Similan Day Trip Diving
This week we have been posting about Similan day trip diving.
We’ve said many times that we prefer Similan Islands liveaboards because they offer better quality diving and more value.
But if you can only manage a day trip to the Similans it would be better to stay in Khao Lak which is the closest mainland jumping off point. But if you are staying in Phuket we can still organise you a day trip with two dives at the Similan Islands, just be prepared for a long day.
Two dive day trip from Phuket to the Similan Islands
This diving day trip is for certified divers who have dived within the last year*. All dives are guided by PADI Divemasters. Dive sites are selected daily by the boat’s dive leader.
Price: 5,600 Thb per diver (3,600 baht per non diver)
Schedule: available from November to April, every day except Wednesday and Sunday (when the boat goes looking for mantas at Koh Bon).
It’s also possible to stay overnight on the boat and dive the Similan Islands plus Koh Bon.
Pick up from your Phuket hotel at 6.00 -7.15 am.
Depart from Thap Lamu pier at 8.00 am.
First dive at about 10.00 am
Lunch is served on board South Siam 3
Second dive at about 1.00 pm
Depart the Similan Islands at about 2.30 pm
Arrive at Thap Lamu pier at about 4.00 pm
Arrive back at your Phuket at about 6.00 – 7.00 pm
The boat pier at Thap Lamu is 1 hour drive north of Phuket island, transfers to the boat start each morning in south Phuket and work north. So the further north you stay on Phuket Island, the longer you get to lay in bed in the morning. We can also arrange pick you up for a Similan day trip at Phuket airport or in Khao Lak if you are staying there.
Similan day trip diving includes: tanks, weights, dive guide, lunch, return hotel transfers from Phuket main beach hotels (Patong, Kata, Karon, Chalong).
Excluded: park fees (700 baht per diver), dive equipment (500 baht per set), outside area transfers (500-1,000 baht)
*Divers are required to have dived within the last 12 months to join this Similan Islands diving trip. If you have not dived in the last year months there are a few options open to you. You can do a local Phuket day trip on a prior day, please ask us about options. Or, if time does not allow that we can arrange a private divemaster for you. Private DM’s cost 2,000 baht per day. One guide can take a group of up to four divers (so if you are travelling solo the extra is 2,000 baht, if you are a couple it’s 1,000 baht per person extra, if you are four the extra charge is 500 baht each).
The Similan Islands dive sites offer the best diving in Thailand. There are nine islands with a variety of different underwater seascapes to suit all divers. The Similan Islands have crystal clear water and the whitest sand beaches in Thailand. The Similan Islands have the biggest reef fish in the greatest numbers.
There is no development at the Similan Islands except for a few national park wooden bungalows and the fact that the national park is closed for 6 months of the year helps to keep the area pristine.
The Similan dive sites are mainly two types. Gradual sloping coral reefs starting shallow depths on the east coasts. Or deep dive sites made up of large granite boulder formations that provide more dramatic dives with swim-thru’s, caverns and the ever present chance of a big fish encounter.
The Similan Islands are great for all levels of diver, there are enough different dive sites that the diving can be tailored to suit any diver’s experience level. Popular dive sites include Elephant Head Rock, East of Eden, West of Eden, Deep Six, Christmas Point, Snapper Alley and Stonehenge.
The Similan islands 1, 2 and 3 are closed to tourists and have been for over 15 years. Similan Island 4 (Koh Miang) has some national park bungalows and a camp site on it plus a small Royal Thai Navy outpost. This is the most popular island with day tripping snorkelers who all have their lunch here. There is also an excellent view point on Koh Miang that is well worth the climb. Similan Island 8 (Koh Similan) also has a nice viewpoint on sail rock which is much photographed.
All tourists entering the Similan Islands national marine park must pay a national park entrance fee and there is also a per day fee for diving at the Similan Islands.