Palau

personal experience

I have only visited Palau once, for just a few days, in 2017.  I was impressed. 

Emerald Tree Skink, Palau (image by Damon Ramsey

Palau is a small nation made of just a few small islands. The main island group is made of uplifted limestone which forms a stunning network of islands, bays and reefs. Some of the islands are connected by various bridges.

There are some interesting birds to be seen around Palau. 

First, there are many seabirds to be seen easily in and around the islands and waters. They include White-Tailed Tropicbird,

white-tailed Tropicbird, Palau (Image by Damon Ramsey).
a rare sight of a tropicbird sitting in the water, Palau (image by Damon Ramsey)

and many terns, including Bridled Tern, 

White capped (Black) Noddy, White (Fairy) Tern, and Black-naped Tern.

Black-naped Tern, Palau (image by Damon Ramsey)

The land based birds include many species endemic to Micronesia, including Micronesian Starling,

Micronesia Starling, Palau (image by Damon Ramsey)
Micronesia Myzomela, Palau (image by Damon Ramsey)

reptiles

There are some interesting reptiles. Most of the ones I saw were widespread species, including Hawksbill Turtle, Yellow-lipped Sea Krait, 

and Emerald Tree Skink.

Mammals

I didn't expect to see many native mammals in Palau, because there aren't many. However, Pelew flying fox seem fairly common.

plants

Being isolated islands with so much rainforest intact, means there are many endemic plants to be seen.

a Palau endemic Bikkia palauensis (Image by Damon Ramsey)

access

Palau is a tiny country in the middle of nowhere!

There are flights, but they will always go via somewhere else, and it is a long way to go. Be aware that the jellyfish lake is still closed (as of 2017).

Some of the expedition ships, such as Silver Discoverer (with Silver Sea) go there. That is who I went with, as a lecturer. 

accommodation

Most of my stay was based just around the Palau Royal Resort. This is probably a fairly pricey hotel, but I didn't pay as I was accompanying a group! I photographed many of the species on this page there, and you can also snorkel right in front of the hotel.