Discover the history and the mystery of Saipan!

Customer Testimonials

What people say about my tours:

In Search of Amelia Earhart

visitors on the Amelia Earhart tour of Saipan
Visitor, Reginald, tours the Old Japanese Jail where it's said Amelia Earhart was detained after her capture by Japanese authorities even after the rest of the world assumed she had perished at sea....

90-year old veteran, Lloyd Glick, experienced the personalized WWII Pilgrimage of a lifetime on Saipan!

Lloyd Glick and Judy with Saipan tour guide Walt Goodridge
WWII Veteran Lloyd Glick and wife, Judy, experiencing Saipan at their own pace upon Lloyd's return by cruise ship to the island 70 years after participating in the naval bombing of the island during the Battle of Saipan. Photo: Jim Davies
Lloyd glick
Note: Lloyd and I communicated by email for several months prior to his arrival. He sent me detailed recollections, facts, figures, war-related and cultural triva of that time in American life, and even photos of his early life and his time on the battleship, USS North Carolina. Using all of that fascinating info--and unbeknownst to Lloyd while I was doing it--I compiled his 1945 war experience, and chronicled his hero's return in 2014 and, once he landed on Guam, I presented him with a personalized surprise: a paperback book I rush printed entitled From Bugle Boy to Battleship! Read more about the hero's welcome on Saipan, and the special treat I arranged on Guam (See Saipan Tribune tribute: pdf jpg)
(Now, I can't promise you that I'll write a book about your life when you come to Saipan, but we can discuss it when I see you!)

Denise's first-ever trip outside of China was to Saipan!!

Denise from Nanjing on Saipan with Saipan tour guide, Walt Goodridge, 丹尼斯从南京塞班岛
Denise from Nanjing with her mom!
"塞班岛的美丽是无法用照片诠释的。那种沁入心里的蓝色是那样震撼。这座经历过二战战火的小岛,如今以它独特的美丽和热情在等待我们。 广告:本次游玩的导游牙买加人Walt,给了我们很特别的体验,他非常客观地介绍了这坐岛的状况,从特别的角度,让我们看到了这坐岛的美丽。" (translation)

Patrick Hayes, son of a Battle of Saipan veteran, came in search of answers

Patrick Hayes, son of Jesse B. Hayes, Jr. came in search of answers
Lead Ranger Brooke Nevitt, Patrick Hayes, and author/tour guide Walt Goodridge lay a wreath for Jesse B. Hayes, Jr. at American Memorial Park's Court of Honor; Saipan, Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Jan 12, 2018
"Hi Walt,
thank you for the impressive effort you put forth on my behalf yesterday on the tour. You certainly planned the tour around my obvious desires and fulfilled all of the curiosity and then some that I had when I arrived on the island of Saipan as a son of a critically wounded Marine from the 2nd Marine Division. I leave the island enriched with historical data that can live on for generations in my family. Thanks Again!"-- Patrick Hayes (READ MORE and see the article that appeared in Saipan's local newspapers!

The China Travel Channel had a great time

观看中文短片 (View video narrated in Chinese; sountrack Mine by Phoebe Ryan)
If not visible, download here

Hasse from the Netherlands visited Saipan, Tinian and Rota!

Hasse from the Netherlands with Saipan, tinian and rota tour guide Walt Goodridge
Battle of Saipan relic hunter, Fabian, Hasse and Walt
Article about Hasse in the Saipan Tribune

Kay from Guam had a great "Tours by Natives" adventure!

Kay from Guam enjoying her tours by natives experience on Saipan
Kay (in the white "I Saipan" t-shirt) with internationally famous Carolinian performer, Gus Kaipat (in yellow) and family! (Ask about Tours by Natives™)
"I had an unbelievable time on Saipan!!! Thank you so much for all of your help with organizing such an awesome experience! I will definitely write more later, but I just couldn't let one more second go by without letting you know how much I appreciate what you've done!!!"--Kay H. Read what Kay wrote later!

