2013 Palau Trip Report

Palau is internationally renowned for its’ marine bio-diversity which includes over 1,300 species of fish, an abundance of large pelagic animals, and over 700 species of corals.

Palau is home to one of the highest number of species not found anywhere else in the world and its marine habitats support a greater density of coral, fish, and other invertebrates than any other place on Earth.

We had 7 days of diving in these magical waters. Typically each day consisted of waking up in our 4 star air-conditioned hotel, then downstairs to an amazing breakfast (your choice of eastern or western style).

Sam’s tours picked us up around 8 – 8.30am each day for the 5 min drive to the dive shop. Our gear was set up and already on the boat, the only thing to do is to analyse our free nitrox for those certified to use it.

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Then just sit back and enjoy the 45min run through the flat calm water of the rock islands to the outer reefs or maybe a 5 min run to a wreck site nearby. The dive guides decide the best sites for the day based on the conditions and divers requests.

After the first 1hr dive in 29 degree clear water it is time to go to a deserted tropical island with pure white sand and crystal clear water for lunch and a swim or a sleep for our surface interval. After lunch it was time for another 1hr dive in paradise.

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After this amazing dive it’s another boat trip flying back through the rock islands to the dive shop. Those keen for some more action jumped in at Sam’s doc to check out some macro critters like the world famous mandarin fish. For the others it is beer o’clock at the bottom time bar & grill located right on the water at Sam’s.

The next stop was back to the Palasia hotel for a shower and happy hour at the bar. The pinna coladas for $5 we a huge hit for our group especially a few soft blokes.

Dinner time: The food has a lot of variety anything from café laid back style to 5 star dining. Some places are hidden away and a little research goes a long way.

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The diving is amazing and the people are outstanding, friendly and very welcoming. The night life is safe and very fun, especially the Karaoke Bar ATT which some of us frequented every night after dinner.

With a large variety of above water activities you are never short of something to do. Or just kick back and relax the choice is yours.

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The Palaisa hotel is one of the best value 4 star hotels in Palau and everyone loved it and the staff.

My favourite dive site is still Ulong Channel drift dive. It has everything from cuttlefish to huge schooling fish, sharks, hard & soft corals and everything in between. Just awesome!

Costume dive day was a huge hit for Sam’s, the locals, and our group. We were getting photo requests from a few boats of Japanese tourists as well, fun times.group_uw

I can’t speak highly enough of Sam’s Tours and Palau as a whole.  This is my 3rd tour there and they treat me like family. I love it and will be returning again soon.

 

Brett Colley

(Tour Leader)