Diving in Palau
With a draft of 1.9 metres (6.23 feet), Four Seasons Explorer can access locations that larger vessels can’t reach. It also features a purpose-built Five Star PADI Dive Centre complete with Nitrox, its own dive tenders and a custom-designed dive and excursion boat for direct entry to even the most difficult to access dive sites.
Divers are grouped by skill level for the most appropriate experience; kits include the latest gear and accessories from Scubapro, Cressi and Olympus; multilingual instructors offer qualified divers a comprehensive array of PADI courses (including Specialty Courses such as Drift Diver and Deep Diver); and the boat’s intimate service approach gives guests the flexibility and freedom to direct their own diving encounters.
Never dived before? It’s easier than you think. Learn the basics just steps from the shore with PADI’s two-hour Discover Scuba Diving (for ages 12 and older) and experience the thrill of your first underwater breaths under the close supervision of our consummate professionals.
- Blue Corner – With its unpredictable currents, this world-renowned site is for experienced divers only. Expect to be rewarded with glorious sightings of soft corals, gorgonian fans, anemones and eels as well as numerous species of shark.
- German Channel – Meet manta rays and grey reef sharks and marvel at the technicolour coral in this extraordinary narrow channel formed by German miners during the early part of the 20th century.
- Peleliu Wall – This deep wall dive showcases a dazzling array of caves, canyons and crevices, home to larger marine animals such as pygmy killer whales and silvertip sharks. On either side, steep walls reveal a cornucopia of hard and soft corals, anemones and sea whips.
- Chandelier Cave – Not for the faint-hearted, this unforgettable dive is a system of five interconnected caves. Marvel at the glittering “chandeliers” – stalactite formations – as you explore each chamber, and keep your eyes peeled for the elusive mandarin fish. Don’t forget your torch!
- Helmet Wreck – While there’s no doubt that nature is the star of the show here, Palau also boasts some incredible WWII wreck dives. The as-yet-unidentified coral-encrusted Helmet Wreck’s stern is visible at just 10 metres, while eerie debris such as helmets (hence the name), ammunition and rifles reveal a ghostly history.
Please note: Due to the depths and currents, dive itineraries are dependent on individual experience, and some sites are only accessible to divers with an Advanced Water qualification.
Divers can usually expect two dives in the morning and one in the afternoon, with the option of additional sunrise, night and wreck excursions. Dive itineraries adapt to currents and conditions, marine visitors and the diving requirements of those on board. Every dive experience aboard Four Seasons Explorer is unique. Before engaging in diving activities, divers who have not been diving within the last three months or have logged fewer than 30 dives are required to participate in an orientation dive (conducted on board daily). Please present your certification card and logbook when you register for diving.
Before engaging in diving activities, divers who have not been diving within the last three months or have logged fewer than 30 dives are required to participate in an orientation dive (conducted onboard daily). Please present your certification card and logbook when you register for diving.
Please note: Divers are advised to refrain from diving 12 hours after international flights and 24 hours before travelling by air.
Four Seasons Explorer is geared towards qualified divers. It is the ideal vessel on which to hone your dive skills, increase your underwater confidence and develop specialty skills in thrilling new areas. Development courses offered on board range from Advanced Open Water Diver to a wide range of specialties, including Enriched Air Nitrox, Deep and AWARE Shark Conservation. Or just join us for fun to explore some of Palau’s most unspoiled and mesmerizing dive sites. Please contact the dive team prior to embarkation to discuss any particular dive interests or course requirements.
- Multilingual dive staff and experienced crew
- Marine biologist
- Maximum 6:1 guest-to-dive-guide ratio
- Separate Nitrox and air-compressor systems
- Full dive equipment for all on-board guests
- Scubapro BCDs and regulators, Suunto computers and Cressi fins
- Surface-marker buoys
- Hot and cold showers on two sea-level platforms
- Dedicated freshwater rinse tank for camera equipment
- Coffee- and tea-making facilities and post-dive refreshments
- Underwater photography and videography services
Driven by passion, the boat’s videographer (served by an on-board videography and photography room) is on hand to capture all the action above and below the waves. Guests can improve their own memory-capturing skills with an Underwater Videographer or Digital Underwater Photographer course, two of a wide range of PADI Specialty Courses taught on board.
Snorkelling in Palau
With more than 1,400 species of fish, a dazzling variety of hard and soft corals, seven species of giant clams as well as sharks, mantas, dolphins and whales, Palau’s underwater world offers itself to the imagination. And there’s no need to worry if you’re not a diver. Learn how to snorkel with expert guidance and top-of-the-range equipment, and let our marine biologist introduce you to everything from mandarin fish and Moorish idols to humphead parrotfish and giant Napoleon wrasse, ensuring bucket-list moments for all.
- The Jellyfish Lake – Utterly unique, this inland lake on Eil Malk island is home to millions of completely stingless golden and moon jellyfish. Snorkelling amongst these incredible creatures is a mesmerizing experience not to be missed.
- Clam City – Welcome to the kingdom of giant Tridacna clams. Believed to be more than 100 years old, some of these majestic creatures weigh as much as 115 kilograms (254 pounds). Look out for staghorn corals, anthias and sergeant majors as well!
- Nikko Bay – Sparkling clear waters make spotting the magical marine life here a breeze, while the vertical limestone walls have protected ancient corals for centuries. Keep your eyes peeled for anthias, blue chromis and Napoleon wrasse as well as moray eels peeping out from the caves, natural arches and siphon tunnels.
- Ngedebus Coral Gardens – These shallow reef flats nesting above nearly vertical reef play host to an abundance of marine life – from snapper to rabbitfish, turtles to goatfish. Dedicated snorkellers might even spot blacktip sharks and eagle rays.
- Seahorse Lagoon – This so-called secret site visited during Four Seasons Explorer cruises offers an extraordinary opportunity to snorkel with some of the rare seahorses that call Palau home.
The local surfing community knows that their uncrowded breaks are one of Palau’s best-kept secrets. Seasonal waves on both the east and west coast reefs are boosted by adventurous “surfaris” to the country’s fringing islands during the winter months. With advance notice, surfing trips can be arranged aboard Four Seasons Explorer through Tropicsurf experts. (Please note that surfing fees are not included in standard accommodation rates.)
- Guests who intend to dive during the cruise must complete the following online documentation. Our Reservations Team will be pleased to assist. DIVER MEDICAL/PARTICIPANT QUESTIONNAIRE STANDARD SAFE DIVING PRACTICES STATEMENT OF UNDERSTANDING RELEASE OF LIABILITY/ASSUMPTION OF RISK/NON-AGENCY ACKNOWLEDGEMENT FORM