Eco-friendly travel guide to Palau advises how to be a responsible tourist. Learn how to travel in a sustainable way and how to respect the local people and culture. Make your trip green by supporting locally owned hotels, organic restaurants and other businesses. Read more on how to protect the environment by making conscientious choices and how to travel green in Palau, Oceania.
- Air quality: 3 / 5
- Bus connections: 3 / 5
- Train connections: 3 / 5
- Hitchhiking: 2 / 5
- National parks: 3 / 5
- Outdoor activities: 3 / 5
- Locals' English level: 3 / 5
- Safety: 3 / 5
- Accommodation: US$10 - $40
- Budget per day: US$20 - $80
- 1 Responsible Travel
- 2 Air Quality and Pollution
- 3 Respect the Culture
- 4 Top 10 Places to Visit
- 5 Explore
- 6 Eat
- 7 Drink
- 8 Activities
- 9 Accommodation
- 10 Regions
- 11 Cities
- 12 Getting There and Moving Around
- 13 Sustainable Shopping
- 14 Recycling
- 15 Work and Study Abroad
- 16 See Also
This city is known as the Republic of Palau, and it has around 340 small islands. The area of this country is 459 km2, and the total population is 17,907 as of 2018. The currency which is widely accepted here is United States dollars. The ethnic groups present in this country include the majority of Palauan, and rest are Asian Carolinian. The major religion which is followed by majority of the people is Christianity. The capital of this country is Ngerulmud, and the largest city is Koror. The average temperature lies between 31 degrees Celsius to 24.2, which means the winter is not too harsh. The average rainfall experienced by this country is 78 millimeters.
Air Quality and Pollution
The air quality and pollution level in Palau is generally safe and acceptable for most individuals. If you are sensitive or allergic to dust, you must wear protective gear like a face mask to prevent yourself from harming. According to the reports from air quality control units, the concentration level of 2.5pm is 27g/m3 that shows the air around here has reached a high level of pollution and is unhealthy for most of the people.
Respect the Culture
Palauan culture is a clan society in a complex matriarchal system where the clan people are governed by a council of chiefs from the ten ranking clans. It has 16 states, and each state is based on historical village-states with its male and female chief councils who advises the national government. Most Palauans practice Christianity, adopted from the Spanish and Germans, although Modekngei is another of their traditional beliefs that coexist alongside Christianity. In Palau, religion's freedom is still in practice in its constitution, and both the government and general society respect it. As a responsible tourist, you must follow their culture and participate in their traditional activities concerning their beliefs and deities.
Top 10 Places to Visit
- Island Babeltuap (Babeldaob): The main attraction here is the large island of Babeltuan, which occupies 90% of the territory. All the active life of Palau is concentrated here. It is covered with pyramids and mysterious structures erected by unknown forces in ancient times. So, Palau is a kind of unique wonder of the world. The surface of the island is covered with monoliths that forms a labyrinth which consist of many mysterious corners. The island is of volcanic origin and is known for its beautiful beaches.
- Jellyfish lake ( Eil Malk island): A famous lake in Palau is located on Eil Malk Island. The water in Lake Medusa is divided into two layers: the upper, saturated with oxygen, in which all its inhabitants live, and the lower, which is located at a depth of 15 meters, saturated with ammonia, hydrogen sulfide, and phosphorus, in which the oxygen content is reduced to almost zero. Only a few microorganisms can live in such a layer. Scuba diving is prohibited here as the air bubbles emitted by scuba diving can kill the jellyfish. A small inflow of fresh water is provided to the upper layer of water through the tunnels connecting the lake to the ocean.
- Peleliu Island (northeast of the island ): Peleliu Island is in the southern border of the rocky islands. It was designated a US National Historic Landmark in 1985 for its role in World War II. Some of the most ferocious battles in the Pacific have taken place in these water shores. Submerged war debris, fighters, rusty machine guns, and hidden bunkers rest at the bottom as memories of the thousands of people who lost their lives here. Military artifacts are scattered across the island like tanks, helmets, and bombshells. Peleliu is surrounded by coral reefs in which marine life lives for example anemones, crabs and bright tropical fish.
- Angaur Island (southwest of Peleliu): Tourists are attracted by many green mines, flooded with water and teeming with crocodiles. In the northwest, there is a statue of the Virgin Mary and a Buddhist memorial. The desert village of Ngaramash is the capital of the island. On the west coast, there is a harbor with crystal clear waters.
