Thursday, April 30, 2015

Open Water Course

The PADI Open Water Course is really the first level of diving license thats available to all and valid globally. Here in Phuket we are very lucky as we have a stunning location we can dive and teach in all year round. 

Nice pool to do the Open Water Course skills in.The Open water course is a three day course which will cover theory, safety, skills and plenty of diving on the reefs around Phuket. Here at Thailand Divers we run the course over three days and offer it as a superior package giving you 6 dives taking in the islands of Racha Noi, Racha Yai, Phi Phi and Shark Point. Or the standard package which contains the 4  coral reef dives required to complete the course. 

DAY 1    
   You are picked up from your hotel around 07:30am by mini bus and taken to the comfortable air conditioned classroom. Here you will meet your instructor for the next three days. In the morning you will be watching a DVD which will explain the theory, skills and safety aspects involved in diving. You will complete knowledge reviews in you Open Water Manual along with multiple choice questions on each chapter of the DVD. Then just before lunch there is the final exam which consists of the knowledge review questions and the multiple choice questions worded slightly differently. The Open Water Course is designed for people of 10 years and above so as you can imagine the exam is not very hard.

Beautiful reefs at Racha Yai and Racha NoiThen a spot of lunch before going to the swimming pool for the afternoon. In the pool you will become aquainted  with your equipment and how to put it on and how it all works. Once in the pool the instructor will give you exercises to get you comfortable in the water and swimming with ease. You will then be taught all the skills you need to be a confident and a safe diver. You will have time to practice these skills so by the time you leave the pool you will be ready for the sea.

DAY 2   
    07:30am You are picked up from your hotel lobby again and this time its off to the boat. Once on the boat you can relax and have a nice cooked breakfast, tea, coffee and juice, croissants and toast. After breakfast its time to see what you remember from the day before. First we have to set up the equipment ready for when we arrive at the first spot. Now relax on the sun deck for a while and enjoy the stunning views. 
Ghost pipe fish at Racha Yai
Dive number 1
Today we are heading to the islands of Racha Noi and Racha Yai.  This more about just getting relaxed in the water. We stay on the surface and swim in a warm shallow bay. On the way we practice a few surface skills from the day before. Cramp removal, tired diver tow, snorkel regulator exchange and other skills that are needed on the surface. Next we hold a bouy line and slowly release the air from our BCDs and descend into the beautiful tropical waters. Fish everywhere. Remember to equalize, dont let go of the rope and breath. Once on the bottom the instructor gets us to add a tiny bit of air to the BCD so we are neutrally bouyant and off we go. All we are doing now is getting used to swimming and keeping an even depth. 

Dive 2
As before down the rope and this time when we are on the bottom we have to do several skills that we practiced in the pool the day before. Mask clearing and regulator recovery in case we loose it underwater and regulator clearing so we can breath. Next off for another "fundive" doing the odd skill as we go.  

Stunning place to do the PADI Open Water CourseNow back on the boat for some lunch. the lunch is huge. it is a buffet cooked on the boat while we were underwater. It consists of a selection of Thai and Western dishes along with excellent soup, rice, noodles and vegetables. There is also a vegetarian option. 

Dive 3

As this is the superior course of 6 dives rather than just the 4 required for the license it can be a "fun dive" no skills but as we are off to Phi Phi tomorrow and the instructor says these will be much better dive sites it will be better to do skills this dive and give us more free time tomorrow. This is fine by me. What we are doing this dive is practicing using a compass on the surface and underwater. We also do a CESA and alternate air skills.

