Racha Noi Island Scuba Diving
3 Dives at 4000 THB All Inclusive
Racha Noi, just 50 minutes south of Racha Yai, has several dive sites around this small island. With greater depths at some locations exceeding 80 metres and frequent stronger currents, it is a popular dive-site for experienced divers to explore. Although some bays are also very ideal for beginners. Racha Noi has become famous for its resident manta rays at several dive sites Manta sightings are the best from December to April, when ocean currents and winds create the ideal feeding and cleaning grounds for these majestic animals.
The northern tip of the island offers an opportunity for a good multilevel dive along a large pinnacle where spotting larger marine life like reef sharks and stingrays is common. Off the southern point is a nice drift dive along some spectacular scenery as you find yourself on top of large rock formations surrounded by deep water. On the southwest side, a wooden shipwreck draws a lot of interesting reef fish.
- Visibility 20-30M
- Difficulty : Easy to Moderate
- Current : Moderate to Strong
- Dive Level Recommendation : Advanced ++
RACHA NOI BANANA BAY :
Banana bay is near the middle of the eastern coast of Racha Noi. The name probably comes from the many banana trees that line the bay. Together with powdery white sands, turquoise water and the lush green landscape, the bay looks like the perfect postcard. There are several mooring lines but most dives start at the clear shallow flat area with depths from 3-10 metres. The hard coral reef slopes gently down to 25 metres with staghorn coral dotting the white powdery sand bottom. This an easy dive suitable for all levels, also for snorkeling, with generally mild currents.
Like the other dive sites of Racha Noi Island, reef fish such as fusiliers, red tooth triggerfish, butterflyfish, damsels, lizardfish and colorful basslets are often found on top of the staghorn coral. In the shallows, you can find giant morays and cuttlefish. Look out for colourful nudibranchs and sea snakes. On occasion, you may also spot great barracuda often numbering close to 1000. In deeper waters, leopard sharks have been known to make an appearance but are very rare. You may also be pleasantly surprised by rare species like twin-spotted lionfish, seamoths, or even a manta ray!
MARINE LIFE :
Like the other dive site of Racha Noi, reef fish such as fusilier, triggerfish, butterfly fish, and colorful basslets are often found ot top of the staghorn coral. In the shallow you can find giant morays, reef octopus, black and white snapper, sea snake – not dangerous , lion fish and scorpion fish. Lovers of nudibranchs will find them on top of staghorn corals. Look at the blue, you can be lucky and spot Manta Rays.
RACHA NOI BAY DIVE SITE :
Racha Noi Bay, also called East Coast Bay, is located on the southeastern side of Racha Noi. Between 8 and 15 meters, this small site offers shallow coral gardens of lush soft coral and hard corals. Currents can be mild to strong. On top, the diverse reef fish makes this location also good for snorkeling. Descending to deeper water, around the rock formations look out for Jenkins ray and the exceptional eagle ray with its striking blue eyes.
MARINE LIFE :
Divers will be amazed by the variety of creatures. With the usual reef fiches, divers will like to discover scorpion fishes, garden eels, eagle rays and milky fish. Explore the sandy bottom to spot camouflaged cuttle fish, flounder and pipe fish. On calm days, you can even swim off the rocky reef and explore the deep blue for leopard shark, manta ray and even whale sharks.
RACHA NOI MARINE ROCK DIVE SITE:
Marina Bay lies near the middle of the west coast of Racha Noi. The dive site has large submerged granite rocks that are covered with a mixture of sea whips, fire coral, and rocky boulder swimthroughs at around 21-23metres. Twenty metres away from the wall is a large single pinnacle that runs from high on the hillside into the water below and beyond. It is worth exploring with some fine little swim-throughs. There are several coral bommies to explore, these are always worth checking as there is usually some great life here, and you will find some White Eyed Morays to watch. The usual reef fish are around. If you are lucky you should be able to sight small reef sharks, but the main attraction is probably the presence of large parrotfish. Currents can change from moderate to strong with usually good visibility around 15-30 metres.
Further south from Marita’s Rock is a small wooden fishing boat ready to explore, which has been down for a few years now, so it has some good marine life build up on it, but be wary of currents in this area as they can be rather strong at times.
MARINE LIFE :
Reef fish such as parrot fish, snapper, angelfish, butterfly fish and neon fusiliers are common. In the sandy bottom of the bay, you may also spot bluespotted stingrays and scissortail gobies hovering in a pair. Take a closer look at the rocks and you may discover nudibranchs and pipefish. In the deeper part, you might also have a surprise encounter with a Manta Ray.
RACHA NOI SOUTH TIP :
This small dive site is a few hundred meters from the southern tip of Racha Noi, and is probably the best of the Racha area to see Manta rays. Once at depth, divers can find shelter from the stronger currents and improvise a route to facilitate a relaxed dive meandering around the large granite boulders and through connecting channels. The boulders start quite deep from 14 metres and run down to 40 metres and beyond, so overall this is a site for more experienced divers. The corals here are pristine and due to the cooler water here, there were no signs of bleaching. There is a good mix of hard and soft corals. Some of the walls around the dive site are carpeted with purple and red soft corals and sea whips. Gorgonian and other varieties of sea fan festoon the boulders and gently sway in the current, filtering microscopic particles from the water. There is a pinnacle below the surface off the tip of the island, with the highest point about 9 meters below the surface.
The usual surgeonfish and unicornfish can be found and if you are lucky, large schools of Chevron Barracuda can be seen. You will definitely find Crinoid’s and colourful Long Arm Feather Stars, lion fish, Bearded Scorpion Fish, Wrasse, Triggerfish. In deeper waters look for Leopard sharks, White tip reef sharks, as well as whale sharks that are often seen around this Island.
MARINE LIFE :
Manta Rays are often spotted here. From February to April you are almost sure to dive with them. There is also surgeonfish, unicornfish triggerfish, damsels and great barracuda are common here. From the other hand, leopard sharks are less.
What to Expect on your Dive with us at Racha Islands
Sirolodive is aimed at providing you with the best experience of scuba diving in Phuket. We are able to tailor all requirements to fit and suit you exactly how you would require them to be.
Our team would pick you up from your hotel at 7:15am and drop you at our Boat at Chalong Pier. We would also be dropping you off at your hotel once we have returned back from your diving trip.
You can enjoy a very good breakfast buffet on board and we serve you with snacks and drinks throughout. Lunch buffet is also served with all dietary requests taken into account. If you wish to order a Vegetarian meal please contact Sirolodive’s staff when you board.
You will be briefed by your instructor regarding the use of all diving equipments, dive sites, what you can expect from each dive location and all safety related matters.
What’s not included:
- Underwater photos and video may be possible from dive staff on the boat as an optional extra, usually 1,000 THB per day
- Pickup/Dropoff additional charges will apply for locations from Surin onwards to Maikhao beach or the North of Phuket