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Joelan Beach Fales
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Reviews (94)
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Reviewed 23 July 2013

Our family recently spent a week at Joelan. It is very basic accommodation, right on the beach with the water lapping at your fale at hight tide. The beach is lovely, with snorkelling in the lagoon available right outside your door. Lovely white sand with trees available for shade. I was worried about the dogs based on previous tripadvisor comments, but can honestly say that these dogs were very docile and rarely barked. I found the waves noisier than the dogs. The low point for me was the bathroom - toilet paper was often in short supply and the shower was a pipe with an on-off handle. Very basic but if you can handle it, it was paradise. Food was plentiful and usually tasty. Falesoa, the lovely lady who runs Joelan, is the heart and soul of the establishment. When she is not there, the meals aren't served on time and nothing much happens. But she is mostly there and things are run very tightly. We hired a car and used Joelan as a base to explore Savaii. It was lovely to come back there each night and relax. Our kids had loads of fun snorkelling, playing in the sand and using the outrigger canoe. You make your own fun there. We loved mixing with the other guests and felt like we had found something quite special.

Room Tip: Fales without walls are cooler.
  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled with family
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1  Thank Bryonia72
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 June 2013

Great place to stay when visiting Savaii. Only cost 50 tala per night (approx $25 Australian) for an open Fale, which included all meals and the food was great. You can go swimming and snorkling at any time of the day the water was so warm. It is also a great place to meet other travellers from all the around the globe. We are already planning another trip back to Samoa and will definately being staying here again.

Room Tip: You have the choice of open (50 tala) or closed fales (80 tala) due to the climate the open fales are cooler at night.
  • Stayed: June 2013, travelled with friends
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1  Thank Michelle P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 December 2012

On Friday 30/11/2012 we arrived at Joelan Beach Fales and let them know that we want to stayed with them for 3 days.We were given the covered fales at the end,we stayed there as a base for us as we travel around Savaii. As a Samoa living in New Zealand for 22 years I found the place very affordable,beautiful on the beach and on top of that the service, the staff were very very friendly.We had a good time with everyone while we at Joelan B/Fales,we will be back at 2013 with our kids to stayed a bit longer.I recommend Joelan Beach Fales to anyone that look for a real Samoa experience.To the owners, ( Falesoa and Lilomaiava) well thank you for looking after and everything,may be next time I will have few more beers with Lilo lol. Faafetai lava,a couple from South Auckland New Zealand..Soifua.

  • Stayed: October 2012, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank RedAnt3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 November 2012

You should consider staying at Joelan's because

1. it's easy to get there by bus. The buses that passes by Joelan's runs quite frequently to & fro from the wharf & market. So no need to worry so much on transportation.

2. Friendly staffs and fellow traveller.

3. if you are lucky & happens to be there during the right time especially during full moon, you get a beautiful moonrise at your fale doorstep. Sunrise is at your fale doorstep too.

4. Nice food and it's free flow. Eat all you can until you think you have enough.

The con's of this place

1. You might get an uninvited guest during your first night stay there is you are not careful. Rat will come if you didn't store your food carefully. Bear in mind that the rat might chew it's way into your bag. To overcome this problem, either tie up your food or just apply some perfumed cream on an outer plastic bag & store your food separately inside that bag. Otherwise, just sleep with the lights on.

2. Mosquitoes. The netting has hole in it.

3. Be careful when it's raining. Water might come through the holes and the inside might get a bit damp.

4. Limited toilets and bathrooms.


Overall, I would still suggest this place to people because of all the places that I have staed during my Samoa trip, this is the one that I love the most to the point that I went back there again to stay instead of heading elsewhere.

