Are you ready to explore the Pearl Harbor and witness the historical tragic events that happened when Japanese forces launched a surprise attack on December 7 1941? Plan your visit to Hawaii and make sure to visit Pearl Harbor! Relax and be confident in your booking, we’ve got you covered. Book your Pearl Harbor tour now! Call us at +1 808-589-0456 for special discounts & tour packages!
Frequently Asked Questions
This question is most commonly asked by people who are looking for tickets to the USS Arizona Memorial. The program that visitors can attend includes a 25-minute video about the attack and a shuttle trip to the site of the USS Arizona, where they can spend time aboard the memorial.
The price of admission is included in all of the tours of Pearl Harbor that we offer. But it’s not a good idea to try to purchase individual tickets. No one is allowed to sell tickets to Pearl Harbor, so if you encounter someone who claims that they can give you tickets, they are most likely trying to scam you.
There are a limited number of tickets available for “walk-up” tickets that would-be tourists can stand in line for. These tickets are only available the same day that you plan to use them, and you must purchase one for every person in your group. The USS Arizona Memorial is a very popular exhibit and there have been reports of wait times over seven hours. If you don’t get in line fast enough, there may not be any tickets left by the time you get a chance to purchase them.
The most reliable way to visit the USS Arizona Memorial is to schedule a tour, which includes a scheduled ticket. If you plan to go on your own, you can buy the Passport to Pearl Harbor which is a self-guided tour.
Strollers are allowed in the Pearl Harbor Visitor Center, but they are not allowed inside the theater or on the shuttle that will take you to the USS Arizona Memorial. Along the tour, you will be given the chance to park your stroller prior to entering the theater and you will be able to pick it back up after touring the USS Arizona Memorial. We cannot make any guarantees about the safety of your stroller although the location where they are kept is close to where park rangers are located. Consider options that don’t involve the use of a stroller.
Throughout Pearl Harbor, there are policies against bringing bags. You will not be allowed to bring a diaper bag into the visitor center. If you choose to bring a stroller, you can bring items such as diapers, wipes, and baby food in the storage pockets.
You may bring your camera with you to Pearl Harbor. The only place where photography is limited is while traveling on the Admiral Clarey Bridge to Ford Island. In addition to taking photos, you may also use a video camera to capture videos. Please understand that if you bring a larger-than-normal camera, the security team may feel obligated to inspect it. No commercial filming is allowed unless you obtain a permit, and security will question you about your intentions to film.
Since bags are not allowed at Pearl Harbor, it may be inconvenient to bring a large camera. If possible, you’ll want to be able to fit your camera in your pockets. This will limit your ability to bring extra gear, such as lenses, to Pearl Harbor.
Selfie sticks are still allowed, but have caused problems on occasions where people bump into each other because they aren’t watching where they are going. Selfie sticks may be prohibited in the future.
Pearl Harbor Visitor’s Center is Handicap Accessible
We offer reserved parking for visitors with disabilities at the front of the lot a short distance from the entrance. Within the Visitor’s Center, all restrooms, galleries, drinking fountains, the information desk, the movie theater, and the bookstore are all accessible by wheelchair. Strategically placed benches allow frequent rests for visitors with difficult walking long distances. If you require the use of a wheelchair, please be advised that Pearl Harbor does not have wheelchair for rent or use except in the case of an emergency. There are third party companies available who can rent you a wheelchair prior to your tour.
In the theater, the movie show features captions in English and we offer an induction loop for visitors who require hearing aids. Our signage is in braille for visitors with visual impairments along with tactile models of resources within the center.
Although EMS is available and Pearl Harbor is located close to a major hospital, there are no doctors or nurses on-site at any Pearl Harbor attraction. If you have a need to bring medical equipment with you on your visit to Pearl Harbor, notify the tour staff when going through the security entrance. You will require special permission to bring in a bag of medical equipment or medicine. If you require any additional special needs, please inform your tour guide or a park ranger.
The USS Arizona Memorial Is Handicap Accessible
A ramp from the shuttle allows visitors who require wheelchairs to visit the memorial.
Bowfin Submarine Museum and Park are Handicap Accessible
The museum, park, and on-site restrooms are all accessible for visitors who require wheelchairs. However, the submarine itself is not handicap accessible. Designed for use by the physically fit men and women of the US Navy, the submarine can be difficult for any individual who experiences limited mobility problems. Service animals are allowed in all rooms of the museum and park.
The USS Battleship Missouri Memorial is Handicap Accessible
The only place in Pearl Harbor where you will be able to checkout a wheelchair if you require one is at the Battleship Missouri. The main deck and the surrender deck are wheelchair accessible and there are two elevators to help visitors board the ship. However, some parts of the ship are only accessible via steep ladders. Remember, this Battleship was designed for a young and physically fit crew of sailors. Slider’s Grill and the Victory Store are accessible by wheelchairs, as well as the restrooms.
