Alot of things have changed since I have last been here. First of all, it even more crowded than ever. They say that after September 11th there are even more visitors to Pearl HArbour. There is also much more security. Dont bring any bags or even purses here because you will not be able to take it in. There are lockers where you can keep your stuff locked up if you wish.
This memorial was designed by architect Alfred Preis and its built over the USS Arizona which is a battleship that was destroyed and sank on December 7th, 1941.
If you dont want to wait in line too long get here early. Try to make the first couple of tours. The later you go the more your wait will be. The tours go every 15 minutes and they are on time to the minute. You will go into the auditorium where you will see a short film and a survivor of Pearl Harbour will talk about what he was doing on that day. Its very interesting. On the back of your tickets there will be information on a soldier that was there at Pearl Harbour. After the film you will take a short boat trip to the memorial.
I never even kew this place was here. On this visit to Pearl Harbour, we got here a little late. We had to wait about two hours to get into the auditorium so we had some time to look at everything. The USS Arizona Memorial Musuem is a nice way to kill some time while you wait to get in. It is free and there is alot of informative things to see here including pictures, models, maps, books and souveniers.
Stop by and check it out for a little more information of what happened that day at Pearl Harbour.
We booked a shuttle through RELIABLE to this solemn memorial on Sunday morning. We were picked up at 8:20 a.m. and arrived around 9:10 a.m. The cost was $36.00 for three of us, plus a tip.
(pic #2) You'll be given a ticket at the visitors center designating the time you board
(pic #3) The shuttle boat takes you to the site.
(pic #4) The gift shop, where you'll find memorabilia related to this event
Our guidebook urged us to be at the memorial by 7-7:30 am, but our driver said that he had dropped people off at that time and the line was triple to what we experienced at a later arrival.
A small museum displayed artifacts, models of various ships, torpedos, maps and other pertinent information on the bombing of Pearl Harbor. An audio tour of the museum is available. After this we waited for our tour to be called....
*There is no charge to tour the USS Arizona Memorial. At the visitor's center a 23 minute movie is shown of the Battle of Pearl Harbor before boarding the shuttle.
Just as the USS Arizona memorial signified the start of WW2 for the U.S., the USS Missouri completes the circle since it's where the Japanese surrendered. This was the "world's last operational battleship" and the last one commissioned by the U.S.
To begin your tour, you must locate the USS Bowfin submarine at Pearl Harbor. It's here that you purchase your ticket (about $16 each) and catch the bus taking you to the USS Missouri, affectionately referred to as Mighty Mo.
Once you board the ship, you'll be moving clockwise to the various sites:
the main battery
the wardroom and museum exhibit
Kamikaze attack site,
tomahawk deck (added in the 1980's),
a view of their weapons system
see their flying bridge and conning tower
the surrender deck
As we disembarked, we were told not to take any photos or talk in more than a whisper. We were to enter the memorial respectful of the men entombed below on the USS Arizona (pic #2).
As we moved to the back of the memorial through a narrow doorway, a room opened up before us and an entire wall enscribed with the names of those who lost their lives on this ship appeared.
At the left side of the wall memorial, another list was etched in stone--men who survived the bombing but desired to be placed with their shipmates after passing on later in life.
pic #3 Oil leaking from the submerged vessel (Tears of the Arizona)
pic #4 Boy Scouts presenting a wreath in front of the wall (pic # 4).
Although Pearl Harbor offered a tour of the USS Bowfin, too, we didn't have time to visit this 1942 submarine. If you have time, this info. might help.
The tour takes about a half hour and costs $10, less for children 4-12. It's located to the right of the visitors center and where you purchase tickets to the USS Missouri.
The USS Bowfin successfully sunk over 40 subs during WW2. A self guided tour takes you throughout the sub, giving visitors a taste of what life would have been like inside this narrow metal tube. A submarine museum close by is said to be worth viewing, as well.
Coming from the UK the words Pearl Harbour have maybe slightly less significance that to people from the USA. That said the image of what happened on that day in 1941 is of World significance.
