Diving is one of the world’s greatest pleasures – an activity where you can truly be at one with nature and enjoy this gorgeous planet that we all get to call home. Only people who have been lucky enough to learn and practice diving will know the magical feeling that it brings. Thailand is a great destination to learn to dive, as the scuba diving in Thailand is some of the best in the world.
As well as white sandy beaches, in the clear waters you’ll find coral reefs, deep drop-offs, wrecks and walls. It’s a diver’s paradise.
Best Scuba Diving Sites in ThailandHow do these rankings work?
1. Similan Islands
The Similan Islands are well known as one of the best places for scuba diving in Thailand. The best way to dive in The Similan Islands is from a liveaboard boat; most trips leave from Khao Lak, but there are departures from Ranong and Phuket too. You’ll see manta rays and whale sharks as you explore around the nine islands.
2. Koh Lanta
Diving here is by boat only, and you take either a speed boat or slow boat. The real diving jewel here is Koh Haa: five big rocks offer divers several caverns and swim-throughs. The amazing caves have wide entrance openings and ancient rock stalactite formations hanging down from the ceilings.
3. Sail Rock
This 30 metre submerged rock pinnacle off the coast of Koh Phangan is often regarded as the best dive site in the Gulf of Thailand and one of the best sites for whale shark sightings. It’s a magnet for fish and the waters are amazingly clear.
4. Koh Chang
There’s plenty of diving sites here, but the most famous is HTMS Chang. It is Thailand’s longest wreck at 117 metres and sits at 30 metres underwater. After more than 50 years’ service in the Royal Thai Navy, it was sunk in 2012 to create an artificial reef. It’s a great site to explore the cabins, briefing rooms and the main holding area.
5. Andaman Sea
This vivid spot has endless amounts of coral reefs and marine life. The Andaman Sea is home to plenty of vibrantly colourful creatures. Often, divers will see hawksbill turtles, leopard sharks and blacktip reef sharks.
6. Koh Tachai
This submerged ridge is made up of hard corals and boulders, which have formed numerous channels that you can swim through. You’ll see vibrant corals, large sea fans and reef fish but the main draw here are manta rays, whale sharks, groups of hunting tuna, schooling barracuda, leopard sharks, nurse sharks and hawksbill turtles.
This is definitely a top dive site for all big fish fans.
7. Koh Tao
Koh Tao has just over 25 dive sites to explore, suitable for all levels of experience. It’s one of the most popular places for scuba diving in Thailand, and it’s also one of the cheapest places in the world to take a PADI course. The calm, clear waters and year-round diving sites make it world-class.