10 Things to Do in Guam for 4 Days and 3 Nights

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Guam is a small island located at the western side of the Pacific Ocean. It’s part of the Marianas and the majority of the local inhabitants are called Chamorros. It’s also one of the five US territories so depending on your nationality (or citizenship), you might be required a US Visa.


View of Tumon Bay
Tumon Bay and Crystal Chapel
From Manila, you can book a flight to Guam via United Air or Philippine Airlines. These airlines offer the cheapest airfare going to Guam. We went there via Philippine Airlines and spent only around Php22,000 ($490, roundtrip) per person. You can even catch promos that would bring the cost down to around Php15,000 ($340, roundtrip).

Initially, I wasn’t at all excited to visit Guam. We know Guam is also famous for their beaches (just like in the Philippines) so we thought it’s like visiting Boracay or Palawan. But as soon as we arrive at Guam International Airport, I felt that this will be an awesome vacation!


Beach, sun and sand at Guam

So if you only have 4 days and 3 nights to spend, how will you be able to maximize your time at Guam? Here are 10 things you can do.

1. Stay at beach front hotels.
You might get discouraged at the price, but make sure you stay at a beachfront hotel. We found cheaper hotels or apartments, more or less Php3,000 a night ($67), but you need to ride a public transport just to enjoy the beach. The cheapest beachfront hotels can offer you Php6,500 a night ($146) and you get to enjoy the sunny beach any time of the day. We booked at Hotel Nikko which is sandwiched between Tamuning Bay and Gun Beach. Tamuning Bay is a reef area where you can snorkel and kayak while Gun Beach obviously lets you enjoy the water and sand.


Hotel Nikko Guam: Our home for 4 days and 3 nights. All rooms face the ocean.
Longest slide I tried so far. This is at Hotel Nikko.
Another beachfront hotel you might want to check out is Outrigger Hotel. A friend of my mother recommended it but when we were looking for available accommodations online, all rooms were sold out (even the most expensive ones)! That’s because they’re not only a beachfront facility, they also have a mall at the lobby entrance. This is The Plaza Shopping Mall which houses the most popular designer brands in the world such as Michael Kors, Anna Sui, Gucci, Coach, Furla and more. 

Beachfront hotels (L-R): The Westin Resort Guam, Guam Reef, Outrigger Guam Resort, and Hyatt Regency Guam
2. Snorkel.

A cheap water activity you can truly enjoy in Guam is snorkeling. Depending on your hotel of choice, you can rent a snorkeling gear or just bring your own. At Hotel Nikko, there’s a nearby snorkeling area where the water is very shallow (knee-deep), perfect for families with toddlers. The water is very clear and you can see lots of fish even when you’re not submerged in water. One thing we missed bringing though was an underwater camera. There are tons of fish species I’ve seen for the first time - more than what you can see at Balicasag in Bohol.


The very clear water of Tumon Bay. You can also take a close look of the Crystal Chapel from this view. A lot of couples get married here. Maybe someday Xoce and I could renew our vows at this chapel.
Me and my sister after snorkeling.
3. Visit K-Mart.

Cup noodles, chocolates, bread and some canned goods. Very Filipino lol.
Breakfast at hotels can be very expensive (average of $20 for a buffet meal) so if you’re on a tight budget, hop on a cab or bus and buy something at K-Mart a day before. K-Mart in Guam is huge and you can find almost everything you need there during your short trip. When I travel, I make time to visit the local grocery because you can always find affordable pasalubong (a little something for friends back home). It’s cheaper there, too than in souvenir shops. And if you’re missing on Filipino food, you’ll see our very own snacks like Cheese Rings and Clover Chips.

4. Ride a submarine.

The captain
If you want to maximize your time in Guam, try the Atlantis Submarine Expedition. We booked ours at Hotel Nikko the day before and the tour company picked us up at the hotel the next day. It’s perfect for families who want to check out water activities but don’t want to get wet. It was exciting to see how the submarine emerges from the ocean. Once you’re inside, you’ll be enthralled at how the captain maneuvers different switches and buttons, how the colors change as you get deeper into the water, and how thick the glass windows are to prevent the water from coming in. You will also be provided with headset and recorded audio guide for different languages.


Inside the submarine
Marine life: what you can see from inside the submarine.
Each side of the submarine have windows where you can see different species of fish and corals. Of course I still prefer scuba diving to get clearer and more beautiful views of marine life, but how often do you get the chance to get inside a submarine? It’s a cool experience so it’s a must in Guam.



5. Check out Fish Eye Marine Park.

Boardwalk going to the Fish Eye Marine Park
A submarine tour can be costly for just half a day (more or less $100), so if you want something similar you can visit the Fish Eye Marine Park. It’s a small underwater observatory where you can see corals and marine life without getting wet. Adults can enjoy the scenery for just $10 and kids for $5. Going to the observatory from the road is like being in a movie, as you will cross a long boardwalk that expands 1,000 ft long. It’s a great view to take selfies or photo op with a group. Plus, you’ll appreciate how massive and beautiful the ocean is. Make sure to be at the observatory before closing time so you can witness how beautiful a Guam sunset is.

