you can also climb 30m into a banyan tree to a forest forest canopy walkway, take a guided tour through the house of rock where the village traditionally shelter during cyclones and visit the remote and wild western extreme of Samoa.
The rugged south coast is very picturesque with much of the road winding through villages set atop the lava cliffs. Stop at Lovers Leap and look for turtles and sharks in the bay below.
Don’t forget to ask your driver to look out for a women’s weaving group. These are fun to attend and while the weaving is fascinating the conversation is often hilarious and insightful. These may be the unofficial marriage bureaus of Samoa.
The ride finishes at Satuiatua, a fale resort built right on the beach under the banyan trees. It’s another of my favourite places with a good menu, spectacular sunsets and a balcony which looks out over the sea (several times we have seen whales spouting from here).

Day 9- Satuiatua

Another day with too many choices. If you can get beyond the beach and bar there is wonderful snorkelling amongst dense schools of fish. Attend a tapa making session to see mulberry bark turned into cloth or take the plantation tour if it is offered by the resort. Don’t forget to taste the flesh of the cocoa pods - delicious.

Day 10 - Blowholes and waterfalls

The last cycling day and it's a longer one at 55kms, but mostly flat and with a lot to see on the way. The blowholes seem to perform in almost any sea condition and tide but can be huge in a good southerly swell. The waterfalls at Afu Aau are probably the second most visited attraction on Savaii, and for good reason. Set in a shady, leafy valley the pool beneath the falls provides a very refreshing swim for all with opportunities for the more confident to leap from the surrounding cliffs. Salelogoga markets provide an opportunity to buy souvenirs and local fruit before finish at Lusia’s Lagoon Chalets just a km down the road. Here you can enjoy a comfortable motel room, a la carte dining and swimming, or just chill on the pier with your favourite tipple and a great sense of satisfaction.

Day 11 - Homeward bound

Cross back over the Apolima Strait, return the bikes and either catch the plane home or extend your trip with time on Upolu. 

Extensions

Like all our trips, this can be customised as much as you like: Stay extra days at any of the resorts, take accommodation upgrades (limited choice) or add on trips to the Upolu destinations including Manono Island, Apia, Kayaking, Giant Clams and luxury resorts.

 

This trip can depart any day.  The sample itinerary was designed to fit in with some of the most pleasant flight times from anywhere in NZ or Australia and so starts on a Thursday.

Supported bike ride.

Includes:

  • Support vehicle traveling at your pace
  • Services of driver as local guide on cycling sections
  • Participants can travel in van at any time for as much of the journey as they want

Bag carry service:

Your bags are collected each morning and dropped at your scheduled destination

Price includes:

  • Airport transfers on arrival and departure
  • Accommodation on all nights
  • 8 or 9 breakfasts (all breakfasts except last morning if flying before 8am), 7 Dinners (all but last night)
  • Bike hire (see pricing)
  • Savaii and Upolu transport while cycling (as per supported/bag carry only options)

Price excludes:

  • Ferry costs (22 tala pp inc bike)
  • Airfares
  • Additional recommended Tours (eg Dive Savaii 65 Tala)
  • Customary fees

Trips can be invoiced in NZ$ or AUS$. The NZ$ price includes an extra night (first night) at Airport Lodge.

 NZ$  - price includes an extra night (first night) at Airport Lodge.

  2 People 4 People 8 People
Per Person NZD 1,440 pp NZD 1,185pp NZD 964pp
Bike Hire if required (per bike) NZD 215 pp NZD 215 pp NZD 215 pp

AUS$  - Assumes early morning arrival on first day

  2 People 4 People 8 People
Per Person AUD 1,315 pp AUD 1,070 pp AUD 865 pp
Bike Hire if required (per bike) AUD 205 pp NZD 205 pp NZD 205 pp

Best family adventure experience I can imagine in the Pacific

So riding around the Island of Savaii in Samoa is about as good as it gets for a young family. Ross and Frances can arrange a range of trips from fully supported (including a guide and luggage transfer) to just doing accommodation booking. We opted for the accommodation only option as we used our own bikes and panniers, what it meant is that we always knew where we'd be sleeping each night. The accommodation options were nearly all excellent, and we ended up sleeping in a mix of beach fales, mini resorts and homestays - even tiny Manono Island off of Upulo. Savaii is an incredible island to cycle around - 10-12 days seems about the right length of time to be on the road giving heaps of time to explore the local sights. 

Ross and Frances were always on hand to tailor our itinerary to what we wanted and we had an amazing holiday with our two small children, 4 and 7. For anyone interested, we managed to ride the 200+km around Savaii with our children on tagalong bikes - and apparently it's been done with trailers and bike seats too. I really recommend the trip, but be aware that Samoa accommodation is not at the luxury end of the spectrum so expectations should be tailored accordingly - it's all more than made up for by amazing people, snorkelling, scenery, wildlife and general pace of life.

July 2013 - Trip Adviser

Fantastic way to see Samoa!!

We had the most awesome time cycling and kayaking in Samoa for 2 weeks! We would highly recommend this to anyone who would like a holiday with a bit of a difference. A fantastic balance between exercise and relaxation. Frances and Ross did an excellent job of creating a holiday tailored to our requirements. They know all the right places to stay and all the hints and recommendations in their guidebook were invaluable. The bikes were good quality and the cycling distances do-able (even for someone who rarely cycles). Cycling allowed us to get a really good feel for Samoa. The Samoan children always appeared thrilled to see us cycle through their villages and constantly put a smile on our face...we did get a little tired of waving to all of them though! The scenery was stunning and the snorkelling fantastic. 

We also managed to fit in a few days kayaking to the island of Manono to spend 2 nights at the wonderful Sunset View fales. This was lovely, very achieveable and fun both ways paddling for a couple of hours over the turquoise waters of the reef. A highlight to the holiday.

Everyone should do a cycle/kayak trip with Bike Samoa :)

Visited October 2013

Bike Samoa

A great trip for people who like to combine exercise with a beach experience! Frances and Ross organised an excellent itinerary with a good mix of accommodation from fales on the beach to more upmarket resorts. Bikes were in very good condition and the backup service run by Peter and his crew meant anyone who didnt want to bike the hills had another option! Definitely recommended for a biking adventure close to home on a beautiful island.

Visited June 2013

Another day in Paradise

Lusias Lagoon

Volleyball

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