I have had the privilege of calling Samoa home for the last nine years. The memories, both happy and sad will be cherished. The friends and family that I have gotten to know better have helped to make me become a stronger and more resilient person today and I will hold them forever in my heart. I can honestly say that making the decision to leave Samoa has been one of the hardest I have ever had to make, it was easier to decide to get divorced so that is a big choice right there! The opportunities that I have had to do so many things and meet so many people are beyond what I ever thought I would accomplish in my life thus far. Over the next six (6) weeks I will be sharing with you some of my things that I have yet to do in my Samoan Bucketlist, so here is number one.
Over the White Sunday Holiday I made sure to go to the beach. It was not just any beach that I chose it was one that I had never been to before and I am a poor volunteer so couldn’t afford to stay the night at this beautiful place. I am so happy with my decision to check out Return to Paradise Resort because I have fallen in love with this location. I will admit that the weather was not on our side that day, but it was worth the trip. The sign from the main road was easy to locate and easy follow it was when you got further down the road that it got a little confusing. There is a sign that gives a list of prices for the use of the beach with a little fale Samoa beside it. IGNORE this sign! There is no one there to take your money so continue to drive past. As we reached where we could see the water and the pristine beaches it was unclear as to where to go now or if we should have turned right at the false price sign because there were no signs for the resort once we got on this road. If you pass another beach fale set up and begin on a dirt road then you are heading in the right direction. Keep following this road until you reach a security guard. This is where you will be given a piece of paper telling you that it is free to use the beach, yay! But you do have to spend money at the restaurant/bar. This is great because in essence you are just paying for lunch at the beach. The costs are reasonable $25 for an adult and $10 for children. You are given a voucher so make sure you don’t lose it otherwise you have to pay more money. Only guests staying at the hotel are able to use the pools, which is completely understandable.
The beach is gorgeous! It is calm enough for young children to swim, there is coral close by so you can get some snorkeling done and there is even a rock pool along the beach. The sand is clean and there is even a volleyball net already set up.
The service at the restaurant was better than some other places in Apia. The staff were friendly and made you feel welcome. They were polite and timely in their service. The food was good. We ate pizza and would recommend the bacon one with pineapple. I also enjoyed the pulled pork pizza even though the rest of my table didn’t like it, their loss I say! The prices were as expected for a resort outside of Apia ranging from $25 +. I think the only thing I would suggest is a dessert menu as I am a huge sweet tooth and would have enjoyed some chocolate.
One of the things that I think I will miss the most about Samoa is being able to admire the chiseled torsos of the handsome men of Samoa. If you are as lucky as I was you may even get to see the likes of Mr Lavalava or some Toa Samoa players when you visit Return to Paradise.