Definitions

Savai'i

Savai'i

Savai’i, the "soul of Samoa", is the larger main island in the state of Samoa, formed by a massive basaltic shield volcano which rises from the seafloor of the western Pacific Ocean. Savai’i is an active volcano, which last erupted in 1911 with lava flows. Home to approximately 50,000 people, it is less developed than Upolu, the other main island. The ports of Salelologa and Asau are situated on Savai’i.

Savai’i is home of the Pulemele’i Mound, Alofa’aga Blowholes, and Moso's Footprint, which date back to prehistoric times. Falealupo, just 20 miles from the dateline, is the westernmost village of Samoa and arguably, the world. In the early 19th century, the island was sometimes called Pola.

Volcanic activity

The island consists of a large shield volcano similar in form to the Hawaiian volcanoes. Accordingly the island has a gently sloping profile, reaching a maximum altitude of 1,858 metres at Mt Silisili.

Savai'i remains volcanically active, with recent eruptions from Matavanu between 1905 and 1911, Mata Ole Afi in 1902 and Mauga Afi in 1725. The lava field at Saleaula caused by the Matavanu eruptions in the early part of the 20th century are extensive enough to be visible in high altitude photographs. Upolu last erupted in 1911

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