Koh Samui diving is yet another reason to visit the tropical wonderland! With clear blue waters, warm temperatures and amazing marine life, it's no surprise that the area is an extremely popular destination for both experienced divers and those who want to take up the sport for the first time.
Short, accredited dive courses are readily available and the prices are very reasonable compared to other countries. A wide range of dive shops offering all levels of instruction can be found on Samui and nearby Koh Tao. And if you look around, it's not difficult to find courses conducted in the language of your choice (except Inuit).
In addition to the affordable prices, one of the obvious reasons dive courses are so popular here is the great locations from which they are conducted -- your instruction is usually straight off the beach in the shallow, calm waters off Chaweng, Coral Cove or several other places around the island.
The water visibility is anywhere between 3-30 meters. The currents around Samui itself are variable, but usually not too strong except on the west coast during the monsoon months.
Most of the diving for novices is only a short boat ride away, while world-class sites for more advanced divers can be found less than two hours away at places like Ang Thong National Marine Park and Sail Rock. Whether you're considering trying the sport for the first time or are a serious enthusiast, you won't be disappointed by either the quality or quantity of diving around Samui, aptly called a diver's paradise!
About 70 Km north of Samui is the island of Koh Tao (Turtle Island). There are numerous dive sites in and around Koh Tao, which is is a mini-tropical paradise offering jungle walks and white sandy beaches. Here the water visibility ranges from 15-30 meters and includes the popular dive spots of Chumporn and Southwest Pinnacles, Nang Yuan, Green Rock, White Rock and Red Rock. The waters around Koh Tao are home to an abundant range of marine life, including barracuda, tuna, snapper and sea turtles.
Considered one of the more challenging dive sites with occasionally strong currents and depths of 10-35 meters, this site consists of fascinating submerged pinnacles. The highest of these rocks is approximately 16 meters below the surface. At Chumporn, you can swim with man-sized groupers and other large pelagic fish, including schools of barracuda, tuna and mackerel.
The Southwest Pinnacles consist of three rock formations which range from 4-30 meters below the surface, representing a series of short wall dives. At the top of the pinnacles are blankets of underwater plant life in a stunning array of rainbow colors. Between the rocks are many bushy black coral sea whips and gorgonian sea fans. Leopard sharks are often encountered and it is even possible to meet an occasional whale shark. Giant groupers are common here, as are scribbled filefish, masked porcupine fish, yellowtail, barracuda and snapper.
This dive site tends to attract the more advanced diver as the water is deeper and the currents are certainly much stronger. The rocks are submerged in 12 meters of water and attract large schools of jackfish (bigger varieties), trevally and giant barracudas.
Green Rock provides a good selection of swim-through opportunities in depths of 4-25 meters. The rock consists of large archways, caverns, caves and crevices. Common sightings include harlequin sweetlips, blue-ringed angelfish and moray eels. Sometimes you can spot whitetip reef sharks, and further out in deeper water, large groupers, schools of yellowtail, fusilier and silver fish.
This dive explores two submerged pinnacles which are only two meters above the surface but extend between 18-22 meters underwater. Schools of butterfly fish and angel fish predominate and colonies of staghorn corals attract breams and damsels to make their homes here. On any given dive look out for the more exciting sightings of sea snakes, turtles, morays and blue spotted stingrays. An interesting and equally exciting part of your dive will hopefully be an encounter with White Rock's resident titan trigger fish -- territorial by nature and supremely erratic.
|North of Samui between the islands of Koh Tao and Phangan is the internationally renowned dive site of Sail Rock. Although only 15 meters above the water, the structure extends 40 meters below the surface. The main attraction of Sail Rock is a naturally formed 15-meter high underwater dive wall or chimney. Divers can ascend from 18 meters up the chimney wall to the surface, making this a unique diving experience. Visibility is usually excellent at around 30 meters. The structure itself is pocked with small holes which are ideal homes for white-eyed and yellow margin moray eels, as well as large sea anemones. Sightings of reef sharks and manta rays are also common, as are large schools of tuna, jacks, trevally and barracudas. During the winter months whale sharks can be seen on occasion.
|Ang Thong National Marine Park lies approximately 30 Km to the northwest of Samui. Popularized by the movie "The Beach" starring Leonardo Di Caprio, the park comprises 80 islands and offers some of the best diving in Thailand. Koh Wao and Koh Yippon are the most popular dive sites, featuring incredible swim-through experiences, not to mention other encounters with caves, tunnels and passageways. The water visibility is 15-25 meters and the area is best visited between the months of September through January. The marine park is a proverbial spawning ground for many fish species and is home to hundreds of different varieties of colorful soft and hard coral.
Koh Samui's numerous dive shops are easily located and can be found throughout the main tourist areas. For the novice and those with little time to spare, the local reefs offer several enjoyable dives accessible by boat within 5-25 minutes, including: Lamai Reef, Chaweng Reef, Koh Matlang and Waikiki Reef. For the more serious enthusiast, there are many dive sites within 2 hours by boat, including: the amazing Ang Thong National Marine Park, Koh Tao, Sail Rock, Red Rock and Koh Nang Yuan, to name just a few.
|Dive & Adventure Projects
PADI. Dive & Adventure Projects. Adventure company with Swedish instructor on Samui.
Website: www.thaistyles.net .
PADI. Scuba diving in Koh Tao. Location: Chalok Ban Khao, Koh Tao.
Website: www.stingray-divers.com .
PADI. Koh Samui international diving schools. Location: Chaweng and Koh Tao. Website: www.planet-scuba.net .
PADI. Explore the underworld with Dive Point. Location: Chaweng.
Website: www.divepoint-thailand.com .
The dive shop
PADI. Dive courses, retail selection. Location: Chaweng beach road. Website: www.thediveshop.net . Crystal Dive Resort
PADI. One of Koh Tao's leading operators. Location: Mae Haad, Koh Tao. Website: www.crystaldive.com .
Searobin Dive Center
PADI. Discover Koh Samui underwater world. Location: Several locations. Website: www.divesearobin.com .
Dive In deep
PADI. Discover Thailand's underwater world. Location: Chaweng Beach Road. Website: www.diveindeep.com .
PADI. Japanese diving scools on Samui. Location: Chaweng and Bo Phut.
Website: www.houbou-ya.com .
PADI. Scuba Diving in Thailand since 1982. Location: Several locations. Website: www.planet-tec.net Crystal Dive IDC Resort
PADI. Instructor Development Courses. Location: Mae Haad, Koh Tao. Website: www.idckohtao.com .
Big Bubble Dive Resort
PADI. Padi Five Star School. Location: Chalok Baan Kao, Koh Tao.
Website: www.bigbubble.info .
New Way Diving
PADI. We believe in small dive groups. Location: Sairee Beach, Koh Tao. Website: www.scubadivingkohtao.com .
PADI. Our team of PADI Instructors & Divemasters have a wealth of local dive knowledge.