Where is Guam????
Guam; Chamorro: Guåhån is an unincorporated and organized territory of the United States in Micronesia in the western Pacific Ocean. It is the western most point and territory of the United States, along with the Northern Mariana Islands. The capital city of Guam is Hagåtña and the most populous city is Dededo. The inhabitants of Guam are called Guamanians, and they are American citizens by birth. Indigenous Guamanians are the Chamorros, who are related to other Austronesian natives of Eastern Indonesia, the Philippines, and Taiwan. Guam has been a member of the Pacific Community since 1983.
In 2016, 162,742 people resided on Guam. Guam has an area of 210 square miles (540 km2; 130,000 acres). In Oceania, it is the largest and southernmost of the Mariana Islands and the largest island in Micronesia. The highest point is Mount Lamlam at 1,332 feet (406 m) above sea level. Since the 1960s, the economy has been supported by two industries: tourism and the United States Armed Forces. [From Wikipedia]
A Bit of History
The indigenous Chamorros settled the island approximately 4,000 years ago. Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan, while in the service of Spain, was the first European to visit the island, on March 6, 1521. Guam was colonized by Spain in 1668 with settlers, including Diego Luis de San Vitores, a Catholic Jesuit missionary. Between the 16th century and the 18th century, Guam was an important stopover for the Spanish Manila Galleons. During the Spanish–American War, the United States captured Guam on June 21, 1898. Under the Treaty of Paris, Spain ceded Guam to the United States on December 10, 1898. Guam is among the 17 non-self-governing territories listed by the United Nations.
Before World War II, there were five American jurisdictions in the Pacific Ocean: Guam and Wake Island in Micronesia, American Samoa and Hawaii in Polynesia, and the Philippines.
On December 7, 1941, hours after the attack on Pearl Harbor, Guam was captured by the Japanese, who occupied the island for two and a half years. During the occupation, Guamanians were subjected to beheadings, forced labor, rape, and torture. American forces recaptured the island on July 21, 1944; Liberation Day commemorates the victory.
An unofficial but frequently used territorial motto is "Where America's Day Begins", which refers to the island's close proximity to the international date line.
Your Tour of Guam
Your tour of Guam will feature culture, history and scenic sites!
We can customize your tour to focus on more of what you like and less of what you don't!
How it all started:
"I was all over the internet looking for a guide for a private tour....nothing!"--Susan
Guam Day Tours founder, Walt Goodridge, on Guam
My name is Walt Goodridge, nomadpreneur author
blogger and part-time tour guide on Saipan!
If you've visited my DiscoverSaipan site
, you'll read
that I started doing tours on Saipan because a woman named Suzanne
needed a last-minute tour of the island. Well, I branched out to referring customers to unique guides on Guam because another woman named Susan (different spelling! I swear I'm not making this up!) was visiting Guam on a cruise ship and couldn't find a guide to accommodate her. Susan wrote:
"I was all over the internet looking for a guide. I think I saw one guy on a private tour site. But there was nothing else on that site to tell me
his background or reviews or anything. I thought there has to be more to Guam then a lookout point!
You are the closest person to Guam I know so I thought why not ask!" Thanks Walt.
Yes, Susan is correct! There is
more to Guam than a lookout point!
So, I referred her to a certified Guam guide to give her a great experience!
Through this site, I refer my choice of licensed Guam guides so you can have the same experience
that Susan had on Guam, and that meet the same standard of uniqueness that I offer on Saipan!
Meet one of your guides!
Since we're on the topic, I'd like you to meet one of Guam's licensed guides! I'll let Ed Feely tell you a little about himself:
"I was born and raised in Maine, USA. My son and I came to Guam over 30 years ago, and I spent 21 years working for the Guam Public School system. I've done a lot of WWII research and travel in the Pacific as I traced my father's military exploits. He was one of the Guam Liberators. I lived a traditional Chamorro lifestyle in Southern Guam, learned the language, explored the island, and listened to a lot of stories from the manamko (Chamorro elders). I'm proud that most people call me Chamoule*. After losing much of my retirement money to the recent stock/investment scandals, I've spent the last 7 years leading trekking, WWII, historical, and customized tours around the island for our tourists to supplement my income. I enjoy meeting new people and sharing the island's history and culture, so I guess I have a dream job now."
*Chamoule = "Chamorro and Haole" (Haole: origin: Hawaiian, used throughout the Pacific region: a person who is not a native Hawaiian, especially a white person.
Cruise Ship Visitors Welcomed!
If you're arriving on Guam by cruise ship and wish a tour, CLICK HERE
A Special Tour for one of the "Guam Liberators!"
Residents of Guam refer to the US troops who recaptured Guam from Japanese control during WWII as the "Guam Liberators."
I had the opportunity to give a tour to one such individual--who had been on the USS North Carolina.
Founder's blog. Guamdate: Feb 2014.
Return of the Liberator: the short, happy tale of 90-year-old veteran Lloyd Glick's long-awaited, much anticipated return, hero's welcome, and whirlwind tour of Guam...as orchestrated by Walt F.J. Goodridge
You could not have imagined, wished for, nor created a more perfect day for a returning war hero! I flew from Saipan to Guam on the 4:15am flight (which I almost missed, but that's another story for another day!) to meet Lloyd's cruise ship, the Crystal Serenity arrive on Guam.
By about 7:30am on Guam, after a typical, tropical "morning blessing" sun shower, the sky opened up and revealed a crisp blue sky and dry weather for the ship's arrival!