Al and Reginald took the WWII tour

Al and Reg on Saipan
Al, Reg, Fabian the relic hunter and Walt on Saipan
"I’ve been to Japan over a half-dozen times over the past decade. Recently, I learned how easy it is to visit Guam via Tokyo’s Narita airport. For this year’s Japan trip, I decided to do just that and visit Saipan and Tinian as well. The overriding reason was to visit the latter two islands as my uncle participated in their invasion by U.S. forces (his unit was the 534th Amphibian Tractor Battalion) during WWII. He lived a long and full life, but like many vets, he did not discuss his service. So, this visit was very personal. I am so happy that I learned of Walt and DiscoverSaipan.com, and with a friend booked Walt’s personalized tour. Although the tour had a WWII site focus, Walt ensured we also visited other sites that helped us also better understand Saipan, its history, and its citizens and their culture. This comprehensive tour let us take many photos, which will be much easier to caption, remember, describe to friends due to Walt’s meticulously timestamped post-tour itinerary. He even sketched an itinerary for our next-day’s visit to Tinian. Walt was open to all questions, and he even now continues to provide us more information and amplification via his post-tour research updates. Having Walt as a tour guide was like having another close friend in the tour group to share the experiences. Walt and DiscoverSaipan provide an excellent personalized tour of Saipan that my friend and I thoroughly enjoyed and learned much. Because of Walt and his focus on a personalized tour experience, I felt my personal mission was fulfilled and that I made a new friend. I highly recommend Walt and DiscoverSaipan.com! "--Reginald R. (April 2017)

Bill and Antoinette did Saipan AND Tinian! (Feb 2018)

Bill and Antoinette on Saipan
Bill, Fabian the relic hunter, Antoinette and Walt on Saipan
"We have been on many tours in many countries and this tour is among the best. Walt is a transplant from Jamaica via NYC but has fallen in love with Saipan. He is incredibly knowledgeable and enthusiastically shares that knowledge. He is incredibly attentive to every detail. The tour was exhaustive and insightful. We felt we really knew Saipan at its conclusion. If I had a complaint, it would be the high cost. Although initially reluctant because of the price, we are glad we chose to do the tour."

R.F. from Hong Kong enjoyed the activities!

R.F. from Hong Kong enjoyed the activities on Saipan!
"Thanks for the photos, and thanks again for your kind serving and arrangement of our tour. We had a great time in Saipan, and too bad we just don't have enough time to taste the place. Hope we have chance to visit the place again."--R.F., Hong Kong
jian on saipan
"Thank you for sending the pictures and also your kindness and help during the trip. It was a good experience for us. I would be happy to see you again when I return to Saipan in the future. I wish you success!"--Jian G., Weihai, Shandong, China more
p.s. WeLoveSaipan.com is really cool!
dmitry on saipan
Hi Walt, Thanks a lot for house and tour of island! It's what I really want! :) "--Dmitry M., Khabarovsk, Russian Federation
bruno on saipan
Bruno on Saipan!
BEFORE:
"Hi Walt, We are coming to Saipan just for 3 days to run away from the busy/crazy life of Seoul. The world is big, but we decided to come to Saipan without any clues about the island, or the things to do and visit. Your website about discovering Saipan just gave me the will to visit the island!"
AFTER:
"Thank you for everything and see you there next time ! :)"-- Bruno Le Toullec, The French Embassy in Korea
australians on saipan shore excursion, cruise ship shore excursion on saipan
Thank you so much! This is more than we've seen and done on any other port on our cruise! [Kagman, Forbidden Island, Tank Beach, Grotto, Suicide, Banzaii, Memorial Park] - Bruce No.1, Bev, Jill, Bruce No.2 from Australia; along with the Sun Princess in the harbor over Bruce No.1's shoulder

"Kind words from Ukraine, via New York"

