Palau is a small archipelago country located in the Pacific Ocean with one of the best diving in the world. The best way to get from Singapore to Palau is probably through Manila, and thereafter taking a connecting flight via United Airlines to Koror. Numerous airlines connect Singapore with Manila, but do plan the transit through Manila with adequate buffer times as immigration queues can be long and also if you need to transfer terminals (United Airlines flies out from Terminal 1 in Manila). As United Airlines has a monopoly on the flight, air tickets are grossly overpriced at US$600 for the short 2hr hop. From Koror airport, it is a short 20min driver to the main street of Palau.Koror
The main street of Koror is fairly compact where most of the countryís businesses are situated: there are 2 major shopping centres (WCTC and Surangel) with supermarkets, hotels, pharmacies, restaurants and cafes along the short stretch. Food is affordable (about US$15 per person for dinner) and the supermarkets do have a large selection of things for sale.Samís Tours
We dived with Samís tours which was efficient and helpful during the trip. The good thing is that they try to place you with the same dive guide and dive group throughout the trip so that you are familiar with them. Their speed boats are comfortable and spacious and get you to the dive sites in about an hour. Lunch is served in a bento box (you can choose between rice and sandwich, and also between pork fish, chicken, beef or vegetarian) usually taken during the surface interval after the first dive.
The diving in Palau is fairly advanced with some deep dives and be prepared for strong currents. The dives sites we did could be divided into a few categories: Corner sites (Blue Corner and Siaes Corner) where the currents were moderate and we spent the majority of the time hooked in using a reef hook and observing the sheer numbers of fishes hanging out in the current; Cavern sites (Blue Hole, Virgin Blue Hole, Chandelier Cave) where you enter overhead environments; Channel sites (Ulong Channel, German Channel) where you do drift dives; and Wreck sites (Iro Maru). Fish life is plentiful in Palau, and you should expect to see many grey reef and white tip sharks on most of your dives, together with the schools of barracuda, napoleon wrasse and tuna which are also common.
Some pictures taken with the Sony RX100:
#1 Jellyfish Lake
#2 Manta Ray at German Channel
#3 Bow of the Iro Maru
#4 One of the many Grey Reef Sharks
#5 Chandelier Caves