WHY VISIT PALAU
An untamed paradise for divers and snorkellers, Paula is an archipelago of more than 500 islands, which sprout like giant mushrooms from the crystalline waters of the Pacific Ocean.
The island of Koror is the beating heart of the country and the entry point for most visitors. Home to most of Palau’s inhabitants, it is far from the prettiest island in the archipelago and few choose to linger here. Those who do, however, can grab a slice of Micronesian life in the local bars and restaurants, where charismatic natives take pleasure convincing foreigners to try the local delicacy: fruit bat soup.
Palau is also home to some of the world’s healthiest and most impressive UNESCO-listed reefs. Iridescent corals swirl around the islands, their marine populations teeming with a bounty few other places can match. Indeed, not a list exists that doesn’t rank Palau’s Blue Corner amongst the planet’s top dive sites.
It isn’t just in the tropical seas where strange creatures thrive, for Palau is also home to one of the most ecologically sensitive and unique evolutionary phenomena: Jellyfish Lake. Cut off from the sea millions of years ago, the lake’s predator-free inhabitants have evolved to lose their poisonous sting. To snorkel slowly amongst these gentle creatures is to float through an alien world.
While it’s easy to see Palau’s beauty, a closer look will reveal scars from ferocious battles that took place on these shores during WWII. Ship and plane wrecks remain buried in dark lagoons, while long-forgotten bunkers and rusted machine guns are peppered across the islands. This is a testament to Palau’s tumultuous modern history, which saw it swap hands from Germany to Japan and, finally, the United States, before achieving independence in 1994.
While Palau may be remote and untamed, it is precisely these attributes that make it one of the world’s last unspoiled natural beauties. The archipelago endures as a marvel of Mother Nature, stands proud as a center for Micronesian culture, and offers a haunting memorial to battles once fought in its turquoise waters.
WHAT TO SEE IN PALAU
- Jellyfish Lake
- Rock Islands and Rock Islands Southern Lagoon
WHEN TO GO TO PALAU
The best period to visit Palau is from April to November.
Being so close to the equator, Palau enjoys a steady warm climate all year round with an annual average temperature of 30°C (86°F). The dry season runs from November to April with maximum temperatures of around 32°C (90°F) and lows of 27°C (81°F). Humidity is high all year round.
The rainy season falls between July and October, and thunderstorms are quite common but typhoons, when it can rain for days at a time, are fairly rare, as the islands are too close to the equator to be in the hurricane corridor.
Following is a list of typical festivals and celebrations of Palau.
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HOW TO REACH AND TRAVEL THROUGH PALAU
Public transportation in Palau is non-existing around the islands outside Koror and Malakal. But you do have scheduled transportation between Koror and Peleliu with public ferries.
But will you have to take a small plane to reach Angaur? And if you want to reach the remote atoll of Kayangel will you have to join a tour for a day trip or charter a boat.
GENERAL INFORMATION ON PALAU
health tips & vaccination: keep up to date with your traditional vaccines, and add those for typhoid and hepatitis A and B. Get treatment for malaria. Do not drink tap water, peel your fruit and cook your vegetables.
local currency: United States Dollar
local time zone: GMT +9
electricity: type A and type B (120 V – 60 Hz)
WHAT TO DO IN PALAU
typical food in Palau
- Taro (ubiquitous plant used to make dishes such as taro soup, taro salads or rosti-style taro cakes).
- Fruit bat soup (whole fruit bat wings and head included cooked in a broth of coconut).
- Broiled fish (a whole fish cooked with garlic, ginger, and banana leaf).
- Tinola (soup made with chicken and papaya and ginger).
- Ulkoy (crunchy, deep-fried shrimp, and squash fritters).
- Pichi-pichi (a traditional dessert made with coconut and cassava).
- Halo-halo (milk with coconut, plantains, jackfruit, and yams).
souvenirs from Palau
SIMPLE PALAUAN DICTIONARY
How are you?: Ke ua ngarang?
Thank you: Ke kmal mesulang
How are you?: Ke ua ngarang?