"I moved to Saipan from New York in late 2009, and was very fortunate to come across one of a number of very informative web sites maintained by Walt Goodridge, director of DiscoverSaipan, that are dedicated to Saipan. I wrote to him shortly, and was amazed to discover what a caring, knowledgeable, and accommodating person he is. From the moment I met Walt all my uncertainties and questions about my new life on Saipan have disappeared. Walt came up with a myriad of lodging options for me, which met my budget, and the choice was basically between "very good" and "even better". Walt knows the best places on Saipan for lodging, shopping, and entertainment that will not cost you a fortune. From telecommunications, to farmers' markets, to postal service – Walt's got the answer as to what, where, how much, and what's best. He anticipates any pitfalls you may encounter arising from your newness to the island, and is swift in helping you avoid same. Most of all, he is down to earth, gracious, very genuine and easy to communicate with, optimistic and unmercenary person. In my opinion Walt is the best guide on the island, by far, that you may find. At times forgetting of his own needs, and generous with his time and knowledge, he is at all times concerned that your experience on Saipan is the best possible one. Thank you Walt!!!" --Alexander P., New York
cristy on saipan
World travelers to over 129 countries discover Saipan!"
Read Cristy and Ricky's revealing story from the Saipan Tribune
[photo of shore excursion visitors saipan,australians on saipan tour cruise ship]
"41 Australians and the Jamaican on Saipan!!" Read the adventure of a big tour I did for a cruise ship group "The Short Happy Tale of 41 Australians and...."
[photo of Hawaii professor on saipan tour]
Visiting professor on Saipan!
BEFORE:
"Hi Walt, I'm a history professor at Hawaii Pacific University in Honolulu, and I'm doing a research project on government systems in the Pacific. So, I'm interested in historical sites and buildings related especially to government history (and WWII history)...."
AFTER:
"Walt provided an excellent tour of Saipan. It was both interesting and informative. I wanted to see a number of sites off the beaten path, and Walt did the research to insure that we found those places easily. What I especially liked was that Walt personalized my tour based on my interests. He's also a wealth of knowledge about the island and has a genuine passion for what he does. If you really want to see what Saipan has to offer, go with Walt!"
[photo of Eric the adventurous on Saipan]
Eric, the adventurous!
I discovered Saipan through my interest in off-the-beaten path travel, world geography, World War II history, Manhattan Project history, and island life. While Guam is moderately well known, the remaining Marianas islands are often overlooked. Saipan is a tropical Pacific island where US ditizens can enter with little to no hassle or visa limitations. Specifically, I discovered Saipan in 2012 while researching potential side trips from a work trip to Guam. I have already visited Palau, Pohnpei, Chuuk, Majuro, and lived on Johnston Atoll so the Northern Marianas were a natural extension. Walt's user friendly website will assist other travellers who might be less familiar with Oceania.
"The best part of my trip was interacting with other people on Saipan, whether they be hoteliers at Mango Resort, Walt (guide extraordinaire), or the staff at American Memorial Park. Of course, this is set in an amazing island atmosphere with gorgeous Pacific sunrises and sunsets. From the flame trees to the mango trees, from the World War II bunkers to ancient Chamorro stones, Saipan has it all. Even though I am an experienced solo traveller, it was fun to spend a day without having to be completely immersed in the decision making. I would definitely recommend Walt's guide services."--Eric
[photo of Wolfgang and Gloria on Saipan]
"Wolfgang and Gloria in the woods!"
[photo of Kay and Barbara on Saipan]
Kay and Barbara at Bird Island !
[photo of Del, Linda, Del, Patricia and Marcia on Saipan with Saipan tour guide Walt Goodridge]
Globetrekkers, Patricia, Neil, Del, Linda and Marcia (front) on Saipan!
[photo of Del, Linda, Del, Patricia and Marcia on Tinian]
"Tinian native tour guide, Laila, describes daily life (and where to find the island's world famous hot peppers) to Marcia, Patricia, Linda and Del! who took a Tinian day trip from Saipan"
"Ask me about a Tinian tour, as well as adventures on the remote, pristine island of Pagan!--Walt
[photo of D.D. on Saipan]
D's two-day WWII tour ends with a sunset on Saipan
I was surprised at the amount of history, both World War II and island history that Walt was able to orally pass on as well as show me. Saipan and Tinian are different from Guam, Walt was able to explain the different backgrounds and how they play out in today's society. Reading about the history and then daily life of a location like Saipan doesn't have the same impact as being there, touching history and putting ones self in the place where that history happened. That's why I went, and that's what Walt was able to deliver for me. Thanks for a fascinating and fun two days!"--D.D.
Read all of D's testimonial! (click once to expand)
Click again to hide this section
"I came to Saipan and Tinian to explore the history of the Mariana Islands and focus on visiting historic sites from World War II. I desired a tour guide, not because I was afraid to travel alone but because of the desire to see off the beaten path locations, gain local knowledge and not have to do even more research into times, directions and the location safety. I'd never met or spoken with Walt before and, going only by his website, took my chances."
"Walt delivered and exceeded on all expectations for my two day tour. Things started right with Walt awaiting me at the Saipan airport, getting us over to Tinian and seeing all of the sites I desired to see along with many other hidden locations that where unknown to me including the SEABEEs monument and both of Tinian's Shinto Shrines. We returned to Saipan early the first day in order to make the documentary at the American Memorial Park before they closed at 5pm (local knowledge kicking in). Walt dropped me off at my hotel, and I was off to dinner on my own."
"Punctually the next morning, Walt was waiting for me in a car to start my exploration of Saipan. We took a quick 15 minute detour to the harbor to assist two customers from another group who were having a small issue, and Walt was there to help out. We proceeded south visiting World War II sites and other Saipan related historical/scenic locations I didn't know about ahead of time including the garment factory district, Ladder Beach and the Old Japanese Jail. We drove, hiked at various spots and sometimes stopped for the photo opportunity. Walt was never pushy and listened to what I wanted to do, and if I wanted more or less time at a location, he was happy to oblige. We finished the tour after seeing everything on my World War II list along with much much more. We arrived at the airport with plenty of time to catch my flight and reflect on the wonderful two day trip."
[photo of Christian and Claudia on Saipan]
"When I see beauty like this I feel like Nature has forgiven the world."--Claudia Claudia and Christian from Germany
[photo of the Schmidts on Saipan]
The Schmidt family from Japan enjoying Saipan's secret cave pool as part of their Saipan in a Day & day trip to Tinian adventure
[photo of Jermaine and Nikki on Saipan]
Jermaine and Nikki from Shanghai by way of Vancouver!
[photo of Lyn and Judi on Saipan]
Lyn and Judi on Saipan
We really enjoyed getting to meet you and hope that we can join up again sometime in another part of the world. You truly showed us a local friendship we were longing for. Thank you for all you did to make our time here enjoyable and for your continued support through the health information. We feel truly blessed to have crossed paths with you :-) We got the great pics of our tour, and thanks for being such an amazing host." --Lyn and Judi
[photo of Maxine with Saipan tour guide Walt Goodridge]
Maxine on Saipan
"Hi Walt, Thanks so much for that wonderful, personalized tour of Saipan. I did get the maps and your sweet card when I checked out and thank you for them. It was a great day which I will remember with fondness for the rest of my life. Good luck to you in all of your various endeavors and I hope that you will have many more travelers heading your way. Fondly, Maxine" (Oct 2015)
Cruise ship customer on Saipan
Mary Tiffany on a star sand beach on Saipan
Star sand on Saipan
Star sand under a microscope. Photo: cruise ship guest, Mary Tiffany
EXCERPT: When you see sand stars, you may be looking at some of the oldest fossils known to man. There is fossil evidence of them dating back 550 million years, and molecular evidence suggesting 800 million to 1.2 billion years. The best time to find some is after a typhoon when the raging ocean has washed them up from its depths as the sea bottom lets loose some of its treasures. One reason they are so abundant on beaches in the Indo Pacific Oceanic area is that they prefer shallow waters, often combining with sea algae anchoring them – so you might find some living ones if you look very closely.[Excerpt from this site]
Walt provided my wife and I an excellent tour of Saipan and Tinian. We did a self guided tour of Saipan, on our first day. Having done this, when Walt took us around Saipan on day two we modified some stops to our great satisfaction. His excellent narratives of WW2 sites as well as history of Saipan were absolutely great. Walt was even able to get us in to see a private collection of WW2 artifacts. Really cool stuff...Our next day started with a really great airplane flight to Tinian. If anyone goes to Saipan, you also have to go to Tinian. Between both islands, Walt made history come alive. All I can say is Walt made this a very cool experience."--Gary and Nancy, Feb 2017
Here is feedback I've received in my role as....

