One Week till the similan islands Opens for a New Season.Well hasn't time flown by here on phuket thailand. It only seems like a couple of weeks ago that I was writing about all the things that were seen by everyone in the similan islands and that was already 6 months since the last people left. This year if you are planning on diving in phuket between 16th of October and the 15th of may then you really should take a serious look at an over night or a 3 day trip to the Similan islands or even up to the world famous Richelieu rock. I can promise you will be talking about it for years to come. Many divers will talk about the world famous Richelieu Rock. This is one of the top 10 sights in the world. A stunning horseshoe shape series of pinnacles rising 60 meters from the sea floor, covered in purple coral. Manta Rays soaring over them like huge eagles silhouetted against the tropical sky. Whale sharks drifting by feeding on the plankton created by the pinnacles. Thousands of species of fish and marine creatures cover the dive site as it is a huge dive site alone in the blue.
However good a dive review is in a book or how famous always listen to the locals. The location all the local guides and those of us who live here for some time will be talking about is the island of Koh Tachai. Koh Tacha consists of two good dive sites. Tachai pinnacle and Tachai reef. This is perfect as it means that people of all levels and abilities can dive here. The pinnacle is more dome shaped and has almost perfectly laid out coral gardens with white sandy floors partitioned by smooth rock walls. This makes for a great dive even in the stronger currents that can pass through. Just making your way along the coral gardens from end to end then over the wall to the next one and you can stay below the rock walls for protection. Overhead there are often huge schools of Barracuda. Then just a 50 meter swim north from pinnalce 1 to pinnacle 2 we can ofter get Leopard sharks on the sandy sea floor Barracuda in the middle and Manta Ray and Whale sharks overhead. This is a dive site could have beed designed by a top gardener and then had divers pick their best creatures and had them all put there too.
Tachai Reef is again a great dive from 20 meters in depth up to 5. great corals both hard and soft, more leopard sharks, sting rays, Barracuda, Bat fish, hawks bill turtles and yes we can get the Manta and Whale shark here too. This is located on the from the south west corner up to the north east end of the island. Koh Tachai lies alone some 20 kms north of Koh Bon and a similar distance south of the Surin islands.
So next time you are in phuket scuba diving or even thinking about scuba diving in phuket then take a peek at the similan islands. You will not regret it. Your only regret will be that you never went sooner, could not stay longer and did not have a good enough camera. But not to worry the similan islands national park is open till mid May so plenty of time to plan your trip to phuket thailand or even have an early taster now then return to the similan islands later in the year for a longer trip. Dont be jealous, join us.