Wheels and Paddles

Wheels and Paddles

One week beach, bike and kayak holiday

Stay at the best beaches on the south coast of Upolu, explore the waterfalls, kayak to the offshore islands and connect it all with mostly gentle cycling.

Description Cycling Beaches Comfort Adventure Culture
A 9 day tour with moderate cycling and as much adventure as you want to add. Fales Motels
Description
A 9 day tour with moderate cycling and as much adventure as you want to add.
Cycling
Beaches
Comfort
Fales Motels
Adventure
Culture

The South Coast of Upolu has lovely beaches and numerous activities, attractions and adventures.  Enjoy them all on this one week tour.

Highlights include:

  • Safe swimming on idyllic beaches
  • snorkelling with giant clams
  • kayaking to a secluded tropical island
  • snorkelling on coral reefs
  • Swimming in waterfall pools
  • Lava tube caves and To Sua Trench

This is a gentle bike ride (electric bikes are available).  The cycles provide a great way to meet the locals and observe village life in ways that are more connected than by van or car.  A support vehicle transports your gear, while the bikes give you the freedom to explore at your own pace.

As some of these activities require minimum numbers to run we have designed this as a semi-guided trip with set departure dates.  That means its suitable for solo travellers.  It can run as the basis of a custom trip on any departure date if you have 4 or more people.  

If you just want the biking and the beaches, or you want a longer bike trip (even for just two people) - get in touch - there are lots of options.  

15 DSCN4912

Relax and unwind in Samoa!


Wheels and Paddles

This trip is designed as a semi-guided trip.  The kayaking and adventure activities are fully guided, while the cycling is supported, meaning a van accompanies riders and riders may put themselves and their bikes in the van whenever they want.  

The Dates tab has the scheduled dates but we can customise this trip and run on any dates for four or more people.  So add more kayaking or stay longer at the best beaches or add kayaking for a couple of days in the Aleipata Islands (from Namua).

Beginning

The trip usually starts on a Friday, however they can be configured to start any day. 

We will meet you off your flight and transfer you to our base at Airport Lodge.

Friday Arrival

Settle into your room at Airport Lodge.

Saturday - Manono Island Kayak and Culture

Whether you arrived on Friday night or caught the overnight from Sydney, this morning begins with a briefing before we launch the kayaks and paddle gently to Manono Island.

We can paddle to Manono entirely within the reef, stopping to enjoy the coral outcrops and observe village life from the water.  But if conditions are good we will sneak out over the reef to hunt for the giant turtles that we often find napping in the channels.  

After lunch on the island we are spoilt for choice.  Snorkel near the reef, basket weaving, a walking tour of the island or kayak skills training - you choose.  

Non-kayakers can still enjoy the island by taking the small ferry there.

We stay the night at Sunset View Fales.

Sunday - Paddle and Ride

Early risers can paddle out to Nuulopa Island at dawn to see the flying foxes return to roost.  Dawn from a kayak is worth getting up early for. 

After breakfast we paddle back to Upolu and change from kayak to bike seats.

A 15 km gentle ride around the coast is a very pleasant introduction to village life and we will probably stop to listen to the church music along the way.

At Falelatai the road heads steeply uphill for 2kms.  Some will opt for the support van while others usually try for the wall of fame and attempt to ride it without stopping.  However you get to the top the views over lagoons are well worth stopping for.  A short blast down the partly sealed road brings us to Lalotalie fales where you spend the night.  Lalotalie is the only night not on the coast, but the riverside location with refreshing swimming is a pleasant spot.

Monday - Waterfalls and Giant Clams

Your host Ollie will lead you on a 4 hour adventure through the canyon beside Lalotalie.  The trip climbs beside a series of waterfalls and while everyone will swim in the pools at the bottom of the falls, probably only some of you will jump over the falls themselves.

In the afternoon ride a short distance down the road to the Giant Clam Reserve.  It is only a 50m swim to the giant clams.  These molluscs have to be seen to be believed as they are over 70cm long and fluorescently coloured. Depending on the tides and bookings stay at either Lalotalie or Le Valasis.

Tuesday - Coastal Springs

An easy, but undulating 17km ride through the villages to Vai Villas.  After refreshing yourself in the freshwater springs, try the resorts lunch (not included in price) and then either relax around the main fale, borrow a kayak to explore the mangroves or take one of the interpretive forest walks.

Wednesday - Togitogigi Falls 

Another easy 17km ride but with plenty of places to stop and explore.  Stop for an early latte at the upmarket resort of Sinalei.  The The short walk to the Ma tree with its giant buttresses is worth the diversion.  Then a few hundred metres further visit the Togitogigi falls for a freshwater swim and cool-off.  A short while later a minor road leads to Aganoa Black Sand Beach: -  a great swimming spot on an ocean beach that is normally protected from swells by the shape of the bay.

For more walking options consider the Coastal Walkway, a short ride down a gravel road leads to a walk atop the lava cliffs with the sea thundering in below.

The day finishes at Tafatafa beach. With clear water, safe swimming, fales at the water's edge and a wonderful host it's my favourite place.  Nugs beach bar next door adds to the magic.

