The Gulf of Thailand
Introduction: This cost of Thailand is a gigantic shallow depression just south of Cambodia. It is roughly 60 meters deep with a maximum of 85. The area boasts a staggering 112 islands with countless fringing reefs with rocks and succulent seabed. The reefs are not as varied as that of the Andaman Sea but the marine life is still prolific.
List of Destinations
- Ko TaoKo Tao meaning Turtle Island, has grown into the hottest diving area in the country. The island with only an area of 21sq km lies north of Ko Samui and Ko Phang-ngan. Ko Tao’s astonishing popularity could be because there is something to satisfy every level of diver.The Chumphon Pinnacle, located 11km from Ko Tao is considered by many divers to be the finest dive site in the region. It consists of a massive granite pinnacle and a series of smaller one. It starts at 14m underwater and drops to a low of 26, covered with sea anemones and pink anemones fish. Divers can even see schools of barracuda, jacks and batfish, then during the right season whale sharks and mantas appear.
Green Rock between just one and 28 meters deep are boulder formations which an array of short tunnels and swim throws. Diving at the rock offers the splendid opportunity to enjoy parrot fish breeding, white eyed morays and blue spotted rays. The area is safe and is perfect for everyone of every level. It is believed to be one of the most exciting sites in the Ko Tao area.
The Nangyuan Pinnacle is undoubtedly the most popular of all the sites in the region. Its granite boulder formations have a diversity of swim-throughs and tropical reef fish such as groupers, long fin, banner fin and blue spotted stingrays.
Shark Island just off the south-west coast is another of the most popular areas to dive with depths of almost 30 meters and hawksbill turtle, blue ridged angel, long fin banner, leopard sharks and reef sharks. The area is perfect for any standard of diving.
The South-West Pinnacle offers diving ranges between 5 and 30 meters deep. The series of steep pinnacles rise from the sandy seabed and offer an ample variety of colorful marine life, such as butterfly fish, blue-ringed angelfish, jacks, barracudas and occasional whale sharks.
Twins which lies just to the west of Ko Nangyuan is made of rocks with depths of 6 to 18 meters. Among the hard corals are big grouper, white-eyed morak eels, pink anemone, clown fish, blue spotted rays, wrasse and black and white sergeant major fish.
White Rock which lies just to the west of Ko Nangyuan is made of rocks with depths of 6 to 18 meters. Among the hard corals are big grouper, white-eyed morak eels, pink anemone, clown fish, blue spotted rays, wrasse and black and white sergeant major fish.
- Ko Phang-nganThis “hippy” hideout of an island famous for its full-moon parties is an excellent departure point for the northern most part of the Ang Thong Marine National Park. The visibility in the area is just 4 meters with a highest of 25.
- Ko SamuiKo Samui is more renowned for its long sandy beaches and sizzling nightlife than its diving, but there are some enjoyable sites nearby.Sail Rock is by far and away the most well-known dive site in the Ko Samui area. It is a rock pinnacle shaped like an iceberg which emerges from a sandy seabed at 40m to tower 15m above the surface. It is also a magnet for fish and there are fascinating schools of anemones and pink anemones.
Koh Yippon consists of 50 different islands. The visibility is lower than that of the other sites in the area but the scenery is still beautiful.
- ChumphonChumphon province offers the visitor an astonishing array of natural attractions and it is a good place to stop and enjoy the healthy diversity of marine life and fringing reefs. One can also do some night diving.Ko Lak Ngam located just 15km north-east of Chumphon, is one of 40 islands which belong to the Chumphon Marine National Park. There is plenty of hard and soft corals and hosts home to a large amount of sea life such as bat fish, trevally, fusiliers, turtle and seasonal whale sharks.
- PattayaJust 90 minutes from the capital, this coastal shoreline is ideal for those in Bangkok who wish to do some diving on their day off.Undoubtedly, the most popular destination in Pattaya for diving buffs is the Hardeep Wreck which was sunk by the allies in the Second World War. The wreck lies on its starboard side at a maximum depth of 26 meters.
- Ko Chang Marine National ParkKo Chang has seen an explosion in the amount of visitors over the past few years. It is just one of a total 52 islands in the Marine National Park. Even though the area has previously been victim to man-made wrongs, there is still the chance to enjoy fringing reefs, marine life, a wreck, giant clams and snorkeling.Hin Kuak Maa offers the diver a huge variety of solid and soft corals which are home to the likes of moray eels, blue spotted sting rays, sea turtles, starfish, stonefish and puffer fish.
Hin Luk Bath has turned into one of the most favored dive sites around with its boulder formations which appear from a sandy seabed 15 meters down The way they jut out allows a vast array of corals and barrel sponges. It is also possible to spot angel fish and barracuda.
Hin Rap South is a 18 meter rock pinnacle which can be dived by anyone of every level. It is covered with staghorn corals, barrel sponges and delicate corals. Experienced divers can also venture out 200 meters to admire a group of rocks known as Blue Mountains which often glow from the sun.
Hin Run Tek with an average depth of 12 meters, is a huge rock formation site with a diversity of colorful marine life such as parrotfish, wrasse and angelfish.
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