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More than 200 volcanic and coral islands, of which only eight are permanently inhabited, make up the northern Pacific nation of Palau. The territory varies from the high, mountainous landscape of the largest island of Babelthuap to low coral islands, usually fringed by large barrier reefs. The scenery ranges from white sandy beaches with an abundance of marine life to dense jungle. Ranked as the fourteenth smallest nation in the world, Palau became independent in 1994, after being part of a United Nations trust territory administered by the US for 47 years.
The country is known to coin collectors as the issuer of exquisite Mineral Art, Tiffany Art, Sacred Art and Ounce of Luck series of modern commemorative coins.
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