1690, Cocos Island. The Spanish galleon Neustra Senora Pilar de Zaragosa y Santiago (Our Lady of the Pillar of Zaragossa and Saint James) sank off the southern shore of the island, enroute to Manila from Acapulco. Forgotten over the centuries was the wreck and the $1.2 billion in Spanish coins on board. Almost 300 years later, papers concerning the Pilar were discovered and the hunt for the treasure began. Except for an anchor, some musket shells and some timber, no major treasure has been salvaged to date. The hunt goes on.
Rights to salvage the wreck may rest with a private company, but that should not stop you from snorkeling or kayaking around Cocos Island if you make a day trip to this tiny island just a mile off the southern tip of Guam. Cocos Island known as Islan Dano to the Chamorros is a 100-acre narrow strip of an island that lies atop the coral reef – part of the Merrizo Barrier Reef – along the rim of the Cocos lagoon.
Take a ferry from Merizo Pier in Guam to Cocos Island. These glass bottomed ferries can make the trip to Cocos Isand in itself a fabulous experience as you glide over the turquoise waters of the lagoon. While the eastern shore of the island is part of the Territorial Park System of the US the west coast of the island is where all the fun is. Here you would find a day resort with a pool, volleyball court, and water sport equipment rentals. Water sports you can indulge in here are snorkeling, diving, kayaking, parasailing and jet skiing. Or just go on a bike around the island or laze along the shore, watching dolphins. If you love watching birds, then you are in luck, because Cocos Island is home to a multitude of species of birds, much more than you would find in Guam.
Ferry charges from Guam to Cocos Island are $40 for adults and $25 for children.
Cocos Island does have a café, ice cream parlor and restaurant, but they only serve basic fare. So it might be a better idea to pack your own picnic lunch. The resort offers various packages for activities including entry fee, use of Mandara Spa, a beachside barbecue and a dinner show at the Sandcastle.
Overnight stay facilities are not available at Cocos Island. So if you decide to go, you will be back in Guam by evening and after a day of hectic water sports and activities, you can look forward to spending the night in the luxury of one of the comfortable rooms we offer at Days Inn Guam, the best hotel in Guam.
Days Inn Guam is conveniently located, just a short drive away from Merizo Pier from where you can take the ferry to Cocos Island. Our friendly staff will also be glad to help you with suggestions regarding water sports and activities and what equipment to rent at the resort.
Day trip from Guam to Cocos island : Video