If you’ve always dreamed of diving into the deep blue sea and interacting with the marine life but you still haven’t got the chance to do so, a visit to the Palau International Coral Reef Center (PICRC) can offer you the rare experience of an adventure under the sea without getting yourself wet.
The Palau Aquarium at the PICRC is the best place to experience the wonders of Palau’s unique marine world without even getting your feet wet. The Palau Aquarium was opened in January 1, 2000 but it was formally launched on January 18, 2000. Kambes Kesolei, Chief Aquarist of the PICRC said the aquarium was established to stimulate interest, increase knowledge and promote stewardship of Palau’s coral reefs and the world’s ocean environment through innovative exhibits, education and awareness programs, and scientific research. He said it also shows the inter-relationship of the habitats in the ocean.
He said this also gives visitors a first hand look into the world of the diverse coral reef ecosystem. There are over a hundred different species of fish in the aquariums. He added that keeping corrals alive inside aquariums is no small task because it requires extra care, skill and knowledge
PICRC is the only aquarium who has 18 exhibitions and among these are the exhibits on Palau Islands, the legend of Chuab, mangroves, sea grass bed, inner reef, reef crest, marine lake, camouflage, creatures of the deep, cave creatures, symbiosis, the outer reef, coral biology, video on Palau, coral cultivation, crocodiles,
Kesolei said the Aquarium is getting at least 34 percent of the market share of the total number of tourists visiting Palau. He said the peak was during 2004 when the number of tourists and visitors was at its highest.
“For last year, the number of visitors has declined but this is based on the decline of the tourist arrivals in the country, too,” Kesolei said. One’s visit to Palau won’t be complete without visiting the Palau Aquarium. It’s a whole new world full of revelations and discoveries.
Entrance fee for the aquarium is $7 for tourists and $5 for local residents. There are also group discounts and special rates for students on a fieldtrip.