Various fish species at the observatory


6. Experience a Polynesian dinner and show.




Because we missed the Wednesday Night Market at the Chamorro Village, we opted for a Polynesian dinner instead. Aside from being introduced to various dishes (Chamorro, Japanese, Western, etc.), you will be entertained with a Polynesian show. It’s live entertainment with women in grass skirts - and they definitely know how to use their hips! I think every woman should learn how to dance like this to achieve those cuts and abs.

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Polynesian dance
Be ready though. You might get invited to their on-the-spot dance lesson!

7. Go to Malls (DFS Galleria, Micronesia Mall, The Plaza Shopping Center).


Guam is just a small place but it doesn’t lack malls. Of course when you’re a tourist, it’s a must to visit DFS Galleria to buy all your duty free stuff. If you want to check out designer boutiques, head to The Plaza Shopping Center at Outrigger Hotel. The Plaza looks like a small version of Rodeo Drive. And if you want to check out Guam’s biggest shopping mall, visit Micronesia Mall. It has different wings (similar to the old Glorietta structure) with an entertainment lobby at the center. You’ll find a PNB branch there, Bench and even Jollibee! Oh and you might want to visit Macy’s while you’re there. 

Because we don't have Macy's back home.
The sneakerhead's haven. I had control over purchasing new additions to my Roshe Run and Flyknit collection (Nope, not a sneakerhead.)
You’ll never feel like you’re away from home, especially when you’re at the foodcourt. If you’re hungry for kare-kare or afritada, you’ll definitely find Filipino dishes. Even KFC sells their version of Adobo (sold at Guam Premier Outlets). Just make sure to carry your food tray after you eat and throw your garbage at disposal bins. Think about self-service.

8. Shop at GPO.


Guam Premier Outlets or simply GPO is probably the most popular mall in Guam. It deserves its own spot. This is the reason why it was difficult for me to keep my last remaining dollars *sigh*. I remembered when I got into the immigration at the airport, the officer asked me what I’ll be doing in Guam. I just said, “I’m excited to go to the beach,” (which was true) and then he added “and shopping”. Shopping wasn’t even included in my itinerary, but I can’t believe I went to GPO for two consecutive days!


THIS is every shopaholic's place-to-be!
So what can you see at GPO? Basically outlet stores of Levi’s, Skechers, Calvin Klein, BCBGMAXAZRIA, Nine West, Tommy Hilfiger and more! The stores are HUGE. Remember, aside from the fact that these are outlet stores, the prices of these brands are definitely way cheaper even when the items are not on sale. I was able to buy a Calvin Klein Brianna satchel bag which originally costs $189. I got it for only $60, plus a free Calvin Klein membership card which I can use in all of their boutiques in the US. I also bought a duffel bag at Tommy Hilfiger which only costs Php600 (approx $13.50).



But the best part of all was Ross. Everyone in Guam knows Ross. GPO typically opens around 10:00am but Ross opens at around 8:30am (use the side entrance near Ross). You have to get there early to scout the best products. They have everything from clothes, shoes, watches, neckties, belts, bag, wallets, perfumes, sunglasses, home accessories - EVERYTHING! All at very cheap prices! They’re branded items in very good condition. What brands? Michael Kors, Anne Klein, Guess, Kenneth Cole, Tommy Hilfiger and so much more. You wouldn’t believe what you see when you spot a Michael Kors bag worth Php4000-8000 and the design isn’t something you normally see in the Philippines (and online sellers). I could spend the whole day in Ross without eating (I’m not kidding).

Mama on her first day at Ross. She went to GPO for 3 days.

9. Visit Two Lovers’ Point.

View from the cliff.


One of the most popular tourist spots in Guam is Two Lovers’ Point. It overlooks the Philippine Sea and you could really get a great view of Guam in this area. We were lucky we went there during sunset. It’s one of the most beautiful sceneries in the world. The view was very breathtaking, calm, and laidback.

Mama and Papa at Two Lovers' Point. The colorful things at the back are love locks.
The place was called as such because of the two lovers who were forbidden to be together so they opt to leap from the cliff and take their lives. It’s an ancient Chamorro romance as they say. Because of its dramatic representation, a lot of couples choose to wed there. I can’t blame them. It’s such a romantic place to spend with your eternal love.

10. Go Skydiving.


YOLO!

Finally, if you’re ready to embark on a once in a lifetime adventure, you can definitely challenge yourself in skydiving! This is the first time my sister and I tried this extreme activity and we’re glad we chose to dive from 14,000 ft (the highest jump)! This is a tandem skydive so you’ll feel secured with professional dive masters. I almost backed out the night before because I was so scared, but once I got into the plane, I felt more relaxed than the night before (weird, I know).