Phi Phi is stunning
Back on the boat and  again the chef has been busy. pancakes with banana or mango, chocolate sauce or maple syrup. Nice relax in the sun on the way back. Almost done as far as the skills go for our Open Water License. We have seen so much today already. Lion fish, parrot fish, Nemo, sting ray, barracuda, Morae eels, Cuttle fish, Damsel fish, sea snake and Harliquin shrimp but to name a few.
My first shark at Phi Phi

Day number 3
Today is the last day of the course and I am already a pro and totally addicted. As yesterday a huge breakfast, set up gear (now I am professional) and know the routine and off to the sun deck. Today we are off to Phi Phi for 2 dives then off to Shark point for the last dive. Phi Phi is quite a long way so time for a nap in the sun. Phi Phi is stunning. Huge cliffs just rise up from the sea with lots of tiny coves and bays. 
Sea horse at Shark Point
Amazing  views of Phi Phi

Dive 4
This is the last training dive. Just a couple of skills left. The instructor was right. There were millions of fish all around us. Amazing. So clear as well and so much color. Until you dive here you will never believe what is was like. After about half an hour we come up shallower over some rocks. my instructor points to the side of us and my god. There were 2 sharks just meters from me. As I look there were more and more just swimming up and down. They were not minding us at all just swimming. I can not tell you how amazing that was, just too exciting.

Amazing  views of Phi Phi                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               Back on the boat for lunch and this time we were in the bay called Maya bay. This is where the filmed the movie The Beach, stunning

Dive 5.
friendly Turtle at Phi PhiNow I am a certified diver. My course is finished so no more mask on and off, no more equipment off and on. Now just diving. This place was named Turtle rock but the first thing we see is another Black Tip Reef Shark. Here there is a little bit of current so we dont need to swim. Just relax and drift along.  As we drift over the reef we do find a turtle and again they see so many divers they just look up at you then carry on eating. One even stops to look at us when the instructor points the camera at it. They are so beautiful.

Beautiful Leopard Shark at Shark Point.
                                                                         Dive 6. 
Shark point. This dive site is stunning. So much color everywhere. Corals, anemones fish and huge sea fans. We see 2 Sea horses on different sea fans, Ghost pipe fish. These are so pretty. A huge Barracuda, more sting ray and harliquin shrimps. Then around a corner lying on the sand was a Leopard shark. It looked like a leopard. Gold with black spots. It just lay there looking at us. Our instructor told us 1 at a time to come slowly forward and lie next to it. I was so close to it I could have touched it.  This 3 days has been the best 3 days of my life. 

Beautiful Leopard Shark at Shark Point.
I will always be in debt to Thailand Divers as not only did they get me my license but they organized it so well that I had the chance to see things that others will never dream of. Ok I was lucky as well but by going to Phi Phi for the second day and doing 3 training dives on the first day ment I can enjoy it so much more. I can not recommend getting your open water license when you are in Phuket enough and Thailand divers was amazing, the food, the boat, the diving and the staff. best holiday of my life. I will be back to do my Advanced Open Water License for sure as I am now totally hooked on Scuba Diving.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Scuba Diving Phuket - Similan Islands - Phuket Thailand.: You get what you pay for.

Scuba Diving Phuket - Similan Islands - Phuket Thailand.: You get what you pay for.: You get what you pay for.           Here in Phuket we get a lot of people traveling through Thailand and south east Asia. As they go th...

You get what you pay for.

You get what you pay for. 

Phuket dice sites are stunning         Here in Phuket we get a lot of people traveling through Thailand and south east Asia. As they go they try new things which is one reason for traveling in the first place. The one that we are most interested in at Thailand Divers is of course diving. Diving in Phuket is an all year round activity. From the Live aboards to the Similan and Surin Islands during the months of November till May and the amazing day trip dive  sites around Phuket all year round.                                                        
Phuket dice sites are stunning

         Phuket as a destination has budget hotels right through to amazing five star penthouses. The dive industry as evolved over the years to offer five star service with a three star price. There are boats that can be hired for the day for company excursions that can take 40 plus people and speed boats for four or five. However the standard every day courses and trips are anything but standard. The boats have comfortable saloons for keeping out of the sun or rain in low season. Shaded outside eating and relaxing area along with sun decks for those who wish to bake in the tropical sun. 

