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Palau Weh (indonesia), or Similan Islands

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I'm going to be in Kuala Lumpur in late November and would like to add a week of diving to the trip. From reports here, I think I've narrowed it to either Palau Weh (Sebang) Indonesia, or Similan Islands, Thailand. So my question is, which of these places is better to dive? I enjoy muck and general reef diving. I'm not into wrecks.

 

Both appear to be about the same amount of work to get to and I'm not picky about accommodations. A nod goes to Similan Islands, because I'd do them on a liveaboard, and that always makes diving easier and you get more dives.

 

And while I'm asking, in looking at this post from 2007, Drew recommends these boats as mid-price and safe; does it still hold true? West Coast Explorer, Black Manta, Colonna VI and Genesis

 

Recomendation for liveaboard to Similan Islands

 

 

Thank you in advance for any information I really appreciate the feedback on this site.

 

Mike

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The Similan and Surin Islands are great, or at least they were when I dived them a few years ago. Have a look here thai liveaboards and you will be able to choose from a list. I have been on the Mermaid 2 and it is a lovely boat. Very comfortable and the best food I think I have eaten on a boat. I did not go on the Mermaid in Thailand though. I was on the Mermaid in Komodo where it goes at the end of the Similan season.

 

Stew

Edited by stewsmith

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Never been to Similan, but I enjoy Pulau Weh a lot, love the ambient, not crowded except on weekend. Beautiful island.

 

peman.jpg

 

Diving in pulau Weh is very inexpensive; and offer almost everything from simple, easy diving house reef, hot spring bubble. beautiful coral garden, wrecks, wall and canyon, muck diving, eel galore (dozens eels incl. the biggest moray eel I ever seen), pelagics in ripping current and washing machine; and if you lucky whale shark and if super lucky, big mouth shark.

 

 

The house reef at gapang in front of Lumba-lumba dive resort is very nice for long shallow night diving; these fellow will always waiting you.

 

puffer22.jpg

cowfish5.jpg

 

Typically simple and basic accommodation. The lumba-lumba cottage is spacious, very comfortable although no aircon.

 

It is not difficult to reach Pulau Weh from KL; you'll reach the resort on the same day. On departure, i suggest to stay overnight at banda aceh; take your time to see the city 6 yeras pasca tsunami; here one left in the city, a 2600 tonne, 63 m floating power plant washed 5 km inland.

 

PLTD.jpg

 

Cheers

Edited by Mamel

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That region is a good destination for diving, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia are beautiful place.

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Thank you all for your advice. I'm hoping to hear from someone who's been to both destinations. But it sounds like I won't go wrong with either.

 

Thanks

Mike

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I did my DM in Pulau Weh in 2001, back before the Tsunami and it was a very special place back then, deep, good vis with some interesting currents from time to time. I hear it is still amazing, just slightly busier now that all the NGO's are working there and the war has finished. I have dived Similan's twice, also amazing, just a lot busier. When i dived there there were generally 4 or 5 live aboards on each site, meaning that generally i saw a lot of divers in addition to all the fish life. I found the diversity of fish life off Pulau Weh amazing, particularly big shoals of pelagics, and because it is off the beaten path there tend to be significantly less divers.

 

Either way they are both amazing, but my recommendation would be Weh for the desert island peacefulness and lack of a million divers.

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