Pattaya is a great location for a SCUBA diving holiday for both experienced divers and first time divers.
There are several islands that are close to Pattaya that offer some great diving adventures. Islands such as Koh Larn, Koh Khrok, Koh Phai, Koh Klung Badan, Koh Man Wichai are just a short boat ride away.
These islands present excellent diving and snorkeling sites and provide an excellent escape from the city for a great day out! The islands are popular for the coral reefs and the variety of fish and plant life. Beside an array of tropical fish, divers can expect to see turtles, the occasional ray, as well as giant grouper and giant starry puffer fish.
Further out are the islands of Koh Hu Chang, Koh Klung Badan, Koh Marn Wichai, Koh Rin, Hin Ton May, and Koh Luam Noi.
A one day diving adventure will cost around ฿ 3000 to ฿ 4000. There are boats leaving from either Pattaya or Jomtien beach.
For the beginner or the intermediate diver who wants to learn or improve, PADI courses are readily available. An open water dive course over four days will get you your PADI certificate for around ฿ 14,000.
There’s also advanced open water diver two day course at ฿ 12,000 with five dives.
If you already have a proficiency certificate, a day’s diving will normally cost you around ฿ 3000 baht with equipment supplied.
Night diving is also available for about ฿ 4000.
Various options are also open for experienced divers, including specialist days as a underwater naturalist, underwater videographer, and also nitrox diving. These cost around ฿ 4000 to ฿ 5000 for two dives and instruction.
There are many dive shops in the Pattaya area, with experienced staff who will be happy to instruct you in your first dive, or help you achieve open water certification.
Pattaya has many well established PADI dive centres for the experienced and beginning SCUBA diver. Here are some of the better known dive centres:
Pattaya Dive Centre on Beach Road, Tipp Plaza, between Soi 10 and Soi 11.
Aquanauts Dive Centre, Soi 6, Pattaya.
Mermaids Dive Center has 5 locations in Pattaya, Jomtien and Naklua.
Neptune Dive Center. 312/12 Pattaya 3rd Road, Pattaya.
There are several wrecks off the coast of Pattaya, including:
HTMS Khram which was sunk as part of Thailand’s underwater conservation park.
HTMS Kood which was sunk 340 metres north of Koh Sak
SS Bremen about 30 km from Pattaya in Chong Khram Channel.
SS Hardeep, off the south coast of Koh Samae San and 400 metres northwest of the coral island Koh Chuang.
There’s more information on ship wrecks off the Pattaya coast on thaiwreckdiver.com