Located some 850km east of the Philippines, Palau comprises 26 main islands and more than 300 smaller islets, most uninhabited, and all fringed by coral reef. From the scenic Rock Islands to its marine lakes full of thousands of jellyfish, there's an astonishing array of snorkeling spots to be explored in Palau. While snorkeling the archipelago, you will encounter a kaleidoscopic marine life, including barracudas, sharks, manta rays, and a wide array of colorful reef fish.
The most popular snorkeling spots in Palau are located in the Rock Islands, and are only reachable by boat. These fantasy-shape limestone islets, inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1992, are covered by jungle and surrounded by shallow coral reefs.
Several local tour operators offers day or half-day snorkeling tours in the Rock Islands, mainly from Koror. Among the best sites of the islands are Big Drop Off, Turtle Wall, Ulong Channel, as well as Nikko Bay.
Clam City, located 15 miles from Koror, is also a good option. On this snorkeling and diving site, you can spot huge giant clams. Some even say that some of the clams weigh more than 100kg!
If you stay in Koror, you can explore the reef in front of the Palau Pacific Resort. This resort is located in Arakabesang Island, linked to Koror Island by a bridge (access to the beach of the resort can be restricted).
But Palau is also home to one of the most amazing and singular snorkeling spots in the world, the famed Jellyfish Lake.
This salt-water lake, isolated from the marine environment, provides a home to millions of stingless jellyfish. Swimming and be surrounded by hundreds of squishy jellies is an experience of a lifetime.
The climate in Palau is purely tropical, hot and humid all year round, and rains can strike at any time. February and March are the driest months.
In the wet season, from June to August, the weather is wetter and more changeable (intermittent tropical rains and sunny spells).
The temperatures are constant, with an annual mean of 82°F/28°C. The water temperature in Palau is around 28/29°C most of the year, so the islands are suitable for snorkeling all year round.
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Unmissable in the Jellyfish Lake
Occasionally sighted on reef spots
On all spots
On all reef spots, especially in Clam City
Some colonies can be found at reef throughout the archipelago
On all reef spots
Saltwater lake filled with stingless jellyfish
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