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GoinDown

Koh Tao, Thailand, for experienced divers

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My first advice would be to avoid Koh Tao. While I do have a soft spot for the island (I spent 3 months there doing my DM), if you have any dive experience at all, you will be disappointed with the sites around the island. They are way over crowded and there is not much life to see at all.

 

That being said when I was last there I dove with Golden Divers (aparently now http://www.impiandivers.com/) in Mae Head, and they were really great. Small groups, no bottom time limits, and were the only shop we found that could arrange a trip to Sail Rock where a Whale Shark had been spotted several times over a couple of weeks.

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I sorta agree. The diving isn't good except once in a while something good happens at Sail or Chumporn rock like a sailfish, whaleshark, bull shark or a whale (it's not common). It's more for the crowd and the people than the diving. The Andaman side has the better diving.

If you must go, I guess there are a few ops with smaller boats but the dive sites are still crowded so it doesn't really matter.

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I would like to temper this a bit.

 

First, I would also recommend Golden Divers (and I am not aware that they changed name, you can still find their website easily). Big pluses: small groups, no limit to bottom time, and they leave later than the others so you have a chance to avoid the crowd.

 

Second, yes, the diving is not great at koh Tao but Chumpon Pinnacle, South West Pinnacle, Sail Rock are nice. And we had dives with whale shark, and once with 4 bulls. And the island remains quite nice if you avoid the crowd (try staying at the northern end of Saree Beach maybe, Bow Thong Resort or around there).

The snorkeling is good, and it is a nice way to spend holidays with the family, even more so if some are divers and some are non divers (bring a non diver to Similans, 4 or 5 days waiting on a boat...).

 

Of course the Similans are better, or Hin Daeng/Hin Muang, but they are far and expensive. Or go to Indonesia or the Philippines, much better!

 

Koh Tao is OK, cheap and the island is nice.

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Thanks for the comments guys, we are off to take our chances on Koh Tao on Saturday combining a relaxing break with diving and some UW photography, so this isn't specifically a full on diving photography type trip.

 

Will check out Golden Divers also :B):

 

I'm posting a question about customs and bringing in my equipment in another thread if anyone has experience..

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