December 7, 1941 Japan attacked the United States at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. Franklin Delano Roosevelt called it a day which would live in infamy. According to PearlHarbor.org, 3,500 Americans were wounded or killed during the attack. Eighteen ships were sank or badly damaged, and over 350 aircraft were damaged or destroyed.
The attack on Pearl Harbor did indeed become an event that lives in infamy. Most people can relate at least some facts about it, even if they don’t know anyone who was there. National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day is set for December 7 of every year.
Some may wish to explore the history of the event by visiting Hawaii. Of course, most people think of Hawaii as a romantic or honeymoon destination, a place to get away from the cold and gray of winter. Yet a visit to the area of the attack may provide an opportunity for historical education.
World War II Valor in the Pacific National Monument
Visitors to Hawaii can enjoy a trip to the USS Arizona Memorial. The National Park Service has established a site filled with information designed to help travelers learn about the reality and impact of the day on those that were there as well as on the country as a whole.
The site encompasses more than 10.5 acres, according to the Memorial’s website. The visitor center hosts self-guided interpretive exhibits and attractions. These include a museum, bookstore, waterfront exhibit, and documentary. Visitors receive a timed ticket upon entrance. While waiting for their memorial tour, they often choose to wander around the attractions of the visitor center. They then enjoy a guided orientation from a park ranger, a short boat ride, and self-guided tour of the memorial.
Address, Hours, and Prices of the Memorial
The USS Arizona Memorial is located at 1 Arizona Memorial Place, Oahu, Hawaii, 96818-3145. For park information call (808) 422-3300.
The Visitor Center is open every day from 7:00 am to 5:00 pm, except Christmas, Thanksgiving, and January 1. Timed tours of the USS Arizona Memorial begin at 8:00 am and run through 3:00 pm. The USS Oklahoma Memorial and the USS Utah Memorial are open from dawn to dusk.
Admission is free. Tickets to the timed memorial tour are given on a first-come-first-served basis and cannot be reserved. Wait times can be as long as two hours.
Planning Your Trip
Numerous flights are available to Honolulu. Research to find deals on flights. Because the area surrounding Pearl Harbor is popular, there are also many hotels and restaurants available nearby. Planning a trip to explore the history of World War II and the attack on Pearl Harbor should not be difficult. After all, it is not located in an isolated area.
Sources and More Information
World War II Valor in the Pacific National Monument website