American Samoa National Park is one of the little known treasures of this country, due in large part to the fact that it is thousands of miles away from the US mainland. In fact, this particular national park is located closer to Australia than it is the United States. The National Park of American Samoa, as it is also called, is situated in the southwest Pacific Ocean to the east of Samoa Island, on the island of, you guessed it, American Samoa. This island is an unincorporated territory of the United States, and this destination is unique among the national parks and quite unlike anything you have probably ever seen before, certainly on the mainland of the USA.
American Samoa National Park spans an impressive 10,500 acres over three volcanic islands called Tutuila, Ofu-Olosega, and Ta‘ū that jut out of the Pacific in impressive fashion. These islands are extremely mountainous and are blanketed in tropical rainforest, pristine beaches, amazing coral reefs, and brilliant cliffs and rock formations. The fauna and flora on the islands are something to behold, and the beauty that awaits you around every corner is astonishing. This particular park serves the purpose of protecting the reefs, mountains, and rainforests, as well as specifically endangered animals on the island. Perhaps most importantly, it also serves as protection to the very culture of the Samoans that has been active on these islands for thousands of years.
For lovers of nature, the eco-tourism aspect of this national park should be appealing. A number of things to do here revolve around nature, including scuba diving, snorkeling, and hiking. The part of the park on Tutuila is best for hiking as there is a trail to the top of Mount Alava here as well as other interesting sites, but also because this is the only part of the park accessible by car. The other islands must be accessed via short flights from Tutuila. You should be warned that there is very little in the way of public services and facilities. That is not how this particular national park operates. However, what you may be lacking in public facilities will more than be compensated for in your ability to truly explore an island that has been unspoiled by the outside world.
The animals that you stand a very good chance of witnessing include sea turtles, three species of bats, and countless tropical birds. There are several distinct marine environments, including the amazing coral reefs, which you may explore underwater on a diving or snorkeling excursion. The richness of this particular national park is that it is young and completely unspoiled. If you are interested in seeing one of the most pristine national parks prior to development of any kind, this may be the ideal destination for you.
The person with the right mindset will find no shortage of activities and attractions. There are even small villages to explore where you can get to know some of the Samoan traditions and cultural morays, as well as enjoying local food, drink, dance, and song. There are several guest accommodations on the island, but this is the kind of trip that you will want to make sure you do your planning plenty in advance. Unless you are Samoan or have lived in Samoa before, you will want to get up to speed on some basic information concerning options for getting around the island (there are rental facilities at the airport), where to stay, where to eat, and other such considerations. With a little advance planning, you should have no problem whatsoever putting together an amazing trip to American Samoa National Park.