Discovery : War in the Pacific National Historical Park

Discovery (Post#29) : War in the Pacific National Historical Park

Aside from the memorial wall that has been put up to Asan Bay Overlook and the scenic view that it offers to the visitors, the ridge line has historical importance to the island. War in the Pacific National Historical Park boundaries are huge to emphasize its significance. There are three boards display that can be found at the lookout area that gives some information about what happened during World War II. Since Japanese was in strong positions at the hillside, they tried to do a Banzai (suicide) attack to drive Americans to the sea as they knew that if they failed they would lost the island. These photos are part of Guam Adventure Photo Collection April 2017.

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Asan Point, Asan Beach Park and Nimitz Hillside

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Hillside of Nimitz Hill where Japanese Banzai and offensive attack towards American soldiers

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Guam Island Tour – Visiting Best Viewpoint of the Island

I will start my story at Fort Santa Agueda since the first two places included in the Island Tour has been detailed in my previous post of Hagatna and Two Lovers Point.

But while I was drafting this post and when I looked into the whole story of my experience in the tour, I see a trend of the places that we had visited while driving around the island. The title of this post is a hint of what I meant on it. Most of the places we visited has historical significance and a viewpoint.

Fort Santa Agueda

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Fort Santa Agueda is still located in Hagatna, but I did not include this in Hagatna post as I wanted to include it as island tour activity. I made emphasis on Hagatna in my previous post, please see here. After we finished the visit of Latte Stone Park and Japanese Caves Latte Park, our guide drove us to Fort Santa Agueda. We took Hwy 33 and we turned right to Hwy 7. From Hwy 7, we turned right again at Fort Ct where we parked our vehicle again. Fort Santa Agueda is included in Hagatna Heritage Walk but I wasn’t able to see this during my first visit in the city because of its location requires me to walk towards the Apugan Hill.

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Fort Santa Agueda Raised Viewing Platform which is the only remains of the fort

When we reached the fort, it has great lookout to enjoy the scenery of Hagatna including Agana Bay, clifflines with Oka Point and Urunao Point including Tumon Bay and of course the far Philippines Sea.

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Cannons at the fort

For Santa Agueda is the only surviving Spanish fort in Hagatna and it served different purposes as the time passes by even though it was fully used as it was built few years (1800) before the Galleon Trade has been stopped (1815). When it was first built, it was used as fortification site to protect governor’s palace and Fort San Rafael. It was mentioned that it was useless when the Galleon Trade was off due to scarcity of supplies which means it doesn’t serve its purpose. During American administration, the fort became signaling station for ships. During Japanese invasion, the fort has been strategic to them and became guns emplacement.

Because the fort sits at the top of Apugan Hill, the fort is famous to visitors of Hagatna as it offers great scenery of western coast of the island.

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With Hagatna

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With Hagatna and Agana Bay

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With Dulce Nombre de Maria Cathedral Basilica

Ricardo J. Bordallo Complex

After leaving Fort Santa Agueda, we took Hwy 7 and ended at Hwy 6. While we were waiting on green light while at the crossing, since I was seating at the front of the car, I had a good look from a distance of Ricardo J. Bordallo Complex where the Governor’s office and Latte of Freedom are located. We crossed Marine Corps Drv towards the said complex. We drove inside it but we never went out of the car, I only had a glimpse of the surroundings from the vehicle.

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Ricardo J. Bordallo Complex

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Latte of Freedom

Asan Beach Park

We enjoyed the coastal view inside the car while our guide were driving along Marine Corps Drv. And then in few minutes from Ricardo J. Bordallo Complex we turned right and parked at Asan Beach Park. Here, I learned a great feat of one of the heroes of my country – Apolinario Mabini. At the park, I learned the place where Mabini has been staying in Guam while he was in exile. I felt proud because one of whom I recognized as hero back home have their statue standing outside the country, an important piece of reminder of my country’s history.

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Mabini Statue and some information of himself to be admired

Another historical importance of Asan Beach Park based on historical records that it is the landing of the American soldier for the Second Battle in Guam in 1944 to take over again the island from Japanese where the latter took it last 1941 from US.

Fort Nuestra Senora de la Soledad

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We were back in the road again, and we were in a road longer than our previous road drive. We went to the pier but seems our guide can’t find what she is looking for. Therefore we went straight to Fort Nuestra Senora de la Soledad, Our Lady of Solitude. The said fort was the last and fourth fortification for galleons between Acapulco, Mexico and Manila, Philippines which has been out of use since 1815.

