Sail Rock (Hin Bai) Diving Guide
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One of the most popular dive sites in the Gulf of Thailand is Sail Rock (Hin Bai), this open seawater formation has an abundance of varied marine life and interesting oceanic formations making the site a great diving location for both novice and experienced divers. The single rock outcrop juts 9 meters out of the sea and sinks a further 35 meters to the base of the sea bed with its structure laced with caves and chimneys. This guide will provide an introduction and over view to Sail Rock diving.
Tourist Guide about Sail Rock Diving
Sail Rock is positioned in a gentle sea current that allows the corals and other small plants to filter feed the nutrients of the ocean as they pass over the exposed surfaces of the rock. This has developed Sail Rock into an oasis of marine life and is the best location to dive (and snorkel) in the Gulf of Thailand. Hin Bai lies between Koh Phangan and Koh Tao Cascais with Koh Phangan being the closest main resort island. This site is also accessible from Koh Samui (28 miles) but day trips tend to be very long and more expensive.
A typical days diving from Koh Phangan costs 2,500-3,500THB and includes two dives, meals, equipment and transfers (60 min for normal boat 20 min for more expensive speed boat). The two dives usual last for one and half hours in the morning and then a two hour dive in the afternoon – this does include preparation time. There are numerous dive centres and schools on Koh Phangan check prices and level of services and reviews before handing over money. One of the best methods for views is to talk to fellow divers who have been on the tours, local and current recommendations are always the best.
Koh Tao day trips cost 3,500-4,000THB and tend to be more expensive than Koh Phangan as Sail Rock is closer to the later. The transfer time is two hours but reduced to 30 minutes by the speed boat tours. During the peak season there are daily tours to Hin Bai but choice frequency and number are less than Koh Phangan. From Koh Samui the price is 5,000 - 6,500THB and includes the same as the Koh Phangan and Kao Tao trips. The major disadvantage (apart from the price) is the transfer time which is two and half hours each way this is reduced to 45 minutes by more expensive speed boat tour. Koh Samui is a less popular destination to visit Sail Rock due to the distance so many diving centres only organise weekly trips, private tours can be organised but cost can very easily rack up.
Sail Rock Diving Safety and Dangers
Diving in Thailand is safe and standards are high but always check equipment and remember you general get what you paid for. It is very tempting to dive beyond your ability when surround by so much beauty and more experienced divers. The divers allure of Sail Rock is the abundance of sea life that has evolved due to the sea current washing nutrients across the corals. These currents, through not particular fast, are constant so always be wary and always dive with a buddy. Never put yourself in danger as emergency services are years behind many western countries. Never attempt to handle or irate the fish as some are extremely poisonous.