American Samoa is a group of islands in the South Pacific comprised primarily of Tutuila and the Manu’a Islands (Ofu, Olosega and Ta’u). It is located about 2600 miles Southwest of Hawaii and about 4800 miles southwest of the mainland United States, making it one of the most remote National Parks. Samoa (formerly Western Samoa) is its closes neighbor, but on the other side of the International Date Line, making American Samoa one day behind Samoa.
The Samoa Islands are part of Polynesia, and have been populated for over 3,000 years. Samoa (or “Sacred Earth”) is believed to be the birthplace of the Polynesian culture. The Samoan islands are covered by rainforests. But what impressed us the most was the coral reef in Ofu. The lagoon along the south coast of Ofu offers the best snorkeling waters in the Indo-Pacific coral reefs. There are over 950 documented species of fish and over 250 species of coral. When we snorkeled, I have to say that it appeared as if nobody besides us had ever been near the pristine corals that were not broken or damaged even slightly.
Ta’u has the highest summit of American Samoa on Lata Mountain at 3,170 feet; American Samoa’s sea cliffs are some of the highest in the world.