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Magellan’s Landing

While we were enjoying the scenery at Fort Soledad, our guide also pointed out the location of Magellan’s Landing site when he arrived at Guam.

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Magellan’s Landing

Umatac Bay

While looking for the historical facts about Umatac Bay, I learned how important the bay is and how it was related to my country as well. The bay became supply station for ships or replenishment stop that cross Pacific Ocean during the Galleon Trade period which happened from 1565-1815. I also learned that one shipment from Cavite (the province that I currently live) in Philippines returned from Acapulco as significance of the end of the Galleon Trade in 1815.

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Umatac Bay with Magellan’s Landing and San Dionisio Church

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Umatac Bay from Fort Nuestra Senora de la Soledad

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Fort Santo Angel, Fouha Rock, Facpi Island and Facpi Point

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Umatac Bay

Asan Bay Overlook at Nimitz Hill

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After spending time at Fort Nuestra Senora de la Soledad which located in the south, we drove back north. This time, we visited Asan Bay Overlook at Nimitz Hill. The hill offers the view of War in the Pacific Historical National Park which includes the hill itself down to Asan Bay. The historical artifacts that surrounds the park is to remember how Guam has been recovered back by US from Japanese in 1944. As I mentioned in Asan Bay in the first part of this post, the bay has been the landing of US soldier to defend back Guam from the hands of Japanese.  At the hill, there are photos that portrays how Japanese tried to drive American soldiers to the sea but they failed.

Apra Harbor and Cabras Island

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Below are version of plane view of the what I had seen while I was Asan Bay Overlook.

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Orote Peninsula

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Orote Peninsula with Apra Harbor

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Apra Harbor

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Apra Harbor with Sasa Bay

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Sasa Bay

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Asan Beach Park

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Fisheye Marine Park and Asan Beach Park

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Tepungan Beach Park and Fisheye Marine Park

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Tepungan Beach Park, Fisheye Marine Park and Asan Beach Park

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After leaving Asan Bay Overlook, we has a brief stop as our guide told us about the one of the tunnels that Japanese used when they stayed in the island.

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Fonte Plateau

Libugon Vista Point

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Our last stop for the island tour is Libugon Vista Point where we had a bird’s-eye view of Tumon Bay, Tamuning, island’s international airport and Barrigada which means we can’t get enough of the lookouts that Guam has to offer.

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Tumon Bay Area, Guam International Airport and  Barrigada Heights

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Tumon Bay

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US Navy Hospital

After the tour, I rested in few hours and decided to walked in the beach as my next adventure in the island. Until then.

Panoramic View : Fish Eye Marine Park and Asan Beach Park with Nimitz Hillside

Panoramic View (Post#32) : Fish Eye Marine Park and Asan Beach Park with Nimitz Hillside

Visiting Asan Bay Overlook is a worth to visit not only to realized the history that happens within the area of War in the Pacific National Historical Park but to appreciate beauty that it is now offering to anyone who visit the lookout. The scenery that I saw during the visit is now the contradiction of the historical events happened in the past. These photos are part of Guam Adventure Photo Collection April 2017.

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Enriching Viewpoint : Asan Bay Overlook Memorial Wall

Enriching Viewpoint (Post#4): Asan Bay Overlook Memorial Wall

Probably to some people, Asan Bay Overlook is known to have its amazing scenery since it sits at the ridge line. But, that’s the additional rewards when visiting the overlooking area. But the place has its memorial wall which listed the names who sacrificed related to war from 1941 to 1944, emphasizing the names that fought the Battle of Guam in 1941 and 1944. And within the memorial wall they made emphasis as well as they put the monument dedicated to the first Chamorro U.S. Navy casualties of World War II. These photos are part of Guam Adventure Photo Collection April 2017.

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Discovery : Fort Soledad

Discovery (Post#28) : Fort Soledad

At the time of Spanish colonization, it is commonly learned that a fort was built for a reason to fortify the place. Like Fort Agueda, Fort Soledad (Fort Nuestra Senora de la Soledad), was built with a reason to fortify the Umatac Bay. Since the bay or Umatac itself became the station of ships that cross Pacific Ocean during Galleon trading period, which became a main reason to create a fort. It is also created to protect the once known rich Umatac Village. These photos are part of Guam Adventure Photo Collection April 2017.

