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

Sam's Tours/palau royal hotel, May, 2012,

by Henry Goichman, CA, US (Sr. Reviewer Sr. Reviewer 10 reports). Report 6562.

No photos available at this time

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

Accommodations 5 stars Food N/A
Service and Attitude 4 stars Environmental Sensitivity 4 stars
Dive Operation 4 stars Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 4 stars
Beginners 3 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments ]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.
Websites Sam's Tours   

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 101-250 dives
Where else diving bali, bahamas, curacao, puerto rico, turks, virgin islands, fiji, la paz, tahiti, etc
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, windy, rainy, cloudy, dry Seas calm, choppy, surge, currents, no currents
Water Temp 85-89°F / 29-32°C Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 40-75 Ft/ 12-23 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions no deco
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? yes

What I Saw

Sharks Lots Mantas 1 or 2
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles > 2 Whales None
Corals 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 N/A Boat Facilities N/A
Overall rating for UWP's N/A Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments limited.
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Subscriber's Comments

By Robert S Kuhn in IL, US 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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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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