Drift Diving in Phuket
All the dives I’d done before Phuket consisted of swimming around one particular spot. Phuket was different. There I swam through an environment. In a drift dive, the dive boat drops you off at one spot and you drift with the current to another spot, where the boat is waiting to pick you up. There’s a nice sense of freedom and movement with these dives.
Phuket’s water offered visibility of around 20 meters – the greatest I’ve ever seen. In that clear, bright environment the fish and coral were especially vibrant and easy to observe. I saw sea snakes for the first time in Phuket – red and blue ones. Although they rarely use their venom, it’s twenty times more potent than land snakes. They’re also twenty-times more evil-looking than their land counterparts.
An American on my boat had recently moved to Thailand permanently on a “retirement visa”. His five-bedroom house in Phuket with ocean views cost him just $75,000. Factor in the strength of the dollar in Thailand for everyday items such as food, clothing, and entertainment, and you’ve got yourself an incredible value in paradise. Not to mention the friendliness of the people, incredible food, beautiful weather. Something to consider.
I won’t get a chance to do any more diving until I reach Egypt – about six months from now. Many people say the diving off the Sinai Peninsula is the best in the world. Of course, people say that about every location. Here’s what I say: Thailand has been the best so far.
By Mike – Oct, 2002
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