...a Video shoot Location Manager

I write on behalf of ZANYBROS staff thanking you for the great collaboration during pre-production and production days. We are very satisfied with the results and excited for future possibilities to film on Saipan. As this big production consisted of 4 different nationalities, languages and cultures, I am glad things went as well as they did. Mr Kim, Lee and Nomura give their best wishes to you and your family as well. Hope to work together again soon. --Angelina Foss, Overseas Marketing Producer, ZanyBros on Facebook

...a WWII Tour Guide (on Tripadvisor.com)


MommaD wrote a review Feb 2020
Canada
DO NOT HESITATE BOOKING THIS EXPERIENCE
Review of: Saipan in a Day-World War II Pilgrimage Tour
We hope to encourage you to book this tour. With Walt waiting for us at the port in a private rented van, with his the full day itinerary he planned & arranged, anxiously waiting to share his wealth of knowledge and experience; our ship could not dock due to rough seas. Months earlier, we looked for the perfect tour of Saipan, this was it! Booking the tour on Pay Pal was simple. With the unfortunate event of aborting the port, Walt refunded our money back within a day with no fees for an FULL REFUND. We know you should book this Saipan tour as we experienced his associated tour in Guam, with Ed two days earlier. Wonderful experience. Do not hesitate to book both!

mmtrip wrote a review Feb 2020
Kaneohe, Hawaii
Amazing, Thorough Private Tour of Saipan
Review of: Saipan in a Day-World War II Pilgrimage Tour
I can't say enough wonderful things about Walt and this private tour. We were picked up at the airport and spent an entire day catered to what we wanted to see and do.