  • Stayed: October 2012, travelled solo
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1  Thank nukesryme
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 November 2012

I took my two children to Joelan's and had the pleasure and privilege of becoming a 'part of the family' for the 6 days we were there.
We travelled around both islands and yes, there are many beautiful beaches, lovely fales or lovely hosts - few have all three. Falesoa and Sione and wonderful hosts, the lovely girls, Moe, Joyce and Na'a - became firm and real friends... so gentle, kind and loving! It was school holidays when we were there, so there were always lots of lovely, cheeky, friendly children keen for a chat or kick around with a football - or a game of their all time favourite pass-time - volleyball!
The fales are simple, mattresses on the floor with sheets and mosquito netting. If you want an extra mattress, just ask, I did as I was a little uncomfortable the first night, and it was no problem!! I love that the fales are totally traditional (apart from a light bulb!) with thatched sides, unlike a lot of others you will find with tarps or heavier (ugly) coverings for the sides. The thatched sides give very welcome air flow in the fales at night, and are easily lifted to give as much privacy/openness that you want. We had one night of a fabulous tropical storm with lightening and torrential rain, the thatched sides were perfect (I had even kept one up a little and the cool rain was delicious!!!). The tide comes right up under the fales which is heaven - the only downside to that is during the day, you run out of beach in front of the fales. Seriously, not a big deal, it's too hot to be lying in the sun all day anyway, and the sea is always perfect!!
There is a shared toilet that flushes, and shower, of sorts, cold water, but that is all you need and an outdoor sink with tap for brushing teeth etc. (remember not to drink the water and I encouraged my kids to use bottled water to brush with, just in case).
The dining area is fantastic, incredibly simple, but super - the food is served buffet style, and there is always plenty. If you are fussy eaters, take crackers, as the food is very Samoan and traditional (which we absolutely LOVED!!) - altho they do serve lovely fresh bread, scrambled eggs etc as well.
Breakfast and Dinner is included in the price (WST$50 per night, if you can believe it!!!) - if you are around for lunch, you are always welcome to join, and one of the lovely ladies would even deliver it to us while we were lounging on the beach in the sun! Sometimes we were surprised with a chilled coconut, hole drilled and a straw, YUM!!! There are always plenty of DELICIOUS bananas and coconuts to eat - it really is just wonderful.
The family and friends were all working on the dining area while we were there, and I can't wait to go back and see the progress.
Buses run regularly from right outside and everyone is quick to offer a ride if they're heading in the same direction as you - I do insist that you experience the Samoan buses tho - they are just too cool!
We hired a car (very cheap) for a couple of days to leisurely check out the island and to hunt out the 'best' beaches and snorkelling spots. Everyone raves about Manase... I think it didn't hold a candle to Lano...way less people too. We would often be the only people in the water - which is where we spent most of out time!
Like I said before, there are definitely some gorgeous beaches on Savai'i depending on what you are looking for... but I loved Lano!!
The other thing that won me over too was the lack of 'tourists'. The other people who were staying there became part of the family also, so by the end, there were big hugs and teary farewells all round. I think Joelan's is unique and therefore entices like minded people. Do not stay here if you are looking for a 'resort' holiday, altho, I would recommend you try it if you are vaguely tempted by what you have read, as you may surprise yourself. It is the simplicity, the traditional, REAL everyday life (no put on smiles or serving flash cocktails) and everything given with love. I love this place and all the people and I can not wait to go back.
Must haves, sunblock - heaps of it in a mist sprayer that you can continually apply with no hassle, mosquito repellant, if you're like me and react badly to bites (altho this trip was fine!!)
your own snorkelling gear, including fins, you will enjoy your snorkelling much more and finally - take plenty of drinking water with you, the more the better! The process of having to boil and cool water was a pain. There is a shop a couple of minutes walk away, but they were sometimes out of water, and sometimes no one to be seen - which I loved as it was just so honest!!
If you love simplicity, no mirrors and want to totally relax in a healthy, happy environment - you have found the place. Enjoy and maybe I will see you there!

Room Tip: Unfortunately, there are dogs - which didn't bother anyone else, but their night time barking (protecting us no doubt!) irked me and disturbed my sleep I would definitely take ear plugs next time, for that reason alone - which is a shame as the sound of water lapping and the waves crashing far off on the reef is just wonderful!!!
  • Stayed: September 2012, travelled with family
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6  Thank Debbzand2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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