Pearl Harbor Aviation Museum is Handicap Accessible
All hangers in addition to the shop, restaurant, and restroom at the Pearl Harbor Aviation Museum are handicap accessible.
How to Book a Handicap Accessible Tour
Before you pay for your tour, add a note at the checkout to inform us if you are bringing special equipment such as a wheelchair or medical supplies. Preferably, wheelchairs will be collapsible, but we appreciate knowing whether or not you are able to step into the chair yourself or whether you require extra assistance. You can also make a note to let us know if you are hearing or visually impaired.
Although Pearl Harbor does not have wheelchairs available to rent, there are many options on the island of Oahu for third party chair rental. We are able to arrange for an ADA vehicle equipped with a lift if you require it.
Our security policy prohibits any bag or container that provides concealment, which includes purses. It’s best to wear clothing with pockets that the essential items you need can be stored in. If you must bring a bag, a clear plastic bag (like a sandwich bag) is acceptable.
In some cases, visitors need to be able to bring medical equipment into Pearl Harbor such as medicine or an inhaler. Please notify the security staff if you need a medical exemption to the no-bag rule.
There is storage available for rent at the Pearl Harbor Visitor Center, which costs $3 per bag of any kind. The facility is open from 6:30 am to 5:30 pm and it is the only storage facility available for Pearl Harbor museums and parks.
While there is no official dress code for the museums and parks of Pearl Harbor, we do require that guests are appropriately dressed while visiting. Visitors must be wearing shirts that do not show excessive skin. Bathing suits are not acceptable, nor are inappropriate t-shirts. Flip flops and sandals are permitted.
We understand that you are visiting Pearl Harbor on your vacation. However, guests are asked to remember that it is a solemn site where many men and women died serving our country. The USS Arizona Monument is also a cemetery, where more than 1,000 lives perished and still remain. Please dress respectfully.
We suggest that you choose clothing with pockets, such as cargo shorts, because you will not be permitted to carry your personal items in a bag of any kind. A light jacket is also recommended because it can get cold and rainy in Hawaii. Guests sometimes remark that the theater is chilly as well.
Military servicemen and women visiting Pearl Harbor are within Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam bounds. Navy personnel will enforce the military regulations around military dress. Uniformed military visitors will be required to have Class “B” dress or better to board the shuttle to the USS Arizona. You are not permitted to wear battle dress uniforms on the USS Arizona. You are also free to dress as a civilian on your Pearl Harbor visit.
If you are looking for tickets to Pearl Harbor, it might be that you are actually looking for tickets to the National Park program that consists of a short documentary and a shuttle boat trip to visit the memorial of the USS Arizona.
Pearl Harbor has many other attractions such as the USS Battleship Missouri, the USS Bowfin Submarine Museum, and the Pearl Harbor Aviation Museum. Tickets are also required to enter these destinations.
In order to get tickets to the parks and museums located at Pearl Harbor, you should book a tour. Different tours offer different combinations of exhibits. The Remember Pearl Harbor Tour includes the USS Arizona and the Battleship Missouri with the price of the tour. Another option is the Pearl Harbor and City Tour, where you can visit the USS Arizona Memorial and experience a driving tour of Waikiki.
If you are not interested in booking space on a tour and are able to provide transportation for yourself, tickets can be purchased in advance through the Pearl Harbor Visitor’s Bureau with a program called the Passport to Pearl Harbor. This package enables you to experience all of the pre-recorded audio tours at all the attractions of Pearl Harbor. However, it will not give you access to the round-trip shuttle to visit the USS Arizona. For more information on arranging tickets in advance, please visit recreation.gov.
With the purchase of any of our Pearl Harbor tours, you will be able to tour the USS Arizona. Authorized tour companies handle ticket sales separately from people who choose to wait in line for first-come, first-served tickets. When you reserve space on a tour, you will be able to plan other events into your day because you will have a reasonable idea of what time you will be able to visit the USS Arizona. You are able to reserve tickets in advance at recreation.gov, but you will not have access to a guide or transportation to the memorial.
If you do not reserve tickets in advance, you will have to wait in line for “walk-up” tickets. Walk-up tickets are limited daily, and lines can get quite long. In the busy season, it’s not uncommon for tickets to be sold out after waiting in line for several hours. Therefore, it is strongly recommended that all tours are reserved in advance.
If you haven’t reserved a ticket in advance, there is a chance during busy times of year that you will wait in line for several hours to find there are no tickets left. This happens commonly because visitors are not aware that space is limited to the USS Arizona Memorial. The program sponsored by the National Park service features a short documentary and a round-trip shuttle ride to the USS Arizona. Both the theater and boat have limited seats, which are what dictates how many tickets are available daily.
