Although there are three islands in the Manu'a group, we will discuss them collectively because they are seldom referenced individually. The three islands are Ta’u, Ofu and Olosega. Manu’a is located about 70 miles east of Tutuila. The addresses are Pago Pago, American Samoa.
Ta’u is the largest of the Manu’a group and the easternmost volcanic island of the Samoan Islands. The island is the peak of a huge undersea mountain. Lata Mountain on Ta’u is the highest peak in American Samoa at an elevation of 3,054 feet (931 meters). The land area of Tau Island is 44.31 square kilometres (17.11 sq mi) and it had a population of 873 persons as of the 2000 census. Also see Wikipedia.
Ta’u was once considered the seat of government for all of Samoa and Tonga. The “king” of Ta’u and Manu’a was Tuimanu’a. The last person to hold that title was Tuimanu’a Elisara and he was credited with signing the 1904 deed of cession giving ruling authority, for Manu’a, to the United States.
The largest airport in the Manu’a group is on Ta’u at Fiti’uta. Nearly half of Ta’u is part of the American Samoa National Park. “On Ta’u, accessed by the airport at Fitiuta, the trail from Saua around Si’u Point leads to the dramatic southern coastline with views of a rocky coast and sea cliffs stairstep to the 3,000 foot summit of Lata Mountain.”
We found this nice blog that will help you get the feel of Ta’u: Ta’u Island Tour by Wesley Queen.
Ofu – Olosega
Ofu is a tiny island with some amazing beaches, mountains, reefs and fishing. Ofu may be the most beautiful part of American Samoa and is certainly the most remote. Ofu is connected to Olosega by a small bridge. Together, they stand alone in the vastness of the Pacific. See “The To’aga Aitu” for information on the American Samoa National Park at Ofu. Also see Wikipedia.
One of the great things about Ofu and Olosega is that it is very difficult to get there. That’s great because not many people do get there and, therefore, the islands are largely unspoiled and the beaches are never crowded -- unless three is a crowd.
At this writing, the Ofu airport is closed, or at least not being used. So, the only way to get to Ofu is by flying from Pago Pago to Ta’u, taking a rather long ride from the Fitiuta airport to the other side of Ta’u, finding a fishing boat to transport you to a spot offshore at Ofu and finally being transported by a small local rowboat to shore – or maybe you can just wade ashore. Once you arrive, you will wonder why you are the only one there and why this magnificent place is almost unknown to the rest of the world.
This blog will give you some great sights and insights to Ofu: If someone tells you to jump off a bridge, do you do it?
You can find a great place to stay at this link: Vaoto Lodge
You can book flights to Manu’a at this link: Inter Island Vacations
That’s about all we have to tell you about Manu’a. If anyone would like to update or add to this information, please use the site contact form. We welcome your input and any pictures you might like to share with us.