Comfortable dive boats         The courses and day trips are run to a similar standard. Small group size 1 - 4  students per instructor or guide. No poor quality beach dives just to get the skills done with no enjoyment factor.  Every dive will be at a good locations that experienced divers go to for their day trips. We want every dive to be fun and for you to be able to see great things underwater.  Having the small group sizes for ALL courses means a 99.9% pass rate. This also means that you will not just pass but pass to a standard far higher than actually required for the certification. As the groups are small the instructors have time to work with everyone to over come and improve anything that needs it. Hence the very high pass rate. 
What you will experience on you PADI courses in Phuket
        Other areas in Thailand like Koh Tao offer cheaper day trips and cheaper courses. This is fine if you are only interested in getting the certification rather than actually enjoying some of the best diving locations on the Planet Earth. Any place on the beach can offer PADI courses by walking into the nearest bit of sea, doing the required skills and walking out again. Or getting on an old fishing boat and chugging to a lump of rock in murky waters. 
Comfortable dive boats

Top day trip destinations       Here in Phuket we have some great dive sites that we the instructor still enjoy after 100s of dives on them. We think this is a far better way to do PADI Discover Scuba Diving or Open Water courses as well as all other courses and fun diving. The boats are modern purpose built dive boats with dining ares, sun decks as well. This is ment to be a relaxing holiday in a tropical paradise as well as just a dive course. You deserve some pampering too. All boat trips include hotel transfers, freshly cooked breakfast, lunch and afternoon tea by a very skilled chef on the boat. There is tea, coffee drinking water and fresh fruit on offer all day. 
Live aboard in the similans is a holiday of a lifetime.
Diving in the Similans is a world beating location.
Excellent service on the dive boats

    Yes the cost here is slightly higher here in Phuket than those in Koh Tao  and other places but what you get for the money is 100% above and beyond the normal. You only need to glance at trip advisor to see the quality of the service. You only need to look at face book, Google plus or Twitter to see the standard of the dive sites and the standards of the boats. Then just at the click of your mouse you can see the prices on the website are very low compared to other Phuket dive centers. If you still need some questions answered there is a live chat function on the website too.  Compare the prices at Thailand Divers to all the others here on Phuket and you will see the price is the same but the service is well above and beyond. 
Phuket has awesome day trip locations that we use on all  PADI courses

 Check out the diving at Koh Tao, The boats and the standard of diver they are producing here on one of their videos. Do you want to be like this ?   On this boat ?   or pay to dive great places on first class boats too.    YOU GET WHAT YOPU PAY FOR.  Your life and that of your buddy depends on your training. 

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Totally new type of shark discovered.

Pocket shark discovery is only the second ever seen

The second-ever pocket shark was collected off Louisiana. It sort of looks like a small whale. Photo courtesy of
The second-ever pocket shark was collected off Louisiana. It sort of looks like a tiny whale. Photo: courtesy of
A pocket shark—the rarest of sharks with only one specimen ever seen before—has been discovered by scientists, and in the most unusual way.
A male pocket shark measuring 5.5 inches long was collected during a 2010 midwater trawl survey 190 miles south of Louisiana by NOAA/NMFS Southeast Fisheries Science Center while studying prey of sperm whales.
The dead specimen was collected with other sea creatures, bagged up and stored in a giant freezer at NOAA’s lab in Pascagoula, Mississippi, until they could be identified, according to the Associated Press.
NOAA fisheries biologist Mark Grace, lead author on a just released study, has spent more than 30 years going through bags of fish to identify them. It took him three years before coming across the pocket shark.
Associated Press called it a small miracle that the pocket shark hadn’t been tossed out after NOAA’s freezer lost power a couple of times.
The pocket shark measured 5.5 inches. Photo courtesy of
The pocket shark measured 5.5 inches. Photo: courtesy of
“I wasn’t really sure what it was,” Grace told the Associated Press. “That pocket over on the pectoral fin, I had never seen anything like that on a shark.”
Grace recruited Michael Doosey and Henry Bart, Tulane University researchers, and NOAA Ocean Service genetics expert Gavin Naylor to help him study the rare sea creature, the results of which were published Wednesday in Zootaxa.
“It’s cute,” Doosey told the Associated Press. “It almost looks like a little whale.”
Pocket shark was collected in 2010 but not discovered in the lab until three years ago. Photo courtesy of
Pocket shark was collected in 2010 but not discovered in the lab until three years ago. Photo: courtesy of
The specimen, determined to have just been born, was identified and subsequently sent to New York and France for high-tech examinations.
The first pocket shark was found 36 years ago on the Naska Submarine Ridge in 1,083 feet of water in the southeast Pacific Ocean off Peru. The female specimen is 17 inches long and is currently housed in a Russian museum.
The latest pocket shark will be part of the Royal D. Suttkus Fish Collection at Tulane University’s Biodiversity Research Institute in Belle Chasse, Louisiana.
“Discovering him has us thinking about where mom and dad may be, and how they got to the Gulf [of Mexico],” Grace said in a statement on NOAA’s site.  “The only other known specimen was found very far away, off Peru…
“There’s others,” he added via Associated Press. “We just haven’t caught them yet.”


