Friday, April 30, 2010

Manta Queen III


A couple of days ago Khao Lak Scuba Adventures said goodbye to the daytrip boat M/V Seahorse. It will be replaced by brand new M/V Manta Queen III which is being built at the moment and will be ready for the next season in October 2010.

The Steel Boat will be permanently at the Similan Islands and our guests will be transferred there daily by speedboat with the option of staying overnight in one of the comfortable new cabins.

Manta Queen III will offer a wide range of options, such as daytrips from Khao Lak or the flexible 2 day/1 night or 3 day/2 night trips. Discover Scuba Diving, Open Water Diver, the Advanced Course and a wide range of Specialties are offered for future divers or those who would like to improve their knowledge.

As a new feature on our daytrips also Nitrox will be available on Manta Queen III as well as the Nitrox Course.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

season starts to end :-(

time seems to run, only a couple of weeks left of this season! When did March pass by and when was february???

Anyway we had an awesome season so far and right now it looks like the Similan Islands saved the best for last. The Whalesharks are at Richelieu and at Koh Tachai even the Minky Whales are passing by. Not to forget about the groups of Manta Rays at Koh Bon and the leopard sharks, ghoastpipefish and Nudis at the Similans.... what more to say? Let's hope the last days stay as wicked as the last ones!

Friday, April 2, 2010

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

assault on the world record

Phuket Gazette Saturday, March 6 2010

http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=342429974341&ref=mf


Phang Nga Province, Phuket's immediate neighbor to the north, is asking divers from all over Thailand to pack their fins, tanks and regulators and head to a diving festival in Thai Muang District on April 3, when there will be an assault on the world record for a mass dive.

Thai Muang is about a one hour drive from Phuket Town.

The festival is organized by ‘Have a Good Dream Co Ltd’, who produce The One Ruam Thai Jai Diew Gan program seen on Thai TV Channel 9, which will televise the mass dive nationwide.

The event was moved up to April 3 after the province became aware that HRH Princess Chulabhorn Valayalaksana would be visiting a group of rural doctors in Thai Muang’s Tambon Lam Phi on the originally scheduled date of April 6.

The mass dive will take place starting at 11am off Thai Muang Beach.

It is hoped that over 3,000 divers will attend the record breaking attempt.

Phang Nga Governor Yiamsuriya Palusuk announced the event at Phang Nga Provincial Hall on Thursday and the date change was announced yesterday.

The current world record for a mass dive is held by Indonesia, where 2,486 divers took a simultaneous plunge off North Sulawesi during a festival in August last year.

Under Guinness Book rules, all divers need to descend to a depth of at least 10 meters and stay submerged for one minute.

International news outlets including Reuters, CNN and NHK will be invited to cover the event, Gov Yiamsuriya said. The Gazette's PGTV also plans to be there to ensure airing on Phuket's provincial cable channels.

To entice as many divers as possible to attend, free accommodation will be provided in Thai Muang and 50% discounts will be available from hotels and resorts in Khao Lak.

There will also be free transport to the festival from Bangkok aboard air-conditioned buses.

If the record is broken, all those taking part will receive certificates and their names will be recorded for posterity in the Guinness Book, which will have an adjudicator present.

For more information, contact
Phang Nga Provincial Public Relations Office: 076-411388

Khao Lak Scuba Adventures:
http://www.facebook.com/khaolak.scuba
http://www.khaolakscubaadventures.com

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Monday, February 15, 2010

Khao Lak Scuba Adventures and Oxygene Diving

video

since January this year, Khao Lak Scuba Adventures joined the Oxygene Group, a group of dive centers, dive shops and Liveaboards around the globe, assuring a certain standart to their customers.

http://www.khaolakscubaadventures.com
http://www.globalqualitydiving.com

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

how fast time goes by....

amazing, my last blog entry is nearly four weeks ago, and so many things happened so fast! While the Whaleshark and the Manta Rays appeared at the Similan Island, while Manta Queen 1 and Manta Queen 2 were coming back with the most stunning pics... in the meantime some of us were in Winter Wonderland Germany, attending the Boat Exhibition in Duesseldorf. We had an awesome time in Duesseldorf, met so many people, made new friends, learned new things...

One of the stories from was: http://www.aqua-med.de provided for all the exhibition halls heart defibrillators. These are supposed to be very easy to handle, so also not trained persons can help in case of emergency. There are patches to be attached to the affected person. Than go away from the person and switch the defibrillator on. The machine than starts automatically to measure if it is necessary to shock or not.

