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Dive Review of Sam's Tours/palau royal hotel in

May, 2012, an Instant Reader Report by Henry Goichman, CA, US
Sr. Reviewer   (10 reports)
Report Number 6562
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
101-250 dives
Where else diving
bali,bahamas,curacao,puerto rico,turks,virgin islands,fiji,la
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

sunny, windy, rainy, cloudy, dry  
calm, choppy, surge, currents, no currents  
Water Temp
85   to 89    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
40   to 75    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
no deco  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
1 or 2 
Whale Sharks
> 2 
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  4 stars
Tropical Fish
5 stars  
Small Critters
  4 stars
Large Fish
5 stars  
Large Pelagics
  5 stars
Underwater Photography  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Subject Matter
Boat Facilities
Overall rating for UWP's  
Shore Facilities  
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
5 stars
Service and Attitude
4 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
4 stars
Dive Operation
4 stars  
Shore Diving  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
4 stars    
3 stars   
5 stars    
]My first trip to Palau.My last great dives were in the bligh waters in
fiji and in particular the very best dive was black magic mountain.Palau is
well deserved for the rep of having diversity and large game--all of which
is truE. However, conditions  vary alot and vis can go down to 40 feet at
times, making some diving murky. The best dives were blue corner, which had
no current and no reef hooks needed with tons of fish and sharks and small
critters, such as clown fish and barracuda. Ulong channnel had lots of
sharks and good viz.German channnel had mantas but was murky.and other than
the manta was not that interesting.Ngarchong inside was very nicemellow
dive and no currentWe went to the the big drop off and other sites as well.
None of the coral was a vibrant as fiji, but was in pretty good
shape.Conditions change very quickly and and boat riddes can be 45 min or
more but are very scenic via the rock islands.I would rate the wildlife  5
stars but the coral lower as the colors seem to be muted.Jelly fish lake
was unique as it is a fresh water lake with tons of jellfish.I am glad I
went but would probably not return The drop offs are exciting and you are
tied down with reef hooks and in a crouched postion watching the action.
All drift diving.I went TO 9 sites during the five days with sams tours
which runs a good operation, but guides vary and with some I wanted more
information on corals etc.New divers would have some problems with the
current and you are not catered to, but do your own set up etc.The blue
corner had more diversity than one would fing on 5-10 dives in a less
diverse area.
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Subscriber's Comments

By rskuhn at Dec 23, 2012 21:54 EST  
Your comments about the water being murky and the conditions change quickly
are only because the DM's at Sams do not understand the tides and currents
in Palau and are inflexible in their dive scheduling.  Sams does an
extremely poor job planning dives around tide tables which can provide
divers poor conditions.
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