- Ngardok freshwater lake (Palauan island of Babeldaob): This lake is the only one in Micronesia that has a natural origin and is rich in flora and fauna. The principal inhabitants of the lake are crested crocodiles, characterized by an elongated muzzle. The length of the male crocodile reaches six meters, and the weight is about one ton.
- Koror (Koror, Palau): Many cultural attractions, museums, and galleries are concentrated in Koror. An overview of Koror Island's destroyed buildings provides insight into Palau's architecture's evolution since ancient times.
- Kayangel Atoll(Palau): Despite the damage caused by a typhoon a few years ago, Kajangel still beckons with stunningly beautiful white sand beaches and large seashells. It is the perfect place to sit in the shallow waters contemplating the ocean. Wild dolphins sometimes come near the shore.
- Rock Islands (Palau): It is a favorite dive site for divers. Also, you can book an excursion to the underground caves filled with canals. A beautiful bay with milky white water is located within the rocky islands. The warm and silky waters looks beautiful, but the natural attraction is the refined white sediment at the lagoon's bottom. For more than a thousand years, tides have brought water enriched with limestone and chalk particles into the lagoon, which sinks to the bottom, creating a thick layer of white mud.
- Ngardmau waterfall ( Babeldob): Ngardmau is the largest waterfall in Palau. Its height is 30 m, and its width is 37 m. If you go downstream, you can find beautiful small pools and miniature waterfalls. Climbing to the top of the waterfall, tourists come across the ruins of Japanese colonial buildings and parts of the old railway system. According to Palauan legend, Ngardmau Falls is a spirit, a massive eel with one eye and is considered as god.
- Airai (southern coast of Babeldaob island): With about 3,000 people, Airai is the second-most populous state in the archipelago. The city is best known for its traditional Palauan meeting house for men, the so-called Bai. In the old days, every village in Palau had its own Bai. At the beginning of the 20th century, more than one hundred such buildings still existed in Palau. The bai was built from fine woods and skillfully decorated with traditional patterns and flowers.
Palau is a country in the western Pacific Ocean consisting of some 340 coral and volcanic islands perched on the Kyushu-Palau Ridge, making it one of the world's important tourist destinations. Palau's major populated islands are Koror, Babelthuap (Babeldaob), Malakal, Peleliu, and Arakabesan. There are loads of activities to do in Palau and exploring essential tourist destinations, including city and national parks, museums, and many more. The country is an outstanding destination to travel to year-round; however, it is best to visit between November and April. These months have the most significant number of aquatic species and have incredible visibility.
Palau is a beautiful country without a doubt that boasts several cities and public parks where you can easily spend your time with family and friends along with spectacular oceanic views in some places. You can do many activities in these parks, such as jogging, snorkeling, diving, and many other adventurous activities. Some of the shortlisted city parks you must visit are:
- Long Island Park
- Peleliu Peace Memorial Park
- Bethlehem Park
- Ngermeaus Island Park
- Korean World War II War Memorial
Palau is a country with several islands where many marine animals are still under conservation. You can spend an amazing time exploring each of the islands and its inhabitting animal and plant species. Several travels and tour agencies provide a guided tour that you can avail yourself of at any time. Some of the must-visit national parks in Palau are:
- Palau National Marine Sanctuary
- Ngardok Nature Reserve
Since the country Palau is a beach destination, it boasts plenty of beaches in the country. As it is famous for diving, whether it be scuba diving, you can participate in various other water sport activities like snorkeling, kayaking, swimming, paragliding, sailing, and tons of other activities. These beaches are great for taking some time off from exploring and rejuvenating your body with the sun’s goodness. Some best beaches in the whole country are:
- Porto Pollo
- Spiaggia di Talmore
- La Sciumara – Rada di Mezzo Schifo
- Spiaggia Rena Majore
- Cala Corsaro
- Cala di Trana
This place has a lot to discover and travel to within the country. Apart from beautiful and enchanting beaches, Palau has tourist attractions in large numbers. There are a lot of places and important landmarks to visit. So, it would be best if you plan your holiday in such a manner so that you can see as many sites as possible to create a bunch of memories to take home. Some essential tourist destinations you must never miss while in Palau are:
- Milky Way
- Dolphin Pacific
- German Channel
- Malakal Island
- Ngardmau Waterfalls
- Palau Aquarium
- Belau National Museum: It is the oldest museum in Micronesia. A semi-autonomous non-profit agency in Palau built this museum to preserve and promote the national heritage. The museum consists of exhibitions of natural, cultural, social, and historical values and arts development at all levels. You must visit this museum during your stay in Palau to get in-depth knowledge.
