Looking to swot up on your worldly knowledge? Take note of these 24 facts about Western Samoa!
- Samoa (formerly known as Western Samoa) is a country consisting of two main islands and 8 small islets in the South Pacific Ocean.
- Its nearest neighbours are Tokelau to the north, American Samoa and Niue to the southeast, Tonga to the south, Fiji to the southwest and Wallis and Futuna to the west.
- If you love the idea of whiling away a few days sipping cocktails under a thatched beach shack, or you’d love to swim in the crystal clear waters, head for the coordinates 13.8333° S, 171.7500° W for your very own Samoan adventure!
- The terrain here is rugged, with volcanic mountains in the centre of the main islands, surrounded by narrow coastal plains.
- The total land area of Samoa is 1,093 square miles (2,831 square kilometres)…
- …that’s less than 1/7th of the size of Wales.
- Samoa’s population was 197,773 in 2015…
- …that’s around 1/15th of the population of Wales.
- Residents here are known as Samoans.
- The capital is Apia; it covers an area of 23 square miles (60 square kilometres) and had a population of 37,000 in 2014.
- Samoans enjoy a tropical climate with a dry season from May to October, followed by a rainy season from November to April.
- The official languages of Samoa are Samoan and English.
- Samoans are apparently known throughout Polynesia as the ‘happy people’ due to their love of life and good spirited nature!
- Amazingly, Samoa has had a total of 7 different flags since its inception!
- Samoan tālā is the official currency here.
- Samoa gained independence from New Zealand in 1962 after 48 years of rule and changed its name from Western Samoa to Samoa in 1997.
- The average life span here is 73 years.
- Obesity is seen as a status symbol in Samoa, where being overweight shows prosperity, wealth and ironically, good health!
- In 2009, Samoa became the first country since the 1970’s to change the side on which its residents drive. The change came about to bring the country in line with other Polynesian countries and to allow the cheaper import of right hand drive cars from New Zealand and Australia, rather than having to expensively import left hand drive cars from America.
- Samoans skipped 30th December 2011! Nope, they weren’t all hungover and nor was it an alien invasion. Instead, the International Dateline was moved to bring Samoa inline with its trading partners, meaning they skipped 30th December 2011 completely!
- Samoa grows coconuts, bananas, taro, and yams; they also catch fish.
- Its industry consists of food processing, auto parts, tourism and building materials.
- The main exports include fish, coconut oil, coconut cream, taro and copra.
- Do you know someone lucky enough to live in Samoa? You can make cheap calls to Samoa with Cherry Call – don’t forget, you’ll also need to use the international dialling code of 001685.
To keep up-to-date with what’s going on in Samoa, head over to the Samoa Observer website.