The Republic of Palau is a breathtakingly beautiful small-island group in the Western Pacific. In the past three years, the country has seen a massive growth in tourist numbers. The rise now means almost 160,000 guests annually enter Palau, which has a comparative population of 20,000. The Palau Legacy Project, a tourism marketing body that works alongside the government to prevent environmental degradation through long-term sustainability projects, recognised that without urgent action, it would get to the point where it was too late to protect some of the most unique parts of the country, which are already very fragile and delicate.
The challenge was to find a healthy balance between encouraging tourism without compromising the local environment and Palau’s distinctive Micronesian culture.