The most stunning dive sites in Thailand

Similan Islands, photo by vonlohmann

With over 3000 kilometers of coastline, Thailand has some of the most amazing beaches on the planet, but it’s not the the palm-fringed strips of soft sand that attract tourists – what lies beyond the beach, under the water, is just as amazing. Coral reefs and the occasional ship wreck make every single scuba dive on the coast of Thailand an unforgettable experience. While most scuba diving spots in Thailand are pretty great, some of them are world-class destinations that offer the opportunity to catch a glimpse of jaw-dropping underwater wonders. Here are some of the most stunning dive sites in Thailand, for those who like to immerse themselves in the magical world of the deep.

Similan Islands

The national park of the Similan Islands, in the south of Thailand, is without a doubt the best diving site in Thailand, and among the best in the world. The nine granite islands are only a tiny fragment of the national park, but the best dives are to be had coral reefs surrounding them. An extraordinary number of marine species live in the waters surrounding the Similan Islands: manta rays, reef sharks, leopard sharks, barracuda, octopus, cuttlefish, lionfish, clownfish, and who knows how many others.

Koh Tao

Koh Tao, photo by Christian Haugen

This all year-round favorite diving spot was actually a detention center for prisoners in the past, but today is it a wonderful place to get away from it all. The lack of strong currents, the great richness of the marine life, and the many diving shops, tours and schools make the island a great place to begin your diving ‘career’ if you haven’t done any scuba diving before.

Pattaya

Because Pattaya is a hugely popular beach destination, much of the coral near the shore has been damaged by overuse, and the site isn’t too famous, However, what makes Pattaya a very interesting diving site are several shipwrecks that attract quite a few wreck diving enthusiasts: HTMS Khram, Hardeep, HTMS Kood and the Patchburi.

Hin Daeng

Hin Daeng, photo by prilfish

Hin Daeng is among the most stunning dive sites in Thailand, especially when it comes to whale sharks and manta rays. The site is accessible only on day trips from Phuket, but that never deters the flocks of eager divers who want to swim with the rays, who are not afraid of humans. Even if you don’t happen to be at the site in manta ray season, the experience is still worth it.

Koh Samui

If you’re visiting Thailand with plans of getting a taste of everything that it has to offer, then go to Koh Samui, where you can discover culture, cuisine, nightlife and attractions, as well as some truly amazing diving sites. There are dozens of scuba diving tour operators and shops in Koh Samui, and it is very easy to find the perfect diving spot for beginners and well as for experienced divers.

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