Looking for the best dive sites in Koh Tao?
Fortunately there are plenty of them! It is one of the best places for diving in Thailand.
This travel tip will likely make it harder for you to choose a dive site … as there are so many. Best to try them all!
Dive in Koh Tao with Nava Scuba Diving. They offer Discover Scuba Diving, 3 day PADI Open Water Dives, 2 days PADI Open Water Dives, refresher dives and fun dives. Book here.
Top Koh Tao dive sites
Located north of Koh Tao, the area around Mango Bay offers a nice, relaxing dive. With depths of 2 to 15 meters, it is ideal for beginners and snorkelers. Hard and soft coral formations are abundant here, along with a variety of sponges and clams. The bay is only accessible by boat and makes a popular day trip for snorkeling. Keep looking around the northwest tip of the island and drift into the bay to avoid the crowds.
One of the most famous dive sites in the Koh Samui archipelago. It is an iceberg-shaped peak that rises from the sandy sea floor at 40 meters high and 15 meters above the surface. It is a suitable dive site for all divers, from discover scuba to scuba divers.
Its surface consists of small patches of hard and soft corals. Common animal species include barracudas, batfish, jacks, the occasional whale shark, and many other types of tropical fish. The currents can vary significantly, but are generally medium to strong. Visibility is usually in the range of 10 to 30 meters. For advanced divers there is a vertical swim through on the northwest side of the rock. Popularly known as “the chimney”, it begins at a depth of 18 meters and leaves the rock at a depth of 12 and 6 meters. There are no fees for diving in Sail Rock.
It is widely considered to be the main dive site on the Gulf of Thailand, 5 km northwest of Koh Tao. The site consists of a huge granite peak with a few smaller pinnacles rising from the ground. 40 meters. Bull sharks teaching barracuda. Batfish, Giant Gropers, Pacific Lionfish, the occasional whale shark.
It consists of seven granite peaks with a depth of 5 to 30 meters and is located about 12 km off the southwest coast of Koh Tao. It is one of the best diving spots on the island. The shallower sections of the pinnacles are covered in anemones, whip corals, and sea fans. Large groupers and barracudas are often seen here, and you may be lucky enough to spot even larger visitors.
Green Rock has several small swimming pools, caves, and crevices where marine life take shelter. The boulders range in depth from 5 meters to around 32. There is often a strong current here that allows you to drift around the submerged peaks, which is not really recommended for inexperienced divers. You are sure to come across Yellow Margin and Titan Trigger fish here as these are popular breeding grounds for them. So proceed carefully.
Two large granite blocks form the White Rock dive site. An extensive coral garden is about 10 meters away, in which there are many schools of butterfly fish and angel fish. Blue spotted stingrays are also a common sight on this dive. White Rock is also a popular night dive site where feather stars and a range of crustaceans forage for food.
This Koh Tao dive site is also known as the Nang Yuan Pinnacle. It starts at around 2 meters and drops to 22. The summit itself is nothing special and the main attractions of this place are the swim-through trails. The swim through entrance is when you exit the summit and head west towards Koh Nang Yuan. This usually happens as a drift dive to the Japanese garden where you can relax for the safety stop.
On the other side of Koh Nang Yuan, starting about 5 meters below the surface and down to a depth of 18 meters, there are twin peaks or just “twins”. This is an ideal site for beginners because of its depth and easy navigation. The rocks are embedded in white sand and there is no shortage of marine life here. A friendly pair of rare saddleback clownfish found on the west side of the larger of the twins.
This dive site is named after the artful arrangement of the coral blocks here. The hotel is located on the east side of Koh Nang Yuan and is suitable for snorkelers and beginners at depths of 2 to 12 meters. A lot of stag horn and plate coral can be seen in the shallows. A popular drift dive can be done from Red Rock through a series of swim throughs and in Japanese gardens for a relaxing safety stop among the myriad of coral formations.
Hin Wong Pinnacle
On the east side of Koh Tao is the Hin Wong Pinnacle. This site is made up of several large blocks of granite covered with sea fans and whip corals, as well as filefish, shrimp fish, coral grouper, and many other reef fish. If you are lucky, you may encounter the resident green turtle. The summit is a table rock formation within about 10 meters of the surface and the maximum depth at Hin Wong is about 32 meters.
Laem Thien Pinnacle
Laem Thian Pinnacle is a great rocky dive site near Mao Bay full of swimming pools, caves and small caves. There are some steep walls with some predators looking for smaller prey. Some excellent white soft coral and sea whips can be seen along the wall at depths between 18 and 5 meters. It is possible to combine this cave dive with the beauties of shallow reef diving in Mao Bay or Aow Mao.
Shark Island was named for its dorsal fin resemblance and is a double ledge southeast of Koh Tao. Each side of the island offers a different variety of marine life and has almost two locations in one! On the east side you will find countless soft corals, gorgonians and sponges, while the west offers hard coral formations in which moray eels, nudibranchs, stingrays and one or two leopard sharks live. Titan triggerfish can be very aggressive here, so proceed with caution. The maximum depth at this point is 25 meters.
At the time of the sinking in 1989, it was rumored that the unicorn was deliberately sunk as an insurance fraud. The 60 meter long cargo ship is said to have a hold with expensive tuna, which turned out to be cheap dog food, hence the nickname it was later given – the wreck “dog food”. It is about 12 km off Mango Bay and at 50 meters it is also a technical dive site. Still largely intact, with most of the intrusive fishing nets now removed, some intrusion is possible. The wreck is now home to some large red snapper and patrolling groupers.
The Torpedo is a 70 meter long Japanese cargo ship that sits upright in around 55 meters of water an hour north of Koh Tao. It fell in the mid-1970s. Due to the depth, this has been classified as a technical dive for experienced divers only. There are three areas of penetration, but visibility at depth is usually poor. The deck is 45 meters high and the holds are still full of teak logs, some of which are scattered on the ocean floor.
Same wider bay as Aow Luek, shallow training or sheltered dive.
Hin Pee Wee
Next to White Rock, 30m.