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Why Thailand is so popular for scuba diving

Why take your PADI diving course in Thailand
Spectacular and safe diving sites ensure Thailand is top of people’s bucket list

Thailand, the “Land of Smiles” located right at the heart of Southeast Asia is famed for its unique culture and internationally renowned cuisine. The country boasts incredible beauty with incredible peaks in the north surrounded by lush tropical jungles and further south palm trees fringing beautiful white sandy beaches, amazing colourful coral reefs.

Thailand also has many exhilarating cultural attractions right across the length and breadth of the country.
With the Gulf of Thailand on the East and the Andaman Sea on the west of Thailand, there are lots of scuba diving opportunities including coral reefs, drop offs, shipwrecks, walls and deep pinnacles.

Once finished diving for the day you will find plenty of entertainment from picturesque sunsets and excellent dining to social drinking and lively full moon parties.

The best dive sites in Thailand

Thailand has dive sites to suit all needs from shallow coral reefs perfect for PADI Open Water divers to deep pinnacles that excite the more experienced scuba diver.

Twin – One of Koh Tao’s most popular dive sites, made up of two main rock formations in calm shallow waters, this dive site caters for all needs of scuba diving. The depth makes it perfect for Open Water training dives while a third pinnacle a short distance away on a drop off can give more experienced divers extra depth to explore. This site has lots to offer with its beautiful reefs and marine life with Hawksbill turtles also being regular visitors.

Chumphon Pinnacle – Widely regarded as Koh Tao’s best local dive site, it is one big pinnacle that is 32 meters in depth up to 14 meters from the surface. Koh Tao’s premier deep dive site is also the site that you are most likely to see migrating Whalesharks that are passing through this area.

Sail Rock – This is the premier scuba diving site in the Gulf of Thailand. Situated an hour and a half boat ride from Koh Tao and is usually offered as a full day trip from the island.

The site is made from one big rock that starts down at a depth of 40 meters and rises 8 meters out of the water. It also has a unique swim-through known as “the chimney” which enables you to descend and/or ascend inside the rock.

Richelieu Rock – Accepted as Thailand’s very best and most famous dive site, a horse-shoe shaped reef that lies in the Andaman sea and is thought to have been discovered by Jacques Cousteau. It is known for its very diverse marine life ranging from shrimps and seahorses to large pelagic like whalesharks, barracudas, and giant groupers.

Koh Bon West Ridge – The number 1 place in Thailand to see Manta Rays as they use this area as a cleaning station, divers can just remain still and watch these majestic creatures. The reef on the site slopes from a depth of 10 metres down to a sandy bottom at 30 metres.

King Cruiser – This shipwreck lies between Phuket and Koh Phi Phi, it was originally a ferry taking people between the island when it hit “Anemone Reef” (another well-known dive site) and sank. It has now become a huge artificial reef that has become home to a huge variety of marine life that includes huge schools of travellies, snappers and other schooling fish that are seeking shelter.
Thailand is a great destination to learn to dive with the PADI Open Water Diver course and to become a scuba diver that is able to dive around the world.

If you are already Open water certified you should look to take your PADI Advanced Open Water course, PADI Enriched Air Nitrox and PADI Deep Diver courses so you can explore the many world-class deep dive sites that encircle the country.

Naturally the PADI Wreck Diving course is a consideration if you are planning to dive on any of Thailand’s amazing wrecks