Things like this is why diving is so much fun. So much of the ocean is un explored. You never know what you can see that has never been seen before as long as you look. Thailand has so many isolated reefs and micro eco systems who knows what is there. next time you go diving think about a Speciality course in Fish identification, Underwater naturalist as you never know it may be you that discovers the next new creature. Even better underwater photography or videography course so you can record the things that you see. This also means you can get some great photos to show all the non divers what they are missing. There are so many other specialities to choose from so take a look and see what inspires you. 

Thailand Divers in Phuket offers so many different courses to suit all tastes. As long as you love diving there is fun to be had and a speciality course for you. A chance to learn more with an instructor who loves the same things as you..

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Can Children go Diving.

Can Children go Diving ?

Phuket is the perfect place for children to learn to dive.

   Now as more and more families are visiting the tropical paradise island of Phuket I thought it will be of use to so many families to let people know that Scuba Diving is not just an activity for adults. Children as young as 8 years old can go diving too. There are several programs and courses for children to take part in, and the junior certifications automatically get upgraded to adult one as they grow up without doing anything except continue diving.
Kids love diving in Phuket as its a perfect place to do a jjunior DSD
Discover scuba diving and Bubble maker are ideal ways to get your children to discover the underwater world.


                                                                                                      Kids  8-10 years   

Bubble Maker.       This is a one day (2 dive) trip on a real dive boat to a location with swimming pool like conditions. Here in Phuket we have several locations where we can go so they children can get a real taste of diving. They will be on an island to the south of Phuket called Racha Yai where they can experience scuba diving under the constant control of a very experienced instructor. They will be taught basic theory and safety skills. How the equipment works and what it all does. They will also be taught how to dive and control themselves in the water. Best of all they will be over a coral reef so they can see plenty of fish and other underwater creatures. Racha Yai is an excellent place for snorkeling too so if the parents dont want to dive then they can snorkel too. The maximum depth for this is just 2 meters so the children can get a full taste of scuba diving but never be far from the surface. 
Bubble maker / learning to scuba dive in Phuket is going to be the highlight of their holiday in Patong or Phuket.Thailand Divers offers the best kids diving program in Phuket.

Kids over 10 years

      Discover Scuba Diving.        This is identical to the adult program which is available to children and adults alike. This is a great day that can be enjoyed by all the family.  This program is a 2 dive day to the beautiful island of Racha Yai. The instructor will give full training on the boat (after a big cooked breakfast) on the way out to the island. This will include some theory, a full safety briefing and they will teach you a few safety and diving skills that will help you get the most out of the day.  Once at the island you will be taken to a nice calm shallow bay. Here the instructor will get you under the water just a few meters. Once on the sand the instructor will demonstrate the skills you learned on the boat and all you need to do is watch and repeat. Once both you and the instructor are happy you will begin your dive round the reef. here there is so many tropical reef fish you will be amazed. The dive lasts for a maximum of 50 minutes or till the first person starts to run low on air and is to a maximum of 12 meters deep.  Once back on the boat you will have lunch. Freshly cooked buffet of both Thai and western dishes.  After lunch the boat will move to a second location in the island for a second dive. This is a great family day out as again its a perfect location for diving and snorkeling alike.
Kids in Phuket love the conditions for Scuba diving as there is so much to see.Thailand Divers Phuket had the most dedicated kids instructors. Ideal for junior divers