- Etpison Museum: It is a three-story building housing Palauan and Micronesian artifacts, photography, displays, and information. There is a large gift shop where you can buy several antique pieces such as jewelry, books, artworks, and souvenirs. This museum is a part of a great charity as it has participated in donating photos to many non-profit organizations, cultural associations, conservation, and educational projects in Palau. Visiting this museum while exploring Palau will enhance your experience.
The traditional cuisine in Palau is based upon root vegetables, chicken, pork, and seafood. However, this country has been strongly influenced by Japanese, American, and Taiwanese cultures. So, naturally, the restaurants here are found across the islands that cater to these tastes. You might find the rates in trendier restaurants are much higher than those of local restaurants. As a tourist, you must eat from local restaurants to contribute to the Palauans' economy. You will find more restaurants in Koror than other islands in Palau. The Palauan food and cuisine are wonderfully varied, and wide varieties are in the range of restaurants on the offer, which have an eclectic mix of cuisines from Indian cuisine with a Palauan twist.
The Specialties of Palau are:
- Fruit bat soup – cooked in a broth of coconut, including whole fruit bat wings and head.
- Toro - it is the ubiquitous plant used to prepare dishes like taro salads, taro soup, or rosti-style taro cakes.
- Tinolo – is a soup made with papaya and ginger and chicken.
- Broiled fish – the dish is prepared with garlic, ginger, and banana leaf.
Some of the popular restaurants that might be of your interests are:
- El Raco de la
- Sa Torre
- Mas Pou
- Mas de Torrent
- El Vaixell'
Despite the country's size, Palau has a small brewery found next to the West Plaza by the Sea hotel. It offers some pretty excellent beers, including Stout, Amber, and many others. As a tourist or an outsider, you must try smoothies made from fresh fruits in Abai Ice in Koror. Exploring Palau's drinking culture will give you insights into the locals' lives and bring you close to them. Some places where you’ll find amazing-quality alcohols and non-alcoholic drinks are:
- Sunset Beer Garden at Palau Pacific Resort
- Red Rooster Café
- Palm Bay Bistro
- Palasia Hotel Palau
- Weltz Bar at the Palasia Hotel
Palau's tap water is very much safe for drinking to drink the tap water in this country. Drinking tap water can help you eliminate the use of bottled water made up of plastic, a non-biodegradable product. Using plastic bottled water can be costly if calculated for a longer-term. Other than these, using plastic bottles can increase your carbon footprints and plastic consumption during your trip, which you can't create a burden on the waste management team. However, in some area of pull out the water is still not fit for drinking; therefore you must always confirm with the locals of that particular place that weather the water is fit for drinking or not. There is less pollution in this country, but there is a sudden hike in pollution from the past few years. There is a constant wastage of water and water pollution by the locals and the tourists who visit this country. Add a responsible citizen. It is your duty that you must not wastewater by any means. The main River of this country is the Ngerikiil River. It is a stream that is used for residential and agricultural purposes. It has a dam which has a capacity of a total of 20 million gallons of water. Other surface and groundwater have awful quality due to different pollution types, continually affecting surface water quality, groundwater, and coastal water. The prime reason for pollution is sedimentation which is responsible for polluting surface water. This country's groundwater is getting contaminated by different pollutants such as septic tanks, saltwater intrusion, and landfills. Land pollution, Motors, and ships that run on gasoline and oil pollute the coastal water and degrades its quality.
It is an island surrounded by the Pacific Ocean. As this is an island, therefore there are a lot of beaches present in this country. Beaches are the best way to relax as the fish say breeze provides refreshment to the body and you can also sleep on beaches during daytime enjoys the beautiful sun and ocean. You can even sunbathe on these beaches. Sunbathing is very beneficial for the skin, and also it helps in curing different types of skin infection. Too much sunbathing can cause suntan or sunburn, so you must always apply Sunscreen before going for sunbathing. Other than this, you can even try various water sports such as snorkeling, water surfing, kayaking, and many more. You can also visit waterfalls surrounded by trees, helping you make your mind and body calm. You must not drink the waterfall water because there will be many different types of contaminants in it. However, you can bathe in the natural water of the waterfall. It will help your body to release stress. Other than this, you can even explore the lake, which is filled with jellyfish. Other than this, there are different museums where you can visit and get knowledge about different things.