Booking a tour in advance is the only way to guarantee that you will be able to visit the USS Arizona Memorial. Sometimes, tickets can be reserved with as little advance notice as the day before. Your vacation time in Oahu is precious. Don’t waste a day standing in line with nothing to show for it.
That being said, there are sometimes options for people who did not book tickets in advance. If programs have no-shows, you may be able to talk to a park ranger about taking their place. Simply walk around and ask tour guides if you are able to join their group. If they do not have space, they may know of a tour guide who does.
If you are unable to find a tour to join, you are still able to access the museums and parks. Although the experience is greatly enriched with a guided tour, the exhibits available are still fascinating for people who enjoy history or the military. The USS Arizona Memorial is an impressive monument, but visitors to Pearl Harbor can also access the Bowfin Submarine, Battleship Missouri, or Pearl Harbor Aviation Museum. Short of visiting the USS Arizona Memorial, you can get a great look at it from the bow of the USS Missouri.
It cannot be stressed enough that booking tickets to the USS Arizona Memorial in advance is the recommended course of action to ensure that you have a stress-free and enjoyable holiday.
Pearl Harbor has been increasing in popularity for several years now. When we started out as an authorized tour provider, only the Bowfin Submarine and the USS Arizona Memorial were open to visitors. Visitors have steadily increased as more and more attractions opened.
In 1998, the Battleship Missouri was moved to Pearl Harbor and became a memorial the year after. It was a nice way to symbolize both the beginning and the end of the war. In 2001, the movie Pearl Harbor was released and more people in the US were aware of the history of Pearl Harbor. This is part of the reason that Pearl Harbor has increased as a tourist destination.
The opening of the Pearl Harbor Aviation Museum also started to draw in more visitors. Hawaii is already a prime location for a tropical vacation and the history at Pearl Harbor draws in tourists with many different types of interests.
Entry to the USS Arizona Memorial is actually free, because it is technically a cemetery where over 1,000 lives are recorded as being buried at sea. However, in order to enter the USS Arizona Memorial without paying any thing, you’ll have to wait in line for one of the limited number of walk-up tickets given out per day. When you reserve a space with a tour, you’ll have to pay a reservation fee which helps to manage scheduling and staff at the USS Arizona Memorial. The fee includes the transportation to the monument, the guide to tell you about it, and tickets that you don’t have to wait in line for.
When we first starting offering Pearl Harbor tours, there was only the USS Arizona Memorial. Next came the USS Bowfin Submarine Museum, then the Clarey Bridge to Ford Island, the USS Battleship Missouri, and last the Pearl Harbor Aviation Museum. Recently, the Oklahoma memorial opened. All year long, these historic sites and museums feature new exhibits to help keep our visitors enthralled while they are here.
One tour to consider is the Pearl Harbor Memorials Tour, which will take you through guided tours of all historical sites at Pearl Harbor. Admission for all parks and museums is included with the price, as well as transportation to the USS Arizona.
You can provide your own transportation to Pearl Harbor. However, the experience differs in several key ways from the experience you have when you book a tour with us. If you plan on touring with our company, you must meet with the tour group at the designated location. We are not permitted to meet tourists in the parking lot of Pearl Harbor.
When you drive yourself to Pearl Harbor, that does not give you a place in the guided tour. Our tour guides provide professional narration and can answer questions you have while you are visiting.
Although the USS Arizona Memorial is free, if you do not reserve space in a tour you will have to wait in line for one of the limited passes reserved for those without a ticket. Wait lines are routinely three hours or longer, and during the busy season tickets can sell out. Parking is also limited and it can be difficult to find a space.
Only authorized vehicles are permitted to cross the Clarey Bridge to Ford Island, where the USS Missouri, the Oklahoma Memorial, and the Pearl Harbor Aviation Museum are all located. Without military authorization, you will have to book a tour to see these sites.
Despite being wheelchair accessible, there are no wheelchairs for guest to rent while at Pearl Harbor. Please plan on bringing your own or renting from a third party distributor. If you will require a wheelchair during your trip to Pearl Harbor, please let us know in advance so that we can make arrangements for a vehicle equipped with a lift if required. You can also choose to bring a collapsible wheelchair if you are able to climb the three steps into the vehicle and sit in a seat.
There are no bags permitted at Pearl Harbor, including back packs, purses, fanny packs, camera bags, diaper bags, or any other item that allows you to conceal items. One storage location is available, and the price is $3 per bag for standard storage. Smaller bags can be stored in a locker for $3. We do not allow our guests to leave bags in tour buses.
We suggest that guests make reservations for their Pearl Harbor tour at the same time as when they are planning their trip to Hawaii. Tickets are limited and for many people, a Hawaiian vacations aren’t something you are able to do every year. It would be a shame if you weren’t able to reserve a tour for your group while you are on vacation.