We enjoyed a personal experience at a private collection of WWII artifacts along with a private viewing of the "long" version of the film at the War Memorial. Not to mention the golf cart trip out onto a luxury golf course to view an amazingly intact rusted tank. No artifact was too obscure or distant to find. Thank goodness Walt doesn't swim or he would have had us out in the water swimming to the abandoned tanks on the reef! I mean this in a good way.

We watched and spoke to local canoe carvers, saw beatiful beaches and even climbed a few rocks here and there for a better view of things.

There is no way we could have gone to the places we went and have seen all that we saw without Walt's insider knowledge. He is a smart guy who has an interesting perspective on life.

If you have one day to spend on Saipan, this is the way to do it!

X4288QVvickie wrote a review Feb 2020
Clifton, Virginia
EASIEST REFUND EVER
Review of: Saipan in a Day-World War II Pilgrimage Tour
We were really looking forward to our full day tour with Walt and had prepaid months prior for the privilege. Unfortunately our ship could not dock because of rough seas. Although Walt had hired a van and been waiting at the dock, he processed a full refund immediately upon learning that we were unable to come ashore. It was more than generous considering he had incurred expenses. He is great to deal with and we hope to get to Saipan in the future and will surely book his tour. Thank you Walt for the FULL REFUND!

Samuel T wrote a review Jan 2020
Dubai, Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Amazing Tour Amazing Tour guide best worth every penny
Personalized experience this man knows every inch of these islands and the hundreds of years of history behind everything. VERY WELL RECOMMENDED YOU WILL GET AN EXPERIENCE YOU CANT JUST BY SIMPLY googling or trip advisor lists

DMc13 wrote a review Apr 2019
Los Angeles, California
Fantastic tour of Saipan and WWII sites
Review of: Saipan in a Day-World War II Pilgrimage Tour
My 15 year old son and I toured Saipan with Walt in March 2019. I was impressed with Walt from the first emails we exchanged about setting up the tour. He was incredibly responsive, informative, and focused on understanding our interests so he could tailor the tour to us.

Walt met us at the Saipan airport and confirmed our goals for the day. He made a special effort to understand my son's objectives for the tour. Walt was a friendly, well-informed and tireless leader, taking us to more than 20 sites in the course of the day. There is no way we could've seen half of the sites in the same amount of time if we'd toured on our own. Two things made Walt's tour particularly valuable. He arranged a few private meetings with Saipan residents who shared unique aspects of Saipan and military history which were real high points of the tour and gave us insights into the place far beyond what we could've discovered on our own. Second, Walt brings a unique perspective of someone who has lived elsewhere and now made his home in Saipan. He loves Saipan but can also talk objectively about the island based on his broad experience.

Walt is also available for tours to Tinian. We did not engage him for that but he generously shared his insights about Tinian and walked us through an itinerary that we could follow. Having spent the day with him on Saipan, I know now we could've had a much richer experience of Tinian if he had guided us there as well.

I'm usually skeptical of individual tour guides, but I can't recommend Walt highly enough for travelers of any age who want to understand the history and culture of the Marianas.

johnbarrygrehan wrote a review Mar 2019
Brighton, United Kingdom
THE WAR IN THE PACIFIC
Review of: Saipan in a Day-World War II Pilgrimage Tour
The one day Saipan military history tour with Walt far exceeded my expectations. I was impressed with his knowledge but it was his easy manner and the way in which he was genuinely happy to take as long as we wanted without rushing us along which was particularly pleasing. I am sure there is no better tour of Saipan. John Grehan

Brian Beck wrote a review Jan 2019
Excellent tour for a new resident
Review of: Saipan in a Day-World War II Pilgrimage Tour
I am new resident to Saipan, and found Walt's tour to be very informative and specifically scoped to helping me acclimate to my new community. Everything was custom, and accurate in terms of information shared. If you haven't already done so, I highly recommend picking up his book "Saipan Living - Relocation Guide." I also found that to be very informative and accurate. Thanks Walt!

