Andaman Liveaboard, Thai Style
Rounding out his series on diving in the Andaman Sea, Paul Lees looks at the lure of Liveaboards.
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Over the years, the Andaman Sea off the western coastline of Thailand has established itself as a popular destination for liveaboard excursions. But there’s also plenty for divers to see on the doorstep at a number of the beach and island destinations themselves.
There's always plenty of package deals out there, many of which can be very attractive. Going down the 'all-in' route can take the stress and exertion out of having to embark on the arduous task of all that planning, let alone research after a hard day's slog in the office! The desirable outcome is to have a great break and fully unwind–and there's no real reason why that shouldn't be achievable right from the outset.
Even though a handful of the larger southern diving destinations come complete with their own International airport, the capital Bangkok serves as a useful jumping-off point. For those stopping off here for a day or two before or after heading south, the rewards are many and apart from scouring the city in search of bargains, there's a myriad of other sights, sounds and food to experience!
The Andaman Sea to the west of southern Thailand has much to offer the visiting diver and snorkeler. There’s a vast range of exhilarating sites in many shapes and forms providing worthy distractions for avid recreational and technical divers, snorkelers and wannabes alike; the variety is phenomenal, with a host of fringing reefs
The descent line disappeared below us after we splashed in above the Sea Charter, one of the few disable wrecks off the coast of Khao Lak. There is along moment between when we leave the sunny surface of the Andaman Sea and the first hint of the ship's shadow blackening the blue water below us. IIn that moment I found myself clearing my ears.
Scuba diving has been one of the fastest growing rec- reational sports over the last few years and, if you live in Phuket – one of the world's diving hubs – you soon realise that there is plenty of choice around. As a dive company, you need to be able to stand out from the crowd.