The USS Arizona Memorial in particular has a limited number of tickets available per day. Between the documentary that is shown and the shuttle boat ride to the memorial itself, there is literally only so many seats. People arrive at the USS Arizona many hours in advance to wait for tickets when they do not have reservations. On busy days, they can wait for hours and find there are no tickets left for them. During our busy season, we may even have sold out tours, so savvy travellers will schedule their Pearl Harbor reservations when they book their Hawaiian vacation.
Pearl Harbor is a great pace to bring children. Not only are the museums and parks filled with interactive exhibits that are fun, but Pearl Harbor is also an amazing hands-on history lesson with tour guides bringing the action to life. A good tour guide can teach you more than a year of history classes.
Before you bring your children to Pearl Harbor, consider watching movies like Pearl Harbor, Battleship, or Tora, Tora, Tora. Documentaries are also a great way to introduce your kids to the subject before you bring them on the tour. If you give your children some background information like what is contained in these movies, it helps them understand better what took place here.
Children will want sunscreen and hats, as most of our attractions here at Pearl Harbor are outside. Since strollers are not allowed in some parts of Pearl Harbor, you may consider carrying babies and toddlers in body-worn slings.
Booking a tour with kids is preferably to visiting Pearl Harbor without a concrete plan. Kids of all ages will stay more engaged if the day moves smoothly along with as little waiting in line as possible, and a tour will help you make the most of your visit. Our guides will keep everyone interested and engaged.
The most popular tour for families is our Remember Pearl Harbor tour, which features both the USS Arizona and the USS Missouri. It is a shorter tour that gives you the ability to see both at the naval vessels at Pearl Harbor. Please note that kids under 4 years old are not allowed on the USS Bowfin submarine.
Pearl Harbor is a destination that is designed to be family-friendly. The only thing that will dictate which tour to take is the age and interest level of your children, which determines how long they can appreciate a history site. Our Pearl Harbor Memorial Tour is a good option for families with older children who want to be able to see all of Pearl Harbor in one day, leaving room for more activities in their vacation. A good medium-sized tour is the the Remember Pearl Harbor tour, which allows you to see both the USS Arizona and the USS Missouri, which are two of our most popular exhibits. The shortest tour we offer best for very small children or when travelling with a baby, is the Pearl Harbor and Honolulu City Tour.
Help you children make the most out of their trip to Pearl Harbor by preparing in advance. Watch movies such as Pearl Harbor, From Here to Eternity, and Tora, Tora, Tora. Read books to help give them context of what happened at Pearl Harbor and how it was important to WWII. Not only will they learn more while visiting Pearl Harbor, but they will be more interested in the exhibits.
Don’t forget to buy you kids a souvenir before you leave!
Tours vary on subject matter, but all of our tours include the following amenities:
- Round Trip transportation, either from Waikiki to Pearl Harbor, or from Honolulu International Airport is travelling from one of the other islands.
- Professional narration from an expert tour guide.
- USS Arizona Memorial admission, which includes a documentary and shuttle to the memorial).
- Time to peruse the bookstore, museum exhibits, and take pictures.
- Guides to answer questions and suggest attractions.
- No parking fees or waiting in line to arrange your own ticket.
To learn more about what we offer, visit our FAQ.
Guides will not come with your tour on the shuttle boat or narrate through the USS Arizona Memorial. National Park service strives to keep USS Arizona a solemn place where visitors can pay their respects to our fallen soldiers. The memorial is a cemetery where over 1,000 military lives perished. Therefore, your guide will not accompany you.
At this time, only visitors with a military identification will be able to visit the USS Utah Memorial. This memorial is located on the west side of the Ford Island, and it is not included in any of our Pearl Harbor tours.
Pearl Harbor closes for Thanksgiving, Christmas Day, and New Year’s Day. The hours of operation are 7 am to 5 pm daily, and those hours do not change for any other holiday or special observance.
Memorial Day is a special day at Pearl Harbor, although the festivities are not as grand as those put on for Pearl Harbor Day. A bell ceremony and flag raising kick off the day, sometimes with Pearl Harbor survivors visiting. There are not many living survivors left, so this is an increasingly rare event.
Events vary from year to year, but have featured book signings and special ceremonies. There are extra crowds on Memorial Day, which can lead to long lines and delays through exhibits and parks. We recommend that your first visit to Pearl Harbor is not on Memorial Day, so that you can experience the exhibits and memorials with less stress.
The December 7 Harbor Day Ceremony is open to the public and the itinerary changes from year to year. If you are interested in attending, check back for more details on this year’s event. Pearl Harbor has a large increase in visitors on December 7, which can mean long lines and sometimes guests are not able to visit all the memorials they would have liked to. For this reason, we don’t recommend December 7 as the first time to visit Pearl Harbor. However, as a repeat visit, December 7 can be a time to see important people, survivors, and politicians at Pearl Harbor.