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Panoramic View : Umatac Bay

Panoramic View (Post#31) : Umatac Bay

Aside from being considered as Magellan’s Landing site, Umatac Bay was former station of the ships before crossing the Pacific Ocean which used by Galleon trade route between Acapulco and Manila during Spanish period. Most of the ships station here to replenish their boats before embarking towards the vast ocean. These photos are part of Guam Adventure Photo Collection April 2017.

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View At My Window : Magellan’s Landing

View At My Window (Post#29) : Magellan’s Landing

Ferdinand Magellan is not a stranger to me since he is always included in the history subject related to the discovery of my country since Spanish Colonization time, which the same fate happened to Guam not really far from Philippines. When we visited another fort at the southern part of Guam, we passed and appreciated from a distance what Guam call it as Magellan’s Landing. The shore is the one that has been considered as where Magellan landed in the island. The photo is part of Guam Adventure Photo Collection April 2017.

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Chromatic Outlook : Latte of Freedom

Chromatic Outlook (Post#37) : Latte of Freedom

Latte stone has been Chamorro’s sign of identity and seeing this many times while traveling around the island should be a normal thing. The latte stone can also be seen both in cultural and political signs or symbols of Guam. The latte stone is the pillar used as foundation support of Chamorro’s building. They built Latte of Freedom with the same concept in mind when they built Statue of Liberty in New York to welcome European visitors while Latte of Freedom is to welcome Asian visitors to US. These photos are part of Guam Adventure Photo Collection April 2017.

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Panoramic View : Guam’s West Coast

Panoramic View (Post#30) : Guam’s West Coast

When I reached Apugan hill, that’s when I understood why the Fort Santa Agueda has been so popular both for local and foreign visitors because the hill is a great lookout to appreciate the scenery of island’s west coast. At the lookout, Hagatna City, part of Agana Bay, Tumon Bay, Oka Point, Two Lovers Point and Ritidian Point can be seen from a distance. These photos are part of Guam Adventure Photo Collection April 2017.

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Name Of The Place : Fort Santa Agueda

Name Of The Place (Post#34) : Fort Santa Agueda

Fort Santa Agueda  is the last and only surviving Spanish fort in Hagåtña, at the top of Apugan Hill. The fort now commonly called Fort Apugan with strategic view of Hagatna and the western coast of the island. Though the fort has not been maximized its usage when it was built in 1800 due to the Galleon Trade between Acapulco and Manila has been stopped, the fort served different purposes for different times and now registered as park. These photos are part of Guam Adventure Photo Collection April 2017.

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Eco Hiking and Cave Swimming at Pagat

In my second day with Guam Adventures, I did an Eco Hiking Adventure to Pagat Point and a swimming at Pagat Cave. I was only their customer to the said adventure but still they pushed the tour even I was alone who signed-up the tour for that day.

Forgive me as I forgot the name of my guide, but I do remember that he was a mixed Chamorro and Filipino race. His facial features was a familiar one to me as he looks like a Filipino, but he doesn’t speak my language. Three of us went to Pagat. His Japanese woman colleague drove and dropped us to the site which just around 10 minutes away from their headquarters.

The parking was the starting point of the adventure. The hike category was easy to medium but having a guide is a good thing for a new foreign visitor as there is trail that leads to the Pagat Point and leads to the cave which a bit tricky which way you wanted to be first.

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Trails before we reached the Pagat Latte Site

Pagat Latte Site

Along the hike we found an ancient latte stones and some of basalt mortars which both evidences that Pagat was once location of ancient Chamorro Village. Based on history Pagat is one of the four that has been recorded with latte sites on the North East side of the island. “Pagat” means to counsel or advise in Chamorro Language.

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Ancient Basalt Mortar where frogs used it as resting haven for a while.

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Latte Site, where a house stands before as we see 8 pillars

Our trek continues in a densely forest which really great in summer where the hike is really comfortable as the trail covered by trees. I observed during the hike that we were descending and I realized the reason why until we reached Pagat Point.

Pagat Point

When we were out of the forest and as we approached the coast, I saw another spectacular scenery in Yigo Guam. We walked towards what they call the “Arch” where I was amazed how wonderful the scenery when looking down with the arch. Not far from the arch, we rested to enjoy and appreciate the natural beauty of our surroundings. Listening to the waves that struck the coast and the cliff back and forth were really nice to hear. Aside from resting in the area, we had our snacks and photo shots of myself with the scenery. The scenery are the worth prizes or rewards after the hike.

