It would be a huge task to try and list all of the dive sites that Palau has to offer. What follows is a list of the most popular for the state of Koror. Most of these dives can be dived on either an incoming or out going tide and will offer a completely different perspective either way. For the dive sites of Peleliu, please go to the section on Peleliu. So here are the greatest hits.
Palau's most famous and popular dive site, deservedly so. Blue Corner has every thing a diver could wish for. Strong currents whip over the top of the plateau bringing with it a plentiful supply of food and nutrients.
Inquisitive White Tip and Grey Reef Sharks cruise up and down the currents providing great close ups for divers hooked in along the edge of the wall. Friendly Napolean Wrasse, Giant and Blue Fin Trevally, Dog Tooth Tuna and a resident Eagle Ray can all be found here. Drift along the top of the Plateau and find Lion Fish, Leaf Fish, Green and Hawksbill Turtles, and then it's out into the blue for a safety stop, usually accompanied by a large school of Black Fin Barracuda. Diving doesn't get more action packed than this. (put a very attractive photo of blue corner with or without divers)
Located west and next to Blue Corner, Blue Holes is a huge cavern with 4 holes at its top, allowing the Sun light to filter down. Divers descend down 1 of the holes and into the cavern where the silhouette shots can be amazing. Randall's Fairy Basslet and the Lyre Tailed Wrasse can be found inside cavern. Divers exit the cavern and travel along the wall where Grey Reef Sharks can be found cruising and occasionally an Eagle Ray. ( a photo of the holes with or without diver)
Another one of Palau's more popular dive sites. Divers descend down to a depth of about 20m / 66ft to a sandy bottom, where a Manta Ray cleaning station is located. After spending about 20 min's with the Manta's, a gentle drift up and through the channel usually follows. Other regulars here, aside from the Manta's, are, White Tip and Grey Reef Sharks, Spanish Mackeral, schooling Black Snapper and Trevally, Turtles, Clown Trigger fish and the occasional Feather Tailed Ray. ( a very nice picture with a manta)
Big Drop Off, can be dived regardless of the current direction. A vertical wall covered with soft corals and sea fans, divers can expect a pleasant drift dive, spotting Turtles, Long Nose Hawkfish and a variety of reef fish along the way. The top of the wall is teeming with life and safety stops can often be shared with a Black Tip Reef Shark, or two. ( a nice photo)
A condensed Blue Holes. Laser clams, Gobies and if you look really closely, Banded Pipe Fish can be found inside the cavern. Whilst, Shark, Black Snapper and the occasional Ornate Eagle Ray, can be seen outside, along the wall. (a photo of a turtle, generic is ok)
A wall dive, drifting with the current. Divers can regularly see White Tip and Grey Reef Shark, Turtles, Bump Headed Parrotfish and if you look closely enough, a Crocodile fish. (a photo of nice of corals and fishes)
Starts off vertically, then begins to slope out around 25m / 83ft to a sandy bottom. This can be a good place to spot Leopard Sharks. White Tip Sharks also frequent the area, as well as the occasional Eagle Ray. The wall it's self is great for Nudibranchs, Sea Whips, Green and Hawksbill Turtles. (a photo of something of the wall can be generic if you dnt have any)
Divers descend down a hole, on top of the shallow reef, into a huge cavern, 28m / 92ft deep. Natural light filters down from the vertical shaft above, providing excellent silhouette shots. The cavern it's self is approximately a 10 to 12 minute swim from beginning to end, then opens out onto the wall. Divers will find the traditional White Tip Shark along the wall, as well as Turtles, Black Snapper and Eagle Rays. The dive ends on top of the wall, where there is a labyrinth of channels and swim throughs. A flash ligh is highly recommended for this dive. ( a photo of this one)
A mellow dive with very little current, Ngemblis has a gently sloping wall that is simply covered with coral of all varieties. White Tip and Black Tip Sharks cruise by, as well as Batfish and Turtles. Nudibranchs, Fire Dart Gobys and occasionally Octopus can be found living amongst the coral. (photo of soft corals and small stuffs)
A simply fantastic dive. As divers approach the mouth of the channel, Grey Reef Sharks gather in Abundance as well as White Tip Sharks, Big Eye Trevally and if you're lucky, a Manta Ray or Hammerhead Shark. A stop is usually made at the mouth of the channel to watch the action. After a 10 minute stop, divers drift with the current up the channel, spotting Sharks and Tuna along the way. About halfway through the dive, divers will come across one of the largest forms of Lettuce coral in the world. The dive ends in a huge sandy basin, with Tuna and hunting Sharks gathering in abundance. Visibility is always good and the coral is simply vibrant.
