Scuba Diving in Phi Phi Island and Phuket with Sunrise Divers

Phi Phi Diving Phi Phi Diving
Phi Phi Diving
Phi Phi Diving

Phi Phi Islands Dive Sites

Diver examining fan coral at Phi Phi


The variety of dive sites in the Phi Phi area means there is something for everyone. Some sites are suitable for beginners, others are more advanced. There are shallow bays, deep drop offs, undersea pinnacles and a wreck dive all within easy reach of Phi Phi and Phuket. Day trips and overnight trips from Phuket reach most of these sites, while a few are only dived on local trips from Phi Phi town.


Despite damage to the town, Phi Phi's dive sites were undamaged by the 2004 tsunami and marine life is as bountiful as ever - from leopard sharks and turtles to nudibranchs and soft corals - this area has it all!

 

The Dive Sites of Phi Phi

Hin Daeng & Hin Muang
Hin Daeng and Hin Muang are fascinating and really dramatic dive sites. Arguably the greatest two sites in Thai waters they are comparable to the Similan Islands and one of the best places in Thailand for big fish sightings.

Hin Daeng and Hin Muang are located 55 km south of Phi Phi Island. These reefs offer the deepest drop-off and steepest wall in Thailand. As both reefs are situated in open sea, they attract a wide variety of reef fish and larger pelagic visitors such as Manta rays and whale sharks. The best time of year for big fish is February - May.

Hin Daeng ("red rock") is a large underwater reef surging up from the depths, and just breaking the surface - only a very small rock hovers above the water. On its northern side the reef drops in a relatively gentle slope. Yet the southern side has a steep drop-off down to more than 50 meters. Hin Daeng's average depth is 25 meters, reaching 50 meters at the max. Watch your depth on these sites!

Hin Muang translates to "Purple Rock". The reason for this name are the many wonderful soft corals - pink and purple in colour - that completely cover the shallower sections of this reef. Hin Muang is located just a few hundred meters from Hin Daeng and rises from a depth of more than 70 meters. The top is about 6 meters below the surface. This site boasts the deepest drop-off in Thai waters.

 

All kinds of marine life can be found in the deep clear waters around Hin Daeng

Average visibility :
25 m.
Average water temperature :
28 C.
Average depth :
25 m.
Maximum depth :
50 m+ (!)

 

Koh Bida Nok / Koh Bida Nai
The two small islands at the south end of the Phi Phi chain provide arguably the best diving in the area. Koh Bida Nok is the further south, while Koh Bida Nai is closer to Phi Phi Ley. They both provide a great variety of underwater terrain. There are shallower areas suitable for new divers and also steep walls dropping to almost 30m. Both hard and soft corals abound.
View of the Bida Islands with Phi Phi Ley in the background
Both islands have a more sheltered eastern side with a shallow "bay" where dives often begin. To the south of Bida Nai is a great swim through and also a beautiful shallow hard coral garden. Leopard sharks are commonly seen at these sites while early morning divers have a chance to see a black tip shark or two. On the west side of Bida Nok is a jumble of boulders with several swim throughs. Turtles are sometimes found here too. There is a great mixture of reef life and always something to see here.
Average visibility :
15 m.
Average water temperature :
28 C.
Average depth :
15 m.
Maximum depth :
30 m.

 

Ao Loh Samah (Losamah Bay)
Loh Samah Bay is located around a towering limestone pinnacle inside the bay that cuts into the southern coastline of Phi Phi Ley. The bay is a popular stopping point for dive trips and other tours and offers sheltered and easy shallow diving. Current can be quite strong on the seaward side of the pinnacle.
Losamah Bay has many corals and plenty of reef life
The sandy bottom inside the bay is ideal for all divers and also for snorkeling. A wide range of reef fish such as angelfish and scorpion fish can be found. If you follow the wall of the limestone pinnacle out of the bay the depth can reach 20m and there is a gorge underwater through the rock. This site is also recommended for good night-diving.
Average visibility :
15 m.
Average water temperature :
28 C.
Average depth :
12 m.
Maximum depth :
20 m.

 

Ao Nui (Nui Bay)
Located on the northwest coast of Koh Phi Phi Don, this is an enjoyable shallow dive and also suitable for snorkeling inside the bay. Usually dived only on local dives or maybe on an overnight trip from Phuket.
Ghost pipefish

Plenty of corals and colorful reef fish. The western section features a wall that descends to a depth of 20m. The marine life includes sweetlips, moray eels and sometimes ghost pipefish.

Average visibility :
10 m.
Average water temperature :
20 C.
Average depth :
12 m.
Maximum depth :
20 m.

 

Hin Bida (Phi Phi Shark Point) 
A small rocky outcrop 8km southeast of Phi Phi Ley, knows as Phi Phi Shark Point to avoid confusion with "Shark Point" between Phuket and Phi Phi. Leopard sharks are often seen here, as well as other Phi Phi sites. The rocks just break the surface.

Leopard SharkA pretty easy dive site and not at all deep. Some areas are covered in stag horn corals, others in soft corals. Look out for moray eels and octopus in the reef. On sandy patches, you may find sleeping Leopard Sharks - they are docile sharks but will swim away if you move too rapidly or noisily.
Average visibility :
16 m.
Average water temperature :
28 C.
Average depth :
12 m.
Maximum depth :
18 m.

 

King Cruiser Wreck

The King Cruiser was carrying passengers from Phuket to Phi Phi when she sank on King Cruiser Wreckthe 4th May 1997. Fortunately there was no loss of life. This is more of an advanced dive due to the depth and the often strong currents. The propellers (deepest point) rest 30 metres deep with the most interesting areas around the passenger decks between 18 and 24 metres. Over the last 2 years the wreck has started to break up and entry is no longer possible, but it can still be a quite dramatic dive, especially if you have never dived a wreck before. Many fish around the wreck, including schools of snappers and small barracuda. Also home to many lionfish and scorpionfish.

The King Cruiser is about halfway from Phuket to Phi Phi and easily dived from both locations.

Average visibility :
12 m.
Average water temperature :
28 C.
Average depth :
20 m.
Maximum depth :
32 m.

 

Ao Maya (Maya Bay)
The large, sheer-cliffed lagoon at the southwestern end of Phi Phi Ley was made famous by the movie "The Beach". More used by snorkelers than divers, but there are dives possible on the outside of the bay at "Maya Wall" and "Maya Cave".
Hermit Crab out for a walk
Not a deep dive, and suitable for all divers. Coral is rather sporadic, but turtles are often seen here, and there is a nice wall on the north side of the bay with plenty of whip corals and one spectacular swim through at about 17m depth. When you surface after your dive, you will be right under the cliffs - quite a spectacular sight!
Average visibility :
12 m.
Average water temperature :
28 C.
Average depth :
14 m.
Maximum depth :
24 m.

 

Hin Dot
A small submerged pinnacle to the south of Koh Phi Phi Don on the edge of TonSai Bay. Not hugely exciting, but there is a fair amount of fish activity at this pinnacle. It is a small site and if you want a 45 minute dive, be prepared to go round and round!

ScorpionfishThere are soft corals at all depths. This is not a deep dive, and will suit everyone. There are a couple of narrow passages passing through the rock at about 12-14m. Sometimes used by local operators for a very quick dive - as it's just outside the bay.
Average visibility :
10 m.
Average water temperature :
28 C.
Average depth :
12 m.
Maximum depth :
20 m.

Other Dive Sites (www.sunrise-divers.com) - Similan Islands - Phuket - Burma

 

Ascend slowly and carefully to the surface

 

 
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