Looking for a dive journey your friends at the scuba shop will salivate over—Similan Diving Safaris will make fellow divers jealous with a mere mention! Well look no further! The Similan Islands – the most famous dive destination in Thailand and one of the absolute best on the entire planet.
What makes Similan Diving so special? There’s no one thing—the total package delivers all the goods you can imagine. In fact, the National Geographic Society has placed the Similan Islands among its top ten dive destinations in the world, and with obvious reason. From rare and varied sea life to crystalline water and pristine coral, you just won’t find a better example of undersea paradise in such a reachable, well-serviced destination.
Let’s start there: accessibility. The Similan Islands lies only a few hours from Khao Lak—one of Thailand’s prime resort destinations—making it palatable even as a daytrip destination. Of course, Similan diving safaris via liveaboard give you much more access to the area’s amazing dive sites, as well as the time to enjoy them. As such, this method is the one most people choose when visiting the area. Keep in mind too that unlike a trip to, say, Burma, where you could spend your entire dive safari on the boat, you might get a little white sand beach time in between dives on a trip to Similan Islands.
Rest assured you’ll want the extra time to take in as many of Similan’s dive spots as you can. You’ll find two distinct dive environments within Similan Islands National Park, the protected dive zone you’ll be in: in the east, undulating coral reefs dominate, with fields of white sands and occasional rocks punctuating them. On the west side gigantic underwater granite formations are the rule, riddled with swimthroughs and currents that will make you feel like you’ve entered a giant washing machine.
Both dive zones offer their own charms, but they do have one major quality in common—abundant wildlife and spectacular coral formations. Though most of the reefs have experienced serious manmade disturbances over the last few decades, they have largely recovered thanks to ironclad protection measures that still govern how boats come and go today. Among them swim leopard sharks, whale sharks, manta rays, and enough colorful, photogenic fish to fill every megabyte of camera storage you’ve got (so bring plenty!).
If this is interesting to you and you want a real challenge – why not consider a Burma Diving Safari?
If there is such a thing as the best of all worlds, Similan just might be it. The pinnacle of natural beauty and massive wildlife populations, with Thailand’s gorgeous resorts just a short jump away—what could be better?