Learn to Dive in Koh Tao, Thailand

Like many other destinations in Southeast Asia, Thailand is one of the best places to scuba dive. Many travelers love to dive while in Southeast Asia as the prices to get your scuba diving certification and to join fun dives are super affordable. Since my trip to the Philippines a few years ago, I was pretty curious about this underwater world. I had met a lot of divers during my travels and they got me excited about the potential...
Kathryn D. Lewis June 3, 2019
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Like many other destinations in Southeast Asia, Thailand is one of the best places to scuba dive. Many travelers love to dive while in Southeast Asia as the prices to get your scuba diving certification and to join fun dives are super affordable.

Since my trip to the Philippines a few years ago, I was pretty curious about this underwater world. I had met a lot of divers during my travels and they got me excited about the potential things I could see while scuba diving. Although, I was still not 100% sure this could be right for me considering my fear of being underwater for too long. I put these thoughts in the back of my mind and thought that one day, I’ll definitely try when I’d be ready. As there’s no better time as the present, I was trying to organize my next travel plans when I got an opportunity to do my PADI in Koh Tao. It sounded like a great opportunity.

Let’s discuss what it’s like to do your PADI in Koh Tao and why you should pick Koh Tao for your scuba diving certification. Then, we’ll discuss a bit more about diving in general in Thailand and, of course, in Koh Tao.

To get your scuba diving certification, you’ll have to go through different steps.

  1. Theory & Quiz
  2. Exam
  3. Practice skills in the pool
  4. Practice skills in open water
  5. Certification

You can get certified in about 3 or 4 days, depending if you’re doing the theory online or at the diving centre. I did my open water course in 4 days and it was divided this way:

  • Day 1: Theory for a few hours
  • Day 2: Skills in the pool in AM, theory and exam in PM
  • Day 3: 2 dives in PM
  • Day 4: 2 dives in AM

The goal is basically to practice all the skills necessary to scuba dive safely up to 18 metres.

STORYTIME: Personally, I always have been quite nervous in the water. I was then quite anxious about getting my scuba diving certification. As Koh Tao is a great destination for beginners, it made me feel quite safe. Also, Juan, my instructor, was patient and very helpful.  This helped me be more confident when I was feeling nervous especially since I had to practice a few skills with my eyes closed as I wear soft contact lenses. I remember taking my first breath underwater (in the pool) – it felt incredible but so weird at the same time. It felt even weirder when we got in the open water and I had to equalize. It was such a cool and fun experience and I can’t wait to dive more. Getting my PADI opened a whole new world for me when it comes to finding new destinations and travel adventures.

Koh Tao Diving Academy Review

When it comes to picking a diving centre in Koh Tao, you want to make sure you’ll stay safe the whole time and you want to make sure you have a great instructor. Reading reviews is definitely helpful.

As Koh Tao Diving Academy is quite a new scuba diving school, they didn’t have tons of reviews yet, but the ones they had were surely great and reassuring.  All the staff was passionate about scuba diving, very helpful and dynamic. If you’re looking for the best diving school in Koh Tao, look no further!

I really enjoyed my training, I felt safe the entire time and I would highly recommend them if you’re thinking of getting your diving certification in Koh Tao.  If you want to do other diving courses or enjoy a few fun dives, it could also be a great option for you, of course!

Koh Tao Diving Academy also offers accommodation at their affiliate resort and is located next to a sandwich shop, which is ideal for a quick lunch during your course! They offer their courses in different languages too, which is another great bonus.

Why Choose Koh Tao for Your Scuba Diving Certification in Thailand

Koh Tao is one of the top spots to learn to dive in Thailand. Imagine a tiny island where you can appreciate divine views, but also discover a whole new world underwater. The Gulf of Thailand is an easy spot to learn to dive and Koh Tao has pretty affordable prices when it comes to doing your scuba diving certification.

Koh Tao Dive Sites & Diving Season

Koh Tao has around 25 dive sites.  If you’re visiting the other islands around like Koh Phangan or Koh Samui, there’s a high chance they will bring you around Koh Tao for your dives. As the water is quite calm around Koh Tao, it makes it perfect for a good dive!

Here’s a list of the popular dive sites in Koh Tao:

  • Chumphon Pinnacle
  • Twins
  • White Rock
  • Green Rock
  • Shark Island
  • Southwest Pinnacle
  • Sail Rock

The best time to dive in Koh Tao when it comes to visibility is from May to August.  If you’re lucky, you could spot whale sharks which are normally around from February to May.  You can also read more about conditions and what you can see while diving in Thailand here.