                                                                                                                                                                                                    Junior Open Water Course,  

 This course is again identical to the adult version except that the maximum depth is 12 meters instead of the 18 meters license for adults. The theory and skills learned in this course are identical to the adults course. This is the full open water license valid all over the world. This license is for life and will automatically get upgraded to and adult one as the child becomes older with nothing more to do on their part. This is a three day course. The first morning is in the classroom learning the theory and watching a dvd. The afternoon is in the pool learning al the skills needed for the open water on the following 2 days. Day 2 and 3 are on the boat. This is where you will refine the skills learned in the pool and practice them in the real world. On each dive you will do 2-3 skills learned the day before in the pool and then go off for an explore with the instructor to see what you can find. The same is for day three and at the end of the three days you will be PADI certified Open Water Diver.
Junior open water in Phuket with Thailand Divers will open your kids eyes to a whole new world.

          All trip include hotel transfer (depending on location) and when on the boat a freshly cooked breakfast and lunch. Both buffet style so there is always several choices. Afternoon tea (pancakes with banana, mango, chocolate or maple sauce) . Fresh fruit is available all day as is tea, coffee, chocolate and drinking water. Coke and Sprite and other soft drinks for a small charge.  All equipment and of course an instructor who is very experienced in teaching children. 

The instructors at Thailand Divers love teaching scuba diver to kids just as much as the kids love it themselves.

Phuket is the safest and most fun place for kids to learn to scuba dive anywhere in Thailand.

                                                                                                                                                                                            So as you can see there are several options for children to experience scuba diving either as a family or as a way for them to do something new fun and exciting while you the parents get some well deserved relaxation time in peace and quiet.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

What is Thai Food ?

What is Thai Food ?

       Over the years people comment on the food here in Thailand. People from other countries say " I love Thai food" or "I hate Thai food". This to me is very strange comment to make after all what is Thai food??

Thailand is a large country that runs North to South. The people are so varied too as they as have many nations been mixed with others over the centuries and so the has the food. Thai food ranges from Chinese styles very similar to what we know all around the world. Noodles, fried rice, sweet and sour. 
The  Phuket dive boats and street vendors of Patong alike have food from all over Thailand.
          We have what westerners think as very spicy is the food from Esan,  Isaan or several other spellings. this is Thailand largest region which is  in the north east on boarder. with Cambodia and Laos. This food is what some people may have tried and said no way. The food is very spicy but with huge amounts of flavor. its not like Indian hot curry which takes away all the other flavors. The Issan food is just large amounts of all flavor. Papaya salad freshly mage on the streets is just one example. When ordering this just say not spicy or even NO spice. 
Patong has a huge selection of varied food available from all over Thailand.

      Then we come to the foods that have traveled overseas. The Thai green, red, yellow curry. These again vary from one chef to another as they are all made locally by people that were taught by their parents, friends who all make it slightly different. They all will be different from what you get in your local resturant  back home. This is because of the lack of Thai ingredients available. Thai food is always very fresh as nothing lasts long in the heat of the day.  What we get in out local Chinese or Indian takeaway is nothing like the food we will get in China or India. The same goes for Thailand. 

Then we have the Pad Thai. This means fried Thai style. This is a stir fry with various noodle types, shrimps and either Chicken, Beef, Pork or seafood. It takes minutes to make and very good cheap non spicy food. 

Thailand is also big on BBQs. Chicken, Pork, Fish, Prawns. This makes sense as Thailand is more suited to BBQ than most other nations. A fire on the beach to cook the fish, a fire on the farm to cook the Chicken or Pork. The BBQ has been around in Thailand longer than in all western countries. Rice, noodles and salad can go with all Thai food. For big celebrations they do the same as we do and can do a pig roast or even spit roast a cow.

  Then in modern times in most holiday resorts now they have western foods too. Pizza, Pasta, Burgers, Mexican, British resturants along with many fast food places. You can get Sunday roasts and there is even places that do a carvery on sundays.
On Phuket you can even get a carvery on Sundays.