PreciousRayStewart
Atlanta, Georgia
Reviewed October 25, 2018
Wonderful Tour - Saipan In A Day With Walt
We had a very short time in Saipan and wanted to make sure we saw everything we could and Walt made that happen. Before the tour he responded to my many e-mails and answered all questions in a timely fashion. We found out that we were all from Jamaica. So probably for the first time ever there were 3 Jamaicans on Saipan at the same time. LOL. Having a private tour was the way to go but having Walt as our tour guide made the tour so much better!! We saw every inch of Saipan, took gorgeous photos, learned so much history & made great memories. We were able to ask Walt any question but his age. Oh and you better believe I asked some personal questions. LOL. We had some deep, thought provoking & funny conversations. We thought Guam was beautiful and Walt showed us how beautiful Saipan was also. We were able to go to a lot of locations that the big tour buses can’t so we saw much more than other tourists. I would highly recommend this tour to anyone visiting Saipan!!
Walt - Thanks again for a wonderful tour. Hafa Adai and nuff respect mi Jamaican bredren.

Paul S
Reviewed October 10, 2018 via mobile
Saipan with Walt
It was a great trip! Walt took us to all the best spot of the island and told us about their history. We liked the flexibility of the private tour since we could choose our route and stay at each spot as long as we wanted. Definitely recommend to see the island with Walt!

billabbottmd
Albuquerque, New Mexico, United States
Reviewed February 28, 2018
Saipan in a Day tailored to your interests
We have been on many tours in many countries and this tour is among the best. Walt is a transplant from Jamaica via NYC but has fallen in love with Saipan. He is incredibly knowledgeable and enthusiastically shares that knowledge. He is incredibly attentive to every detail. The tour was exhaustive and insightful. We felt we really knew Saipan at its conclusion. If I had a complaint, it would be the high cost. Although initially reluctant because of the price, we are glad we chose to do the tour.

Darla P
Cincinnati
Reviewed January 29, 2018 via mobile
Military tour of WWII
My father was a Marine in the 2nd division who was part the beachhead assault in the Battle of Saipan 73 yrs ago. He was critically wounded on the third day of the battle. As with most men of his generation he never spoke of his battle rigors other than to say he was just a Marine doing his duty for his brethren and country. Therefore I placed a great deal of responsibility on Walt the tour guide to fill in the voids and educate me about battle sites and geography. I submitted questions to him prior to my arrival. It was very clear that he had research the particulars and more. When I left the island I was enriched in Spirit and knowledge that will live on for generations in my family. Thanks Walt!!!!

LaurieH295
Reviewed January 14, 2018
Excellent tour and guide!
Review of: Saipan in a Day-Amelia Earhart tour
Walt provided a full day of sights to see and had a wealth of information about Saipan. It was a thoroughly enjoyable day. I highly recommend Walt and his tours!

LaurettaE
Three Rivers, Michigan
Reviewed August 8, 2017
100% Trustworthy
Ever wonder what would happen to your online booking payment if your trip was canceled at the last minute? It happened to me and I certainly was glad I had booked my tour with Walt Goodrich [sic], Discover Saipan. Our cruise ship could not dock because of bad weather. Would our very large tour group get a refund? Even though this cancellation undoubtedly caused him and his team big problems and a lot of cash out-of-pocket, Walt was very gracious. I was impressed by his handling of the situation and his follow through. If booking tours over the Internet makes you the least bit uneasy, choose Discover Saipan. Everything about this business is first-class! You are in good hands with Walt!

RadRoentgen
Frederic, Wisconsin
Reviewed April 27, 2017
Excellent experience with Saipan tour led by Walt and DiscoverSaipan.com.
I’ve been to Japan over a half-dozen times over the past decade. Recently, I learned how easy it is to visit Guam via Tokyo’s Narita airport. For this year’s Japan trip, I decided to do just that and visit Saipan and Tinian as well. The overriding reason was to visit the latter two islands as my uncle participated in their invasion by U.S. forces (his unit was the 534th Amphibian Tractor Battalion) during WWII. He lived a long and full life, but like many vets, he did not discuss his service. So, this visit was very personal. I am so happy that I learned of Walt and Discover Saipan, and with a friend booked Walt’s personalized tour. Although the tour had a WWII site focus, Walt ensured we also visited other sites that helped us also better understand Saipan, its history and its citizens. This comprehensive tour let us take many photos, which will be much easier to caption, remember, describe to friends due to Walt’s meticulously timestamped post-tour itinerary. He even sketched an itinerary for our next-day’s visit to Tinian. Walt was open to all questions, and he even now continues to provide us more information and amplification via his post-tour research updates. Having Walt as a tour guide was like having another close friend in the tour group to share the experiences. Walt and Discover Saipan provide an excellent personalized tour of Saipan that my friend and I thoroughly enjoyed and learned much. Because of Walt and his focus on a personalized tour experience, I felt my personal mission was fulfilled and that I made a new friend. I highly recommend Walt and DiscoverSaipan!