We do not operate tours on Pearl Harbor Day, although sites other than the USS Arizona will be open as normal. A shuttle is available from the Pearl Harbor Visitor’s Bureau for $15 if you would like to arrange transportation on December 7.
Yes! One popular Norwegian Cruise Lines NCL boat does a Hawaiian islands cruise that lets visitors tour Pearl Harbor. However, this program generally puts you in a very large group of over 50 people, where it can be difficult to get close to the tour guide or have your questions answered. We believe that our small group tours can give visitors a better overall experience.
Occasionally visitors are interested in charting a boat for travel on their Hawaiian vacation, as is sometimes done in the Caribbean and Mediterranean. Unfortunately, Hawaii is located in more dangerous waters. The same high winds and strong current that make Hawaii world famous for surfing can make sailing uncomfortable and difficult. For these reasons, there are not many companies interested in providing this service.
Pearl Harbor is open daily from 7 am to 5 pm. The USS Arizona Memorial is open from 7:30 am to 3 pm.
If you have not arranged a tour in advance, it is recommended that you arrive prior to 7 am in order to get a ticket to see the USS Arizona Memorial. A tour is the best way to avoid lines and guarantee that you are able to see the monument.
Pearl Harbor is closed for some holidays: Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day, and New Year’s Day. It is open every other day, barring weather. Please feel free to check with your tour company if you have questions.
There are no discounts for visitors with military IDs, either active duty or veterans, at the USS Arizona Memorial. However, you must have a military ID in order to visit the USS Utah Memorial. This location is not a part of any of our tours. Visiting the USS Bowfin submarine with a military ID does offer a $4 discount if you are active duty. This is only available for walk-up visitors, that is to say visitors who have not reserved space on a tour.
If you reserve space on the Arizona Memorial and Battleship Missouri Tour (Luxury Edition), the Pearl Harbor and Circle Island Tour (Luxury Edition), or the Beyond the Call to Duty Luxury Tour, you can receive a military discount with ID.
Pearl Harbor is on the beautiful island of Oahu. You can reach it by airport via Honolulu International Airport. We offer tour packages from other islands with airfare included.
Please let us know if you have not received or cannot find your confirmation and we will be happy to resend it. Occasionally, our emails are sent into spam folders. It is also possible that you did not enter your email address correctly. If you received a receipt via email but no confirmation, then your email address was correctly entered and something else went wrong.
It is possible that we have not been able to complete your confirmation yet and require a little extra time. We request at least 24 hours from the time you request your tour to complete your confirmation. If this time has passed and you still need assistance, please contact us so that we can help you as soon as possible.
It is possible to pay less money booking your own flight to Oahu rather than reserving space in our inter-island tour packages. However, our tour packages include certain advantages that you may want to consider. We automatically adjust tour start times in cases where your flight is delayed or where traffic causes an issue. Although you have the option of taking care of your own transportation and meeting the tour at the airport or Waikiki, you will forfeit your non-refundable tour reservation if you miss your pickup. Missed flights, delayed flights, backed up traffic, or any other sort of delay is not the tour company’s responsibility.
On the other hand, booking an inter-island tour means that we will adjust your tour times in case of delays. You will not have to wait at the airport because we will already know what time your flight gets in. If you plan to spend the night in Honolulu or don’t require round trip transportation for some reason, we can still pick you up at the airport.
Rarely, guests are not able to visit the USS Arizona Memorial unexpectedly. Most often, this is because of weather conditions but can sometimes be caused by problems with the shuttle boat or safety concerns. Whenever possible, we will inform you in advance if you will be unable to tour the USS Arizona Memorial. In some cases, guests will be able to take a boat ride near the memorial but not board it. If this happens, you will still be able to see the remains of the ship.
In the event that you are not able to visit the USS Arizona Memorial, there are several other attractions at Pearl Harbor that may interest you. The visitors center, museum exhibits, and shops are other great attractions.
In the event that the shuttle boat cannot take you to the USS Arizona Memorial, we do not offer refunds. The shuttle is run by the Navy and it is beyond our control whether or not it is able to operate on the day of your tour.
Yes. In any tour that includes pick up, you can also arrange drop off for no additional cost. Simply make a note when you create your reservation that you would like to be dropped off at the airport. Please note that we are unable to transport your luggage, although we do have space for you to bring a carry-on bag.
It’s important to note that if you book an option that includes a city tour and request drop off at the airport, you will miss the driving city tour because we will take you back to the airport right after the Pearl Harbor portion. If you don’t want to miss the tour of Waikiki, you can take a taxi or shuttle from Waikiki to the airport.
We have several locations to be picked up for your tour that are within a short walk from your hotel, if not at your hotel. Tour details will be emailed in a voucher. Print and keep this voucher with you because it contains detailed times and locations where you will be picked up. We will even include a description of the vehicle for your safety. Please remember that if you require special accommodations such as wheelchair lift, we will need to be notified ahead of time. Inter-island tours will meet at the airport for pickup, with more details on your voucher.
