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Dive Review of Palau Aggressor II in
Micronesia/Palau

Palau Aggressor II, Sep, 2005,

by Martha & Jeff Hubbard, NY, USA (Sr. Contributor Sr. Contributor 24 reports with 2 Helpful votes). Report 1968.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience Over 1000 dives
Where else diving Bonaire, Cayman, Belize, V.I., Roatan, Fiji, PNG, Chuuk, Fernando de Noronha, Palau x4
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, rainy Seas calm, choppy, surge
Water Temp 83 to 84 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 30 to 80 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile ?
Enforced diving restrictions Follow the leader except on wrecks. Nominal max=110 ft, but exceeded it when necessary (Iro wreck, Siae's tunnel) without hassle.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks Lots Mantas 1 or 2
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles > 2 Whales None
Corals 2 stars Tropical Fish 5 stars
Small Critters 3 stars Large Fish 3 stars
Large Pelagics 5 stars

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter 4 stars Boat Facilities 4 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 4 stars Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments Big camera table on Aggressor and protected camera area on skiff. Crew will hand down/up camera. Digital download computer facilities and E6 available. Camera-only rinse tank.

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations 5 stars Food 3 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 4 stars Shore Diving 1 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 2 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments Our week on Palau Aggressor II had only 5 divers! Less ethical operators might cancel a charter with so few guests as being insufficiently profitable, but not Aggressor! Five divers was glorious, twelve would be O.K., but a full ship of 18 would be pretty crowded. Dive deck is big and has tank holders and under-seat storage, but gear stays on the skiff from which diving is done. Two showers on the dive deck, and fresh towels after every dive. The skiff is roomy and comfortable, but only one (good size) ladder for exits.
The crew of five (down from usual seven) was attentive and diligent.
We had no nitrox broken part, no spare. Four or five dives a day in Palau on air pushes no-deco limits, and some divers skipped dives because of accumulated nitrogen readings (not into deco) on their computers. (We, using Cochran Gemini computers, did all twenty-four dives in 5½ days without approaching deco.) I hope they stock up on parts.
Every divers BC gets an emergency radio beacon attached for the week, and they loan Dive-Alert, sausage, reef hook, and cutter (in case the reef hook gets stuck) for those who dont have them.
Only three night dives are permitted, although there is time for five. The dive day is pretty full, since there is a 5 to 20 minute skiff ride to and from dive sites, meaning 2-3 hr of travel time added to dive time. Some of the travel is through the beautiful Palau lagoon, but some is on the open sea.
Palau has made a substantial recovery from the damage of the 1998 El Nino-related bleaching event. Most dives have 1 hour bottom time.
Cabins are large enough for the week of diving, but not for two people trying to pack! Lower double bunk holds two comfortably and there is enough clearance under the top bunk to prevent head bumping. Food was spicier that most of us liked.
What to do on the last day after the morning dives on a live-aboard, beyond washing gear, is often a problem. The last day (Saturday) after two dives and lunch, Aggressors bus took us into town and ferried everyone where they wanted to go all afternoon, which is very generous and a nice touch. Dinner is not included, but the bus took us to a restaurant of our choice and waited to return us to the ship!
Palau Aggressor II is comfortable and the crew is committed to diving and comfort. Best way to dive Palau!
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Note: The information here was reported by the author above, but has NOT been reviewed nor edited by Undercurrent prior to posting on our website. Please report any major problems by writing to us and referencing the report number above.

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