Map of Samoa showing Va'a-o-Fonoti district.
The district is 38 km² and consists of a main area around Fagaloa Bay with nine villages and a small coastal exclave about 10 km further northwest, with the village of Faleāpuna (pop. 582). The district includes areas with significant conservation and cultural values. Va'a-o-Fonoti geographical boundaries are surrounded by the larger district of Atua. The capital of Va'a-o-Fonoti is Samamea.
The small settlement of Uafato is part of the Uafato Conservation Area, a project started by the villagers in the early 1990s, to protect their environment from logging. The area has gained a reputation in the last decade for woodcarving and traditional arts and crafts in Samoa.
Va'a-o-Fonoti was named within the district of Atua and established in the 16th century when, Fonoti - the victorious claimant to the Junior TuiAtua title - Tui Atua Faasavali rewarded the people of this part of Atua for their bravery in that war. The district name literally means "The longboat of Fonoti", denoting the bravery of the naval crews from this area during this war. Later Tui Atua Faasavali lived in different parts of the back and tail of Atua.
The paramount title of the district is Talamaivao.
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