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Palau is a world class dive destination chosen by the National Geographic Society as the first Underwater Wonder of the World. Fed by three major converging ocean currents, Palau is home to more species of marine life than any other area of similar size in the world. 350 islands & atolls host 1,300 species of fish, over 700 species of coral and more unique species than anywhere else on earth.
Palau’s oceans are known world-wide for their abundance of large pelagic animals and other incredible underwater lifeforms, including giant 500-pound clams, dugongs and a lake filled with millions of sting-less jellyfish.
WHAT TO DO
Palau is an amazing destination for divers and snorkelers alike. Divers will experience some of the world’s best-known dive sites, including walls, wrecks, reefs, caves, blue holes, and incredible drift diving. For non-divers, kayak and snorkeling tours of the legendary Rock Islands are as awe-inspiring as Palau’s world class dive sites.
HOW TO GET THERE
United Airlines offers one flight every day to and from Palau.
Outgoing (Guam to Palau):
Mon-Fri: flights depart around 7-8pm.
Sat & Sun: flights depart around 10pm.
Return (Palau to Guam):
All return flights depart Palau around 2-3am and arrive to Guam around 5-6am.
Diving – Palau is an amazing destination for big animals. Sharks, turtles, and large fish can be seen on nearly every dive. Rays are also common. Environmental conservation efforts have kept Palau’s marine life and corals healthy and thriving. Dive sites are incredibly varied with coral covered walls, unique drift diving, channels, tunnels, and beautiful blue hole caverns. See videos of Palau’s Unique Dive Expeditions.
Kayak tours – Bring your snorkel gear and a waterproof camera and get ready for an amazing adverture through Palau’s beautiful Rock Islands. Kayak tours include a knowledgeable guide, multiple stops to snorkel and visits to hidden coves and other areas not accessible by boat.
Peleliu – About an hour and a half by boat south of Koror, Peleliu is very near to many of Palau’s best dive sites and also rich with WWII history. (Read about the Battle of Peleliu for more info). Due to the long boat trip a group of at least 4 people is required to visit Peleliu as a day tour; alternatively, it is possible to book accommodations and base your dive trip out of this southern island, putting you closer to famous sites like Blue Corner, Blue Holes and German Channel.
Exact dates vary and every hotel is different, but here’s a general rule of thumb for Palau’s 3 ‘seasons’ of tourist traffic:
Low: Best availability for hotels and generally lower rates. Some hotels do have short seasons within this time of the year.
High: Rates are higher, availability is limited. Book a couple of months in advance for a better chance of availability.
Peak: For the best chance of availability in your hotel or resort of choice, make your booking no later than August. Beyond that time, expect vacancies to fill quickly.
Weather: Palau’s doesn’t have a dramatic foul-weather season to avoid.
Permits & Fees
Please be aware of required local permits and airport departure fees.
These must be paid in cash at your destination and are not included in travel packages.
Permits are purchased through the tour operator at your destination. Departure fees are paid at the airport upon departure.
Koror State permits
Required for diving and all other water activities. Costs are per person (Ages 7 & up), permits valid for 10 days.
- Koror State Government Permit w/ access to Jellyfish Lake – $100.00
- Koror State Government Permit, no access to Jellyfish Lake – $50.00
- Add Jellyfish Lake access to existing permit – $75.00
Peleliu State permits
Costs are per person (Ages 6 & up), permits valid for 10 days. Some tour operators charge a processing fee for permits. Surcharges may apply if using a credit card.
- Scuba diving – $30.00
- All Other Water Activities – $15.00
- Land tour – $10.00
Departure Fee & Environmental Fee
Total $50.00, applicable to all travelers.
- Must be paid at the airport upon departure.
- Plan to pay in cash – credit cards are accepted but the machine is often out of service.
- There is an ATM at the airport.