Scuba Diving in Pattaya - The Complete Guide

Pattaya is one of the most visited holiday destinations in the world. The beautiful beaches, the local seafood, the culture and nightlife, Pattaya has a lot to offer. But did you know that you can dive into the deep blue ocean and have an experience of a lifetime? Yes, you heard it right! Scuba diving in Pattaya is ever-growing and has some of the world’s best dive sites.

Why Go Scuba Diving in Pattaya?

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One of the most diverse locations, Pattaya is growing favourite day by day among both novice and advanced divers. You’ll witness some of the world-famous shipwrecks and dive into beautiful marine life. Stingrays, eels, seahorse, turtles, lionfish, coral reefs and at times sharks, you name it, and you’ll find it there. The local guides will introduce to you well known marine creatures like pufferfish, pipefish and clownfish. Scuba diving in Pattaya is sure to leave you spellbound and in awe of the ocean and its many secrets.

Sites for Scuba Diving in Pattaya:

1. Pattaya Near Islands

Scuba Diving in Pattaya
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The Pattaya Near Islands dive site is along the island of Koh Larn. The visibility in Pattaya Near Islands varies from 5m to 15m. It will leave you mesmerised as there are plenty of coral reefs, sea turtles and other marine life.

Diving Sites
Koh Larn, Koh Sak and Koh Krok.
They are the nearest ones and are spread across 9-12 km from Pattaya beach.

Diving Highlights
Koh Sak is the most dived site, and most beginners are brought here for training. The waters and calm which makes the condition for diving perfect. If you want some thrill and want to go deep-sea, then you can head to Koh Khrok, a site of tidal activities.

2. Pattaya Far Islands

Scuba Diving in Pattaya
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The Pattaya Far Islands are another popular chain of islands for scuba diving in Pattaya, controlled by The Royal Thai Navy.

Scuba Diving Sites
The other part of the remote islands is Koh Rin that is near to the North Rock and South Rock – the two most unique and famous scuba diving sites.

Diving Highlights
The northernmost spot is Koh Phai, which has a rich and varied marine life. You can spot seahorses, pufferfish and soft corals in this area. Hin Khao, the other name for North Rock is a hard granite rock with a fifteen-meter wall swamped with coral is a significant attraction. The other one is known as Hin Toh Mai or the South Rock and is a sight for soft and hard corals. There have been sightings of sharks and stingrays at this spot. If you’re looking forward to experiencing a shark in real life, then head to the Far Islands, and you might get lucky!

3. Samae San Islands

Scuba Diving in Pattaya
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Samae Islands should be on your list if you want to experience scuba diving at its best.

Diving Sites
Located at a distance of 39km from Pattaya, there are four major dive sites including Koh Chuang, Koh Chang, Koh Ron Nang and Hin Lak Bat or as it is popularly known as Shark Fin Rock. The island conditions make it an excellent sight for novice divers, but sometimes southern winds make it dangerous and thus require more expertise.  

Scuba Diving Sites
Scuba diving in Koh Chuang’s shallow waters is the best offered by Pattaya with abundant marine life.

Highlights
The Shark Fin Rock meaning a rock shaped like a shark’s fin is swarmed with corals and thriving aquatic sightings. Black and blue-spotted stingrays, eels and lionfish are common.

4. Wreck Diving

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If you’re the explorer type and are psyched about wrecked items, then scuba diving in Pattaya has something exciting to offer. Apart from marine life, you can also witness sunken ships from as long as WWII.

Diving Sites
Pattaya has some of the world-famous wreck diving sites that include HTMS Mataphon, HTMS Kut and HTMS Khram. These three ships were decommissioned and given to Thailand that later sunk them to turn into reefs. Due to the depth of these wrecks that can go up till 30m, you usually need to be a certified scuba diver to explore it. Wreck dives let you go through the deck area, and numbers of holes are made to lead the way out in case you wander somewhere unsafe inside the wreck.

Another famous wreck dive site is the Hardeep ship, located near Samae San Islands, which was bombed and sunk by British allies in WWII. Initially a passenger and cargo-ship, it is 64m long and has access to the engine room for exploration. You can swim across the deck, and you might also spot a detonated bomb on the sand bed.

Best Time to Scuba Dive in Pattaya

Diving in Pattaya can be done all round the year but the best season is from September to February. The water is calm, and it is best for beginners to go diving in mild conditions. During other times, the conditions are suitable but challenging. So if you’re an expert and are looking for some thrill, then you can try diving in monsoon season. On some days, it might be difficult due to tide and a sudden change in the weather.

