Adventure Rock Islands Palau
Hello my name is Dieter, I am one of the managers of the Fish ’n Fins & Ocean Hunter Liveaboards Palau business group. I've been working for the company since October 2018 and have never had the opportunity to do the Fish ’n Fins “ Indiana Jones Tour ”.
But last Saturday the time had come :-)
What can I say, in my 20 years in the tourism industry I haven't experienced a tour which has so much to offer - adventure, sport, culture, turquoise water, white sandy beaches, delicious BBQ, cocktails and cold beer - heart, what more could you want .
Following I will summarize the tour and what we saw and experienced. I’ll attach some of the photos I took to better illustrate the tour.
• Breathtaking boat trip through the Rock Islands
• Palau Visit to a Yapese stone money quarry
• Kayaking through mangroves and limestone caves
• Relax and BBQ on the beach
• Snorkeling in Mandarin Fish Lake[/box]
A Pleasant Start
8 guests who live here in Palau, Tova, my wife and I met at 8:00 a.m. at the Fish 'n Fins dive shop in order to sail to our adventure towards Airai, a Palauan state north of Koror, around 8:35 a.m. after a small breakfast and a nice Lavazza espresso in the Barracuda Restaurant.
Our captain Kenneth, captain of the Ocean Hunter Palau for over 20 years, had chosen an incredibly beautiful route through Nikko Bay and along a large number of rock islands, to finally arrive after about 30 minutes at a small yellow hut which marks the entrance to a Yapese Stone money quarry.
Visit to a Yapese Stone Money Quarry
When we arrived at the yellow hut, our tour guide Kent gave us a short introduction before he led us on a nicely with handrails secured path into the rainforest. I found the forest in particular to be incredibly impressive, huge trees, ferns, palm trees and all the houseplants that you probably have at home, only much bigger and lusher.
Kent has been the tour supervisor of Fish 'n Fins for many years and is an amazing tour guide, probably the best tour guide I know - he knows Palau, nature and culture like no other - a good tip if you are planning your Rock Island tour with Fish' n Fins, try to get Kent as your guide.
However, we heard stories about palm trees, crabs, nuts and of course Yapese stone money, which was mined in Palau and transported to Yap, where it is still used today as a means of payment.
Another tip - bring a flashlight - there are some caves in the forest that are better explored with a lamp.
Kayaking through Mangroves and Limestone Caves
Back at the small yellow house, Kenneth, Matti and Clark had already lowered the kayaks that came with a second boat into the water.
We made ourselves comfortable in the kayaks and off we went - first Kent led us along the usual Rock Island limestone formations, which are even more impressive from the kayak than from the day boat, before he led our kayaks into the first cave. We were silently gliding though some caves with stalactites on the way to a picturesque mangrove channel which ended in an incredibly delightful little bay, where we left our kayaks and after having visited another cave on foot we took off to the nearby “Lee Marvin Beach”.
Relax and Grill on the Beach
Kenneth brought us straight to “Lee Marvin Beach”, which takes its name from the actor who shot “Hell in the Pacific” here in 1968.
At the beach we found two of our chefs who had set up a complete buffet and were currently putting fish, meat and tofu kebabs on the grill.
Beer was in the cooler and ice cold, the table set - time to relax and enjoy some culinary specialties.
Relaxing on the beach, processing impressions, collecting more selfies with a tropical background, building sandcastles and having another beer before continuing to our last stop for the day, Mandarin Fish Lake.
Snorkeling at the Mandarin Fish Lake
The Mandarin Fish Lake is only a few minutes by speedboat from Lee Marvin beach on the way back to Fish ’n Fins.
Mandarin Fish Lake consists of two shallow bays, in which you can watch mandarin fish in the shade of the Rock Islands even during the day - and as promised and delivered - our group saw 4 mandarin fish, nudibranchs and a purple giant clam.
After a day full of breathtaking impressions, we made our way back to Fish 'n Fins, where we said goodbye to each other after a last beer and making plans for one of the next weekends.