Snorkeling involves swimming with a mask and a breathing tube, with or without the use of fins. It is a relatively simple and accessible activity that does not require special skills, preparation, or expensive equipment. This is why snorkeling is universal, because it is suitable for people of all ages and experience levels. Moreover, snorkeling provides an opportunity to explore and experience the habitat of marine creatures with minimal stress on the ecosystem.
Finding an interesting location for such swimming activity is very easy in tropical countries as local warm and transparent waters ensure excellent visibility, allowing a detailed exploration of the variety of marine flora and fauna. In this regard, Thailand stands out as one of the premier regions for snorkeling, attributed to the abundant and vibrant coral reefs that serve as habitats for hundreds of tropical fish, plants, and marine mammals. The best places for underwater swimming are in the Andaman Sea on the Similan Islands, Phi-Phi Islands, Coral Islands, Maiton, and others. Let's dive into it and learn about each location.
Our top Phuket snorkeling tours: programs and prices
- Similan Islands Excursion: the Similan Islands are famous for their fauna and landscape. Here, you can encounter colorful fish, sea turtles, and even whale sharks. The underwater world has impressive rock formations, creating caves and passages for swimming. Such diversity makes the islands a paradise for divers and enthusiasts of snorkeling with a mask and tube. The islands are part of the Mu Ko Similan National Park, created to protect the natural resources of this area. Moreover, due to their ecological significance, the Similan Islands became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1998.
- 11 Islands Excursion: a tour along the entire coast of Thailand, visiting Panak, James Bond, Hong, Phi-Phi-Don, Bamboo Islands, the Railay Peninsula, the Fertility Cave, and the Viking Cave. We'll take a refreshing dip in Ton Sai Bay and Pile Lagoon. Ton Sai Bay is a crowded bay on the west coast of Phi-Phi-Don Island in Krabi Province. It is known for stunning natural landscapes — high limestone cliffs surrounding the turquoise shallow waters of the Andaman Sea. Pile Lagoon is a deeper bay on the coast of the same island, offering more secluded and peaceful options for recreation.
- Phi-Phi Islands Excursion: a journey to the Phi-Phi archipelago with an overview of unique locations on the largest and most developed island Phi-Phi-Don. After a walk on Monkey Beach, you'll have the opportunity to explore the local coral ecosystem through a snorkeling experience.
- Speedboat Trip to Racha and Coral Islands: a tour to the closest islands to Phuket which are Racha and Coral. The dive will take place off the shores of Racha, and after lunch, the boat will take us to Coral, where we can explore tropical jungles and shallow waters independently.
- Sail Catamaran Cruise to Coral and Racha Islands: this tour sets itself apart from the previous one by featuring the use of a distinctive and unconventional boat. It is a cruise under the white sails of a catamaran. It involves a more comfortable and spacious boat, offering an augmented number of lounge areas. The highlight of the trip is the return journey to Phuket during the sunset in the Andaman Sea, featuring a photo session bathed in the rays of the setting sun.
- Trip to Racha, Coral, and Maiton Islands: this excursion offers two dives — one near the shores of Coral Island without going ashore and another near the shores of Maiton. Between them, there will be a stop on Racha Island for a buffet lunch and a short beach break.
- Trip to Maiton, Khai Nai, and Khai Nok Islands: this tour also offers two diving options — near the shores of Maiton without going ashore and on Khai Nai Island with lunch, beach relaxation, and swimming. After that, there will be a stop at Khai Nok Island with free time for independent exploration, swimming, and beach relaxation.
- Trip to 3 Khai Islands: a tour through the Khai triangle is a cruise to a group of small islands at different stages of development. During our time here, we'll enjoy swimming and snorkeling in the vicinity of the largest Khai Nai Island, followed by some leisurely beach relaxation on both Khai Nai and Khai Nok Islands.
- Maiton Island Cruise: an atypical snorkeling trip in Phuket. Usually, this kind of excursions imply a uniform holiday in different locations. Here, on one island, we will try all types of recreation such as swimming and snorkeling among coral reefs, a walk around the island visiting all the viewpoints, beach volleyball, and swimming in pool. Another unique detail of the cruise is the location. Maiton is known for its untouched beaches, crystal-clear water, and lush wild jungles. The cleanliness of this place is linked to its historical peculiarities — it was once a restricted island, and now there is a daily limit on the number of visitors.
- Catamaran Sail to Coral Island and Banana Beach: this tour involves snorkeling in the most picturesque place for this activity. Coral Island is surrounded by reefs, so its ecosystem amazes with its diversity and brightness. Here you can see many colorful fish, sea turtles, starfish, rays, and various types of hard and soft corals. The island also has beautiful beaches with white sand, where we'll have free time for a stroll and sunbathing. The tour's highlight is the stop at the southernmost point of Phuket to contemplate the sunset.
- Fishing in Phuket: this tour offers several options for active recreation. First, we'll head into the open sea for trolling accompanied by an instructor. Afterward, we'll stop at Racha Island for snorkeling, some beach activities and a lunch prepared using our catch. The fish and seafood caught on the way back can be taken home and cooked independently.
The price of each excursion includes transfer to and from the diving location in Phuket, as well as the assistance of a guide and equipment rental. In addition to Phuket snorkeling tours, you can rent a speedboat, fishing boat, catamaran, or yacht for a chartered cruise. This format involves independently choosing the program, locations for swimming, and diving.
What's important for the tourist to know?
We have gathered some basic tips that will be useful during the preparation for the Phuket snorkeling tours:
- Sun Protection: make sure you bring sunscreen, sunglasses, and a hatgear. If the chosen cruise involves swimming or snorkeling, don't forget to pack a swimsuit, towel, and a change of clothes.
- Clothing: to feel comfortable in Thailand's tropical climate, wear light and breathable clothing. For island walks, opt for soft, light, and sporty shoes.
- Respect for Nature: Thailand's nature is unique, so respect its inhabitants. During snorkeling and diving, avoid getting too close to the animals, never attempt to catch or take them ashore as well as refrain from damaging coral reefs and clean up all small and large litter.
Remember these guidelines to have an enjoyable experience while exploring the beautiful underwater world and islands of Phuket.