Rainy morning on Guam; not to worry, the forecast predicted great weather!
The Crystal Serenity backs in to Guam dock F4 at 8am on schedule!...
Once through customs onboard the ship, the passengers are treated to a stunning reception that includes media, government officials, dancers, performers and beauty queens...
Lloyd Glick and other beauties! (l.to r: Lirene Veksler, Aliyes Scott, Katarina Martinez)
Dancers on the dock!
Lloyd Glick on Guam
We head out towards the War in the Pacific National Historical Park and start to see Guam,
Judy and Lloyd at the War in the Pacific National Historic Park Asan Beach park "unit"
Once we get to the Visitors Center, after a few introductions and a bit of milling about, we start a mini presentation for the visitors in attendance. Park Ranger Ben Hayes welcomes Lloyd to the center and bestows a medallion.
Judy, Lloyd receiving a Veteran's Commemorative medal from the Park Service's Ben Hayes and James Oelke (not shown, sorry James!)
I then shared the story of how Lloyd and I met online, and how we cultivated a unique relationship for two months while he was still in California, and I on Saipan!
I then turned it over to Guam's Senator Benjamin Cruz who bestowed Lloyd with a Guam Legislature Resolution honoring and recognizing his contribution to the liberation of Guam. (The senator's gracious appearance was a total surprise!)
Lloyd, The Resolution, Senator Cruz
Afterwards, I shared the surprise I've been anxious to reveal for quite a while. Lloyd had only a faint idea that something was brewing behind all the detailed questions I'd been asking him during our email conversations. I revealed, finally today, the reason for it all: I'd secretly compiled, prepared and created an "as told to" autobiography of Lloyd Glick the bugle boy scout, the enlistee, the Musician Second Class, the battleship sailor and now returning war vet, entitled Bugle Boy to Battleship: A Battle of Saipan Veteran's Memoirs...as told to Walt Goodridge!
He's already approved it and given a preliminary "green light," so...read more, see the alternate covers I had considered, and even order a copyhere
Lloyd and his autobiography..hope he likes it!
Next, we head out onto the island with Ranger Ben Hayes, who gives a spectacular, detailed, and at times quite moving tour of sites at several of the National Park's "units."
Ben gives history lessons and lessons how to really give a tour, replete with diagrams, maps, photos and quotes from veterans, eyewitnesses, historians and authors
Joining us for the day was also Cameron Miculka, whose father was the first ranger on Guam, and who got an exclusive all-day interview with Lloyd!
Blue skies over Miculka
Bugle boy and Ben at the Bunker
Since Ben has the keys to it, we got a rare, exclusive treat and got to visit inside the communications bunker at Fonte Plateau. Very few folks get to go inside!
Inside the communications bunker
Next, we stopped at Simply Food (my favorite health food store and restaurant on Guam, operated by the Seventh Day Adventist Church) to grab something to eat, and were treated to lunch on the house by the director and manager of the restaurant.
Manager, Sharon Schmidt, greets the Glicks
The tour continues with Ben showing more of Guam past and present...
While at the Visitor Center, local author, great spirit, and marketing maven, Dianne Strong (author of Witness to War
), who had been there promoting her book, made a quick call to local (Pacific News Center) television station anchor, Kevin Kerrigan, who then contacted me to arrange a special interview with Lloyd.
Lloyd meets Kevin Kerrigan
Walt, Lloyd and Kevin doing the interview to be aired Monday night on Guam (stay tuned for links and downloads)
After a full day with many more shows of appreciation and respect, we make our way back to the visitor center by 4:40 (after closing time) to drop Ben back and take our leave! We couldn't have gotten a better tour guide. We say our goodbyes and take a final photo....
The gracious wife, the Jamaican, and the star of the show!
But, wait! There's more! As the couple make their way back to the ship at 5:15pm, there's yet another set of surprises in store...
Port police officer, Frances, confers a special pin as a show of fellow police officer comradery to Lloyd
Then, Pilar Laguana, of the Guam Visitors Bureau, bestows upon them a few more gifts plus a spectacular Chamorro culture book...
Felix Reyes, me, Frances, Lloyd and Judy...almost final farewell!
Finally, as rush hour traffic starts to put the squeeze on Marine Corps Drive traffic, I meet Jasmine Stole, the reporter behind this great Variety story on Lloyd
, and pick up a few copies of the paper for Lloyd, head to the airport...
and return to Saipan on the 8:30pm flight to await Lloyd's arrival on Saipan....so we can do it all over again!
See you on Saipan! | What happened on Saipan???
p.s. Thanks to all who made the day an unforgettable experience. Lloyd shared with me that the respect, recognition and warm reception he received on the island of Guam was totally unexpected, and overwhelming--in a quite moving way!
Time for YOUR tour of Guam!
Now, I can't promise you the royal treatment that returning veteran Lloyd Glic, did, but
sign up for my "Guam Day Tour" (see form) and discover Guam in a way unlike any other! Guides
are all certified and Guam-based.
NOTE: While I build up a slew of happy "I want to see Guam" customers for this site, check out these reviews from my Saipan clients
and rest assured that I look for the same
level of care, professionalism, attention to detail, fun and adventure from the guides you'll have for your Guam experience!
And, if you're coming to Saipan before or after your visit to Guam,
sign up for my DiscoverSaipan "Tours by Natives" experience