...a WWII Tour Guide (on Google.com)

Chris Puleo
We had only a day and a half in Saipan and Walt managed to arrange a terrific tour to see all of the important WWII sites in that time. He picked us up at the airport and made sure we got back their in time for our flight the next day. We also decided to include a short but very memorable visit to Tinian in that time. Saipan is terrific but the history and impact of the events that took place on Tinian made that a very worthwhile addition to our trip. Walt recreates the events that happened at each site so you can better understand what was happening during those critical times. We would highly recommend using Walt and his company when visiting the island.
Daniel Burnham
Walt and I had a grand time together. I'm glad that I finally decided to visit Tinian--I was on the fence about including it in my itinerary, but it really turned out to be the highlight of my time in Guam and the Northern Marianas. Highly recommended!
Gledsie Stewart
We had a very short time in Saipan and wanted to make sure we saw everything we could and Walt made that happen. Before the tour he responded to my many e-mails and answered all questions in a timely fashion. We found out that we were all from Jamaica. So probably for the first time ever there were 3 Jamaicans on Saipan at the same time. LOL. Having a private tour was the way to go but having Walt as our tour guide made the tour so much better!! We saw every inch of Saipan, took gorgeous photos, learned so much history & made great memories. We were able to ask Walt any question but his age. Oh and you better believe I asked some personal questions. We had some deep, thought provoking & funny conversations. We thought Guam was beautiful and Walt showed us how beautiful Saipan was also. We were able to go to a lot of locations that the big tour buses can’t so we saw much more than other tourists. I would highly recommend this tour to anyone visiting Saipan!!
Walt - Thanks again for a wonderful tour. Hafa Adai and nuff respect mi Jamaican bredren.
M M
Walt did a great job for me. Picked me up at the airport and proceeded with a very organized tour of the Island and of special interest to me the WWII sites and a private collection .Very professional and knowledgeable. Highly recommended.
Gary Parsons
Walt was a wonderful guide. Before we came, Walt coordinated through email so we knew we had the tour we wanted. During the tour of Saipan and Tinian, Walt tailored what we did to fit our exact interest. I would recommend Walt to anyone. He knows his stuff...
Hasse Wiersma
What a great experience! I always want a tour different from anything else and Walt directly understood what I wanted. We had a great long day trip on Saipan where I really saw EVERYTHING. The other day we went to Tinian, the island that changed history, where he showed me around to all the spots that you can think of that are of interest including a few secret spots. Well done and well communicated!
Cathie Slota
We used Walt's company for a tour both on Saipan & Guam. And he did not let us down. In response to an email with questions about the tour Walt responded with an email immediately as well as a phone call from Saipan to see if I had any more questions. I was so impressed that while on our cruise I passed his info on to others who also signed up. We had 4 vans on Saipan and 2 on Guam. His love and knowledge of Saipan was evident througout the tour (more than our money's worth). He hired another guide to assist him on Guam. Ed also shared his expertise and even let us stop at a store to buy the "famous Spain." We were interested in WWII history and he showed us many sights as well as interesting facts not found in books. I can, with no hesitation, recommend both tours.
Lloyd & Judy Glick
I met Walt a year ago this month. My wife and I were booking a cruise through Crystal Cruises, from Long Beach, CA, to Tokyo, with one=day stops at several of the Pacific islands where I had fought during WWII. Due to age and some other restrictions, we did not want to sign up for tours which Crystal was sponsoring, as I really only wanted to visit those sights which related to my Navy service. Hence, I went on line and searched for a private guide who would accompany us during ship stops on Guam and Saipan. I spoke with Walt Goodridge by phone. He understood exactly what we were looking for and quoted a fair price for his services. Walt met our ship on its arrival at Guam. He had arranged for a representative of the National Park Service to spend the day with us and, with Walt, to take us to the places we were hoping to visit. I could not have conceived a better tour. Our ship left Guam just after dinner. The next day we awoke to find the ship docked in Saipan. Walt was waiting right there on the dock. He spent the whole day with us and, using his comfortable vehicle, took us completely around the island and made sure that we covered all the sights that related to the WWII invasion and battles on Saipan. He was extremely knowledgeable about the history of not only Saipan but the entire Commonwealth of the Northern Marianas Islands. We left Walt late that afternoon at the gangway of our ship. We departed feeling that we were leaving a friend behind. I would recommend Walt as a guide for any of my friends contemplating a visit to the NMI. I can’t imagine that anyone would know more about the Islands than Walt, nor how to enhance the pleasure of visiting there.--Lloyd Glick

