Is Phi Phi the best day trip scuba diving in Thailand?
Here is why Aussie Divers Phuket think that Phi Phi may be the best day trip scuba diving in Thailand.
Advanced Open Water Course at Phi Phi
Yesterday we went scuba diving with Jake and Tara as they did their PADI Advanced Open Water Course with Aussie Divers Phuket. We headed off to the Phi Phi Island group for two dives and a third dive at Shark Point on the way back. This was the second time Jake and Tara had done this trip, the first was a few days earlier for the PADI Open Water Course. The Phi Phi Islands are less than 3 hours day boat ride from Phuket in the south of Thailand.
The first dive started at the north tip of Koh Bida Nok. The north face is a wall dive and has a straight drop to 25 metres. The wall is stunningly covered by soft corals of many colors including purple, white, pink, red, yellow and orange. We continued along the east side where we saw some great schools of yellow snapper and two big Giant Moray Eels. We were on the lookout for a lazy Leopard shark having a rest in the sand.
Koh Bida Nok
We slowly cruised to the south part of Koh Bid Nok and when arriving to the west side we were greeted by two of the docile and very inquisitive Leopard Sharks. The first was about 2.5 metres long and the second was around two metres in length. The beautiful sharks are one of the best sea creatures you will ever want to scuba dive with. They bring pleasure to the most experienced of scuba divers. Leopard sharks are becoming a regular site whilst scuba diving around Phuket.
After the dive, some instructors were claiming the there were three and maybe even four different Leopard Sharks swimming around with the scuba divers. The sharks were swimming in shallow water (less than 15m) and were seen not only by Jake and Tara whilst on their PADI Advanced Open Water Course but by other students, some who were first time divers doing there PADI Discover Scuba Diving and PADI Open Water Course.
Next was a cruise around the Phi Phi Islands themselves, past Maya Bay that Leonardo Di Caprio made famous in the movie “The Beach”
We then moored in Palong Bay, Phi Phi Ley to do a dive to the north along Palong Wall, which is commonly know as a Black Tip reef Shark dive. We were in one of the early group of scuba divers and found ourselves a nice quiet place to watch the sharks. During a 15-minute period Jake counted 24 sightings of Black tip reef sharks. These are magnificent creatures that pose no real threat to scuba divers. Add the turtle and cuttlefish we saw along with some giant groupers, giant pufferfish, some Razorfish and a nice selection of reef fish. Both Tara and Jake said it was their favorite of the 12 dives they did in their PADI Open Water Course and PADI Advanced Open Water Course.
The real beauty of this dive is that most of the time we were in less than 10 metres of water so it makes it ideal scuba diving for people learning to dive with beginner courses such as the PADI Discover Scuba Diving and PADI Open Water Course.
Enjoying the Dive Twice
Like I said Jake and Tara did the Phi Phi day trip only a few days earlier. On that day we also did Koh Bida Nok and were lucky enough to see sea snakes, a turtle an octopus and some massive schools of snappers, tuna and giant travellies.
The second dive that day was south of Palong Wall and where three turtles were there for the please of the scuba divers and a leopard came swimming by as well. Right at the end of the scuba dive we were lucky enough to come across a nice big red reef octopus that just finished of things nicely.
There are no sure things when it comes to scuba diving however at the moment, Phi Phi is producing more to see in a 50 minute dive than most dive sites in the area and my thoughts are that it is the best dscuba diving site close to Phuket and could be the best scuba diving site on the west coast of Thailand.
So if you are in Phuket for some scuba diving, no matter if you are a day trip certified fun diver, heading out for your first ever scuba diving experience, learning to scuba dive with your PADI Open Water Course or PADI Advanced Open Water Course make sure you have time to fit in a Phi Phi dive, you won’t be disappointed.
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