USS Arizona Memorial

April 19, 2011
by Randy Miller

Visit the USS Arizona Memorial

The USS Arizona Memorial is located at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.  The memorial is built on top of the sunken Battleship USS Arizona located on Battleship Row at Ford Island.

A visit to the USS Arizona Memorial is part of a 1 hour and 15 minute program that includes an introduction by a National Park Ranger, an impressive 23-minute documentary film, a shuttle boat to the USS Arizona Memorial where you will board the memorial. The only way to access the Arizona Memorial is by this Navy Shuttle boat on this tour.

The USS Arizona Memorial is a monument that sits above the sunken hull of the battleship USS Arizona. It was built in 1962 and declared a National Historic Landmark in 1989. The memorial gives a feeling of serenity and pride. Alfred Pries, the architect who designed the memorial intended the structure to Sag in the middle and stand strong and vigorous on both ends, expressing initial defeat and ultimate victory.

  • The first room you enter in the USS Arizona Memorial holds flags of the states from which the eight battleships of battleship row were named and a state flag from Utah from which the USS Utah was named. The USS Utah was not on battleship row, but still rests in Pearl Harbor and is memorialized on the far side of Ford Island.
  • The second room is the large open area where you can reflect quietly and view the remains of the sunken USS Arizona below.  Ceremonies are held in the Assembly Room.
  • In the back of the memorial is a marble wall with the names of the 1,177 Sailors and Marines who died on the USS Arizona during the attack on Pearl Harbor. This room is called The Shrine Room and it also honors the men who served on the USS Arizona and survived, but have chosen to be interred along with their shipmates.

Manning the Rail

If you are visiting the USS Arizona Memorial when a ship is entering Pearl Harbor you may witness sailors “manning the rail”.  This is a beautiful tradition that honors the men of the USS Arizona and all of those who lost their lives at Pearl Harbor. Sailors stand along the rails of their ship and salute the memorial.

USS Arizona Memorial Reservations

With over 2 million visitors per year, Pearl Harbor is the most visited site in all of the Hawaiian Islands. The Arizona Memorial program capacity is limited to 150 people at a time.  Because of the limited capacity, programs often sell out months in advance. It is highly suggested that you book your tour in advance to avoid the disappointment of missing this important historical site.

To make reservations for a USS Arizona Memorial Tour choose any of our Pearl Harbor Tours. Every Pearl Harbor Tour includes the USS Arizona Memorial Program tickets. The 75 minute program includes a 25 minute film, a Navy boat ride to the USS Arizona Memorial, and time on the Memorial.


As a national park site, the program is designed to accommodate those needing additional accessibility.  The restrooms, theater, exhibits, bookstore, information desks, Navy shuttle boats, and Arizona Memorial are all fully-accessible to visitors in wheelchairs.

For visitors with hearing impairments, the documentary shown in the theater is fully-captioned (in English).There is an induction loop for use with hearing aids. Visually-impaired visitors will find signage in braille in addition to tactile models of various interpretive resources throughout the site.

Non-English Language Tours

An audio tour is available in seven languages: English, French, Japanese, Korean, Mandarin, German, and Spanish. This audio tour is developed with a fascinating narration of the museum, visitor center, and waterfront exhibits, as well as on the shuttle boats and on the Memorial.

You can pick up your headset for the audio tour near the Information Desk at the Visitor Center.

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