Although most of our tour options start from hotels in Waikiki, there are options for guests that are staying outside of the city or not at a hotel. There are a few different places to start your adventure, depending on where you are at on the island. Please be advised that we are not permitted to meet you at Pearl Harbor. No tour will start at the parking lot of Pearl Harbor.
If you’d like to drive to Waikiki, you can park either at the Honolulu Zoo or the Ala Moana Shopping Center, both convenient to the Ala Moana Hotel where our shuttle will pick you up. If you are staying near Kailua or Kaneohe on the windward side or Hawaii Kai on the East side, you should consider driving to Waikiki for pick up. We have a tour pick up at the Aulani Disney Resort and Koolina, if you are nearer to those destinations. For guests coming from the North Shore, we have a pick up at Turtle Bay. Some tours offer pick up at Kahala, but not all of them. Due to the short distance from Kahala to Waikiki, you may be required to pay a small fee to do this. You should indicate on the checkout page of your reservations where you plan to be picked up.
If you haven’t yet booked your hotel or accommodations, you can still book your tour. You will be able to request a change once you have this information, but in order to check out you can put any hotel you’d like into the pickup section.
When plans change and you need to cancel your reservation, please let us know. Inter-island tours include airfare, and therefore cannot be refunded, but other programs have simply policies.
Tours occasionally sell out, particularly during busy times of the year. Hawaii is a popular tourist destination and the many attractions of Pearl Harbor can make for big crowds. Unfortunately, space is limited, especially to see the USS Arizona Memorial.
Cancelling a reservation is very simple, and refundable as long as you are not booking a tour that includes airfare. It is better to reserve a space and then cancel it if you change your mind than it is to decide to come and discover the trip is sold out. Although the inter-island tours are not refundable, they are the most difficult to reserve in a short period of time, so it’s also important to book these as early as you can.
Stay in contact with us if your plans change. If you must move your trip to another date or add guests, we can work with you. We want to help you have the best tour of Pearl Harbor as possible!
A common misconception is that if visitors wait to book their tour at the last minute, they will be able to get a better price. Rest assured there our rates are the same or lower than you will find elsewhere. Discount Pearl Harbor tours are often run by people who want to give timeshare presentations or who are unauthorized to give tours.
There are many wonderful things to see and do in Hawaii, but many visitors find themselves in a state of “paradise paralysis.” You have so many ideas of the things you’d like to do when you get here, but the beach calls to you and your vacation is over before you know it. Booking your activities ahead of time helps keep you on track with the things that you wanted to do on vacation, plus gives you more time to relax because you don’t have to spend time coordinating your tour.
We offer inter-island tour packages that include airfare. Pearl Harbor is located in Oahu, but we make it easy to still reserve a tour of Pearl Harbor while you are in Hawaii. Round-trip airfare and pick up at airport is included with the price of a tour. The airport is located a few miles away from Pearl Harbor. Flight time is usually between 20 to 45 minutes, and our inclusive package makes it a breeze to spend one day touring Oahu and Pearl Harbor. Many of our packages include a noon time meal as well. Check the description of your specific tour for more information on meals.
The airport is the only way to travel from island to island because the treacherous waters make ferries or boats impractical. We do not offer round-trip tour packages from Molokai or Lanai. We also do not have a pick up location near Hilo. If you are planning to visit any of these locations, you will have to arrange transportation to a pick up spot yourself.
The biggest difference from one tour to another is which attractions the tours visit. Deciding which tour is best for you will depend largely on what historic places you’d like to see or things you’d like to learn about. If you’re not sure, you might want to see everything Pearl Harbor has to offer.
Usually when people choose shorter tours, it’s due to time constraints or travelling with children. If you have to make the tough decision to exclude an attraction or two, we offer different packages to accommodate that and help you make the most of the time that you do have.
Our tours are designed to make things as easily as possible for you, and there are many things included in the price. But there are some things you will have to pay for yourself. Our tours do not include:
- Food and Beverage- Depending on the tour, you may have a free lunch included. This is not the case in every tour, so check your individual tour descriptions for more information. Other food and beverage purchases will be your own responsibility.
- Gratuity- Tour guides do accept tips and depend on them as a portion of their income. Please consider providing a small tip for their expert narration.
- Souvenir Photos- No professional souvenir photos are included with any of our Pearl Harbor tours, although you will have a few opportunities to purchase one if you would like to.
- Storage- We offer unsecured bag storage for $3 a bag, and no bags will be permitted at Pearl Harbor. If possible, we recommend not bringing any bags with you for your tour.
- Admissions to sites not on your tour- Unless you purchase the tour package that allows you to visit every attraction at Pearl Harbor, you will have to pay for your own entrance to any attractions not a part of your tour.
