Jennifer is an internationally-published writer who loves travel, dining, wine, and weightlifting. After living abroad in Asia for 6 years, she once again resides in her home state of Florida.
Latest posts by Jennifer Raskin (see all)
- Guam in 48 Hours: 13 Fun Things to See and Do - January 1, 2018
- 11 Destinations in Asia That Everyone Should Visit in Their 30s - September 19, 2017
The American territory known as Guam is just a hop, skip and a jump away from Japan. It is an island that you’ve simply got to see. This little paradise is a fraction of the cost of Hawaii and has all the Polynesian and tropical charms that you might be looking for.
Many people come here on a weekend getaway hence they only have a good 48 hours to explore Guam. Should you find yourself visiting this charming island for a few days, here are the best things that you can do when your time in Guam is limited.
1. Enjoy the gorgeous beaches
You can’t go to an island country like Guam and not head over to a beach. They are everywhere! And they are truly spotless too. Also, the waters are incredibly clear so you can easily see the sea life thriving below. Even the coral reefs here are still in their pristine condition so if you can, jump right in for some snorkeling or diving.
There’s much to explore in the waters here, from the Apra Harbor – a site where ships from WWI and WWII sunk on top of one another – all the way to the Gun Beach. Temperatures stay roughly the same year-round – in the 70s and 80s, so every day is a beach day in Guam!
One thing to note is that most tourists stay in Tumon. It’s undoubtedly the most convenient location. But, if you really want to explore Guam for the paradise that it is, rent or hire a car to take you to the Shark’s Cove. You’re welcome.
2. Eat the native food
Sooner or later, you’re going to get hungry while you’re in Guam. But if you simply turn to the typical American staples, which you will find in abundance here, you’ll be missing out. Make sure to try some Chamorro food. Chamorros are the native people of Guam, and their food is the perfect blend of Latin and Asian cuisines.
There are lots of tortillas and tamales, and there’s a particular condiment based on soy sauce called finadene that the locals like with everything. One bite and you’ll wish all the American food tasted this way.
And because food is the absolute best way to get a true taste of the places you visit, I’d be remiss if I didn’t urge you to try kelaguen, which is a bit like ceviche. It comes in varieties with beef and fish though barbecued chicken is the most popular choice.
Pickled items are also everywhere, and you’ll find things you’d never expect to pickle pickled in Guam, like mangos and papayas. Don’t knock it until you try it!
3. Take a hike
Tumon isn’t a particularly walkable part of Guam, but then again, neither is the rest of it. It’s tempting to look at a map and think you can handle it but you’ll turn your tail back to your hotel fast after roaming about in that sweltering heat.
While it’s only 32 miles long, it feels like thousands when you’re trying to walk it. That being said, there are tons of places where you can take a car ride to enjoy a hike. The Inarajun Falls, Talofofo Caves, Gadao Caves, and Fai Fai Beach are some of the most accessible hiking spots for any traveler.
4. Watch the sunset
Even if you live in California and you see stunning sunsets every day, nothing is more majestic than a twilight in Guam. Even better, grab a cocktail, and you’ll be in absolute paradise.
5. Enjoy live music
In the island paradise of Guam, your beach adventures will likely lead you to some fantastic live music performances. Beach bars and barbecues will all draw you in with their lively sounds of reggae and perfectly chill music.
6. Shop for souvenirs
You’ll find fun island trinkets to take back with you, but one thing you’ve got to get is a Guam t-shirt. One of their famed slogans is: “Where America’s Day Begins.”
7. Don’t miss the hills
The southern hills of Guam have a very sparse population. See them via a rental car or by hiring a driver for the day. You can make stops along the road at the scenic overlooks and untamed lands. There you’ll even be able to see WWII sites which are fascinating, even for those who are not much of a history buff.
8. Attend a fiesta
The people of Guam are some of the friendliest you’ll ever meet. Whole neighborhoods often convene monthly to share food and drinks and to throw a magnificent party.
If you love fiestas, you will love Guam. And it doesn’t matter if you don’t know a soul here. Guamanians are so warm and welcoming that they will invite you along even if they don’t know you. You’ll feel part of a family before long!
9. Check out the lattes
In Guam, if you ask for a latte, you won’t be getting a drink. In the ancient times, the Chamorro people created these interesting rock pillars and mounts which have become a symbol for the country. One of the most impressive is the Latte of Freedom.
10. Visit the night market
If your weekend happens to be on a Wednesday, then the Wednesday Night Market in the Chamorro Village is the place to be at. It’s where you can get lots of authentic local handicrafts for souvenirs, plus you’ll get to eat yourself silly from all that food.
11. Climb Mount Lamlam
Climbing this mountain will give you the distinction of a person who has climbed the tallest mountain on earth. If you thought Mount Everest was the tallest, Guam has something to say. That’s because the distance from its peak to the bottom of the Mariana Trench features the greatest change in elevation over a small distance. Now you have something to brag about when you get back home!
12. Go on a carabao ride
Carabao is Guam’s water buffalo. They’re sweet and gentle creatures. Having an experience of riding one is absolutely charming.
13. Get real Guam culture at Lina’La Chamorro Cultural Park
Lastly, you can take in the original Chamorro experience of how life was in Guam some 500 years ago. It’s a fascinating way to spend your day traveling back in time here. However, it is only open for private tours so you’ll need to make arrangements in advance, to ensure that you don’t miss out!
Is Guam on your bucket list yet? Well, get it on there! So what would you want to do first when you get to Guam?