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The Junk Dive!
How would you like to dive from a traditional Junk. The junk June Hong Chian Lee ("respect wind travel forever") is restored to her old glory to serve as a liveaboard in the Phuket area.
The Amazing Junk
The June Hong Chian Lee is one of several junks built in Penang, Malaysia, and is a 30 meters, 140-ton three mast junk with 330
square meters of sails. The ship has a long history that you can read about on their beautiful site. At the start of each season when the June
Hong Chian Lee is launched, a Chinese shaman or priestess performs an ancient seafaring ceremony to call ashore the spirits of men who died
while serving on the junk’s decks. more...
Koh Tao, relaxing diving away from the crowds
Imagine a small tropical island with incredible snorkelling and scuba diving, a rich jungle in the centre and surrounded by remarkably quiet, palm tree
Aerial view of Koh Tao
You're imagining Koh Tao, a small island off the southern coast of Thailand - not far from the better known (but more crowded) Koh
Whale shark season in the Similian Islands
The Similans, located about one hundred kilometers Northwest of Phuket, are composed of nine granite islands covered in tropical jungle, washed by
a clear blue tropical ocean and blessed with some of the world's finest beaches.
Whale shark near the Andaman Islands. The waters surrounding these islands are a great place to see whalesharks. Find out when to go. more...
Siam Dive n' Sail Web site; full of Thailand Diving Info
Siam Dive 'n Sail is located in Phuket. Not only will they help you book land based or liveaboard trips, their web site is full of great information.
Go diving with Phi Phi Scuba Diving Center.
Scuba Diving on Phi Phi Island got its' start in the late 80's and Phi Phi Scuba Diving Center was one of the first Dive Centres on the island. Once you arrive on Phi Phi Island, and easy ferry ride from Phuket or Krabi, your first walk down the main street will show you what the island has to offer. Lots of restaurants, shops and quite a few dive-shops. You wont have to look far to find the Phi Phi Scuba Diving Center though. Their bright yellow shop (like their boats) is the largest diving center on the island and is located right in the middle of the main walkway. Established in 1989 and under Swiss management. You will find lots of nice people around the shop and always someone who speaks your language. This dive center also visits the great sites Hin Daeng & Hin Muang by day trip on their fast and comfortable speedboat.
Thailand is blessed with two bountiful seas, the Gulf of Thailand in the east and the Andaman Sea, part of the eastern Indian Ocean, in the west. The riches that these oceans contain are a delight. Because of its varied topography and delightful people, Thailand offers any diver diverse undersea experiences along with an unbelievable amount of top-side recreation. It is the perfect place for a diving holiday. World-class diving, heavenly tropical islands (Koh is island in Thai) and immaculate white sand beaches await.
Dive sites can be reached either by liveaboard from Phuket (Similan Islands, Koh Bon and Richelieu Rock). Or you can reach closer dive sites by day boats from the numerous islands such as Koh Phi Phi (reached by ferry from Krabi and Phuket) for the westcoast dive sites. Or Koh Tao and Koh Samui for the dive sites in the Gulf of Thailand.
The Similan Islands
Similan Islands are 9 granite islands covered by lush, tropical jungle and surrounded by clear blue water. The islands are a national
park and free from development. The eastern side of the islands are known for their white sand beaches and coral reefs that slope to about
98ft. Coral outcropping covered with sea fans and soft corals rise from the seabed to just below the surface. On the western side, Indian Ocean
currents swirl around granite formations. Dramatic rock formations form swim-throughs, overhangs and caverns. These rocks are covered with rainbow-colored soft corals and sponges. Sea fans, eagle rays, leopard sharks, oriental sweetlips and orange anthias are all signature sights in the Similans.
This is one of the best diving spots in the world. Please see our Trip of the Month: Similian Islands, Koh Tachai and Richelieu Rock.
Burma Banks (please see our Burma
Koh Tachai & Richelieu Rock
North of the Similans lie Ko Bon, Koh Tachai, the Surin Islands and Richelieu Rock. All of these areas, with the exception of Surin, offer world-class
diving that differs from the Similan Islands. Koh Bon offers leopard sharks and the colors of the corals are radically different from the
Similan Islands. Koh Bon is one of the better places to see manta rays, especially toward the end of the season on April through May when there
is more plankton in the water. Please see our Trip of the Month: Similan Islands, Koh Tachai and Richelieu Rock.
By far the best and most popular dive sites by day-trip from Phuket or Phi Phi, these two pinnacles are located approximately 25 km east
of Chalong Bay in Phuket. Despite their limited visibility, these are two of the better dives in the world.
Hin Daeng & Hin Muang
These two sites south of the town of Krabi are accessible only by liveaboard or by fast speedboat from Phi Phi Island. Hin Daeng is a pinnacle rising 10ft above the water's surface. On the southern side of the rock, the pinnacle drops straight down to 197ft. On the eastern side, the drop-off is less dramatic. Two ridges extend to 131ft and support tall coral trees and gorgonian fans. Like silvery curtains in the wind, huge schools of jacks continuously weave their way through these ridges. South of Hin Deang is Hun Muang, known for it's purple soft corals, sea fans in hues of red, orange and yellow, sponges, anemones, tall gorgonian fans and rocky outcrops.
One of the best things about diving around these two small islands is the fact that dive sites, unlike Phuket's and Samui's, are only minutes
away. Sites range from deep water pinnacles to shallow coral garden to rocky points complete with swim-throughs.
This island offers the diving as Koh Tao. Sail Rock is the main dive site. Chumpon Pinnacles National Marine Park is also a good day trip.
Andaman & Nicobar Islands
These island groups belong to India but are best dived by liveaboard from Thailand. Please see our Trip of the Month February 2002 for more information...
Thailand has three seasons: cool, hot and rainy. The best time to visit (for consistently great weather if you love the sun) is between October and
May. The summer months of July and August are customarily very pleasant, although it tends to rain in the evenings. September is usually not
the best time on the islands, as the the seas are usually too rough for diving and rain fall is widespread. With regard to the water clarity,
rain makes no difference in most offshore areas. In the Similans, the water is actually clearer during the summer months as the islands are
too far offshore to be effected by fresh water runoff.
To chat, find out about trips in the region, look for a dive buddy or get answers to any SEA dive related questions, visit Fins Online, a very popular Divers Forum based in Singapore
Lonely Planet Diving & Snorkeling Thailand (Diving & Snorkeling), Mark Strickland
& John Williams | Buy
The Dive Sites of Thailand, Paul Lees | Buy
Thailand's Coral Reefs, Colin Piprell & Ashley Boyd | Buy
Marine Parks of Thailand, Francis Lee & Chou Loke Ming
Lonely Planet :: Thailand