The total area of this country is 459 square kilometers. There are many different accommodation options, such as resorts, guest houses, hotels, hostels, and some beautiful places for camping. The best resort is Palau Pacific resort which also has a five-star hotel in it. The charges for this result are around $500 per night. It might look on costly, but it is the best stain option if you travel with a large budget for yourself. These resort facilities include 5-star hotels and free breakfast, which will be of your own choice from the resort staff's menu. More to this, there are outdoor pools where you can swim with your friends or family. All the rooms are fully air-conditioned. There is a fitness center so that you can remain fit. There are different Five stars and four-star okay available in this country will stop there is a Palasia hotel Palau, a five-star hotel that costs around 150 US dollars per night with many facilities. These facilities involve a swimming pool, yoga and Gym center, spa, hot tub, laundry, restaurant, and a lot more. Some regular hotels are also present in this country, which are affordable for almost everyone. Some hotels charge around 50 to 60 USD per night, which are easily affordable. Other accommodation can even go down to 30 to 40 USD, but that type will not offer much. Other than this, you can even couch surf if you are not willing to spend any amount on accommodation.
Green hotels are different from normal hotels. They have a green tree certificate called a green certificate issued by either government itself or any regulatory body working under the government. They are different from normal hotels as they do not harm nature while serving their customers. They use every eco-friendly technique to serve their customers, and while serving, they make sure that they are not harming nature by any means. The dishes that these hotels serve are made up of organic fruits and vegetables. So much beneficial for health as they do not contain harmful chemicals that can damage the digestive system. All the electrical appliances and switchboards have a special device installed which automatically switches off that particular appliance when it is not in use. Many of the things of these hotels are made up of recycling materials. They use recycling as a very important source to reduce their waste put to stop the cosmetics used in the Rooms of these hotels, such as shampoo call my face wash and other products made up of herbal ingredients that do not harm the skin. Other than this, the bedsheets and towels are made up of cotton, which is a natural fabric; therefore, they do not harm nature or causes skin rashes.
Hostels and Guest Houses
Hostels are best for those who are traveling to a particular city all alone. There are not many people who choose to stay in a hostel in this country, only the ones who do not want to spend much on the accommodation stays here. Out of the total tourists who visit this country annually only Those tourists who are younger so this type of accommodation, so there are high chances of getting a good company that too of your age. As many students choose to stay in our hostel, a backpacker's hostel and student’s hostel are available in this country. Students are still different from backpackers hostel as they are specially built to each University student some discipline; therefore, there are always time restrictions. The doors will be closed for everyone. You must inquire before accommodating a hostel, whether it is a backpacker hostel or a student’s hostel. You cannot expect privacy from these posters because there will be another person sharing the room with you. Specially built for backpackers, and those are people who do not carry much of the luggage and usually carry a bag with all their essential items in it. More to this, there are a lot of other benefits of staying in a hostel.
Apartments are flats which are available for rent. More to these apartments are a good option of accommodation if a person wants to stay for a longer time. These apartments are best in providing privacy. The apartment premises are always under surveillance through a surveillance camera, so you are very safe in these apartments. You do not have to worry about your family, child, or belongings because they are very safe. Also, every apartment has a staff of guards who ensure everything in this apartment is secured. Other than this, some basic benefits are that you can save money by living in an apartment and making dishes in these apartments' kitchens. Every flat has its kitchen where you can cook your food. Other than this, you do not have to pay for the maintenance of these apartments. Many grocery stores are present near the apartments, so it will be very easy to cook your food as you can bring the store's essential items. As this is an island, therefore there are different types of apartments present in different locations. You must always choose the apartments present in the best location, such as near sea or water bodies. You can even meet a lot of new people while accommodating in an apartment.
Couch surfing helps you understand that particular city's culture and traditions in detail. It is only a local who can help you get knowledge about the traditions and culture they follow. Moreover, there are different types of hosts which are present in this city. You must always check the crime rate of that particular place before choosing couches surfing. The crime rate of Palau is low, so you can stay with the locals safely. Also, the local people are very kind and generous towards the tourist so you will not have much trouble. The hosts are in a very limited number, so you have to search for any host family.
Camping is a free type of accommodation; therefore, you can save a lot of money but only if you have the essential items needed for camping such as a tent and other things. If you do not have such things, then camping can be very expensive for you as you have to buy a tent and the essential items which can be very costly. Camping is a temporary type of accommodation. Therefore you must always have a backup accommodation option already with you. Camping alone can be very boring therefore you must always travel with a partner so that you won't get bored easily. Camping on the hillside can be very breathtaking. More to this camping can also help you to get rid of stress. Some of the disadvantages of camping on a hillside include getting an ample water supply because there is always a shortage of food in the hilly region, so you must always pack the essential food. You will not have access to the internet.
the capital city; with the international airport and most of the population, plus several tiny offshore islands
the largest island; relatively undeveloped and regarded by many as the "real" Samoa
- Apia - Attractive laid-back town with some good hotels. Good shopping, restaurants, bars and a public market.
