Our Thailand and Myanmar Dive Sites map shows the main dive site locations in Thailand, along with the key dive sites in neighbouring Myanmar which many liveaboards visit too.
Thailand’s Main Dive Site Locations
- West Coast (Andaman Sea). Dive Season: October to May
- Similan Islands – the best diving in Thailand, typically accessed by 4 day liveaboards, which includes the must-see Richelieu Rock dive site – the single best dive site in Thailand. Some boats will also take in the Surin Islands.
- Koh Lanta – the closest access to Hin Daeng, Hin Muang and Koh Haa, the three other great locations outside the Similan Islands
- Koh Phi Phi – fun diving at Koh Bida and local reefs, but few boats go to the deep ocean pinnacle sites like Hin Daeng and Koh Haa.
- Phuket – ideally placed for liveaboards to both Similan Islands and Hin Daeng. Several smaller local reef areas too.
- East Coast (Gulf Of Thailand). Dive Season: December to September
- Koh Tao – backpacker mecca and most popular place in Asia to get scuba certified. Very busy in the water. Chumphon Pinnacle is the stand-out site.
- Koh Samui and Koh Phangan – popular tourist islands that have small reefs but local dive shops usually speedboat over to Koh Tao to dive
Myanmar Main Dive Site Locations
- Andaman Sea. Dive Season: October to May
- Almost all Myanmar sites are only accessible from liveaboards which will typically take in most of the sites mentioned on the map within a 7 day liveaboard, including a couple of days diving the Similan Islands
- Black Rock is the single most amazing dive site in Myanmar, but its remoteness means that not all boats go there – plus any boat that does go there needs to be of solid construction because there is no shelter for miles around if the weather turns bad
- Phuket Airport:
Phuket Internatioal Airport is the largest and busiest airport in Southern Thailand. For most liveaboards, you’ll fly into Phuket Airport and then transfer either to Chalong Pier in the south of Phuket or go to north to the town of Khao Lak and depart from Tapla Mu pier. Phuket itself is a big island with several distinct areas and many beaches – see this guide to Phuket for a sense of what to see and do.
- Krabi Airport:
Krabi International Airport is also a busy airport currently undergoing further expansion. Krabi Airport is the gateway to Koh Lanta and Koh Phi Phi islands which have many diving shops for day diving. There are some liveaboards which visit the dive sites around Koh Lanta and Koh Phi Phi, but they typically depart from Phuket and so you would fly to Phuket Airport rather than Krabi Airport. See this detailed guide to Krabi Airport for more information. It’s also a short drive from Krabi Airport to the beach tourism areas of Ao Nang, Railay Beach and Krabi Town.
- Trang Airport:
Trang Airport is currently very small and only has Bangkok to Trang flights with budget carriers.
Towns and Cities:
- Khao Lak: the main town in Phang Nga province and the jumping off point for diving the Similan Islands on a liveaboard. See our detailed Khao Lak map. Liveaboards typically depart from Taplu Mu pier. The reason why Khao Lak is more popular than Phuket as a departure point for liveaboards is that the crossing to the Similan Islands is quicker and therefore cheaper for the boat owner (less fuel used).
- Kawthoung: Myanmar border town where Myanmar liveaboards check in with immigration authorities before the boat enters or departs Myanmar. Myanmar liveaboards almost always actually depart from Thailand and cross over into Myanmar.
- Ranong: provincial Thai town that sits across the water from Kawthoung. Some Myanmar liveaboards are based here.
- Phang Nga Town: A transport hub for people travelling to Khao Lak, Phangnga town doesn’t offer many reasons to dawdle on the way to the beaches.
- Krabi Town: The sleepy capital of Krabi province, Krabi town is the transport gateway if you’re travelling by bus to Krabi’s other more famous attractions like Ao Nang, Railay Beach and islands like Koh Phi Phi and Koh Lanta.
- Trang Town: picturesque capital of Trang province which sees a lot less visitors than neighbouring Krabi or Phuket. There’s several beaches and national parks to explore. Diving opportunities are limited but it’s easy to travel by ferry or speedboat to Koh Lanta.
- Surat Thani: Major fishing port that’s also the gateway to Koh Samui, Koh Phangan and Koh Tao with multiple ferries departing daily to the islands. Surat Thani is also where the train from Bangkok terminates – the train line physically ends here.
- Chumphon: Another seaside town with ferry links to Koh Tao, Phangan and Samui. There is also local diving off the coast of Chumphon which is usually overlooked by everyone heading to the islands.