The Ultimate Guide for Moving To Santa Rita, Guam for 2022

The United States has several unincorporated territories, including the island of Guam, located in Micronesia in the South Pacific. The people are United States citizens but do not vote in mainland elections. They have their own government entities but some US government protections. 

Guam is home to two major military installations – Anderson Air Force Base and US Naval Base Guam. As a result, many military families enjoy this island for a time. If this is you, you will want to explore the area of Santa Rita.

The Island of Guam

Guam is a small island closer to Japan than the United States. It’s 30 miles long and between four to twelve miles wide. Around the perimeter is the vast ocean with sandy beaches and towering cliffs. In the interior are tropical forests, meandering rivers, and stunning scenery.

To give you a bit of the lay of the land:  Anderson Airforce Base is located in the northeast section of the island, Antonio B. Won Pat International Airport is in the middle, and the Naval base is further down the road on the north coast (navy base on the south of Guam and in the village of Santa Rita), and Santa Rita is in the middle of the southern part of the island. 

Here are some travel distances from Santa Rita

-To the Naval Base – about 5 miles

-To the Airport – about 18 miles

-To Anderson AFB – about 26 miles

There are a couple of different routes around the island. You can follow the roads around the western, southern, and eastern coasts. The northern coast has minor roads that go toward the water, but the major roads cut inland. The major cities are in the center, and there are plenty of open spaces for recreation and relaxation.

Guam offers a quieter existence, away from the hustle of large metropolitan areas. The climate is tropical, and the setting is rural. Temperatures year-round are steady – around 80-82 degrees Fahrenheit. There is a dry season between January and May and a wet season between July and November. There are two official languages – English and Charmoru, the indigenous language. 

Guam has 19 unique villages. Most of the population lives in the north, but some desirable areas, such as Santa Rita, are on the southern side. 

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Santa Rita

Santa Rita-Sumai, its official name since August 2021, is a town of just under 6,500 residents. The village was established after World War II by the US Military. The former village of Sumay was in ruins and was turned into a naval base. The villagers relocated up the hills to where Santa Rita stands today. Since 1973, Santa Rita has had an elected mayor. 

Santa Rita is surrounded by beauty. Tarzan Falls and the Yona and Fena Lake are on one side; the Guatali River is on the other. There are beautiful views of the Pacific Ocean and its ports.


It's no wonder buying a home in Santa Rita is a popular for military families, and several housing areas are assigned for enlisted members and their families.

Santa Rita real estate consists of four military-only off-base neighborhoods – Lockwood Terrace, North Tipalao, Apra View, and Bay View. The homes have three to five bedrooms with at least 1,600 square feet of living space. Many homes have views of Apra Harbor.

There are also homes in Santa Rita to non-military and military members alike of the community. Most types of homes in Santa Rita are single family homes. Because of its close distance to the Navy Base, many of the newer and nicer rental homes are priced to accommodate the military housing allowance of $2205-$2450 and sometimes, higher. The median price for single family homes at the time this blog was written is $455,000.



If you are in Guam working for a military installation or support services, you are in good company. Almost 30% of residents work for the US Government. The other huge industry in Guam is tourism, including the airlines that transport tourists on and off the island. The biggest tourist hub is Tumon, where there are dozens of hotels, shopping areas, and entertainment venues. Other areas of the island are famous for wildlife viewing, beach-going, and relaxing.


Families who relocate to Guam have many school choices administered by the Guam Department of Education. There are 25 elementary, eight middle, and six high schools. Schools closest to Santa Rita are Harry S. Truman Elementary School, Commander William C. McCool Elementary/Middle School (this is a military Department of Defense school for children of enlisted members), Ocean View Middle School, and Southern High School.

The University of Guam and the Guam Community College are in the center of the island and are affordable options for continuing education.


There are a couple of small stores in Santa Rita, but the good thing about living in Guam is that everything on the island is close by. Here are some places to check out:

Navy Exchange is where military and family members can shop at the base exchange. Prices are great, and goods are prevalent.

Agana Shopping Center is about 25 minutes from Santa Rita and has local and US shops with fashion and food.

Micronesia Mallin the village of Dededo; about a 20-30 minute drive from Santa Rita, is the largest shopping center on the island and perhaps in the surrounding area. There are over 130 shops, and the goods are mainly duty-free.

Guam Premiere Outlet; located in the central village of Tamuning, about 15-25 minutes from Santa Rita, has shops with sportswear, jewelry, toys, cosmetics, and much more. 


Maybe because of the substantial influx of tourists to the area or perhaps because of the fresh seafood that comes out of the ocean, restaurants in Guam are varied and delicious. Here are some of the best:

Jeff’s Pirate Cove is a casual outdoor seaside eating establishment in Talofofo, southeast of Santa Rita. Located on the site of an old machine gun bunker, it remembers the past and honors the present with an onsite seaside museum. But its real gift is excellent food and cold drinks. Burgers, BBQs, seafood, and salads are on the menu for a casual lunch or dinner. Get there earlier for an omelet, steak & eggs, or an Ipan Pirate Breakfast.

Sumay Pub and Grill is popular for having one of the best burgers on the island. They have fries, chicken wings, and fish & chips – classic American pub food in a casual setting.

Marina Grill is to the west along the coast, at the Agat Marina. It’s a higher-end dining experience. Start with seafood appetizers, soup, salad, and a beef or seafood entrée while enjoying the views.

McKrauts serves authentic German and European food. A nice change from the ordinary. Enjoy dinner and live music in the beer garden.

Caliente is near the center of the island in Hagatna. It’s an easy drive, and locals love this place for its Mexican and Southwestern cuisine.

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Things to Do

Guam is a great place to live if you are active and love to get outdoors. Here are a few of the highlights of this island paradise.

Tumon Bay is a marine preserve on the north end of the island. The preserve is one of five marine preserves on Guam. It’s said to be the landing place of Ferdinand Magellan in 1521. Now, it is a premier recreation spot for islanders. Fishing is allowed, but primarily by hook and line. A few fish can be caught from shore using a cast net. Tumon Beach is a great swimming spot; outrigger canoes launch from Matapang Beach.  Large resorts surround Tumon Bay with lots of activities for the kids, tons of restaurants, spa services, and nightlife opportunities.

South Pacific Memorial Peace Park is a place to reflect on Guam’s history. There is a memorial comfort tower and a peace prayer house.

The Starts Guam Golf Resort has three 9-hole courses, an outdoor pool, a sauna, and a Japanese restaurant.

The Guam National Wildlife Refuge is a beautiful place to see the native plants of Guam. Head to Ritidian Point, the northernmost part of the island, for great ocean views and hiking spots, then explore Jinapsan Beach’s white sands.

Hamamoto Gardens/Tropical Fruit World is the perfect place to see native plants and enjoy exotic fruits. School children enjoy tours and samples.

Guam has historical significance and on your tour of the island, check out places like Fort Nuestra Senora de la Soledad – a 19th-century Spanish Fort.

Hike the Spanish Bridge near Sella Bay – a great place to collect seashells. On the island's southern end are many hiking trails leading to summits and waterfalls. 

For a different view, check out Surf Side Beach, also known as Black Sand Beach. It’s also a local surf spot.

Moving to Santa Rita

Moving to Guam is like having peace of paradise. Warm weather, ocean views, and a tropical vibe are all on a little island in Micronesia. While there are several home options, Santa Rita offers the quiet away from the bustle of tourists. It’s more affordable than places in the central villages. If you are moving here to work or serve at one of the military bases, Santa Rita is perfect for you and your family.