Diving in Koh Tao: Top dive sites
Written by Natalie Alderton, PADI Staff Instructor
Diving on Koh Tao is a magical experience. We have over 25 dive sites here to choose from ranging from 10m all the way to 40m depending on your experience, comfort level and certification.
The vast array of soft and hard corals at Japanese Gardens is suitable for all levels, starting at a PADI Discover Scuba Diving experience to a PADI Advanced Open Water course – there is something here for everyone. You may see spotted Eagle Rays, Turtles and Squid with more amazing fish and corals to explore.
Another local favorite and worldwide famous dive site on Koh Tao is Chumphon Pinnacle.Just 20 minutes from our PADI 5-star dive center, Chumphon is made up of huge pinnacles that are a must to explore. This site offers depths starting from 16-18m for the PADI Open Water Course and with some spots as deep as 40m, it is also an ideal site for teaching the PADI Deep Specialty Course.
Whether you wish to make some fun dives at Coral Grand Divers or take a PADI course there are many places to explore. Another local favorites is Twin Pinnacles, excellent for all levels. Here you are sure to find a few Blue Spotted Sting Rays, Blue Ringed Angle Fish, Weavers Butterfly Fish, Red Breasted Wrasse, White Eyed Moray Eels and we even get the chance to spot the famous Whale Shark too!
We are blessed here on Koh Tao as we see many Whale Sharks all year. They are mostly seen around February, however we often see them every month. Ranging from 3m - 5m, they are such an amazing fish to see and will be forever in your memory - it is such a surreal experience to see one or sometimes even two at the same time!
White Rock is also a very popular dive site here on Koh Tao. It’s one of our biggest sites and again suits all levels from a PADI Discover Scuba Dive experience to Advanced and more. You are sure to spot many colorful fish and corals - Remember to move and breathe slowly so you can see the whole dive site in all its beauty.
Southwest Pinnacle and Green Rock are also extremely exciting and offer everything you would want and expect to see on a dive. Southwest Pinnacle is a huge pinnacle with other smaller pinnacles around it to explore. Here we see lots of big fish here - Barracuda, Snapper, Fusiliers and more. Green Rock is so much fun! If you are an advanced diver this dive site offers many swim throughs - rocks that are big enough to pass through with your SCUBA equipment. If you’d like to work on your buoyancy before trying, then maybe the PADI Peak Performance Buoyancy course is right for you! Once you have completed this course in one day, you can practice your skills at Green Rock on your next dive. It really is truly a great site.
There is many more dive sites such as Aow Leuk, Tanote Bay, Mao Bay and of course our famous HTMS Sattakut Wreck dive. You can swim around this Wreck on your PADI Advanced Open Water Course and after that you can take your Wreck Specialty - with just another 3 dives you’ll after the Advanced Open Water you learn to map, reel outside the wreck then actually penetrate inside!
With so many courses, dive sites and places to explore, Koh Tao is surely the place to visit next.