Thailand Divers day trips you are sure to get a good breakfast.All dive boats, Live aboards and other tours that involve or include breakfast and lunch will have a selection of western and Thai food modified for westerners.  The dive boats these days are known for excellent food and compete to find the best chefs.  So for people to say they dont like Thai food is crazy. It just means they tried one or two things in a certain area and gave up.  How can people not like BBQs, Chinese, Curries, Fish stir fries, salads and soups. There is a Thai style food that can suit all tastes and it will always will be fresh and full of flavor. Here in Phuket being very central we have the full range of foods from all over Thailand along with being a center for tourists which brings a large selection of western places too. 

On the day trips and liveaboards you are sure to be well fed.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Dive Boats in Phuket.

 Dive Boats in Phuket.

        Here in Phuket over the last few years I have had more and more comments on the dive boats  just as much as the dive sites. We all know the diving here in Phuket is some of the best in the world   what with the warm water all year round and so many sheltered spots to dive no matter what the   weather does.  So what is the difference between the multitude of dive companies and dive centers?? 

 The 2 main differences are the dive boats and the instructors. There are many good instructors on the island too who have vast experience and excellent knowledge. However the best ones are the ones are the instructors that still have the passion and want to go diving rather than the ones who see it as another day at work but its still better than an office job.

     The main difference that can make or break a day is the boat.  As I said all dive centers go to the same dive spots but what makes the difference is how you get there and how relaxed you are when you begin your dive. Some companies have smaller, slower boats with wooden benches to sit on.  They are nice and cheap and get you to the dive sites if some what behind everyone else and with a numb bum. There are faster ones which pack everyone and their dog on to cover the cost of the fuel to run at faster speeds. Both have good points and bad ones. 

What I have been repeatedly been told is the best way to dive is on a comfortable boat where the skipper and tour leader use their brains. The best boats have a large saloon that can hold everyone in comfort during the scattered storms of low season. They have a large open shaded area to eat during the heat of summer and a sun deck for those nutters that still feel the need too bake themselves further. The boat must have a chef onboard to cook a good breakfast on the way to the first dive site so everyone has energy for the day. We must have a good selection of both western and Thai food for lunch along with afternoon tea {pancakes with banana, mango, chocolate or maple sauce) just incase you feel a bit peckish  before dinner. 

The tour leader and skipper need to be able to think and if one dive site is busy then move to the next one which is empty then move back to the first one when everyone else has moved on. Tides and currents must be taken into account as they are not the same everyday, so the order of dive sites can not remain the same as the enjoyment of some dive sites can be lost in stronger current where on other sites current can help as it means less finning. 

   Now take all of the above factors into account and you should get a perfect day (weather permitting) as this something we still can not control but with a bit of thought the weather should not impact too much on the day if you have the right boat. Who cares about a bit or rain on the way out if you have sausage, beans, eggs, toast and tea or coffee to get through. A quick lunchtime shower when you have your Spag Bol, Pasta Carbonara, Pad Thai or Thai Green Chicken Curry. Then mix this with an experienced Instructor who is there because he or she wants to be there. Wants to meet new people and most of all wants to make sure you have a good day too. Then just for good measure add the warm water, stunning dive sites
and the huge variety of marine creatures on offer. Then what do you get Diving in Phuket with Thailand Divers. Dont believe us then just check trip advisor. From 1st time diver to people with 1,000s of dives under their belt along with dive professionals from around the world all cant be wrong. Check us out on Facebook, Twitter or talk to us live on  to get all the latest from the greatest all year round dive center.

So many people completing their Discover Scuba Diving at Phi Phi.

Large dive boats with open air eating areas

Large dive boats with open air eating areas

 Large Comfortable Dive Boat  to relax on the trip to Phi Phi

Nice protected bays and dive sites

Perfect Phuket beaches

Stunning views when diving in Phuket

Sunsets on the return from Phi Pi with Thailand Divers

Stunning sunset scenery on the return from diving in Phuket