The best self-drive destinations on Guam
published: July 03, 2018
When it comes to travel, if you feel that the journey is just as important as the destination, then Guam is the perfect destination for you. Named “Best Overseas Self-Driving Tour Destination” by Ctrip, China’s leading online travel agency, Guam was selected for its stunning coastal routes and serene driving experience.
Being on your own gives you the freedom to explore the island at your own pace, the flexibility to visit the areas and sites that interest you, and a drive that takes you away from busy urban villages to wide coastal lanes that cut through shifting, breezy landscapes.
Ready to hit the open road? It’s hard to choose a favorite but here are some sites around the island that you shouldn’t miss.
Plaza de España
Plaza de España served as the center of cultural, religious, and government activities for centuries. In the 1660s, the Spanish colonial government chose this site as the Plaza Principál. Historic sites here include the Azotea, the last remaining structural element of the Governor’s Palace; the Almacen Arches, Guam’s signature triple arches that were once the entrance of the royal warehouse built in 1736; and the Chocolate House, the small round building that was used by both the Spanish and American administrations to host meriendas where beverages and pastries were served. While you're in Hagåtña, take some time to explore the Heritage Walking Trail that connects 17 historical sites and brings to life the resilient and fascinating history of the Chamorro people.
Cetti Bay Overlook and Fort Nuestra Señora de la Soledåd
The village of Umatac is located on the southwestern coast of the island and is home to some of Guam’s most visited scenic and historical sites including the Cetti Bay overlook and Fort Nuestra Señora de la Soledåd, or Fort Soledad. “Umatac" is derived from the Chamorro word “uma,” which means to carry something on the back or a heavy load on the shoulders. Umatac is the smallest and the second oldest Guam village, and Umatac Bay is believed to be the site where explorer Ferdinand Magellan made first contact with Guam on March 6, 1521. There are a number of historical sites to see in Umatac and many of them can be explored by walking along the quiet streets of the village.
Considered Guam’s oldest and best-preserved village from the Spanish era. Inarajan’s history predates the island’s discovery by Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan in 1521, and has been listed on the National Register of Historic Places since 1977. There are 17 National Register of Historic sites in Inarajan, and many can be explored on foot. As you further along the coast, look out for the “Bear Rock” sitting on the edge of Agfayan Bay and stop to take a dip in Salaglula Pool, a set of natural seawater pools that is a popular spot for swimming and relaxing.
Two Lovers Point
Two Lovers Point, or Puntan Dos Amantes, is without a doubt one of Guam's most iconic sites. Every year, hundreds of thousands of visitors are drawn to the towering cliff that is the site of one of Guam's most renowned and romantic legends. The site features tiered lookout points that offer a dramatic view of the Philippine Sea and breathtaking Tumon Bay. From the top, it is a 400-foot drop to the crashing waves below. Visitors can walk the plunging face of the cliff on walkways that hug and hang over the jagged rock. There are also telescopes for long range views of the ocean and Guam's western coastline.
Like our landscapes, renting a car in Guam is a breeze
Requirements may vary between car rental companies but basic requirements include a driver’s license in the visitor’s home country and a passport. An international driving permit is not required. Some car rental companies have a minimum age to rent a car such as 21 years or older, and might also require a deposit and credit card.
Slow down and go with the flow
We want you to have an unforgettable – and safe – holiday in Guam. To get the most out of your around-the-island road trip, plan your route ahead of time and remember that driving is on the right-hand side of the road. Seat belts are required by law and it is against the law in Guam to talk or text on a mobile phone while driving without a hands-free device.
It is also important to mind traffic signs and signals. According to Richard Kuntz from Blake’s Car Rental Guam, one of the most common mistakes is obeying the traffic lines and signs. “Be careful and please obey the traffic laws. Enjoy your time on Guam and get lost in the beauty and splendor of Guam. Go see all the sites around Guam. I have seen too many times a family will come to Guam, stay four days and not even go around the island one time. It’s so sad,” said Kuntz.