Thursday - Tropical Island Paradise

Swap you bikes for kayaks as we paddle out to this deserted tropical island with its sandy beaches and private lagoon.  Explore the island, snorkel the reef, swim in the lagoon or just relax on the beach.  If we can drag you off the island soon enough we may explore the mangrove lagoons at Poutasi before heading back to Moega Amania.

Friday - Namua Island getaway

Get on your bikes early as there is a lot to do again today.

13 kms down the road is To Sua Trench.  This collapsed lava tube is one of the picture postcard attractions of Samoa with the steep ladder leading down into the sea water pools.  The trench and surrounds deserve a couple of hours at least. Take in the seascape, blowholes, beach and history along with a gentle swim in the pool.  At high tide there are big diving, jumping opportunities, while at low tide (and with a calm sea) it is possible to take a long underwater tunnel to the sea.

When you eventually drag yourselves out of the pool, ride another 13 kms to Lalomanu Beach.  Lonely Planet rates this one of the 10 best beaches in the world, so it's worth stopping for lunch and a swim here.  After lunch continue on another 5kms to the ferry (dinghy) to Namua Island.  The fale resort is the only habitation on the island and is located on a sheltered sandy beach.  

Saturday - Explore Namua

Climb to the top of the island to spot the dolphins and whales in the bay and watch the seabirds on the cliff, circumnavigate the island at low tide, snorkel and swim from the beach or just relax with a book in the fale.  

Later in the day it will be time to pack up and take the 2 hour van trip back to Airport Lodge in preparation for your departure on Sunday.

Note: This itinerary (amended on May 18, 2016) varies slightly from previous ones as we incorporate new ideas and places.

Extensions

Continue cycling around Upolu to Apia (minimum two more days).

Add kayaking from Namua (subject to availability of guides and minimum numbers).

If you area group of 4 or more - consider customising the itinerary to add additional kayaking to Nuusafee Island, an extra day at Vai Villas, a coastal challenge from Lalotalie or a full tour of Upolu.

Price and payment

Price includes:

  • Airport transfers on arrival and departure
  • Accommodation on all nights (Arrive Friday, Depart Sunday -10 days later)
  • All breakfasts except last morning if flying before 8am,
  • All dinners except first and last night
  • Four lunches
  • Bike hire
  • Gear transfers while cycling
  • Kayak hire, guide service, customary fees and lunches on Kayak days.
  • Waterfall Canyon tour at Lalotalie

Price excludes:

  • Airfares
  • Additional recommended Tours (e.g. lava caves)
  • Customary fees while cycling  (some beaches and landmark spots have an access fee of 5-20 tala)
  • Drinks
  • Lunches on 4 days

Pricing

 Full tour starting Friday Night with kayak to Manono on Saturday - $1,780 NZD/ 1,695 AUD Single supplement $150 NZD/ 142 AUD

Note:  These are new prices effective 20 May 2016 and reflect an extra night's accommodation and minor improvements to the itinerary).

Note that trips are dependent on a minimum of 4 people on the trip.  Please ask for a quote if you want an exclusive trip for a group.

Trips can be invoiced in NZ$ or AUS$. 

Visa and Mastercard are accepted but subject to a merchant cost surcharge of 4%.

Wheels and Paddles

This trip is designed as a semi-guided trip.  The kayaking and adventure activities are fully guided, while the cycling is supported, meaning a van accompanies riders and riders may put themselves and their bikes in the van whenever they want.  

The Dates tab has the scheduled dates but we can customise this trip and run on any dates for four or more people.  So add more kayaking or stay longer at the best beaches or add kayaking for a couple of days in the Aleipata Islands (from Namua).

Beginning

The trip usually starts on a Friday, however they can be configured to start any day. 

We will meet you off your flight and transfer you to our base at Airport Lodge.

Friday Arrival

Settle into your room at Airport Lodge.

Saturday - Manono Island Kayak and Culture

Whether you arrived on Friday night or caught the overnight from Sydney, this morning begins with a briefing before we launch the kayaks and paddle gently to Manono Island.

We can paddle to Manono entirely within the reef, stopping to enjoy the coral outcrops and observe village life from the water.  But if conditions are good we will sneak out over the reef to hunt for the giant turtles that we often find napping in the channels.  

After lunch on the island we are spoilt for choice.  Snorkel near the reef, basket weaving, a walking tour of the island or kayak skills training - you choose.  

Non-kayakers can still enjoy the island by taking the small ferry there.

We stay the night at Sunset View Fales.

Sunday - Paddle and Ride

Early risers can paddle out to Nuulopa Island at dawn to see the flying foxes return to roost.  Dawn from a kayak is worth getting up early for. 

After breakfast we paddle back to Upolu and change from kayak to bike seats.

A 15 km gentle ride around the coast is a very pleasant introduction to village life and we will probably stop to listen to the church music along the way.

At Falelatai the road heads steeply uphill for 2kms.  Some will opt for the support van while others usually try for the wall of fame and attempt to ride it without stopping.  However you get to the top the views over lagoons are well worth stopping for.  A short blast down the partly sealed road brings us to Lalotalie fales where you spend the night.  Lalotalie is the only night not on the coast, but the riverside location with refreshing swimming is a pleasant spot.

Monday - Waterfalls and Giant Clams

Your host Ollie will lead you on a 4 hour adventure through the canyon beside Lalotalie.  The trip climbs beside a series of waterfalls and while everyone will swim in the pools at the bottom of the falls, probably only some of you will jump over the falls themselves.

In the afternoon ride a short distance down the road to the Giant Clam Reserve.  It is only a 50m swim to the giant clams.  These molluscs have to be seen to be believed as they are over 70cm long and fluorescently coloured. Depending on the tides and bookings stay at either Lalotalie or Le Valasis.

Tuesday - Coastal Springs

An easy, but undulating 17km ride through the villages to Vai Villas.  After refreshing yourself in the freshwater springs, try the resorts lunch (not included in price) and then either relax around the main fale, borrow a kayak to explore the mangroves or take one of the interpretive forest walks.

Wednesday - Togitogigi Falls 

Another easy 17km ride but with plenty of places to stop and explore.  Stop for an early latte at the upmarket resort of Sinalei.  The The short walk to the Ma tree with its giant buttresses is worth the diversion.  Then a few hundred metres further visit the Togitogigi falls for a freshwater swim and cool-off.  A short while later a minor road leads to Aganoa Black Sand Beach: -  a great swimming spot on an ocean beach that is normally protected from swells by the shape of the bay.

For more walking options consider the Coastal Walkway, a short ride down a gravel road leads to a walk atop the lava cliffs with the sea thundering in below.

The day finishes at Tafatafa beach. With clear water, safe swimming, fales at the water's edge and a wonderful host it's my favourite place.  Nugs beach bar next door adds to the magic.

Thursday - Tropical Island Paradise

Swap you bikes for kayaks as we paddle out to this deserted tropical island with its sandy beaches and private lagoon.  Explore the island, snorkel the reef, swim in the lagoon or just relax on the beach.  If we can drag you off the island soon enough we may explore the mangrove lagoons at Poutasi before heading back to Moega Amania.

Friday - Namua Island getaway

Get on your bikes early as there is a lot to do again today.

13 kms down the road is To Sua Trench.  This collapsed lava tube is one of the picture postcard attractions of Samoa with the steep ladder leading down into the sea water pools.  The trench and surrounds deserve a couple of hours at least. Take in the seascape, blowholes, beach and history along with a gentle swim in the pool.  At high tide there are big diving, jumping opportunities, while at low tide (and with a calm sea) it is possible to take a long underwater tunnel to the sea.

When you eventually drag yourselves out of the pool, ride another 13 kms to Lalomanu Beach.  Lonely Planet rates this one of the 10 best beaches in the world, so it's worth stopping for lunch and a swim here.  After lunch continue on another 5kms to the ferry (dinghy) to Namua Island.  The fale resort is the only habitation on the island and is located on a sheltered sandy beach.  

Saturday - Explore Namua

Climb to the top of the island to spot the dolphins and whales in the bay and watch the seabirds on the cliff, circumnavigate the island at low tide, snorkel and swim from the beach or just relax with a book in the fale.  

Later in the day it will be time to pack up and take the 2 hour van trip back to Airport Lodge in preparation for your departure on Sunday.

Note: This itinerary (amended on May 18, 2016) varies slightly from previous ones as we incorporate new ideas and places.

Extensions

Continue cycling around Upolu to Apia (minimum two more days).

Add kayaking from Namua (subject to availability of guides and minimum numbers).

If you area group of 4 or more - consider customising the itinerary to add additional kayaking to Nuusafee Island, an extra day at Vai Villas, a coastal challenge from Lalotalie or a full tour of Upolu.

Price and payment

Price includes:

  • Airport transfers on arrival and departure
  • Accommodation on all nights (Arrive Friday, Depart Sunday -10 days later)
  • All breakfasts except last morning if flying before 8am,
  • All dinners except first and last night
  • Four lunches
  • Bike hire
  • Gear transfers while cycling
  • Kayak hire, guide service, customary fees and lunches on Kayak days.
  • Waterfall Canyon tour at Lalotalie

Price excludes:

  • Airfares
  • Additional recommended Tours (e.g. lava caves)
  • Customary fees while cycling  (some beaches and landmark spots have an access fee of 5-20 tala)
  • Drinks
  • Lunches on 4 days

Pricing

 Full tour starting Friday Night with kayak to Manono on Saturday - $1,780 NZD/ 1,695 AUD Single supplement $150 NZD/ 142 AUD

Note:  These are new prices effective 20 May 2016 and reflect an extra night's accommodation and minor improvements to the itinerary).

Note that trips are dependent on a minimum of 4 people on the trip.  Please ask for a quote if you want an exclusive trip for a group.

Trips can be invoiced in NZ$ or AUS$. 

Visa and Mastercard are accepted but subject to a merchant cost surcharge of 4%.

Fishing in the Lagoon

Family cycling

Fire Knife dancer

Quiet Roads

Niu gathering

Turtles

Fiafia

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