Going to Guam? Find out where to go and what to do.
Guam is a beautiful island territory of the U.S.
The island is in the Western Pacific, and it’s the largest of the Micronesian and Mariana Islands. The island features clear oceans and white sand beaches, making it a popular tourist destination. Nonstop flights are available from cities in Japan, South Korea, Hawaii, and other locations, and most take around four to five hours.
Along with traveling there as a tourist, Guam is also somewhere people relocate if they’re in the military, for their jobs or because they want to have an island lifestyle.
The following are some of the other main things to know about Guam as a traveler.
Reasons to Visit
The Huffpost called Guam the most exotic destination in America. It’s hard to believe it is part of America, but that’s exactly what it is as a territory. The entry requirements are the same as they are for any other U.S. destination. A U.S. citizen may be required to bring their passport, but a photo I.D. or proof of citizenship is sometimes accepted on a case-by-case basis.
You may not need your passport if you fly through Hawaii, although you might want to bring it anyway.
Guam is known for the clear water and thriving coral reefs, which is a rarity compared to a lot of the world. As a result, diving is a popular activity in Guam.
The history and culture of the territory are appealing to travelers. For example, the territory has a lot of Chamorro culture, but also influences of Spain, Japan, and America. Chamorro is an indigenous Pacific Islander.
Spain first colonized the island in the 17th century. During World War II, Japan occupied it for two years, and it’s currently home to a fairly large U.S. military presence.
Hiking is beautiful in Guam, and the weather ranges from the low 70s to the mid-80s year-round.
Guam is tiny, so you can get a feel for it rather quickly. It covers around 212 square miles of land. Rhode Island is nearly five times bigger than Guam, to give you some perspective.
Where to Stay
Tumon is the center of the tourism industry in Guam. This is probably where you’re most likely to book your rental or hotel room. There’s Tumon Beach, Gun Beach, and Ypao Beach. There are plenty of local restaurants and historic sites from World War II.
There are also shops and plenty to do in Tumon.
Tamuning is a village that is also pretty touristy and has entertainment and restaurants.
Tamuning is home to outlet shops and attractions like the Tarzan Water Park. You can also catch a breathtaking sunset at Two Lovers Point.
Taxis are pretty readily available in Guam, but they’re expensive. There are around nine bus routes on the island, or you can take a red trolley with routes around major tourist and shopping areas. Renting a car could be most convenient, but you’ll need to bring your U.S. driver’s license with you.
Is Guam Safe?
Overall, Guam is considered safe for travelers, and it’s family-friendly. The people are friendly, and there’s not a lot of crime. You should use a reasonable level of caution like you would anywhere else.
What to Do
Shipwreck diving is something you shouldn’t miss if you get the opportunity to visit Guam. War left Guam with some beautiful dive sites—among the best on the planet. For example, there’s an underwater flotilla with tankers, bombers, and freighters. Apra Harbor is one of the best places for shipwreck diving.
Another diving spot is the Blue Hole, which is on the southern coast, at the tip of the Orote Peninsula.
If you prefer to spend time on land, think about visiting Tolofofo Falls in southern Guam.
Fort Nuestra Senora de la Soledad showcases the island’s Spanish influence.
If you want to venture away from the more crowded, touristy, and Americanized parts of Guam, make time for Shark’s Cove, where you’ll find rugged and secluded beaches.
Get a feel for some of the local culture at the Chamorro Village Market. The market includes dances and performances, cultural presentations, food, and shopping. It’s around 20 minutes to the west of Tumon.
What About Typhoons?
Finally, while the weather of Guam is generally mild and beautiful, you should check out the forecast before your trip. Typhoons approach with some warning, but they can become an issue.
There’s no warning for earthquakes, and tsunamis can occur even if an earthquake happens hundreds of miles from the island.
June through September is Guam’s storm season.