Day of Departure – The Journey Begins!
We gather in the shop around 6 pm and head towards the Tap Lamu pier, located 15 minutes taxi ride from Khao Lak by 7pm.
Once we arrive on the boat, we allocate our guests to their cabins, set up our equipment and enjoy our first buffét dinner on board while we learn about the trip and the boat with a full briefing from the tour leader.
We’ll show you where everything is and more importantly where to get coffee. Also this is a perfect time to check our dive books with maps of the dive sites we’ll visit and what marine life you can expect to encounter during the journey.
The boat starts heading out to the Similan Islands after a nice dinner with some fireworks to scare away any evil spirits that might have come on board while the boat was moored up at the pier according to Thai-tradition.
The journey takes approx. 4-5 hours while you sleep comfortably in our air conditioned cabins. We offer sea sickness pills to everyone even if you usually don’t have an issue with this. The conditions are usually calm but the pill will help you sleep the first night as you might not be used on sleeping on a boat.
After a wake up call at 6.30am, we meet together at 7am for a full safety diving briefing and a site briefing before kitting up to make our first dive at:
DIVE 1: West of Eden, West side of Similan Island #7
This site is a fantastic site to start your diving holiday normally with good viz and lots of marine life. Conditions are normally calm, ideal for checking equipment and fine tuning weights. In the shallower water, there is a wealth of corals and small bommies to hunt around for lionfish and octopus, as a special point of interest there is a channel with huge boulders either side with beautiful sea fans making it perfect for our underwater photographers. Check out for the Spearing Mantis, and the Sea Moth, both have been spotted here. Search amongst the crevices for Banded Boxer and Hingebeck shrimps plus sometimes some nice nudibranches. You finish the dive in the shallows where you can search for morays. octopus and scorpion fish before returning to our boat.
After returning to the boat, we can dry off before having breakfast and an informal de-brief discussing fish life and points of interest with your dive guide. Time to fill out the log books. After breakfast we can take the dingy to Island Number 9 beach, Donald Duck bay to take pictures from the famous view point, Sail Rock.
The next dive briefing is at 10.30 with our dive usually planned for 11.00am at
DIVE 2: Christmas Point / North Point , North-West Side Of Similan Island # 9
We travel to Island # 9 to do our 2nd dive, which will be either Christmas Point or North Point depending on conditions. These dive site demonstrates why Similan Islands are so highly ranked among divers with some amazing topography.
These sites consists of giant boulders which form fantastic formations with arch ways, swim throughs and dramtic canyons to enjoy during the dive. We always dive these sites differently depending on the current. The sites are massive so there’s never a problem in finding shelter and we still have a large area to explore. If we are lucky we might spot a white tip shark out in the blue, or a resting Ray between the rocks.
After the 2nd dive we serve a lunch buffet and start heading north towards Koh Bon island.
DIVE 3: Koh Bon West Ridge
3rd dive of the day we’ll do at the West Ridge on Koh Bon Island. Koh Bon is famous for being a cleaning station for the massive Manta Rays. We can never guarantee a sighting but Koh Bon is definately the best place in Thailand to look for them. Even if the Mantas are absent this dive site is beautiful with a limestone wall and ridge covered in colourful soft corals with large moray eels and different kinds of shrimp living in the cracks. The current can sometimes be quite strong on the ridge but this attracts a large number of pelagic fish species which feed along the ridge in the current.
DIVE 4: Koh Bon Bay (Sunset or Night Dive)
If you like critters you don’t want to miss out on this dive ! Last season we found more weird creatures here, baffling our dive guides, than any other site. Highlights include decorated spider crabs, abalones, decorated hermit crabs and nudibranchs/slugs. Also here we get the occasional visit from hunting barracudas and don’t be surprised to see huge freeswimming Giant Moray Eels hunting.
After the night dive we enjoy another delicious dinner and discuss what we’ve seen so far and maybe share a beer or two.
Now we are getting into our diving routine, so wake up 6.30am, time to grab a coffee and toast, briefing then hitting the water at:
DIVE 5 + 6: Koh Tachai Pinnacle.
The pinnacle starts at 12m and can have some stronger currents. Fortunately we use the mooring line for descent for easy access to the site and shelter from any current. This dive site comes alive more and more the stronger the currents get and can be an amazing adventure dive with good pelagic action.
It consists of a dome surrounded by hundreds of boulders having large sea fans and coral gardens. If you get lucky and get that 30m+ visibility while you dive here it’s a beautiful scenery. You also have the chance to see some cool stuff here, we have seen Manta’s, Leopard Sharks and Whale Sharks. Look up above the dome for sightings of the unusual Oceanic Triggerfish, also for Giant Trevally and Bat fish schooling. On the second dive there is a good chance of spotting schooling Barracuda.
Dive 7 & 8, Richelieu Rock
In the afternoon we head up to Richelieu Rock to make the next 2 dives. This dive site is a pinnacle in the middle of the ocean and works as a magnet for all marine life in the area. This is our most famous dive site in Thailand, highly ranked among divers world wide, and rightly so. The rock is covered in soft corals and sea fans, and with thousands of cracks for all sorts of marine life to live in such as, sea horses, ghost pipe fish, harlequin shrimps and large number of different moray species.
This site usually has a school of Yellow Fin Barracudas and snappers patrolling the rock, that and the possibility to encounter our largest visitors, the Mantas and the occasional Whale Shark makes this one of the most exciting and diverse dive sites of the whole trip.
After the second dive we’ll head off towards our night location at Bonsung Wreck.
Dive 9 + 10: Bonsung Wreck
Last two dives of the trip really stands out. Bonsung Wreck is one of the highest ranked dive sites among dive guides in the area along with Richelieu Rock. The Bonsung Wreck used to be a tin dredger, scooping sand from the bottom to filter it for precious metals, before it sank some 30 years ago.
The wreck itself doesn’t resemble much of a ship or anything but it’s absolutely covered with marine life. On top of the wreck there’s a proper “fish soup” of schooling snappers, juvenile barracudas and jacks, and on the wreck itself you’ll find white eyed and honeycomb morays, different kinds of nudibranchs, lots of scorpion fish and it’s common to find cuttlefish and octopus in the sand around the wreck. This is also one of the few places we can spot the legendary stone fish, nominated as the ugliest fish in the sea.
The visibility is lower here than the rest of the sites with an average of about 10m but it makes up for it with the amount of life it holds.
When we come up from the last dive our staff will start cleaning the equipment, if you got your own gear now is the time to rinse it and hang it up to dry before we arrive to the main land again.
On the journey home we’ll have a delicious pasta lunch and maybe a beer or two while we reminisce about our dive adventure. This is the best time to get advice on any additional diving you want to do around Khao Lak and the Similans and also what other activities there are to do around here.
We get back to the pier approximately 2.30 pm and will then take you to our office in Khao Lak and assist you with any forward transfers or help you with booking accommodation if required.
If you have any questions about the trip, the diving, the boat or the Khao Lak area in general, send us an e-mail and we’ll be more than happy to help you.
The Liquid Team