If you’re heading to Thailand and are a scuba diver or have always wanted to get certified, you need to add Koh Tao to your itinerary. The island is in the Gulf of Thailand and can be reached only by ferry from Koh Samui or Koh Phangan.
It’s a beautiful island with only one major town which is where the ferry arrives, other parts of the island are uninhabited and can only be accessed by ATV’s or dirt bikes. The main reason that it attracts travellers is for the scuba diving. The water is very clear and there is an abundance of marine life.
When you arrive and walk into the town of Sai Ree, you’ll notice dive shops everywhere offering daily dives as well as PADI open water certification courses. Since there are so many dive operators on the island the course price is basically the same no matter which one you choose, and it’s a lot cheaper than doing the same course at home.
When selecting a dive operator, one perk that may interest you is that some will offer free accommodation at the dive resort while you are taking the open water course.
The big player on the island is definitely Ban’s Diving Resort, you’ll see their boats loaded down with lots of new divers. I highly recommend Sunshine Divers, it’s a small resort located on the southern part of the island away from the main town/beach. My accommodation was free since I took my open water course with them. You don’t need to worry about transportation as the resort will drive you to the boat and pick you up each day. There’s a restaurant at the resort, as well as many others within walking distance.
The dive spots are incredible, the visibility is endless and you’re guaranteed to see some amazing coral reefs and a variety of tropical fish. So, if you’re a diver or want to be a diver definitely take the ferry ride to Koh Tao when in Thailand.
Here’s a couple of the dive spots: