It's been called one of the seven underwater wonders of the world. Many of its dive sites appear on lifetime dive lists. If you've been a diver for more than five minutes someone inevitably has told you about Palau and the incredible spectrum of dives that await in this corner of Micronesia. What I've always found interesting about Palau is that no matter what the weather, viz, water temp, time of year, morning, afternoon or night, divers can't get enough of this Pacific archipelago. It's a place of superlatives that always seem to exceed expectations -- and this holds true whether you're a new diver or arrive with thousands of hours underwater. This is rare in the dive world, where many top destinations come with the you-must-be-advanced caveat. In fact, to have one of the coolest experiences there you don't even need to be a diver. To immerse yourself in the otherworldly experience at Jellyfish Lake you only need to be able to swim. It's like floating among a thousand pulsating hearts.
There's a Japanese Zero wreck that sits in the lagoon in five feet of water. You half expect to be able to jump into the cockpit at low tide and take off. A vast variety of the machinery of war -- floatplane bombers, minesweepers, cargo ships and everything in between is found at all sport-diving depths (and tech- diving depths) for wreck divers. Palau's Blue Corner, a dive that often begins with a descent through the Blue Hole, has been described as a three-ring circus. You really don't know what to watch with so much going on. The first thing most divers say after diving Blue Corner is "again, please." In fact, it's the typical response to almost every dive in Palau. In between all this, there are air-filled caverns, precipitous, sea-fan-choked walls, cleaning stations where you can watch both sharks and mantas getting the once-over side by side, and places where you can spend the day observing mandarinfish courtship. Although it may sound heretical, it's worth venturing all the way to Palau just to sea-kayak though the mangroves, secret lakes and Rock Islands. Turn on the radio while you're there and you'll get the unique treat of hearing John Denver songs sung in Palauan!
Much has been written and said of this destination and, in a world of hype and hyperbole, Palau has managed to live up to even the most dreamy blue imagination.