On Saturday in one of our neighbour halls a man had a heart attack. Another visitor, not trained at all, took the defibrillator and simply followed the three on the machine described steps; patches, go away, switch on. The man´s heart had already stopped, so the defibrillator shocked a couple of times. After a few minutes the emergency team arrived and overtook.

The man is alive, he will be fine and the emergency team said, that were would have been no chance to survive for this man without the interaction if the visitor and the defibrillator.

Good job visitor and aqua med!

http://www.dive-news.net/videos?task=videodirectlink&id=176

Friday, January 8, 2010

BOOT 2010 the preparations

from the 22.01. till 31.01.2010 Khao Lak Scuba Adventures will be present at the BOOT 2010 in Duesseldorf.

At the moment we are trying to think about what we need to take there, to do there... We are really looking forward to this!!!

Friday, January 1, 2010

task force 'movie'

We were planning to make a video about… well about everything, the shops, the boats, the diving, how a typical day looks like… everything. Underwater stuff was kind of easy, but for the rest we had no material. So we were trying to hire a videographer, simple like that! Unfortunately we are in peak season and all the videographers are very busy, and we had a delivery date.

Doesn’t matter, we can do that on our own! So we borrowed a camera (thanks a lot for that!) and started filming… Hmmmm… looks not really nice… we need some more action, we need actors!

During the next three days Sarah and Dave turned into the honeymoon couple Suzanne and Andrew (for friends Suzi and Andi), they arrived at their Hotel, checked in, got divorced and Andi became a Divemaster over night. That’s how things happen in real life, yes!

We were really surprised about how many problems we were facing all of a sudden; the hotel pool looked really ugly because there was a big cloud, for night shots we would have needed more light, everything in the shadow looked grey, the outside boat shots were a disaster; there were a lot of waves, the dingi was shaking, sun behind the boat, tiny water spots on the lens… and and and! It just didn’t end.

After three days of filming we were really fed up with it and very sure that all we made is not usefull. But after watching it all over again we were surprised that maybe some stuff could be pretty good.

We sent the material to the editing company, it will take some more time before we will see the result… can’t wait!!!

mission dive courser accomplished!

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

daytrip to boonsung wreck

a very easy diving day is a trip to the wreck. Last week i went together with four other divers with a longtailboat to boonsung wreck. As this is very close to shore, there is no need to get up too early, we were leaving the dive center around 9.30am. After driving 10 minutes, hour longtailboat was awaiting us at pakarang beach. Equipment, tanks, food and drinks were loaded, and here we go :-) after only half with nearly no waves, we reached the dive site. Two other longtails were around, but it was not really busy, nice.

Around 11.15 we jumped for the first dive. My very first dive at the wreck. And it was great! The dive site is only 18 meters deep, and the different parts of the wreck are overgrown and so many schools of fish are around! There are heaps of lionfish and many many scorpionfish and uncountable moray eels, and... and... and...

After the first dive we had our lunch and chilled for one and a half hours on the boat, before we jumped for the second dive. Even after the second dive, it felt like we could have spent much more time at this dive site without getting bored.

Around 4pm we were back at the dive center, exchanging signatures and stamps in the logbooks. Mission wreck dive successfully accomplished!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Summary of the season so far

Let’s have a look back how the first two month of the season were working out so far…

In general many companies in Khao Lak are complaining about not enough tourists, and that it's worse than last year… and so on. I don’t think this is true. We had a very good and busy november and the complains are every year in december the same, everybody remembers that last year at this time it was much more busy. For some reason not many are remembering the complaining last december about not enough tourists and that everything was better the year before. This might be because humans rather remember the good stuff and forget about the bad. But the ‘pre-christmas-down’ is an established enemy.

For us at KSA it still looks very good, we have a lot of internet pre-bookings, many walk in’s, boats are filled but not uncomfortably crowded, the christmas and new year trips are fully booked since weeks.

The forecasts for January are ranging from ‘desaster’ to ‘it will be soooo incredible busy!’. Let’s face it; we gotta wait for january for knowing for sure.

Let’s have a look at the diving so far;

against all expectations, there is a lot of big fish around already. The Manta Rays around island number nine are a common picture already and it’s worth to have an eye on the blue at Richelieu Rock for the Whaleshark. The Liveaboards are bringing back happy divers, as well as Sea Horse and white dolphin from the Daytrips. Conditions and visibility are great, the speedboat rides are not too bumpy and it rarely rains.

