In September 2013, Palau’s current President Tommy Remengesau announced his intention to protect 80 percent of Palau’s waters as a National Marine Sanctuary. For the month of September 2014, National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence Dr. Enric Sala is leading key scientists and filmmakers to explore, survey, and document the diversity and abundance of the marine life that will be protected by the new offshore sanctuary. The team will also assess how well inshore marine protected areas have performed to date.
a lake with a few million jellyfish. Tourists come from all over the
world, mainly Asia, not only to see the jellyfish, but also to swim among
them. One may wonder whether these people are crazy. But the
answer is that these jellyfish don’t sting!
morning, before the tourists did. We motored on our fast boat on a
maze of marine channels amid limestone islands covered by lush tropical
vegetation. The water ranged from turquoise to navy blue, and it was so
clear we thought we were going to run aground on the reefs below. After arriving
at the little dock on one of the islands, we hiked up and down a hill, and
there it was, a completely enclosed lake, surrounded by hills covered by a
thick canopy.I jumped in the water and felt like I was floating in a primordial universe,
with countless brown hearts beating. I have visited some of the most
remote places in the ocean, full of sharks and huge fish schools; but
these little animals, virtually water inside a living bag, made me feel
closer to nature than anything else.
who pay an entrance fee. Rangers control access to the lake and enforce
the regulations. And the entire archipelago around the lake is untouched.
No houses, no hotels, no human signs. This is why people fly here; to find
undisturbed nature they miss in their normal lives.
The Pristine Seas expedition to Palau is sponsored by Blancpain and Davidoff Cool Water.