TUMON, GUAM: The nerve center of fun, shopping and dining in Guam
As the center of Guam’s booming tourism industry, Tumon (a district of the municipality of Tamuning) is an ideal base for those looking for an unforgettable experience in paradise. The majority of the island’s hotels are located in Tumon Bay, as are myriad white-sand beaches, shopping centers, restaurants and entertainment opportunities. Excellent snorkelling, scuba diving and other water sports can be found just offshore in the crystal-clear Tumon Bay, and there’s a fair number of historical sites to explore as well. If you only have time to visit one place in Guam, Tumon’s got to be it.
Endless Opportunities for Fun
Tumon’s prime attraction is its soft, white-sand beaches and brilliant aqua waters. Top spots for sunning and snorkelling include Gun Beach at the north end of the bay, and Ypao Beach, Tumon’s largest and oldest. Ypao is popular with families because it’s got open grassy fields, an amphitheatre, barbecue pits and breezy pavilions. Book a fishing charter or scuba excursion to one of the many reefs, wrecks and caves that lie just a short distance from land or within Tumon Bay Marine Preserve. For a pure adrenaline rush, rent a jet ski or try your hand at parasailing.
Back on land there’s an endless range of activities, including water parks, the Cushing Zoo, zip lining, the tunnel aquarium, magic shows, dinner shows, amusement and thrill rides, dancing, karaoke and festivals. For a moment of serenity, take in views of Tumon Bay at Chinese Park, a monument to Confucius with gazebos and grazing bull statues.
Shopping and Dining
The main hotel strip is lined with restaurants featuring both international food and tasty Guamanian cuisine that combines Asian, Spanish and Pacific Island influences into a unique island fusion. Chamorro barbecue, red rice and chicken kelaguen are just a few of the delicious local dishes every visitor must try. Tumon is also Guam’s capital of retail. Many world-renowned fashion designers and beauty brands have boutiques here, in upscale shopping centers such as T-Galleria Guam, Tumon Sands Plaza, Micronesia Mall and The Plaza Shopping Center. For sweet discounts – and deals made sweeter by Guam’s tax-free shopping – don’t miss the annual Shop Guam Festival, which takes place every year from November to February.
History and Heritage
Although Tumon is surrounded by modern amenities and comforts, the area has a rich history. WWII relics such as Japanese bunkers (at Tumon Beach) and guns (at Gun Beach) still sit in their original positions, with sunbathers mostly oblivious. For a reminder of the Spanish era, visit the Padre San Vitores Shrine, which marks the site where Chamorro Chief Matapang executed Padre San Vitores for baptizing his daughter without his permission in 1672. Stand underneath the ArchibishopFelixberto Flores statue near Guam Premier Outlets and gaze up at the first archibishop of Guam. And you can’t leave Tumon without visiting Two Lovers Point, the clifftop lookout that is the site of Guam’s most famous legend.