Scuba Diving in Khao Lak | Everything you need to know
Some information about the holiday region Khao Lak
Khao Lak is a fantastic holiday region in southern Thailand, about 60 km north of Phuket. Mass tourism and crowded beaches are, thankfully, not yet here. In the small main town are numerous restaurants, shops, massage spas as well as banks. But generally, those who visit step out of the town and into its surrounds where the scene can be described as Thai idyll. The hinterland is hilly and full of tropical forests in lush green. There are hiking trails and waterfalls for sporty explorers. However, most visitors come here to experience the long sandy beaches which line up from south to north.
Good to know about diving in Khao Lak
The big attraction for travel to Khao Lak is of course the diving. And this is generally due to the world-famous Similan Islands and the islands to the north.
Due to its distance from the mainland, diving in Khao Lak is usually done with full day trips. There are also a few dive sites closer to the mainland, but the most beautiful places are all a little further away.
How is the water temperature in Khao Lak?
The Andaman sea is usually between 28 and 31 degrees Celsius all year round. During February and March nutrient rich currents from deeper parts of the ocean are swelled up and bring colder temperatures.
This usually lasts a few minutes and never gets any colder than 25 degrees. What makes these currents actually desirable for divers is that manta rays and whale sharks follow them.
So when it does get cold: open your eyes:)
When is the best time for scuba diving in Khao Lak?
Since most of the diving in Khao Lak is done at the Similan Islands the diving here is bound to the opening times of the National Park.
The Similan Island National Park closes from May to October. Therefore diving in Khao Lak is only possible from November to April.
In the other half of the year divers better head go to Phuket which is open for diving all year round.
How is scuba diving in Khao Lak during the rainy season?
Since the Similan Nationalpark is closed during the rainy season there is no diving in Khao Lak during the rainy season.
The dive sites of Khao Lak
The dive sites in Khao Lak are on average at a maximum depth of 18 to 40+ meters and generally range in level of difficulty from easy to medium. For some sites like Koh Bon, Koh Tachai and the wrecks, more experience is definitely appropriate.
The main attraction in Khao Lak are the Similan Islands
The dive sites on the Similan Islands inspire with steep walls, small caves, overhangs and above all the impressive rock formations. In many places, there are also good opportunities for large-scale fishing with sharks, manta rays and other pelagic animals.
Since these dive sites are so special we have dedicated a whole page to them.
Local dive sites in Khao Lak - wrecks and plenty of fish
While most divers come for the Similans, many of them who choose to try the local wreck dives would agree that they are very worthy dive sites in their own right.
The Boonsung wreck, a former tin dredger is now home to vast numbers of fish. On most dives you will not be able to see the surface due to the density of the schooling fish surounding the wreck. With a maximum depth of 18 meters it is also a beginner friendly dive site.
Tor13 is an artificial reef made up of several concreted blocks and sunken wrecks that have attracted plenty of marine life.
At Sea Bees Diving Khao Lak you can dive these local dive sites 6 times a week on our MV Runaway.
Our dive trips in Khao Lak
We have a fixed schedule for our day trips in Khao Lak and go to a different destination every day. We normally dive twice a day.
Sequence of a diving day at Sea Bees in Khao Lak
All diving trips in Khao Lak start from the port in Tap Lamu. That is, no matter where your hotel is during your diving holiday in Khao Lak (and at which diving school you dive) you will have to come to Tap Lamu to commence your dive.
Tap Lamu is a place slightly south of Khao Lak across the hill. The journey time from most hotels in Khao Lak is 15-30 minutes.
If you dive with Sea Bees, our driver will pick you up from the hotel in the morning and bring you safely to our diving base in Khao Lak.
After a short check-in in the base, we continue by minibus to the boat.
On board, our English-speaking instructors, our Thai crew and a freshly prepared breakfast await you. As soon as all are on board, the boat will leave and go to the first dive site.
A quick note on how long it takes to get to the Similan Islands
Most dive boats in Khao Lak need more than 3 hours to get to the Similans and another 3 hours back in the afternoon. Speedboats are faster but lack the comfort of a true dive boat.
At Sea Bees, we use our comfortable Motor Catamaran MC Sundancer for scuba diving day trips to the Similan Islands. The boat was specially designed for divers and has set new standards for diving in Khao Lak.
Most importantly it will allow divers to reach the Similan Islands in less than two hours without compromising on comfort.
How we dive at Sea Bees
As security and fun are our top priority, we always dive in small groups of up to four divers per dive instructor or divemaster in Khao Lak.
If desired, you along with your buddy can do the dives on your own; the prerequisite being an appropriate level of experience and a detailed briefing from one of our guides.
After the dives we perform a sufficient surface interval of at least 90 minutes. During the break, there is time for a freshly prepared lunch, a few cold drinks and maybe a leisurely swim in one of the bays.
After the second dive at another dive site, you will head back to the mainland.
Usually we are back at the port at around 4.30pm and then you are transported back safely to your hotel in an air-conditioned minibus.
More diving offers in Khao Lak
In addition to the day trips, we also offer diving courses for beginners as well as diving instructors. More information on dive courses can be found here.
And if you prefer to go on safari during your diving holiday in Khao Lak then take a look at our Genesis Tours, which will take you to Khao Lak's best dive sites over 3 days and 2 nights.
Finally, for the perfect diving holiday in Khao Lak, we recommend our own diving resort.
A small bungalow complex in the middle of the green is also integrated into our diving school here.
Our beginners' dive courses also take place here. As many of our guests stay here, you will quickly make new friends and share your dive adventures with them.
Have we awakened your interest in diving in Khao Lak?