With diving on Ko Samui so popular, the last two decades have seen a rapid growth in the number of dedicated dive shops offering courses and tours to the island’s best locations. The majority of dive shops are found on the north and east coasts, in the districts of Mae Nam, Bo Phut and Maret, a collection of locally run outfits, and international brand name stores.
On the north shoreline of Ko Samui, just north of the Ko Samui International Airport, Bo Phut beach is home to some of the longest running dive teams on the island. The aptly named 100 Degrees East dive center is a five star PADI certified outfit with recognition for their outstanding services to training. They’re also the first PADI Eco-Dive center on the island, picking up the prestigious title in 2006, as well as beach dives and day trips to Sail Rock and Ko Tao, they also offer additional snorkeling tours for non-divers or to extend your trip.
Operating on the south coast of the island at tourist favorite destination Lamai Beach, Lamai Scuba Divers takes its guests on trips to remote dives sites like the Chumphon Pinnacles and lesser known Mango Bay to the north of Ko Tao, as well as local beach dives closer to their shop. They provide enriched air for extended dive sessions with reduced decompression time, and offer the relevant PADI training course for first time users. They’re a popular choice in this part of the island, where water sports are a real tourist focus.
Back up the east coast, just north of Chaweng, Silent Divers is a five star multicultural PADI outfit with a great reputation for interesting dive trips. Running regular speedboat and tour boat trips to exciting sites like Shark Island, they also operate high-speed catamaran sailings to outlying Chumphon Rock. One of their specialty trips is a wreck dive to the HTMS Sattakut, a scuttled Thai Navy vessel lying in 29m of water just of the island of Hin Pee Wee, purposely sunk to provide an artificial reef in these remote waters.
Ko Samui is the second largest of Thailand’s islands, and despite its position off land, it’s relatively easy to get to. Tourists tend to arrive on the island by plane through its dedicated international airport, but when a more elaborate route is required, ferries run regularly from the mainland just east of Surat Thani.
Decent dive operation but this is not a luxury liveaboard. Tired decor in cabin, mattress on floor and badly leaking pipework in the bathroom. It is very basic. The crew are helpful though, the divemaster good and the dive deck well organised. The sites in Similan Islands are pleasant but average with the exception of Richelieu Rock which is very nice. All sites are very crowded with many boats around.
Been diving around Marine Park, Koh Tao and Sail Rock, Thailand with Dive Point Samui last year after attend my mate's wed in Samui and two week vacation for myself. It was a thrilling experience to dive in such beautiful dive sites and the boat is a very nice, clean and comfortable boat. Dive crew are professional, sociable, cool, fun and serious about divers' safety! Fell in love with the Thai Curry that was prepared on the boat! It is a slow boat but you can actually sleep on the boat as the...