...a Travel Agent Resource

Jorg, travel agent in Germany
We found Walt Goodridge on the internet looking for a guide and an onbound operator on Saipan. Walt is an incredible hands on and reliable guy.
We received his answers with in minutes after we send the request to him. Our clients love Walt and with some he is still in contact exchanging pictures.
He knows Saipan very well and has special places to show to each guest, his island tours have a very personal and special touch. If we would have him on all south pacific islands, our life would be much easier ....With very best regards from Munich!

...an Activity Coordinator

Chris and Kayla Lassiter
Chris and Kayla on Saipan
My husband is in the US Navy and first went to Saipan as a port visit 2 years ago. We visited Saipan last year for our honeymoon and again this year! It has crystal blue waters and is a great place to relax. We booked our tours through Saipanbookings and would recommend them for future travels. They arranged pick up to and from our activities as well as fast responses on any questions I had before my trip!
Q: What was the best part of your trip?
I enjoyed spending time at the beautiful beach at our hotel as well as the dinner cruise with my husband. Last year we went para sailing and jet skiing and had a blast with both activities!
Tikla and Austin
tikla and austin on managaha island saipan
"I lived on Saipan with my family for several years and loved it! After I left for school and married Austin, I just had to come back and show him all the places and people I love. My friends and I used to camp out on Managaha all the time and I wanted to do that with him! Talk about the most romantic trip ever! The weather was perfect on Managaha and my husband LOVED it!! We snorkeled in the bright blue water and then pried open some coconuts for a snack. We had the whole island to ourselves for a very peaceful, beautiful night. He loved the crabs all over the beach in the morning and it was super romantic of course. Thanks for being so helpful! You made the whole experience easy and enjoyable. I can't thank you enough!"
Thanks again,
Tikla
p.s. Sorry for the delay getting back to you! We had such a great time I didn't even check my email!! :)
And I love the newsaipan.com site! What a great mission. Here is an official statement if you like it better:
"We booked a ferry to Managaha through SaipanBookings. The whole thing was super easy thanks to the prompt feedback I received before I came. When we arrived on the dock the boat operators were extremely friendly.
Here is a photo (I think we look pretty good for having just camped on an tropical island, wouldn't you say? ;)
Jian G., from Weihai, Shandong, China
Saipan
"My wife and I were considering moving to Saipan when we took the trip in December 2009. Walt at DiscoverSaipan helped us to secure the night on the arriving day with a nice and clean hotel in the tourist area. It was also a breeze when we wanted to extend one night with the same hotel. We wanted to stay with a local family and Walt also helped us in finding the homestay. Walt even accompanied us to rental car return and the airline check-in counter on the departure day. We found the service to be reliable and responsive.... We recommend the service to visitors who want to have a tour of Saipan more catering to their individual tastes and/or an off-the-beaten-path experience.
Q:What did you like best about Saipan?
"...I found that what really impressed me are the following:
  • The color of the water near Managaha island and Memorial Park, and in other locations around the island. It is the color of bright Jade. Just loving it!
  • How safe it feels. During the days that I did the homestay, the entrance was never locked. I used to do that in California so it was not surprising to me, but it would be shocking to a person who has only lived in the urban areas of most cities, where a steel door entrance is a must to fend against break-ins.
  • Beautiful, but uncrowded beaches. Better yet, beaches that are all public! It is definitely touching to a person who has gotten used to seeing signs saying "private property, do not trespass" in many scenery spots in other parts of the US.
  • I know this is probably not an exciting testimonial, but it is true to my heart.

    Choose from these tour options:

    World War II Pilgrimage

    Tinian to Hiroshima Tour

    Cruise Ship Excursion

    Amelia Earhart Mystery

    Saipan plus Tinian

    Guam Tour

    “Saipan in a Day” Tour

    “Escape from America”

    Special Request

    Check out Walt's Saipan-Specific brands