August 11, 2011 | By Merri Lou Martin
If your vacation plans are taking you to Honolulu, Hawaii, you won’t want to miss the Pearl Harbor tour. This year is the 70th anniversary of the horrific bombing of Pearl Harbor.
When selecting your tour, be sure to include the Missouri Battleship. Several years ago I had the opportunity to take a tour of this magnificent ship. Seeing the very small sleeping quarters of the crew gave me chills thinking about the undesirable conditions these soldiers endured to fight for our freedom. It was fascinating to step inside the navigation room atop the ship; the space was very tight for the number of men required to navigate the battleship. This hour long tour was the highlight of my Pearl Harbor experience.
For those of you history buffs out there, The Complete Pearl Harbor Experience is the perfect tour. Visit the USS Arizona Memorial, the USS Bowfin Submarine, the USS Missouri Battleship and the Pacific Aviation Museum all in one day. Tour departs at 6:00am and returns at 4:45pm. The cost is about $119.00.
If you prefer a shorter tour, then the Battleships of World War II tour is the perfect one for you. See where WWII began and ended. You’ll explore the USS Arizona Memorial and the USS Missouri Battleship. This tour is offered three times a day. I suggest taking the earliest tour at 6:00am. The lines are much shorter and the temperature is cooler at that time of day. The cost is about $59.00.
Important information you will need to know when visiting Pearl Harbor is the Pearl Harbor “No Bags” Policy. Due to increased security measures, all purses, handbags, backpacks, fanny packs, camera bags, diaper bags, luggage and/or any other type of bag that can conceal an object are not permitted inside Pearl Harbor, the Visitor’s Center, or to any of the attractions. A storage facility is available at $3 per bag at the entrance to the National Park. Cameras and camcorders are permitted.
A vacation to Honolulu will not be complete without visiting Pearl Harbor and the surrounding World War II historical sites.