Palau - often referred to as Belau - consists of the far-western portion of the Caroline Islands, including the larger islands of Angaur, Babulthuap, Eil Malk, Koror, Peleiu and Urukthapel.
For over 30 years it was a part of the United Nations Trust Territory of the Pacific under United States administration. It finally gained its total independence in 1994.
Palau is a beautiful tropical paradise, and one of the true unspoiled destinations on the planet. Most of the 100-plus islands are small low-lying coral islands, ringed by barrier reefs. The exception is mountainous Babulthuap, volcanic in origin.
The economy revolves around agriculture and fishing, but scuba diving in the pristine reefs is a growing-in-popularity tourism activity.
Facts and Figures
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With its location to the immediate north of the Equator, Palau's weather is hot and humid throughout the year.
Average daily high temps are in the low 80s. Rain falls throughout the year, but most occurs from May to November.