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Thailand forum

Best Thai Island for Diving and Hanging Out?

Posted by tokyobelle on 24/9/2007 at 14:46

Hi. I went to Thailand in the summer of 2006 and this site was such a wonderful resource-thanks again.

This time, another friend and I are thinking about returning to Thailand in December and we're wondering what the best option would be. She's very into diving while I just wanna hang out on the beach, soak up some local culture, get massages, eat and of course, lie around on the beach. Ideally, we'd love a bit to do at night but neither of us are party animals, so we'd be happy with a nice place to get a few drinks and meet up with some fellow travelers.

We've both been to Thailand before-but along the gulf coast (Samui, Ko Pha Ngan, Ko Tao) so we were thinking to do the Andaman coast this time. Having read the Thai beach section here, I'm intrigued with Ko Tarutao and Ko Lipe, but any other islands or insight would be greatly appreciated. My friend also has a tent so camping could be an angle as well-has anyone camped out on Ko Tarutao before?

Thanks in advance,


#1 tokyobelle has been a member since 21/5/2006. Posts: 19
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Posted by travelhappy on 24/9/2007 at 18:50

Hi Belle

have you considered Koh Lanta? Much more chilled out and less crowded than Koh Phi Phi, and with some excellent diving. Tarutao and Lipe are both pretty hit and miss for diving, although nice above water for being a bit more remote. Lanta's beaches are big enough to not feel hemmed in, and there's plenty going on at night - good restaurants, bars, a couple of nightclubs etc.


#2 travelhappy has been a member since 24/9/2007. Posts: 14

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Posted by exacto on 25/9/2007 at 09:31

Hi Belle,

I remember you. Nice to hear from you again.

I realize that you've been there already, but in my mind, Ko Tao might still be the best fit for the part lazy beach retreat and part scuba paradise that you are seeking. I particularly liked that the dive sites were fairly near the shore, meaning I could get in my two dives for the day without having to travel far from the island.

Did you have a good time when you were there before? There are several excellent dive places on the Andaman side, but I can't think of anywhere that has the balance of beach fun and dive places that you are looking for.

Anyone else have a suggestion?

#3 exacto has been a member since 12/2/2006. Location: United States. Posts: 2,759
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Posted by Bee on 26/9/2007 at 16:51

I'd like to recommend Trang province, very nice place for diving and relaxing. Trang Province is a fascinating tourist destination with numerous jungles, mountains and waterfalls. Some of the dive sites in the National Park are world-class. If you want to get more information, you can visit this web site:

#4 Bee has been a member since 25/9/2007. Posts: 2

Posted by cybervlad on 26/9/2007 at 18:36

tokyobelle, I agree with exacto about Koh Tao. But if you want to explore new places I think Tarutao is a good choice.
Personally me I have not visited Tarutao yet, but I plan to visit Koh Lipe (and other islands of Tarutao archipelago) in November (especially, while dark moon, because I need strong current for drift diving).
As far as I know people usually doing camping in Adang island (next to Koh Lipe).

#5 cybervlad has been a member since 6/6/2007. Location: Thailand. Posts: 182
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Posted by stockamole on 19/11/2007 at 11:03

The Trang islands could be alot of fun-Laoliang or Muuk. Pretty laid back islands

#6 stockamole has been a member since 19/11/2007. Posts: 10

Posted by noca2020 on 7/11/2012 at 01:58

Haven't been to Thailand yet, but in doing lots of research, Koh Tarutao is high on my list. However, seems impossible to pre-book park accommodation due to the payment requirement (some type payment voucher issued by the park authorities). As we are going in December, I fear arriving there without prior arrangements. Would anyone have recommendations on how to make this payment from abroad? Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

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Posted by RiniRabbit on 8/11/2012 at 21:26

For the best diving is in Similan islands , you can stay at Khao Lak and do liveboard or day trip to Similan these need to book in advance. :)
Koh Tarutao is very beautiful for the top of island in Thailand, For Tarutao you need to book in advance for accommodation and other activities that you would like to do before heading to there.
Koh Lipe will much crowded Thai and Tourists during that time.
Anyways December is peak season! should do a good plan for diving trip!
Cheers! ^^

#8 RiniRabbit has been a member since 31/7/2012. Posts: 78

Posted by mariajames on 9/11/2012 at 09:50

I decidedly admired that the dive sites were adequately abreast the shore, acceptation I could get in my two dives for the day after accepting to biking far from the island

#9 mariajames has been a member since 29/9/2012. Posts: 57

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