A 2 minute boat journey from Ulong Channel. This is a dive down a section of vertical wall, to the entrance of a large tunnel that cuts straight through the reef. Divers can often find a large school of Big Eye Trevally circling below them, just inside the entrance. Once inside, there is enough light, but if you'd like to make the most out of the soft corals and small fish that can be found, bring a flash light. Upon nearing the tunnel exit, sleeping White Tip Sharks can be found, as well as plenty of small life, Fire Dart Gobys, Long Nose Hawkfish and Lionfish. The dive finishes along the wall where Grey Reef Sharks cruise past.
A simple drift along the wall amongst schools of Pyramid Butterfly fish, leads to a section of reef that juts out. Napolean Wrasse, Grey Reef Sharks and schools of Red Tooth Trigger fish gather here in the gentle currents. After a stop along the edge of the wall to watch the action, divers drift over the shallow plateau that is covered in coral. Clown Trigger fish and small grouper can often be found amongst the corals.
A wall dive where Napolean Wrasse, Turtles and Sharks are commonly seen, as well as an abundant supply of Pyramid Butterfly fish and Yellow Tailed Fusiliers. Current depending, the dive usually ends as a drift dive along the plateau on top of the wall where White Tip Sharks can commonly be seen.
Blue Corner in minature. The dive will start along the wall, eventually coming to a large corner jutting out from the reef. Divers will usually hook in at this point to check out the action. A drift over the top of the plateau will follow with a safety stop, usually over the top of the reef. Grey Reef Sharks are found in abundance on this dive, as well as, large Napolean Wrasse, Snapper, clouds of Pyramid Butterflyfish, and Emperor Angelfish can be found along the wall. On top of the Plateau, Yellow Margin Trigger fish and Barracuda gather. A number of shallow gullies are on top of the reef and if you look closely enough, Leaf Scorpionfish can be found here. New Drop Off can have very strong, unpredictable currents however, which makes it quite an advanced dive.
Named after the stalactite formations growing down from the caves ceiling, Chandelier Cave consists of 4 water filled, accessible chambers, each with a breathable air pocket. Air naturally filters through the porous Limestone and it is perfectly safe to breath. Visibility is usually excellent, unless the silt layer on the bottom, lying at approximately 15m / 48ft, has been disturbed. Light only comes from the small entry / exit point at the beginning of the cave system, so torches are a must. A fascinating dive, but not for the claustrophobic.
So named because it's only a short boat journey from Koror Harbour. A favourite for check out dives. A gentle, unassuming wall dive with mild currents. Grey Reef and White Tip Sharks can be seen here, as well as a variety of reef fish and the occasional Eagle Ray.
Sunk on March the 31st, 1944, the Iro was a Japanese fleet oil tanker, and is arguably the most popular wreck Palau has to offer. The bow is at 20m / 66ft, whilst the stern drops to 36m / 125ft. She lies upright and is a massive 140m / 462ft long. Her shear size and numerous points of interest makes it impossible for divers to get bored. Infact, you would be hard pushed to see all of the wreck in just one dive. The ship herself is absolutely covered with coral and is teeming with life. Other than a large variety of small reef fish, divers can often see Trevally and Baracuda cruising around the wreck, as well as a number of Batfish, who seem to like hanging around the descent line. Visibility can vary greatly on this wreck however, and for no apparent reason, is completely unpredictable.
Sunk on March the 30th, 1944, the Helmet wreck was an unidentified Japanese cargo ship, and was only discovered in 1990. Her stern lies at 15m / 50ft, whilst her bow drops to 35m/116ft. She only measures a modest 58m/191ft, but don't let that put you off, for she's simply filled with fascinating artifacts. Sake bottles, ammunition shells and explosive charges litter the deck. Machine guns, rifles, old boots, boxes of shells and even a frying pan can be found near the stern. Gas masks stare back at you. Down in the holds, boxes of depth charges, helmet stacks, webbing and 3 large aircraft engines can be found. A fascinating dive.
A mellow dive, ideal for check out dives and novice divers. Alice's has very little to no current at all. Cruising along the gently sloping wall, divers can spot White Tip Sharks, Crocodile fish, Green and Hawksbill Turtles, as well as a variety of reef fish.
Boats more up outside a small channel that leads to the salt water lake. Divers then have approximately a 3 minute snorkel to reach the lake. Once there, descend to a depth of about 5m/17ft and start looking for the elusive Mandarinfish, ( a brightly coloured member of the Dragonet family), that hides out amongst coral rubble. The best time of day to spot these guys is at dusk, when they come out to mate. Photographing Mandarinfish requires the patience of a saint, but get it right and the results can be outstanding. Aside from Mandarinfish, divers can also find Triggerfish, Butterflyfish and Pajama Cardinalfish in the lake.