On a visit to Oahu in transit to the other islands it seemed an interesting place to visit for half a day or so.
I was extremely impressed by the organisation at the USS Arizona Memorial. There was total respect for what is in essence a mass war grave. I am sure the many relatives of those who perished will be proud of the respect and reverence in which the whole visitor experience is handled.
Boats carry visitors from the shore to the actual Memorial which is built over the site of the wreck. Inside is an entire wall listing all the names of the 1177 men who lost their lives. Most touching of all was a small stone where sailors who have since died and have chosen to to be buried with their fallen comrades are commemorated.
I came away a wiser person and somewhat humbled.
All American schoolchildren are taught that December 7th, 1941 was "a date which will live in infamy." On this day, the United States military installations surrounding Pearl Harbor, Hawaii were attacked by Japan in a devastating air raid. When all was done, 2,388 American lives were lost. Japanese forces suffered 65 casualties.
The attack targeted airplanes parked at Hickam field, Bellows field, Wheeler Field and Ford Island. Naval station Pearl Harbor supported a large fleet of ships which the Japanese aimed to demolish, focusing on the larger vessels. After the attack, nine ships had sunk and 21 were damaged. Of the sunken ships, 2 were not able to be risen and still remain on the harbor floor, the USS Utah and the USS Arizona.
A memorial to those lost was dedicated in 1962. The memorial spans the hull of the USS Arizona, without ever touching the ship itself. The names of the men and women who died in the attack at listed inside the memorial. As you look into the water, you can see oil puddles that are floating up from the ship, the "tears of the Arizona." The USS Arizona is considered an active US military cemetery and is a sacred place for visitors. It acts as a testament to all men and women lost in the Pearl Harbor attacks.
A visit to Pearl Harbor begins early in the morning. The museum open at 7:30am and boat tours to the USS Arizona begin at 8am. The visitor's center closes at 5:00pm. Tickets are free and first come, first serve. 4,500 tickets are allocated per day but most days they are gone by noon, so arrive early.
I strongly suggest getting the headset tour. This walks you through the museum and gives a great deal of extra historical information. The ticket includes the museum, a video on Pearl Harbor and the attack and the boat trip to the memorial. The video is actually very good (and I'm really picky about that kind of stuff). After the video, you board a boat to the memorial where you spend about 15 minutes.
I thought 15 minutes would not be much time, but the emotional toll of the memorial makes 15 minutes plenty of time to think about what you are experiencing. It is a very moving experience. If you only have time for one thing in Hawaii, this should be it.
On 3 September 1945, the USS Missouri floated in Tokyo Harbor, the location for the brief 23-minute surrender ceremony marking the end of World War II. Today, the USS Missouri, America's last battleship, sits in Pearl Harbor right next to the Arizona Memorial that marked America's entrance into that conflict. From a U.S. perspective, the Arizona and the Missouri form the bookends of the war.
A tour on the Missouri is worthwhile not only for the ship's historic role in the war's end, but also for a view of a lost era, when naval conflict was big ship versus big ship and when projecting power meant gunboat diplomacy. Unfortunately for the Missouri, when it was christened in 1944, the aircraft carrier had already made it obsolete. Still, it brought it's ability to lob 1900 pound shells 23 miles to Korea, Vietnam and even the first Persian Gulf War before it was retired for good. We spent the extra money to get the guided tour to ensure we got the wholestory.
The USS Arizona Memorial was quite moving. You see a short movie in the theatre about the bombing, and are then taken on a boat to the Arizona Memorial; a large white pontoon over the final resting place of the USS Arizona.
Photo is taken aboad the USS Missouri which is permanantly docked in Pearl Harbour. You can take tours aboard it(2 different ones), or walk around yourself. We went on the delux tour. It took you into areas of the ship which you couldnt go otherwise, but it went for two hours, and was quite boring. A lot of talk about guns, ships and operations in far too much detail. Too much information for your average person!
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