Summary; Diving at the Similan Islands this season is awesome and it seems like we are avoiding the ‘pre-christmas-down’. No reason to complain for us… so far so good :-)

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Guest feedback from Alec L.

Hi everyone,

I'm just back from my Similan Islands boat trip and on solid land in Khao Lak.

A friend,Jeurgen(sorry for the spelling,if you read this) is working for a Dive Shop in Khao Lak.....Khao Lak Scuba Adventures...and put me on the list for the next trip,so arrived on the 18th,then headed off to the Islands on the 19th with Jeurgen as my dive guide.

Reading in the reports about the Similans,they always say that they are beautiful.Unfortunately,this usually means pretty scenery,shame about the diving!!!

I was totally mistaken-----the Islands themselves are breathtakingly beautiful,the Dive sites are nearly all, absolutely stunning.The visibility underwater was usually 40 to 50 metres (almost like a swimming pool) and the scenery was often more like a mountain range than anything else,often covered in fabulous soft and hard corals.

The animal life ranged from good to incredible.Others on board saw Mantas,but I wasn't lucky this time.That said,I have not been disappointed at all---so many close encounters with fabulous beasties.Morays,Octopus,Barracuda all within touching distance(in fact,on occasion,they have actually bumped into me,or my camera lens,at least!!) On top of this,there was the more unusual stuff,harlequin shrimps,pineapple fish (no photo though,dammit!),a strange little pipe horse fish,stone fish and more scorpion and lion fish than I could count---we even had a white tipped reef shark come visit during a night dive!!

To any diver thinking of doing the trip---don't hesitate---it will not disappoint.

Unfortunately,I'm having problems uploading photos and video at present.I've managed a small selection of photos,but some of the videos are real "wow" jobs(not boasting---the creatures are definitely the stars!!). Worse comes to worst,I'll upload them when I get home-----only a week and a bit (Boohoo!)--I've really enjoyed the whole of this 3 months trip,but I guess all good things must come to an end,Eh?

Have no idea what to do with the extra time.I may well stay here,fabulous beach and my accomodation is cheap(but good)--and there's even a bar that sells Kilkenny Beer!!(at an exorbitant rate,but so nice to taste REAL beer again!).Money is running worryingly low,so options are a little limited.Still,only an hour or so to Phuket Airport (for flight to KL on the 2nd) and the resort is....well...a resort---the usual tatty souvenir shops,and bars...but fortunately,still a few local food places----60p for a bowl of delicious spicey noodle soup.YumYum!!!---have a bowl for breakfast,and you're not hungry until the evening.

Well,I've rambled on enough,

See you later,

Alec.

Monday, November 30, 2009

WHALESHARK


First Whaleshark of the season was spotted by manta queen II at richelieu rock! Yihaa

Saturday, November 28, 2009

guest feedback from Karen from Singapore

My first LOB experience and all of you on Manta Queen 1 set the standard so high! The food was amazing, the staff were helpful, friendly and funny, especially when they were rushing us to put on the gear before every dive - "Weight belt! Weight belt!" even when we were still tugging on the wetsuits at our knees!! It was so funny! Please thank Pinok and her assistant for us again. We were definitely well-fed and I have those lumps around my waist to prove it.

Special thanks to our man, Dan for working so hard trying to spot those magnificient sea creatures for us. Jaz really had a horrific experience with a bad instructor in Sabah that she wasn't keen to dive ever again and thankfully, Dan helped changed her mind! Those were my first ornate ghostpipes, clown triggers, Pinky the frogfish, ribbon eels, mantis, soft shell cowrie, fire goby, octopi and so many more!! So thank you so much Dan! I've got 14 proud pages on my logbook from the Similans! *Kisses.

Michele and I were very impressed with dearest Vicky whom took so good care of all of us that all we had to do was to eat, dive and sleep! I'm sure there must be hell lots going on behind the scene to ensure all the guests' safety and comfort were well taken care of so kudos to our sexy, beautiful tour leader - Ms. Kiwi!

