NEED TO KNOW
LOCATION Located in the western Pacific, Palau is often incorrectly regarded as part of nearby Micronesia
SCUBA DIVING Palau is best known for big marine animals and rocky reefs
DAYTIME TEMPERATURES Jan: 81°F (27°C); Apr: 82°F (28°C); Jul: 81°F (27°C); Oct: 81°F (27°C)
In ancient times a matrilineal society regarded as one of the wealthiest in the Pacific, Palau is today a magnet for those few divers who are prepared to travel a long distance for their sport. And often they come just for one very famous dive known as Blue Corner.
Strong currents sweep up a perfectly vertical wall to a flat reef top where guides position divers, who hover above the reef using specially designed hooks that attach to rocks or rubble. It can be a battle staying still in these currents – a challenge that doesn’t seem to affect the massive numbers of fish that come to the wall to feed.
Huge schools of barracuda block the sunlight as they approach. They are followed by even larger schools of jacks, while gray reef and whitetip sharks patrol just below, waiting for an easy meal.
Getting There The most frequent and convenient flights to Palau depart from Manila in the Philippines, although there is also a route available from the US via the Pacific island of Guam.
When to Go There is year-round diving here, although visibility is said to be at its lowest in September.