Thailand: A dip in the Andaman Sea
Thailand is a country that, in spite of a massive influx of tourists each year, is still home to some pristine environments, both above and below the water. While the large number of visitors that flock to Thailand each year may have the potential to pose a threat to the marine environment in the future, the fact remains that the sheer size of the tourist industry throws up some benefits for those looking to dive on a budget. It is possible to secure cheap flights to Thailand from a number of established operators such as DialAFlight. Since coral-rich Thailand is such an excellent location for diving there are plenty of professionally run schools, hire outfits and liveaboard operators, and so the hold luggage restrictions you may encounter on many cheap flights to Thailand pose no obstacles to arranging a visit, whatever level of diver you are. You can simply rent quality equipment that has been well maintained from professional outfits across Thailand.
The Andaman Sea to the west of Thailand offers some of the best dive locations, not just around the country but arguably in the world. The warm and clear waters are home to a host of different species of flora and fauna, thanks in a large part to the abundance of coral reefs. The beautiful beaches and well developed tourist industry also means that there are plenty of options for some dry land R & R if you want to simply take it easy for a few days.
Those that want to mix a bit of resort relaxation into their diving holiday have several choices. Phuket is a large island that offers access to a range of dive sites, and has a notable party atmosphere of an evening. The majority of the reefs are in a healthy condition, providing the ideal environment for large numbers of tropical fish. The most popular dive site near Phuket is Racha Yai, featuring rocky reefs and extensive coral forests. Nearby Ter Bay offers a popular wreck sitting at a depth of between 15 and 25 metres.
The picturesque Krabi coastline offers the greatest range of dive sites in Thailand. The main concentration of dive centres in Krabi are around Ao Nang Beach, a great ‘all rounder’ offering both land and sea based entertainment. Krabi offers good opportunities for both snorkelling and scuba diving, and also affords access to all of the major dive sites around the Phi Phi islands.
The Phi Phi islands are located between Phuket and Krabi. Phi Phi is another hotspot for the young party crowd, and attracts both divers and those simply wishing to live it large, and is a another good choice for those that wish to have a bit of both when booking cheap flights to Thailand.