Has Kata Beach Dive Become A Serious Certified Divers Site
The hunt for rare and unusual creatures
In the past the Kata Beach dive was used more as a necessity and beginners dive rather than a dive site for certified divers.
It is a dive site that can only be dived during the high season, October/November through to late April. The change of winds during the low season has the wind coming directly from the west and straight into the beach. These create high waves and increases underwater movement, reducing visibility and pushes trash into the dive site.
The high season winds come from the east and make for better beach dive conditions.
Kata Beach is quite a shallow dive site and given it proximity the heavily populated Phuket island, visibility is not always the best. However with some careful planning around high and low slack tides it is quite possible to get some reasonable if not good visibility around 10 – 15 metres. At its poorest the visibility could be less than a single metre.
With the start of the new 2017 – 2018 high season brought a few surprises for regular divers of the site. There has been a dramatic increase in marine life at the site that has made her quite a nice and some what interesting site when conditions are good.
The population of the standard reef fish has significantly increased, and they on their own make it a nice dive. The list of reef fish is a long one with Anemone fish, fusiliers, rabbit fish, angel fish, butterfly fish, sweetlips, barracuda, needle fish, groupers, flounder , trevally , lion fish, scorpion fish and bat fish all in abundance.
What has made it more increasingly popular, especially with the dive staff is the increase of unusual and rare creatures that appear to be unique to Kata Beach.
The dive site has been home for a number of years to the mimic octopus and is believed to be one of the very few dive sites in the area containing this rare creature . Late 2016 also saw an unnamed (or unidentified) ray that was also unique and a nice point of difference.
The normally difficult to find frog fish, seahorses, sea moths, snake eels, nudibranchs and spearing mantas shrimp have all made appearances to the delight of instructors and divers.
Along with all of that, cuttlefish, squid, the odd turtle and even a rare appearance of a reef shark has created a lot of positive feedback so far this year.
Although it can have some challenges Kata Beach has definitely made it an impression and a good dive site for experienced divers that like to explore something different.