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Scuba Diving in Ko Lanta, Thailand
Dive Site: Ko Phi Phi
Location: Ko Lanta, Thailand
Description: Wall dives, pinnacle dives, caves & caverns, coral gardens and more!
Depth: 5 - 30 metres (15 - 100 feet)
Visibility: 5 - 30 metres (15 - 100 feet)
With diving to rival the Similans, Phi Phi's 30+ dive sites are great for beginners and experienced divers alike. Phi Phi is best known for its fabulous sea fans and as home of the leopard shark. Located about 22km west of Ko Lanta, the Phi Phi Islands comprise Phi Phi Don, Phi Phi Ley, Ko Yung (Mosquito Island) and Ko Mai Pai (Bamboo Island) and offer consistently good diving. The rugged limestone cliffs plunging into aquamarine waters make Phi Phi an unforgettable destination for holidaymakers and divers alike. Underwater, the scenery only becomes more breathtaking. With long caves, dramatic overhangs, walls that go down to 30m and a fabulous display of hard and soft coral, the diving around Phi Phi is varied and spectacular.
Phi Phi is best known as home of the leopard shark. These docile, nocturnal creatures are normally found lying on the sand facing into the current; they are one of only four species of shark that doesn't have to keep swimming in order to breathe. They eat crustaceans, small fish and sea snakes. Surprisingly little else is known about the species, although they are believed to be closely related to the whale shark. They can grow up to 3.5 metres and are completely harmless to humans. Other marine life is plentiful and varied. Most of the fish and coral species that are found in the Similans can also be found around Phi Phi. Even the elusive whale shark is spotted several times a year - most often at Bidah Nok.
Saffron Kiddy, PADI OWSI
Although I completely agree that all of the dive sites mentioned on this page, particularly Hin Muang and Hin Daeng are amazing and offer a fantastic variety of marine life, I think it should be made clear that the diving around this area is NOT all year round. The west coast of Thailand - Phuket, Phi Phi and Koh Lanta (and Similan Islands) are off season between May to October and conditions are not good - as recently experienced by a fatal sinking of a dive boat at Phi Phi last week and a slightly less serious sinking a couple of weeks before, again around Phi Phi, due to large waves. It is important divers particularly less experienced ones know what conditions to expect if they go to dive this area at this time of year. Many dive operators actually close down and it is being suggested due recent events that the authorities are going to force all operators to close during this season.
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