We all have reasons for doing the things we do. When it comes to visiting Pearl Harbor, chances are you’re doing so for the sake of experiencing an important piece of American history. Maybe you have a link to the December 7, 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor, a relative who experienced the devastating events of that day. Whatever your reason, you’ve decided to visit Pearl Harbor. Now you have another decision to make: do you want to try to do it on your own, or join a guided Pearl Harbor tour? We’ve already touched on some of the obvious advantages of a tour, but if you’re still on the fence, here are a few more reasons to to book a Pearl Harbor tour.
A Fixed Schedule So You Know What To Expect
If you’re the type of traveler who likes to have every minute of their day planned out, it’s nice to know that a Pearl Harbor tour follows a fixed schedule. You know exactly when you’re being picked up and when you’re being dropped off. Tours also have a set itinerary, so there are no surprises during the tour.
Some tours run just a few hours and some can take upwards of 11 hours. While you can try and plan your out Pearl Harbor visit on your own, with the Passport to Pearl Harbor, you’d be surprised to find how easy it is to lose track of time, especially exploring the exhibits and museums at the Pearl Harbor Visitor Center, the hangars of the Pearl Harbor Aviation Museum, and the decks and interiors of the Battleship Missouri.
You Just Have to Show Up
When you decide to visit Pearl Harbor on your own, you have to think of everything. You have to arrange your own transportation and tickets to whatever attractions you want to experience. You have to decide where to go first and what exhibits and memorials are most important to see when you’re on a tight schedule. You have to make sure you arrive early to get your tickets for the USS Arizona Memorial program as they’re given out on a first come, first served basis beginning at 7:00 every morning.
An organized tour takes care of all of that, so all you need to do is show up at your designated pick-up spot at the appointed time. For many people, this is one of the best reasons to book a Pearl Harbor tour.
Options to Fit Every Visitor’s Needs
If you’re worried that the selection of Pearl Harbor tours is limited to just one or two options, none of which will fit your needs or wants, don’t be. There is a wide variety of tours that visit different Pearl Harbor sites, explore beyond the harbor in historic downtown Honolulu, or even take you on a grand adventure around Oahu.
There are short tours for those in a time crunch, long tours for those who want to see and experience everything, and there are some in between. A lack of options is not a problem.
No Wandering Around Looking for What You Came To See
It’s no fun to aimlessly walk around Pearl Harbor, lost and confused about where a certain exhibit is or how to get to a memorial. What sites do you see first? Should you start with the attractions on Ford Island and work your way back toward the entrance to the Pearl Harbor National Memorial? Where do you get your USS Arizona Memorial program tickets?
You want your Pearl Harbor experience to be hassle-free. Pearl Harbor tours include a guide, who is there to show you where to go and when.
Make New Friends
You probably didn’t think of this one, but a Pearl Harbor tour is actually a great place to meet new people. You already have something in common, and most Pearl Harbor tour guides are experts at breaking the ice and getting the conversation going. You’re going to be spending at least a few hours with the same group of people—and some of that time is spent riding in a tour vehicle—so get to know your tour-mates. You might end up making some new friends.