Thursday, July 5, 2007

A question about Rota Island and Boating

We are wondering if there is a specific reason that there is currently no ferry service linking Guam and Rota, or Rota and Saipan.

I am told (and somewhere have a photo) that one can see Guam on a clear day from the summit of Wedding Cake Mountain, which makes the lack of a ferry route curious to us.

Also, should luck intervene on our current financial situation, we thought we might buy a boat while living on the Island. Would it be possible to run the boat to Guam and pay to dock it at a public slip?

These thoughts about getting a boat are kinda' pipe-dreamy, but we ask ourselves about why a seemingly easy link between the islands isn't available at this time.

Any thoughts would be appreciated.


Andrew & Suz



The Saipan Blogger アンジェロ・ビラゴメズ said...

I can confirm that you can see Guam from Rota. A ferry would be a great idea...except for the Brown Tree Snakes.

Bruce A. Bateman said...

It is a matter of supply and demand. There is a private ferry service between Saipan and Tinian owned and operated by the Tinian Dynasty Hotel and Casino. It loses well over 1 million dollars per year but is kept in operation by the hotel to bring it's customers over from Saipan. Their customers are on Saipan because the airlines land incoming flight there rather than at Tinian's airport.

If the 20 mile trip on the Tinian Ferry loses money every year even with a built in customer base, imagine the losses on a much longer route with a very small passenger list.

One other quick point...the transit between Tinian and Rota and between Rota and Guam differ substantially from the passage between Saipan and Tinian in that the former are open water trips without benefit of sheltering lee-side islands during the passage. Even in the Saipan/Tinian trip most passengers get seasick and the voyage often has to be cancelled even in moderate seas. The passage between Rota and Tinian or Guam would be pretty chaotic with , pardon the expression, vomit ankle deep in the gangways.

Regarding boats....I own two here and can give you this much advice: expect to pay roughly 3 times the amount here that you would pay in the US. The market is small and the inventory is too. Plus that inventory must be transported a long way to get it here. Few boats are made locally. That being said, there is no better way to experience island life than to own a boat and use it frequently.

Good luck in finding the craft of your dreams while living on beautiful Rota.

marianas life said...

yeah we dreamed of living on a sailboat. rota has a nice new visitor dock and the guam yacht club sponsors a sailing race to rota every may. but i don't think there are long term slips on rota. you'd have to trailer and launch your boat all the time but you could definitely go to guam. maybe you'll get lucky and get a slip:) we'll sail down to rota and visit:) and then sail on to guam with you guys if you want.

A G Gatto said...


Sorry about my comment moderating dumbness...



A G Gatto said...

I figure the current is rough as it passes between islands.

I think that ferry boats should fall under government economic development initiatives, but I won't overstep that opinion right now as I am sitting here in PA. It'll be a good discussion once we get there though, don't you think?



A G Gatto said...

Sail away, ML!

We hope that living in Rota brings lots of folks down from Saipan to visit.

BTW, I'll do the cooking-Suz'll make us a nice Margarita (She's been a Bartender on top of teaching for over 10 years)