Beneath the surface of the ocean lies endless unknown territories. Scuba diving offers the ability to enter and explore, no passport or VISA needed! With clear blue waters, varieties of sea life and warm temperatures Thailand is among the best diving locations in the world. Stretching the Andaman coast the Similan Islands are consistently ranked as a one of the world’s top dive sites. Thailand however; is fortunate to have numerous sites in its waters which are ideal for under water adventures. Venturing into the Gulf of Thailand you will find the Samui Archipelago. Situated at the north end is Koh Tao – or Turtle Island. Whether it’s deep water shipwrecks, submerged pinnacles or beautifully inhabited coral reefs, Koh Tao offers excitement for the neophyte and master diver alike. Sharpen your technical skills or set out on a relaxed dive to find Nemo; on Koh Tao you can do it all.
Sairee Beach is the heart of the diving action on the island. Located on the west side of the island its 1.7 km stretch of white sand beach is ideal for getting divers loaded onto boats and out to beautiful dive sites. Finding a shop for fun dives or to begin/continue certification classes is not a difficult task. The beach is peppered with shops posting signs of the day’s dives and asking visitors if they have an interest in diving. If you can avoid stopping at the first shop calling you and can make your way to one dive shop in particular; you will be happily rewarded for your patience. Getting people wet since 1993, Scuba Junction is the spot for all your scuba needs! A five year rating of “Best Dive Operator on Koh Tao” they come highly recommended. Whether it’s SSI/PADI certification or recreational dives; Scuba Junction focuses on personalized service, safety, quality and of course fun. Each dive group is limited to a maximum of four divers and their equipment is top quality. The staff is accommodating, has a love for diving and is a great mix of personalities. Scuba Junction also promotes eco-friendly diving to keep the environment pristine for future divers to enjoy.
I’ve been fortunate to earn my open water and my advanced adventurer certifications on Koh Tao through Scuba Junction. I chose the SSI certification for both courses. Prior to entering the water, skills training is extremely thorough. Reading manuals, taking test and discussions ensure that once entering the water groups are prepared and safety is a top priority. Once in the water the experience is first class. Dive sites are unreal and the life aquatic is breathtaking. Mango Bay, White Rock, Japanese Gardens and Chumphon Pinnacle will ensure you see an assortment of marine life as well as vastly different terrains on the ocean floor. If you go for your advanced adventurer certification you will have the chance to do a night dive. I was slightly nervous of diving at night with giant barracuda’s during their dinner hour. However; while on the dive we witnessed nature in full swing. No more that 30 yards away, under the spotlight of flashlights, a barracuda got down to business. The hunter went after the hunted, twice, and the barracuda had rabbitfish for dinner. We also saw puffer fish, hermit crabs and two blue spotted sting rays. Exploring life underwater is like nothing else. I would recommend, at a minimum, everyone go for your open water certification. If scuba diving floats your boat then head to Koh Tao and look up Scuba Junction. You will not be disappointed!
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