Please thank Fabien for us too for so patiently answering all our so many questions before the trip. =)

Thank you. Thank you all very very much for giving us such an amazing and unforgetable time at Similan... Even when somebody on board did not rub his/her nipples. =P

Manta Queen1_Trip 11


MQI - Trip 11. Giant frog fish, ornate ghostpipe fish, 3 juvenile tiger tail seahorses, pineapple fish, nudibranch, maldives sponge snail, leopard sharks...nice! vic

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Wednesday, November 25, 2009

my new office

finally, now that the season has started, my new little office in bang niang is ready. So I grab mys computer, some equipment and some shirts and move in... together with tweety :-)

Unfortunately that means that i will not have much time left for going to the boats... but i will try my very best!

some pics from Manta Queen II

photo contest Manta Queen II

a group of divers from macau went for a photo contest during their liveaboard. here's a best of plus some pics from the boat...

life in khao lak and at the similan islands

random pictures from the shop and the boats...

Reef clean up Richelieu Rock

at the third trip with manta queen 1 a fishing boat left quickly richelieu rock when we appeared. they had dropped their net when they saw us, and the net covered then the top of the rock. vic, tik, dan and mr.cru removed it successfully and we sent it together with some pictures to the similan island marine park office.


Tuesday, November 24, 2009

an ordinary morning

why do we do what we do?


this little fella is playing a quite prominent role in Thailand. On all our Trips as well as in the shop or at one’s home we are trying to collect them. It is the only part of the can of pure aluminium and by the end of the season we send the collection to Bangkok where they get melted down. This Aluminium is used than to produce artificial arms or legs.
So if you come to Thailand; don’t throw away the entire can!

http://www.khaolakscubaadventures.com/

meike goes manta queen 1


Manta Queen I _05 24/10 – 28/10

The afternoon of the 24th, two hours before Manta Queen I was departing, we decided spontaneously that I will join the trip to the Simlan Islands.

So hurry, hurry, quickly packed some stuff and off to the boat! Around 6.30pm we left khao lak to taplamu, where the boat and the crew were waiting for us. First look at the boat and a briefing, what to do, what not to do, how to do what… seemed like a lot of rules, but indeed everything was well thought about and running perfectly.

While we were listening to the briefing, the crew had loaded all the gear downstairs, so after the briefing we could go down and set up the equipment. It is very comfortable that you have to do this only once, your gear than has it’s fixed place on the platform.

We were coming closer to the departure, and straight after leaving the pier, the crew started some fireworks. The front of the ship is the holy place on the boat, the ghosts are living there and the fireworks are for them, so they will guide us through our trip.

After we left Taplamu, heading to the Similan Islands, Dinner was served, and everybody was checking out the other divers, the dive groups, the guides, the cabins and the fridge with the beer. everybody was excited about the days coming up.

Next morning at 6.30 Vic started knocking on cabin doors and waking everybody up with a lovely ‘briefing in half an hour!’. So we all met up on the main deck, having a coffee, some toast and having a first look at the Similan Islands. Because it was very early in the season, there were rarely any boats around, the islands were nearly ours!

At 7.00 the first groups jumped into the gear and at 7.13 I was under water the first time this season!! Awesome!!! The Dive site was East of Eden, where are a lot of corals and suddenly a cute khul’s stingray lifted up from the sand right under vic, swimming 3 or 4 meters away, turning around and watching us with his huge eyes.

After this first dive breakfast was served and we had a surface break of 2.5 hours. We went on to the west side of island number 7, the next dive site was west of eden. Corals mixed with some boulders, another great dive.

We had three more dives at the Similans, including a night dive in Honeymoon bay and the next day, after an early morning dive between the islands 5 and 6 we went on to dive at koh bon. Still the same day we went on to Koh Tachai, a bit north of the Similan Islands. Koh Tachai belongs to the Surin Islands and it was the spot for our night dive this day.

The next morning at 4.30 the captain got up and brought us from our bay at koh tachai further north to Richelieu Rock. The number one dive spot in Thailand… for a reason. These were my first dives at Richelieu Rock ever, and it was incredible awesome!! Corals and Corals and schools of fish meeting schools of fish at more corals, octopus everywhere, lionfishes, stonefishes, nudibranks, a seahorse, tiny cube boxfishes, pufferfishes, corals… it was really hard to see everything, because a) there is so incredible much to see and b) there is fish everywhere. There could have been a blue whale giving birth right behind me, I would have been to busy watching the rest J

The plan was 3 dives at Richelieu Rock and than for a sunset dive back to koh tachai. But after the second dive at Richelieu a survey told us, that everybody would rather make 4 dives at Richelieu. And if the question would have been if we want to stay for another 25 dives at Richelieu… the answer probably would have been ‘yes’ as well.