Getting There and Moving Around
It is an island; therefore, it is obvious that you can reach here with a cruise or a ferry ride. More to this, there is an airport present with the help of which you can reach here. However, the airport does not have established connections with the rest of the world, but you can still reach through indirect flights from nearby countries. Other than this, there are some options for moving around in the country, including buses, local trains, taxis, motorbikes, bicycles, and walking. Different types of travel options charge differently.
There is an airport in this country, and it is called Palau International Airport. This airport is responsible for all the flights reach this country. Moreover, flights are very convenient and can help you to reach your destination in a very short period. You can even travel overseas, but a flight ticket can cost too much. It is a public airport operated by the Republic of Palau, whose elevation is 176 fetes. This airport is covered over an area of 480 acres. However, these airports do not have flights from Asia.
There are very few buses in this country; therefore, you can move around the country for very little time. More to this, there are buses present in the largest city; therefore, you can move around with buses' help in the largest city of Palau. However, buses are a common mode of transportation as it neither does nor charges much. The reason behind fewer buses is still unknown. It might seem because of less technological advancement in this country. Also, this country's population is not enough to make proper use of buses; therefore, it will be a wastage to introduce many buses.
Trains are a common mode of transport when you want to reach a place in less time. The tickets for these trains cost more than buses but are always less than flights. With the help of trains, you can also meet many people traveling on that train. There are no trains in this country because this country's population is very low, so establishing trains will be a loss, and no good revenue will be generated. More to this country the country is not well developed so introducing trains will be difficult.
Hitchhiking is a good option for traveling without paying the person. It involves asking for a free lift from any traveler going to the same destination. More to this, hitchhiking can help you save a lot of money. Hitchhiking is great, but it often causes delay, so you must always plan accordingly. Hitchhiking can help you to meet a lot of people that to all the locals. Hitchhiking is very common because either people of this country have their vehicles or they hire personal cars.
There are different other methods of moving around in this country. Walking is very beneficial for health, and you can even explore the city if it is smaller in size. Another way includes bicycling, which can help you to move around in the country in very little time. You can even hire a motorcycle, car, or minivan to move around the country if you are traveling in the country with a group of friends or family. A direct way to reach here is through ferry services from the neighboring country, but that can take too long.
Sustainable shopping involves purchasing those products which are beneficial for human health as well as beneficial for nature. The production of these products does not harm nature, and not even consumes natural resources. Solar panels generate the majority of the electricity. There are products made up of natural material, such as clothes made up of natural fabrics such as cotton or silk. Generally, these clothes are mostly made with hands, so these products' production includes less machinery use.
Some of the recycling programs in Palau were that in 2011, recycling regulation authorities launched a scheme in which every person who needs a container or beverages container has to pay .10 dollars as a deposit fee. When the locals return that particular beverage container made up of plastic, glass, or metal gets 0.5 dollars back to the designated recycling center. It led to a reduction of waste, and more items were recycled. There are a lot of recycling centers present in this country.
The waste management of this city is good enough to maintain the cleanliness of this city. The waste in this city is regularly treated and is regularly sent to landfills. After eliminating the useful waste such as organic waste or products which can be recycled, the rest is sent to incinerators. Incinerators are those cabins where waste gets decomposed using thermal energy. Waste can cause a lot of pollution if not treated properly.
Work and Study Abroad
This is not a developed country; therefore, there are very few job opportunities available in this country. Other than this, there are fewer organizations, so finding managerial jobs will be tough. If you are well educated, you might get managerial jobs in those present here. Other than this, there are jobs such as waiter, guide, and other such jobs that can help you earn some living. There are fewer education institutions present in this country.
It is a good program which involves sending the student to foreign for further study. It is generally a free program only when you attain a scholarship; otherwise, you would have to pay the tuition fees. This type of program can help a person to become more adaptable to the changes around him. As you need to clear the entrance exam, which is also given by many other students, beating them and clearing this exam will boost your self-confidence. There is no such university in Palau that has access to the student exchange program.
As this is an underdeveloped country, therefore, there is less au pair work available. Au pair can help you to experience the culture of that place. However, you might have to adjust according to the lifestyle of the family. It is not an easy job but you will surely have a great experience exploring it.
Volunteering can help you to stay away from stress. Volunteering can be hard if you are not confident about getting involved with the local people. Few organizations here are always ready to hire volunteers on the go. You can join them by directly visiting their office.