Palau is a Micronesian country of about 340 islands in the Pacific Ocean. It has an area of around 466 square kilometers. Koro is the most populated island in Palau while Ngerulmud located in the Babeldaob island serves as the capital of this island nation. Palau is associated with many unique facts some of which have been mentioned below:
Women Rule Society In Palau
The Palauan society is based on a strict matrilineal system. Women are the decision makers in the society. Matrilineal practices prevail in inheritance, marriage, funeral, and all other aspects of life in the country.
Fruitbat Soup Is Considered A Delicacy In Palau
Palauans prepare soup using fruit bats, coconut milk, ginger, and spices. It is regarded as a delicacy in the country.
Palau Has A Lake Packed With Millions Of Jellyfish
A marine lake called the jellyfish lake is located on Palau’s Eil Malk Island. Millions of jellyfish migrate across this lake every day. The lake was largely cut off from the ocean in the past but is connected to it via small fissures and tunnels in the limestone bedrock. The relative isolation of the lake allowed the independent evolution of the species here. Thus, although the jellyfish found here have nematocysts, they are not poisonous. The absence of predators has allowed the jellyfish to evolve without the need to produce poison. Today, tourists are allowed to swim and snorkel in the lake but not go too deep since at greater depths in the lake, an anoxic layer produces toxic levels of hydrogen sulfide that can cause death.
Palau Created The World’s First Shark Sanctuary In 2009
Although sharks are often treated by people as monstrous bloodthirsty creatures, the Palauans exhibited a different attitude towards these wondrous creatures of nature in 2009. The world’s first sanctuary to protect sharks was set up in Palau in that year. All commercial shark fishing activities were banned in Palau within its waters. Today, the sanctuary protects an area of around 600,000 square km. In 2012, the World Future Council awarded Palau with the Future Policy Award in recognition of the country’s efforts to protect the marine ecosystems.
Palau Does Not Have A Military
Palau is one of the few independent nations of the world that lack an army. Through the agreement of Compact of Free Association, the US is responsible for defending Palau against foreign invasions. Palau, however, has a small 30 person Maritime Surveillance Unit that patrols the coasts of the country.
Giant Saltwater Crocodiles Thrive In Palau
Saltwater crocodiles are common in Palau’s coastal mangroves and rock islands. Although regarded as an aggressive species of crocodile, only one fatal human attack by this creature has been recorded in Palau’s modern history. The attack occurred in the 1960s.
Palau’s Milky Way Lagoon Provides Natural Spa Treatment
The white mud found in the bed of the Milky Way Lagoon offers natural spa treatment to those interested in smearing themselves with the mud. Many tourists to Palau make sure they take a dip in this lagoon and apply the mud on their bodies to achieve spa-like effects on their skin.
Palau’s Only Prison Is A Tourist Destination -
The Koror Jail is the only correctional facility in Palau. Interestingly, it is also a tourist destination as the inmates here sell elaborately carved wooded storyboards at a retail facility located in the premises of the jail.
Palau Is The World’s Most Over-Governed Place
Although Palau is a small archipelago, its entire territory is divided into sixteen states as distinct administrative regions. Each municipality of the country also has both an elected legislature and a tribal chiefdom. Thus, this country of only about 20,000 people is regarded as the world’s most over-governed place.
Palau Is A Fantastic Tourist Destination
Tourists who visit this unique and picturesque country always return with fond memories of the place. The country is full of interesting geographical features. One can enjoy an adventure of a lifetime by visiting the country!
About the Author
Oishimaya is an Indian native, currently residing in Kolkata. She has earned her Ph.D. degree and is presently engaged in full-time freelance writing and editing. She is an avid reader and travel enthusiast and is sensitively aware of her surroundings, both locally and globally. She loves mingling with people of eclectic cultures and also participates in activities concerning wildlife conservation.
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