A Memorial Day Visit to Pearl Harbor

O’ahu 2016: Introduction
Hyatt Place El Segundo
Four Seasons O’ahu at Ko Olina
Pearl Harbor Memorial
Makapuu Point Lighthouse
Polynesian Cultural Center’s- Ha: Breath of Life Show


Pearl Harbor Memorial

On Memorial Day 2016 my wife and I made a memorable visit to Pearl Harbor.  I booked our tickets through our hotel concierge.  Our tickets cost $1.50 per person. Our baby was free.

We had reservations for 11am and arrived closer to 10:20am.  It is recommended to arrive an hour early.  Parking was nearly full but we were able to find a spot. We arrived and got in the will-call line.  We recieved our tickets and were told where to line up to begin the tour.  Since we still had time to burn we walked around a bit and checked out some of the sites.

USS Bowfin Submarine


Flag at half staff

DSC00618 DSC00626
The anchor of the USS Arizona

After walking around for about 20-30 minutes we got in line to enter a mini movie theatre which kicks off the tour.

My wife and baby waiting for the movie to begin

The movie is a short 15-20 minute documentary on the attack on Pearl Harbor and why the Japanese planned the attack. It went into detail about the US’s Pacific Fleet and explained America’s entrance into WWII.  It was very informative because I wasn’t sure of all the details behind the attack.

The boat to the USS Arizona Memorial

Onboard the shuttle boat to the USS Arizona

The entrance to the USS Arizona Memorial
The ship resting just under the waters surface

Part of the ship poking out

Inside the memorial
List of the fallen armed forces

The ship resting under on harbor floor

One of the most amazing aspects of the memorial to me was that their was oil leaking from the ship and reaching the surface.  You could see a steady and slow stream of oil rise up and float away.  I believe this was referred to as “black tears”. Crazy that 75 years later there is still oil in the ship!

Oil leaking from the USS Arizona

“Black tears”

We spent 20-30 minutes or so on the actual floating memorial. My wife rented a guided tour so she listened to some commentary on the memorial while visiting.

Inside the memorial

Flag at half staff

Flag folding ceremony 

Exiting the memorial

Memorial exterior

After we reached land again we paid a quick visit to 1 of 6 living Pearl Harbor veterans! We had to wait about 15 minutes in line as he was taking pictures, signing his book and speaking with guests.  We thanked him for his service and I took a picture of him with my wife and son.

A Pearl Harbor veteran

A really interesting place and a bit surreal to be in a place with so much history and where so many people lost their lives for our freedoms. I hope every American that wants to visit gets a chance to see this awe-inspiring memorial.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *