The Teshio Maru wreck is a must-see for any avid wreck diver visiting Palau. Located in the western lagoon of Palau, just 5 miles (8 kilometers) west of the Palau Pacific Resort, this Japanese Army Cargo Ship was built between 1942 and 1944, and it sank in 1944 during Operation DESECRATE ONE.

The Teshio Maru lies on its starboard side, facing southwest, in 75 to 80 feet (23 to 24 meters) of water, with the port side only 45 feet from the surface. The visibility at this site is usually very good, ranging from 30 to 90 feet (10 to 30 meters). Divers with Wreck Diver Certification can penetrate the wreck, but must do so with caution, as the structures are unstable.

The reef formation surrounding the Teshio Maru wreck is a coral slope with a sandy bottom, providing a stunning backdrop for the ship's wreckage. The wreck is covered in staghorn corals, plate corals, whip corals, and black corals, creating an impressive and unique underwater landscape. Marine life is abundant around the wreck, with barracudas, jacks, groupers, fusiliers, anthias, and other reef fish thriving in the area.

Diving the Teshio Maru requires careful monitoring of bottom time and air consumption, as the depth of the wreck can reach up to 80 feet (24 meters). Currents are usually none to moderate, making this site accessible to divers of all levels of experience.

underwater photo of a giant puffer fish at the Teshio Maru wreck in Palau It's important to note that live ammunition can be found on the Teshio Maru wreck, as with all ship and plane wrecks in Palau waters. Divers should exercise caution and not pick up any ammunition, as they can be unstable and potentially dangerous.

The Teshio Maru wreck is an excellent site for underwater photography, with the lighting, corals, and marine life making it a photographer's dream. Whether you are a seasoned wreck diver or a beginner, the Teshio Maru wreck is a must-see dive site in Palau.

To fully enjoy the Teshio Maru wreck dive, it is recommended that divers have their Wreck Diver Certification. This certification ensures that divers have the necessary knowledge and skills to safely navigate through a wreck, including proper buoyancy control and safety procedures.

The Teshio Maru wreck is a fascinating piece of WWII history, and diving it allows visitors to explore a part of Palau's rich cultural heritage. The wreck's size, at 321.4 feet (98 meters) in length and 2,820 tons in weight, is awe-inspiring, and it is easy to imagine what life was like aboard the cargo ship before its sinking.

As with all dives, safety should be the top priority, and divers should ensure they have proper equipment and follow all guidelines provided by their dive operator. It is also important to respect the marine life and the delicate ecosystem of the reef. Divers should avoid touching or disturbing any coral or marine life and follow responsible diving practices.

Overall, the Teshio Maru wreck dive is a unique and thrilling experience that offers a glimpse into Palau's history and marine life. With careful planning, proper certification, and a sense of adventure, divers can explore this incredible wreck and make unforgettable memories.