Here we go!
Look at how scared I was!
It was more than awesome, really. Plus the view was just amazing! I had the chance to see the Marianas Islands from 14,000 ft at one minute freefall. When you book at Skydive Guam, be sure not to cancel so as not to forfeit your payment. If you’re taking the highest jump like I did, be prepared to shell out more than $500. It’s expensive, but definitely worth the one-time experience.

Awesome view of Guam (I'm getting a little dizzy here. Trying not to puke).
If you’ll be in Guam for more than 4 days, you can pay a visit to the Chamorro Village to try their local cuisine or spend a whole day at Cocos Island. I know I’ll be there when I visit again.

Quick Tips

1. Public transport is by bus and taxi. Public bus costs $4 per person per ride. Discounts are given to students, senior citizens and persons with disability. Taxi from airport to Hotel Nikko at Tamuning area cost us $20 (for 4 people). Taxi from GPO to Hotel Nikko and vice versa cost us $28. It’s very likely you’ll come across Filipino taxi drivers .


2. You can book your day tours in your hotel. Just ask for their catalogue at the Guest Relations desk. Book trips between 8:00am to 5:00pm because the tour offices close early.


3. When exiting Guam, put all your stuff in one luggage. Even if you don’t fill up your allowed check-in baggage weight limit, you will be charged for an additional fee if you have more than one check-in luggage regardless of size. Just keep in mind, one person = one luggage.

This sunset view at Fish Eye Marine Park. How great thou art, Lord. 
If you like it, share it! Include Guam in your travel dream board!

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20 comments

  1. Hi,

    Do you need a US VISA to go to Guam? I'm a Filipino living in the Philippines by the way :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello! Yes you need a US Visa. Safe travels!

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  2. Hi Jena! Thank you so much for sharing your Guam experience! Your blog is really a huge for help for me. My senior citizens aka the parents hehehe are the ones who want to go to Guam and decided to bring me as their tour guide..hahaha..Even its my first time too..I just want to ask the polynesian dinner and show is it in your hotel? Too bad we can't go to Chamarro night market. We arrived at thursday and left at monday :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello Katherine! Glad to be of help :) Hope you and your parents enjoyed. It feels like a bit home, no? Daming Pinoys! The Polynesian dinner was at a restaurant. I forgot the name but the place is very popular. They serve international buffet.

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  3. great review, just came from there yesterday, shopping is amazing, beach is very clean and chill. Tip: use lakbayguam.com it made it easy for us to travel around.

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  4. Hi Jena, how much is the Atlantis Submarine Expedition experience? How much did you/your family spend in the island hopping? Thank you in advance.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello! Can't remember the exact cost, but it shouldn't be more than $100 per person when we went there.

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  5. Jenn, good day. wanna ask if were going to Guam Jan 1-11 need Visa right? How many days processing?

    thanks

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So sorry I missed your comment! Hope you're enjoying Guam at the moment

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  6. Great post on your Guam experience, I was there a few years ago for vacation and it is an underrated charming destination. I think it's a good shopping destination, probly cheaper than SG or HK. Lots of Japanese at the beach. I had a chance to visit the local neighbourhood and it looks very much like a middle-class Filipino gated village (though their houses are all bungalows 'coz of the frequent typhoons there). I found public transpo to be hard, waiting times are long, buses (or coasters) are infrequent.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Definitely love Guam better than SG or HK! You're right about public transpo. Taxi fare is very expensive, but it's the fastest way to get from one place to another.

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  7. Hi! Great article!Just wanted to ask which camera are you using? :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. iPhone 5s and a Sony point and shoot camera (I forgot the model)

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  8. Hi. Thank you for this info. May I ask, the charge for more than 1 check-in luggage when exiting Guam is at the airport? Thanks.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello. Not sure how much the cost was.

      Delete
  9. Hi Jena,

    Nice blog. Thanks for all the info! :)

    I just want to clarify if a US Visa is really required when going to Guam? Because I read something that its not required for Filipino citizens. If it is really required, can you kindly let me know where to get it and how much it will cost us? Is it easy to get approve for a US Visa to Guam?

    Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
  10. Thank you for writing about your Guam experience! My family and I are going to Guam for the holidays. While researching for activities to do in Guam, it was your blog post that showed me that there are other sites to go aside from snorkeling and going to the beach. Thanks again!

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  11. I have a booking for Guam this weekend but I have been thinking not to pursue it due to my new work assignment. I have difficulty in booking a room and it will be very expensive since I am travelling alone. I might find another time to go there. If I have read this article months ago I should be pursuing it. But who knows If i find a good deal then. Saturday 25th is still 6 days more to go.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hope you went to Guam and enjoyed your stay! I was actually looking for flights and hotels in Guam last January, but everything is so expensive at the moment. I came across a blog (or a YouTube video) about going to Guam during November because they have a massive sale during that time of the year. Maybe that's another option if you want to visit.

      Delete
  12. Hello,could you descript bit detail about the cost of the trip there. I can prepare the budget.
    thanks

    ReplyDelete

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