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They call it as Arch with an obvious reason

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Coast

After the Arch scenery, the coast is the next big thing for me. The coastline cliff are all amazing. The scenery is not typical coastal view, the cliff limestone makes it more dramatic. And the waves that strikes back and forth to the coast make it so beautiful that creates variety of hue in the shoreline.

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The limestones along the coast make the scenery so spectacular that I really enjoyed it. Just beware as the limestone may cut your skin if you will not be careful. The scenery makes me want more of it, if only my camera are able to capture all the beauty that I was enjoying at that time.

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If the coast side offers amazing blue color with the shoreline, the land portion of Pagat towards the inland offers surroundings with natural green setting that’s so nice to see.

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After enjoying and appreciating amazing scenic views in Pagat Point, we decided to move again to reach Pagat Cave.

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Pagat Cave

We hiked back from Pagat Point towards the cave. We trekked back by partially ascending but then we descended again until we found the cave. I prepared and put my life vest. Before we entered the cave, we found people going outside and we let them out first before we get in. We talked to the people who came out from the cave. Then, we decided to go inside. My buddy and my guide left his bag in dry area inside the cave before we go to the main area of the cave.

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We went down to the cave and immediately the depth of the water were almost knee-depth. Then we move forward towards the center of the cave where the water is at least my shoulder depth. I am not really good in swimming, I learned the basic swimming from college as my physical education subject. And I was able to do free style in a pool but when the depth of the water is beyond my height, I am not really that confident.

My guide talked a lot of stuff while we both enjoy the water inside the cave. Aside from talking to him with different stuff, I went to the deepest part of the cave and had my souvenir photos.

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After having a great time inside the cave, we decided to go back. One thing that I can say when we went back. If hiking or trekking towards Pagat Point is easy to medium, going back is quite more challenging because anyone will catch their breath as its more on assault hike. Going down is easier than going up.

Note:
Photo(s) with no marker – courtesy of Guam Adventures (licensed photos)

Featuring Our World : Pagat Point

Featuring Our World (Post#7) : Pagat Point

Once we reached the Pagat Point, I fall in love with the place. I remembered what I saw when we stopped a bit in Yigo in the middle of Buggy Off-Road adventure. If the scenery of the coast from the top is amazing the scenery of the coast up close are more than that. The clear ocean water and the waves that strikes the coastal cliff seems to be one of a kind. The way I looked at my surroundings, I thought I was in another world or another planet as for me it was additional paradise that I witnessed. And the uniqueness added to the place are the limestones formed around the area. These photos are part of Guam Adventure Photo Collection April 2017.

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View At My Window : Pagat Arch

View At My Window (Post#28) : Pagat Arch

When we were out of the woods and when we were in an open area, few meters towards what they used to call as Pagat “Arch”, coming from a distance it seems that it was just nothing as I was already amazed with coastal view. But when, I was few steps away to see the water with the said arch, I was ecstatic to see such scenery. I admired the arch and the water seen below which shows how clean and clear the water is. These kind of scenery are one of the reasons I love Pagat Point. These photos are part of Guam Adventure Photo Collection April 2017.

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Discovery : Pagat Latte Site

Discovery (Post#27) : Pagat Latte Site

After hiking for more than half-an hour, in the middle of the forest in Pagat, we reached one of the Latte Site which considered an ancient latte site. Based on history, the latte site is considered lived by people between 10th to 17th century. These Latte stones are the foundation of the Chamorros home. These photos are part of Guam Adventure Photo Collection April 2017.

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Life Of Others : Living Frog at Ancient Basalt Mortar

Life Of Others (Post#11) : Living Frog at Ancient Basalt Mortar

During the hike in Pagat, since the area is protected and being preserve as it is a national historical site, we found a relics of Basalt Mortar used by local Chamorros even before Spaniards arrived. And while my buddy guide telling about the basalt mortar, we found these living organism resting inside the mortar. These photos are part of Guam Adventure Photo Collection April 2017.

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Photo(s) with no marker – courtesy of Guam Adventures (licensed photos)

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Buggy Off-Road Adventure with Coastal Scenic View at Yigo

I was looking for adventure in Guam at the internet and I found Guam Adventures site. They are offering activities that tourist will enjoy. Two things that I did with them, for this post, I focus on Buggy Off-Road adventure. I haven’t tried to do a buggy off-road even I knew that it was available in my country. I haven’t had a chance.