Guides will not come with your tour on the shuttle boat or narrate through the USS Arizona Memorial. National Park service strives to keep USS Arizona a solemn place where visitors can pay their respects to our fallen soldiers. The memorial is a cemetery where over 1,000 military lives perished. Therefore, your guide will not accompany you.
Pearl Harbor has enough attractions to fill an entire day. We understand time is precious on your Hawaiian vacation, so we offer numerous packages ranging from about 4 hours to 13 hours. The USS Arizona Memorial, Pearl Harbor’s most popular historical site, hosts a program that takes about 75 minutes to complete. All of our tours include the USS Arizona Memorial, but add in other attractions such as the Bowfin Submarine, Pearl Harbor Visitor’s Center, Pearl Harbor Aviation Museum, and the Battleship Missouri. Clearly, the more you plan to see, the longer you should plan to visit.
We also offer tours that introduce you to Oahu. A shorter tour is the Pearl Harbor and Oahu Island tour, which spends about three hours at Pearl Harbor and then has a driving tour in the city.
Pearl Harbor is not just a piece of history and a popular tourist attraction. It is also an active military base. If you had visited Pearl Harbor prior to September 11, 2001, it’s possible that you may have found a boat willing to take you on a tour to Pearl Harbor and float past the USS Arizona wreckage. Since 9/11, the heightened security at military bases means that commercial vessels are not permitted to enter. Even when they were permitted in the harbor, commercial vessels have never been permitted to stop at the memorial. The only way to see the USS Arizona memorial is through the National Park program that offers a navy boat shuttle.
Pearl Harbor is located on the beautiful island of Oahu in Hawaii. It is near HNL (Honolulu International Airport).
If you would like to visit Pearl Harbor but you plan on staying at another one of the Hawaiian Island, we offer packages that include airfare from Maui, Big Island, and Kauai.
The National Park Service runs programs at the national monuments located at Pearl Harbor, so it is a common misconception of first time visitors that Pearl Harbor is a national park. Pearl Harbor is actually an active military base. The National Park manages the memorials and authorizes tours. Our tours are the only official tours of Pearl Harbor available.
Hawaii is a string of islands located in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. Pearl Harbor is located on the island of Oahu. The nearest airport to Pearl Harbor is Honolulu International Airport (HNL). Waikiki is a 20 minute drive.
As of 2016, the wreckage of the USS Arizona still leaks oil into the Pacific Ocean. Even though it has been 75 years since the great ship sank, oil continues to be spotted above the water of the ship. After testing, it was determined to be safer to allow the wreckage to continue to leak than to remove the ship. Microbiologist Ralph Mitchell began some interesting work studying a certain bacteria that seemed to be feeding off the oil spilling out of the USS Arizona. His preliminary studies suggested that the bacteria was increasing how quickly the monument was corroding. His study and any course of action were halted due to budget concerns.
Over the course of the last 70 years or so, the intent of the USS Arizona Memorial has shifted slightly. When the memorial was first constructed, it honored the over 1,000 servicemen who lost their lives aboard the vessel.
But the heroes who perished aboard the USS Arizona only represented half of those killed at Pearl Harbor. There were so many other lives to remember, that the USS Arizona Memorial came to symbolize all who died serving our country in Pearl Harbor.
As time passed, the memorials at the USS Utah and the USS Oklahoma were constructed. To visit them, you must have military ID because they are located on Ford Island.
On September 2, 1945, the USS Battleship Missouri anchored in Tokyo Bay. More than 250 warships brought all attendees of the surrender to the meeting place where the surrender was signed on board the USS Missouri. Since then, the ship has been moved to Pearl Harbor, in Oahu, Hawaii. Docked at Ford Island, you will have the opportunity to stand on the same deck where the surrender was signed as part of our USS Missouri tours.
Only one battleship of the entire 12-ship Imperial Japanese Naval fleet survived WWII. Named Nagato, she was an important vessel in the war and was the flagship for the strike force that descended on Pearl Harbor.
During the surrender ceremony, Nagato was present in Tokyo Bay. However, she was taken by the US as terms of the surrender. The ship had seen better days after serving in the war, and she couldn’t be used for much. That was the main reason why the Nagato was used as target practice and sank during an atomic bomb test at Bikini Atoll.
During the battle that took place at Pearl Harbor, the USS Arizona took heavy damage before it sank. The ship itself could not be salvaged. It was determined that the wreck was not risky in terms of other ships navigating the harbor. Then, the hard decision of what to do about the remains of over a thousand sailors who perished in the attack.
The Navy determined that the most respectful thing to do was to declare the men buried at sea and the USS Arizona a cemetery. Some people have been concerned because of the oil leaking out of the vessel, but it was deemed less harmful to simply leave it than to remove it.