Notable Operators 

Scuba Diving in Pattaya
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  • Dive in Pattaya
Address: 50/2 Moo 12, Huay Yai Road, Huay Yai, Banglamung, Chon Buri
Operating Hours: 8:00 AM to 8:00 PM
Website: divepattaya.com
Cost of 1 Day Dive Trip:
Certified Divers - THB 3300
First Time Divers - THB 4000 
  • Pattaya Dive Centre
Address: 219/3, Pattaya Sai Nueang, Bang Lamung District, Chon Buri
Operating Hours: 8:00 AM to 9:00 PM
Website: divecentrepattaya.com
Cost of 1 Day Dive Trip:
Certifies Divers - THB 3000  
First Time Divers - THB 3900 
  • Real Pattaya Divers
Address: 334/117 Moo 12 Soi Welcome, Nongprue, Pattaya City, Chon Buri
Operating Hours: 8:00 AM to 9:00 PM
Website: real-divers.com
Cost of 1 Day Dive Trip:
Certified Divers - THB 3200
First Time Divers - THB 3900 
  • No Limits Divers
Address: Pattaya 2nd Road, 485/9 Moo. 10, Nongprue, Banglamung, Chon Buri
Operating Hours: 8:00 AM to 9:00 PM
Website: nolimitdive.com
Cost of 1 Day Dive Trip:
Certified Divers - THB 2800
First Time Divers - THB 3900
  • Pattaya Scuba Adventures
Address: 144/287, Nongprue, Thappraya Rd, Pattaya City, Chon Buri
Operating Hours: 8:00 AM to 8:00 PM
Website: pattaya-scuba-adventures.com
Cost of 1 Day Dive Trip:
Certified Divers - THB 3300
First Time Divers - THB 3990 
  • Seafari Dive Centre
Address: 10 284/19 Beach Rd, Bang Lamung District, Chon Buri
Operating Hours: 8:00 AM to 8:00 PM
Website: seafari.co.th
Cost of 1 Day Dive Trip:
Certified Divers - THB 3000
First Time Divers - THB 4000
  • Mermaids Dive Centre
Address: 315/166-167, Banglamung Chon Buri
Operating Hours: 7:00 AM to 8:00 PM
Website: mermaidsdivecenter.com
Cost of 1 Day Dive Trip:
Certified Divers - THB 2900
First Time Divers - THB 3600
  • Scubadawgs
Address:  114/1 Bang Bao Pier, Koh Chang, Trat
Timings: 8:00 AM to 8:00 PM
Website: scubadawgspattaya.com
Cost of 1 Day Dive Trip:
Certified Divers - THB 2900                                    
First Time Divers - THB 3500
  • Jomtien Dive Centre
Address: 75/179 Jomtien Beach Road Pattaya City, Chon Buri
Operating Hours: 8:00 AM to 8:00 PM
Website: jomtiendivecenter.com
Cost of 1 Day Dive Trip:
Certified Divers - THB 2800
First Time Divers - THB 3400 

Essential Tips 

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  • If you have never done scuba diving before, then take the discover scuba diving foundation course that offers two dives and necessary training to help your first experience be smooth.
  • The cost includes a full set of rental gear, transportation from boat to the dive site, lunch and refreshments in between dives and a certified dive instructor. The boat is equipped with oxygen tanks and other vital gear to ensure your safety.
  • There are a lot of courses offered by almost all service providers for certified divers who are looking for advanced training. You can through the list of courses and choose the best one according to your skill level.
  • It is essential to be medically certified to be able to try scuba diving. Most companies will ask for a medical certificate to ensure that you’re healthy and fit to go for scuba diving.
  • Ensure that the service provider and the instructor are certified. Do thorough research; do not compromise on the quality of gear to save some extra bucks.
  • If you are already an expert diver and are just looking for some exotic locations in Pattaya for your fun, then you can skip the cost of the rental gear and use your own.
  • Remember to listen to the instructions carefully during the training. You may find it difficult at first to breathe through the oxygen mask, keep practising, and you will ace it.
  • When you’re out there in the deep blue ocean, in case of any problem immediately inform your instructor. If it’s your first time at diving, be near the instructor at all times and not attempt to move away on your own.

An extreme sport, scuba diving is a surreal experience. As exciting as it sounds, it is equally breathtaking and sophisticated. If you’re on vacation to Thailand, make your first diving experience memorable by visiting the exotic sites of scuba diving in Pattaya!

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