When I was in Guam, when I found the site, I got a chance to experience the buggy off-road ride. Because I don’t know how to drive, I told them that I will join with a guide. The reason I sign up on it because I saw their video advertisement regarding the said adventure and I was curious on their tracks and the site that they stop to enjoy the coastal scenic view of the island.

I joined the 11 AM adventure schedule. They picked me up in my hotel around 10:30 AM and when I arrived at their headquarters I was the only visitor inside the building, after few minutes passed, lots of Japanese visitors came. All of us will have the buggy-off road adventure at the same time. While we were waiting, another group came-in, they were the group which just finished the said buggy-off road adventure. I realized that the Guam Adventures seems famous to the visitors in the island.

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Guam Adventures Headquarters and my group during orientation using the ATV

After they accommodated the previous group, the company’s attention came to us. First, they gave us our helmets and they checked if we have sun glass which I had at that time, they said its good and no need to borrow one from them. Next, we went out of their office and walked towards where the Buggy ATV (all-terrain vehicles) are. They oriented the people who will drive by themselves. They shown the instructions how to use Buggy ATV car. Then, we selected our vehicle. My guide and my driver went to our ATV and we did a test. There is a test track not far from their office to check that all in the group are comfortable driving the Buggy ATV. After some few rounds in the practice tracks, we started the adventure. At first, we drove to the part of race track. Next, we took the off-road tracks, some are elevated, some are inclined, some are mixed plain and some are zigzag tracks.

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We entered the forest track which I felt more exciting. Though the tracks were dusty at that time, I still enjoyed it. My guide asked me to rate the driving adventure that I like and I told him next level before the extreme level adventure. After that, he did some tricks to make the driving Buggy ATV more fun.

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After driving at forest track, we were back in the off-road tracks. We drove farther and father than the previous tracks we had. Then, the group stopped and I thought that we will just rest in few minutes. Then we walked few meters from where we parked our vehicle towards the viewpoint. And when I saw the coast, I felt amazed. I was standing in a lookout point to enjoy the panoramic scenery of North-East Coast of the island from the top.

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When I saw the coastal scenery, I can’t stop but to admire it. All of us in the group took our time to take lots of photos. Everyone has their time to stand and position to have a photo with wonderful scenery.

After we were done with amazing scenery, we drove back and returned to where we started. Even on our way back, the driving and riding experience were still enjoyable. We drove from off-road tracks to race tracks to practice/test tracks until we were back to the adventure’s headquarters.

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Note:
Photo(s) with no marker – courtesy of Guam Adventures (licensed photos)

Juncture With Folk(s) : At Guam Adventures (Yigo)

Juncture With Folk(s) (Post#5) : At Guam Adventures (Yigo)

When I am in an adventure tour, its good to be with people. So after buggy-off road ride, we had a group picture as our souvenir while at Guam Raceway International where the Guam Adventure headquarter is located. The photo is part of Guam Adventures Photo Collection April 2017.

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Photo(s) with no marker – courtesy of Guam Adventures (licensed photos)

View At My Window : Guam Adventures Buggy Off-Road Track

View At My Window (Post#27) : Guam Adventures Buggy Off-Road Track

One of the things that I enjoyed aside from riding the buggy off-road ATV vehicle are the Guam Adventure tracks that we used to enjoy both driving and riding the vehicle. At first, it was a race road track, then it followed by an off-road track which includes a forest track. I enjoyed the most was when we entered the forest track. These photos are part of Guam Adventure Photo Collection April 2017.

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Picture Frame : North-East Coast Scenic View at Yigo

Picture Frame  (Post#6): North-East Coast Scenic View at Yigo

At the farthest point of the buggy off-road track, we had a chance to rest a bit, unknowingly that we rested at Yigo part where we can enjoy the North-East Coast of the island including the view of the vast Pacific Ocean. It was amazing scenery that I can think that it was kind of paradise. These photos are part of Guam Adventure Photo Collection April 2017.

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Transportation : Yigo, Guam – Buggy ATV (All Terrain Vehicle)

Transportation (Post#7) : Yigo, Guam – Buggy ATV (All Terrain Vehicle)

Riding a vehicle is also an adventure, during my holiday trip in Guam, I tried to experience to ride a Buggy ATV (All-Terrain Vehicle). Since it was summer in the island, our off-road ride adventure was not a dirty one even there were tracks that we passed specifically inside the forest area that are dusty and I can imagine in wet season it will be a muddy one. I guess that will be more fun right? The photo is part of Guam Adventure Photo Collection April 2017.

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