Similan Islands dive site
Location: North side of Koh Bangu (Similan Island #9)
Depth: 8-35 m
Type: Big boulders
Level: Intermediate. Currents can be strong.
North Point is another Similan dive site that goes by several other names depending on which liveaboard boat you are diving from. Some liveaboard operators call this site Triple Arches or Golden Arches. North Point is the most apt name though as it’s the most northerly Similan dive site.
This is a granite boulder dive site and currents can be strong here. The maximum depth is 35 metres and the boulders come up to 8 metres below the surface. Visibility is generally excellent between 20-40 metres.
There is a mooring line here that can be used for descents and safety stops if necessary. This is definitely a dive site to put the wide angle lens on your camera so that you can capture the grandeur of the boulder formations and, if you are lucky, a passing pelagic.
The large boulders form swim-throughs and caverns. Soft corals and crinoids cling to the smooth rock surfaces. Sea cucumbers and black spiny sea urchins are everywhere. Blue sea stars as well as pincushion star fish also cling to the rocks. There are also some large and colourful Crown of Thorns starfish but not enough to cause a problem.
Leopard sharks can be seen in the sand at the bottom of the boulders. Green and Hawksbill turtles are common. This site also gets it’s fair share of manta rays who come to use the cleaning stations here.
Other interesting marine life includes large grouper and banded sea snakes. Giant barracuda can be seen circling in the blue.
How to dive the Similan Islands
You can dive the Similan Islands by day trip from Phuket or Khao Lak, or by liveaboard. Liveaboards are ideal given the size of the area, the variety of dive sites, and the distance from the mainland.
If you don’t mind longish transfers then Similan diving day trips with 2 dives run five days per week from Phuket.
The Similan Islands diving season is from 15 October to 15 May.