One of the lures of living on a small island in the Pacific Ocean are all the things you can do in your off time. Let's face it, most people come here for work, but few come here because of work and our exciting fast-paced lives. Guam is a tourist destination, and many businesses are centered around keeping the tourist entertained. We get to enjoy that too. So here are just some of the things you can do in your off time. Situated in the Western Pacific, Guam is known as the gateway to Micronesia and provides a range of exciting activities that are complementary to its closest island neighbors. SCUBA diving on Guam can encompass many activities, including diving in the Marianas Trench, the deepest water in the world; snorkeling in amazingly diverse coral reef areas; jungle trekking to secluded beaches, historic sites and pristine waterfalls; sea kayaking the coast and swimming with the dolphins and experiencing the rich Chamorro culture and warm hospitality that is distinctly Guam. Guam also offers top-level golf courses designed by golfing greats such as Jack Nicklaus, Gary Player, and Sam Snead. The island also has a pleasing selection of Asian, European and Chamorro-influenced dining establishments, luxury resorts and moderately priced hotels.
SCUBA diving is one of the most popular things to do in the waters surrounding Guam. With a couple hundred dive sites on the map, and probably hundreds more to be discovered, you’ll never be short on new places to see. For the adventurous, the nearby islands of Saipan, Tinian, and Rota also offer world class diving. There are several SCUBA retailers on the island that offer certification from basic open-water to advanced dive training, as well as all the equipment you'll ever need. Most also offer daily boat trips for one or two tank dives for around $50.00. Generally, no food is provided on the boats, so if you want to eat, you'll have to bring your own. In addition to the "big" retailers, most of the resorts also run dive operations and offer introductory classes to get you in the water within a few hours. A way to save money is to sign up for "membership' with one of the retailers. Generally this will get you discounts on equipment and some number of free dives. Costs of membership is competitively priced from store to store at around $75.00 in 2008.
Guam's exceptionally clear waters maintain temperature between 82–86 degrees year round, varied undersea life, unspoiled coral reefs and a number of World War II airplane and ship wrecks make it one of the best diving destinations in the world. Located just off the Marianas Trench, the deepest part of the ocean in the world, Guam offers the dedicated diver numerous reefs and sheer walls, hundreds of varieties of coral and fish, dolphin watching, and wreck diving. A number of marine preserves have been established to protect Guam's undersea life, which are open to the public and offer great experiences. There are a number of commercial dive operators on Guam that offer tours and instruction. Both Andersen AFB and COMNAVMAR Naval facility have on-base dive shops with bargain prices for military personnel.
If you are golf lover you will love golf on Guam! Listed below are some of the more well known courses on the island.
- Mangilao Golf Club – Is easily the most beautiful course on the island. Located on the eastern coastline of the island it offers an unforgettable challenge to players of all skill levels. It was designed by world renowned Nelson and Wright Golf Course Architects from Hawaii.
- Leo Palace Resort – Is the best maintained course on the island. Although not located on the coastline it is next to a lush river valley and is highly rated by local golfers.
- Talofofo Golf Resort – Offers some spectacular views and was designed by 9 Senior US Professional Golfers - Sam Snead, Chi Chi Rodriguez, Gene Sarazen, Billy Casper, Doug Ford, Gene Littler, Orville Moody, Bob Toski, and Ben Hogan.
- Windward Hills Country Club – Is the oldest course on Guam having opened in 1951. It was constructed as a family course so it can be enjoyed by all groups, ages and skill levels.
Jungle Trekking / Hiking in Guam
Boonie Stomping as it's referred to on Guam, is another recreation you my choose to partake of. It's a popular way to see some of the more remote areas of Guam that are definitely off the beaten path. Boonie Stomping is an activitiy organized by Guam's Department of Parks and Recreation on the weekends, usually Saturday mornings. Hikes can take from a couple hours to most of the day, with varying degrees of difficulty. Hiking on Guam may seem extreme to some. Heat and humidity are always a factor, as is the general terrain and jungle environment.
The Guam Boonie Stompers meet every Saturday at 09.00 at the center court area of the Chamorro Village in Hagåtña and drive to their starting point. Organized alongside the Department of Parks and Recreation the Guam Boonie Stompers offer public hikes to various destinations in Guam, such as beach coves, snorkeling sites, waterfalls, mountains, caves and World War II sites. Boonie stomps range in difficulty and weather conditions can make the hikes more difficult than described. The cost is $2.00 for hikers over 12 yrs. Email [email protected] for more information.
Other Sports and Outdoor Activities
For the sporty and adventurous there are plenty of indoor and outdoor activities to keep you busy in Guam. It’s easy to find a sport or activity to suit your tastes and for information on how to participate, use the contact information below, and for upcoming tournaments and leagues check the Pacific Daily News Sports notes for details.
Archery – Ladies Archery Club Island Girl Power Youth Center, Y-Sengsong Road, Dededo. Info: 637-3011 or 688-4752. Sessions for age 7 to adult 10:00am to noon every third Saturday of the month.
Baseball – Guam Baseball Federation Tel: (671) 479-2265 | Fax: (671) 479-2267 | Email: b[email protected]
Canoeing – Outrigger Guam Canoe Club (OGCC) | P.O. Box 3441 Hagåtña, Guam 96932 | www.ogccguam.com
Martial Arts – United Martial Arts Association of Guam Info: 637 - 1713 | Kontenda’s Mixed Martial Arts & Fitness Club Info: 777-9280
Rugby – Guam Rugby Club Wettengel Rugby field, Dededo Info: Ross Morrison Tel: 788-7440 | Email: [email protected] | Grit Season Training - 6:30pm -7:30pm every Wednesday.
Soccer – Guam Soccer Association Info: 477-5423 Contact the GSA for information regarding leagues and teams.
Softball – Softball – Guam Men's Fast pitch Softball Team Info: Frank 888-3172 or Walt 472-2158 | Guam Senior Softball Association Info: Stephen Guerrero at 888-3887 or Ed Santos at 734-5777 Invites new and returning players age 49 and over to practices.
Swimming – Manhoben Swim Club Info: Maria Petros: 734-4398 or Mercedes Bonsembliante: 483-7056
Beginners & returnees registration is on-going.
Tarakito Swim Club Info: 483-3637 | Website: www.tkoguam.com
New sessions begin monthly for age 5 and up. Multiple levels and classes available
Table Tennis – Guam Table Tennis Association Guam Sports Complex,Dededo | Info: 472-8005 Practice sessions 6:00pm–9:00pm – Tuesday & Thursday.
Triathlon – Guam Triathlon Federation Tamuning, Guam | Email: www.triathlonguam.com
Volleyball – Doubles Beach Volleyball Play Jimmy Dee’s beach, Tamuning Info: Brooke @888-5250 4:30pm-6:30pm Tuesdays, Thursdays, & Saturdays at. All skill levels welcome to play.
Haggan Volleyball Association Info: 686-3226 | Email: [email protected]
Team Hatsa Volleyball Info: 789-3912 | Email: [email protected]
Water Polo – The Guam Water Polo Team Info: 649-7277 New members required for practice and tournament play. Practice times are 6:30pm on Tue & Thu, and 2:00pm on Sun at the Hagåtña swimming pool.