After 4 dives we finally went back to our bay at koh tachai, where we had our morning dive of the trip… Where Zaina and Jacob spotted the Manta Ray! So ‘Yes’, they are here!!!

The second and last dive of the day was back at Koh Bon, this time Koh Bon Pinnacle. And as if planed as a perfect ending of an awesome trip, four leopard sharks were around J

At 4.30pm we arrived back in Taplamu, four days of diving are over, the crew was doing an amazing job, excellent organisation (thanks to tripleader and videographer vic), perfect conditions over and under water plus a very cool group of divers! An awesome trip, and it was sure not the last one J

Thanks to all divers on board, to the crew, to vic, sarah, andrea, dan, tik, julian and jay!

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about the liveaboards

If you love exotic places, sunny beaches, crystal clear water and a fantastic variety of marine life, then join us on one of ourliveaboard cruises.

Aboard the M/V Manta Queen, M/V Manta Queen II or M/V Seahorse you will visit the jewels of the Andaman Sea at Similan, Koh Bon, Koh Tachai, Richelieu Rock and the Surin Island National Park.

Our comfortable liveaboardsManta Queen, Manta Queen II and M/V Seahorse accommodates you in spacious air-conditioned cabins.

Big saloons and wide sundecks invite you to enjoy and relax while our boats takes you to some of the world’s top ten dive sites.

Wide dive decks allow the divers easy entries and exits. The tanks are refilled with the gear attached to your tank - so all you have to do is what a liveaboard cruise is all about: sleeping - diving - eating - diving - relaxing - diving - eating - sunbathing…

What to bring

  • Your log book and/or certification card (mandatory to board the cruise)
  • Towel, sun lotion, hat, sunglasses, sweat shirt for chilly nights
  • I-Pod, books or magazines
    Khao Lak Scuba Adventures highly recommends every diver to have extra dive insurance.We offer extra insurance cover, day by day, week by week or annual from a UK based dive insurer. www.indepths.com Rates start as low as 175,- Thb per day.

    Tips about equipment

    Do not overload your luggage as you probably need less than you think. The water temperature is around 28oC all year round therefore a 3mm shorty wetsuit is usually enough but a full length 5mm suit wouldn’t be out of place especially when making 3 to 4 dives a day.

    Khao Lak Scuba Adventures also provides a full set of diving equipment (dive computers are not included in the rental sets) and many other important accessories can be rented at the dive center.

    If you bring your own dive gear please make sure that regulators and BCDs are properly serviced (and checked!)

    Visit our photo gallery to see more images of our diving center, boats, dive sites, islands and much more…

  • about the daytrips

    A day scuba diving or snorkeling trip at the exciting dive sites of the Similan islands and beyond is the perfect choice for guests who are on a limited time schedule and for those who like to enjoy the amenities and comforts of their hotel or resort on land. Joining aday trips you can spend the whole daydiving or snorkeling at exciting and remote location and still make it back to Khao Lak in time for dinner.

    Due to its distance to the Similan Islands, it is a very popular trip for divers and snorkelers alike, as is the 2 or 3 day overnight trip. Our custom liveaboard MV Seahorse is cruising continuously around theSimilan Island National Park and Koh Bon.
    A daily transfer by our 600 horsepower speedboat “White Dolphin” in the morning takes you to the diving vessel MV Seahorse making it possible to start on any day a 2 day and 1 night or 3 day and 2 nightsliveaboard cruise.

    This two boat dive system introduced by Khao Lak Scuba Adventures has proved the most flexible and demanded during the past years.

    Another great advantage is that we don’t have to compromise dive sites for several different interests such as snorklers, dive courses introductory divers and certified divers.

    After the main briefing all of our guest will be separated into individual groups in order to accommodate all of our guest needs The White Dolphin departs to shallower and calmer reefs to safely go after the needs of dive courses and non dive activities while our certified divers will dive from the MV Seahorse.

    This fast transfer to the islands by speedboat and diving from a comfortable dive vessel while servicing dive courses and non divers/snorklers by speedboat. This is the best way to ensure that everyone will have a fantastic time enjoying the treasures of the Andaman Sea. Thailand

    All accommodation in share air con twin cabins and for families 4 bed bunk rooms, 4 western style toilet/shower combinations, large diving deck with showers.

    Visit our photo gallery to see more images of our diving center, boats, dive sites, islands and much more…

    http://www.khaolakscubaadventures.com/
    http://www.khaolakscubaadventures.com/daytrips