Deciding to leave the USS Arizona underwater was a difficult one, as was the same decision for the USS Utah. The USS Oklahoma had a slightly longer life than the other two. Although Oklahoma was also sunk in Pearl Harbor, she was raised and put in drydock a few years later. Oklahoma was decommissioned in 1944 and was in the process of being moved to the mainland when she sank again. The exact remains of the vessel are unknown.
Tour guides and park rangers are often asked if Elvis Presley paid for the USS Arizona Memorial. The answer is partially. Many different people and groups raised money to help the memorial come together. Elvis was one of many artists to help out, holding a benefit concert that raised over $64,000. That concert paid for about a tenth of the total final cost of the memorial. Elvis was not paid for his performance and, instead, made an additional contribution. The year after, in 1962, the memorial was dedicated and opened.
Although it sounds a bit like gossip and slander, there’s a possibility that Franklin Delano Roosevelt was using cocaine on the day he gave the now famous speech that references “a day that will live in infamy.” However, it’s not nearly as scandalous as you might think.
In the 1940s, it was common practice to treat a sinus infection with cocaine. Doctors would attempt to decrease the swelling that occurs inside a nose and would sometimes put a needle into the sinuses to irrigate them. Cocaine would be used to help stop the swelling and to numb the place where the needle would be inserted. FDR received treatment from Dr. Ross McIntire on December 7 and 8 for a sinus infection.
Although we do not have certain evidence that FDR used cocaine on the day he gave the “Day of Infamy Speech,” there is a possibility that it happened. It was common practice at the time to highly dilute any dose of cocaine administered, however, so it probably didn’t have any impact on him. It’s also possible that FDR had no knowledge that he had been given cocaine. It was believed at the time that if you used cocaine to treat a patient but did not tell them that you did, they were less likely to become addicted to it.
The USS Arizona Memorial was dedicated on Memorial Day in 1962, 20 and a half years after the attack on Pearl Harbor. The memorial’s construction took two years and were managed by Walker-Moody Construction Company. The memorial itself is supported by concrete poured in columns that extend 80 feet into the ground below the water. The memorial itself is intended to appear as though it is gently resting atop the harbor.
We are commonly asked it Elvis Presley built the USS Arizona Memorial or paid for the building. The truth is, the monument was designed by Alfred Preis.
There is some controversy surrounding the exact number of people who died on the USS Utah. Different sources have reported between 58 and 64 servicemen died aboard the vessel. Our best knowledge is that 58 men died on the ships, and that number includes both enlisted men and officers. Four of those men were not entombed with the ship, leaving 54 lives in those waters.
There is one additional body entombed in the USS Utah, and that is the body of an infant named Lynn Wagner. Living only two days, Lynn’s father had brought her ashes on the ship with the plan of spreading them at sea. He did not have the chance to spread her ashes, but she has been entombed at sea.
The Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor was mainly by air, but there were several submarines in the effort as well. They were mostly a failure. The attack was designed by Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto, and his goal was to minimize damage to the Japanese Imperial Navy. He believed that if Japan attacked by air, they would be able to cause the most damage possible to the fleet at Pearl Harbor. He hoped the attack would be more difficult to detect, and he was proved right.
Was Yamamoto attempting to invade the US? No. The attack at Pearl Harbor wasn’t about bringing the war onto American soil so much as it was about hurting the US so badly that they would be scared and forced to surrender. Although Yamamoto got many things right about Pearl Harbor, he was very wrong to think America would surrender.
2335 military service people and 68 civilians were killed for a total of 2,403 lives lost at Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. Of those lives, 2,008 of them were in the navy, 109 were in the marines, and 218 were in the army. Nearly half of those lives were on the USS Arizona when it went down. The Japanese lost 55 men as well.
December 7, 1941 was the day that Pearl Harbor was attacked by the Japanese. The attack order was called Tora Tora Tora and was made by commander Mitsuo Fuchida. Pearl Harbor was attacked at 7:55 am.
As far as famously mistaken statements go, Lieutenant Kermit Tyler may have one of the best. December 7, 1941 was only Kermit’s second day watching the radar. He saw planes coming in which he thought were US Army B-17 heavy bombers leaving the base to fly towards California. He said, “Don’t worry about it.” This is the reason the US was completely caught off guard when the Japanese attacked.
Some people have referred to the Pearl Harbor attack as the Battle of Pearl Harbor, and that is an incorrect characterization of what took place here. It was a suprise attack and the loss was very heavily on the American side with very few Japanese soldiers being taken down.
The attack struck at 7:55 am and by 8:00 am, most of the US fighter planes had been decimated. The Japanese torpedo planes began to attack the ships in the Harbor for 11 minutes, followed by bomber plans. In the first wave of the attack, a bomb hit the USS Arizona and caused a major explosion.
By 8:40 am, 167 additional aircraft attacked. This second wave was not able to do as much damage as the first wave did. All of the Japanese aircraft were leaving Oahu by 9:50 am.