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Well...of all the places...Palau has to be worth the effort.....it's got everything.

Drop offs, blue holes, caverns (qualifications needed for some), drift/rip dives, wrecks - ranging in difficulty....wildlife...I saw and swam with the whole lot from Friendly (dolphins) to not so friendly (Tiger and Bull sharks)...more turtles than you could  shake a stick at, mantas...reef sharks get really badly fished and fins cut off so if you go make sure your dive operator is actively involved in local campaigns to stop it.

Need more info let me know...I've been twice and I'm going back next year...best diving I've ever done.

Kinetic
 

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Yes, Palau has to be THE place for exciting scenic/creature diving. Friends of mine were there this winter, on the Big Blue Explorer, a first-class liveaboard, which they thought was at least as good as the Agressor and Dancer boats and quite a bit cheaper. They spent 4 days at Yap, diving with the mantas, on the way home. The 7-day cruise on the Big Blue Explorer cost 1620 dollars. Together with the air fare, hotel nights in Hong kong and Manilla and the 4 days on Yap, the trip cost a small fortune. A pity you have to rob a bank to experience the world's best (?) diving.
 

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John,

You're quite right...it's not cheap but as I said...it is worth the effort.

Getting to Manila is not too expensive, considering it's the other side of the world, but the Manila - Koror - Manila flight is a bit pricey given the distance especially when compared to what you just paid to get to Manila. You have to time your flights into Manila so as to avoid overnight stops, but sometimes it's unavoidable. Anyway, Manila's an adventure in itself. You can get to Palau from the east from Guam and Yap way....but if you're travelling from Europe you have to go via Manila or Taipei.

Accomodation on the islands varies in price but you get what you pay for. The diving itself costs a lot also...some of the most expensive I've come across on my travels...but it's worth it for the diving.

If anyone needs advice, pointers etc then let me know...I've been to Palau several times and I'll be definitely going back.

Graham
 

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Where do you stay and who do you dive with, Graham?
 

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John,

We stayed at a place called The Carolines....lovely place on the hill side. You have your own bungalow and the views are lovely...not cheap though. First time was our honeymoon so we pushed the boat out and second trip we just could not stay anywhere lese as we'd fallen in love with it.

I'll send you the link if you want it.

Operator we use each time is FishnFins...again can send the link. Run by an Israeli couple who bought it from the original owner...this was the first dive operator on Palau. They take out many of the film crews from around the world etc etc. They have been good to us and we're pretty good friends with them and we meet up when they come over to the Boot show in Dusseldorf. There is another operator called Sams Tours that I've heard rated too, they also seem to have a share of the film crews going with them but I personally cannot comment. FnF have been good to us, local guides and skippers always felt safe and they're a laugh too.

Please let me know if you want any links, contact info other details...be happy to help.

Graham
 
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