Palau is an island Nation located within the Micronesian region of Oceania and consists of over 500 islands. The primary language spoken is Palauan, with English widely spoken. The currency used is the United States Dollar. This is the perfect contry to travel to for an island adventure, but be ready to spend a bit of money, as transportation, accommodation and excursions are not cheap! Vaccines to have prior to your travels to Palau include Hep A and Typhoid. Dengue mosquitoes do pose a risk, and it’s important to either boil or drink bottled water while in Palau as a safety precaution.
You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is like an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty. - Mahatma Gandhi
Flights to Palau’s main airport in Koror, Roman Tmetuchl International Airport (ROR), do not come cheap. I flew with United Airlines direct from Guam, the flight took 2 hours. If you do choose to depart from Guam, note that flights typically depart in the wee hours of the morning and arrive that early as well. Google Flights is what I found best to book.
Where to Stay
There are quite a few touristy hotels in Koror and also a fair share of run down ones. I chose to go with a hotel that was somewhere in the middle and not too far from town so that I could roam around. The West Plaza Hotel Malakalwas where I stayed, and it was a nice luxury that they had air conditioning, a mustin Palau. Higher end options include the Palau Pacific Resort, which I checked out to try and use their wifi, which was down on the entire island at the time, or the Palasia Hotel Palau.
What to Bring
There’s no need to even check a bag when traveling to Palau. All you really need is a swimsuit, shorts, tank tops and sandals. Make sure to bring your mosquito spray and GoProif you want to grab underwater photos at Jellyfish Lake! Note that cellular data does not work (at least if you have AT&T), and you will need a universal adaptor, this oneis very compact and most definitely my favorite. The roads can be very windy, and the boat rides, choppy, so if you’re prone to car or sea sickness, don’t forget your dramamine, sea bands and/or ginger chews! Note that wifi is not something to depend on (locals call it “Palau Wifi”), so make sure to have all of your work and calls done prior to arriving.
Go fresh when in Palau. They’re known for their taro dishes, of which I stuffed myself full with while there. It’s delicious, very starchy and reminded me of something like a white, sweet potato. Fresh lobster, crab and rice is a big one over there. They unfortunately have a major overfishing problem in Palau, but they are one of the few islands who are making significant impacts towards protecting their oceans and banning commercial fishing.
Where to Go
Jellyfish Lake is number one! Part of the Rock Islands of Palau, Jellyfish Lake is a marine lake located on Eil Malk island in Palau. To get there, one must do a bit of hiking, but even hiking through the jungle is something you don’t want to miss out on. I will admit, the lake can at times be flooded with tourists. For this reason, I’d advise going during low season or earlier in the day. Milky Way is also a great spot, where you can cover yourself in natural, white mud from the bottom with which you stand. Turquoise waters and naturally hydrating mud in a little cove… I mean, to this day it’s topped my list of coolest experiences I’ve ever had. Also highly recommended is taking a small plane ride over the Rock Islands with the doors off. It was euphoric and a great opportunity to grab some epic shots!