Pearl Harbor is a common name in our time, well before mine and well after. It attracts over a million tourists per year when they come to the Hawaiian Islands. Visiting was a moving experience and here I tell you how to visit the USS Arizona Memorial for $5.
A huge part of the United States of America’s history was the attack by the Japanese on Pearl Harbor. On December 7th 1941 during World War 2 a surprise attack shook the country and left 2,403 American’s dead. The most devastation came with the USS Arizona battleship, the death toll alone was 1,177. A memorial now floats above the sunken ship for all to visit and pay their respects.
The site is open to the public and here is how you can visit the moving memorial for just $5USD.
How to get to Pearl Harbor/USS Arizona Memorial
The bus is your best way to arrive to the memorial. A one way ticket is $2.50, but if you pay $5 you can have unlimited trips for the day!! How amazing is that! Just make sure you tell the bus driver when you hop on you want an all day ticket. Depending on where your accommodation is you can just head to www.thebus.org to route your journey. If you are staying in Waikiki you can catch buses 20 or 42.
When to get to Pearl Harbor/USS Arizona Memorial
Tickets are limited each day. To visit the memorial they are for free. Yes, to jump on the boat, ride over, visit the memorial and catch the boat back is all free. Due to the limits people tend to arrive early so they are not waiting in long lines, nor do they miss out. You can purchase tickets online, but if you head out and arrive early in the morning you should be fine. I arrived about 7.45am and was on the 8.15am ‘tour’.
Getting tickets, what you can take with you when visiting
When you arrive, there will be security. If you have any kind of bag you will need to pay for it to be stored. The current price in November 2017 was $3.00 per bag and is expected to go up in 2018. I avoided this fee and only took a little penny bag (size of a credit card), a clear water bottle and my mobile phone. Any large camera cases, purses, fanny packs, backpacks etc need to be put in storage.
You will then walk through security and if you head straight you will see the options of ticket types. Walk to USS Memorial. They will issue for the next tour group. Arrive near the theatre 5 minutes before your tour begins.
How the tour operates for the memorial
You will watch a 23 minute documentary informing you of the December 7th attack. Then head out to the boat which will take you to the memorial. Here you will see the fuel still coming to the surface and parts of the ship. To the back of the memorial is where the names of the 1,177 crewman who lost their lives are. Also crewman who survived the attack and have since passed away and wished to lie with their brothers. Knowledgeable staff are also onsite giving out information which is very moving too. When the next boat offloads your tour group will then board and head back to the site.
You are now free to walk around the site and continue reading and seeing artillery weapons. There are water refill taps located near the bathrooms.
A touching place to remember
I was emotional when visiting here and I am from Australia. I can only imagine how people who lost loved ones on this tragic day feel when they come here.
Pearl Harbor is a place you must visit when coming to Oahu. You can come at 7.30am and be gone by 9.30am if you wish.
Now you just have to walk back up to the main road and wait at the bus stop for your return into Honolulu, Waikiki etc.
Make sure you head to the blog page for more travel advice.