We had done some homework before the start of our holidays about diving in Koh Lanta and around Kantiang Bay. ‘Scuba Fish’ a UK owned dive centre, came out as our first choice. A 5 Star PADI dive centre, good reviews, small groups, max 4 divers per dive guide, two reasonably big boats and maybe most important, in walking distance from our hotel, which is nice so we could pop in and have a look whenever we felt like it. We didn’t pre-book any dives so went down there on the 30th of December had a talk to Paul, the guy in the shop and apparently it was pretty busy, pretty busy meaning fully booked for the next couple of days. BIG BUMMER! F@ck, SH#T. We were not expecting that! We agreed to be put on the waiting list hoping some people still would still cancel their trips. Ready to look for an alternative, we received an e-mail couple of hours later telling us there were free spaces because some guests had cancelled their trip. Thank god for Internet and free WIFI :-). First day of diving next day Sunday 31st, finally we ended up doing four diving days with two days in between.
As promised, the groups were small and that was a real luxury, Leen being a new and inexperienced diver and I still wanting to make some pictures and movies.
We had four different diveguides througout our four days of diving, which was not a problem at all. Mel, Saney, Dan and Mats they were all nice and decent diveguides. Due to some small equipement malfunctions, a selfinflating BCD, the first day was not a big success for Leen, but after fixing that, diving went better and better everyday. There are plenty of very nice dive sites around Koh Lanta, but the closest, Ko Haa, is about an hour away. We’ve been to Koh Haa twice, been in the ‘Cathedral’: a very big cave with an air bubble inside. Been there & done that. After some very nice diving days at Koh Rok and Koh Phi Phi, where we found lots of Nemo’s, anemone fish and skunk anemone fish we went back to Koh Haa to round up our diving on Koh Lanta with two spectacular dives with lot’s of batfish and a nice octopus!
Time to pack all of our clothes and diving gear and head for Koh Lipe by Tigerline ferry, a trip that took half a day and was quite an adventure on it’s one. Tigerline sent us a transfer from the hotel, a pick-up truck with wooden benches that took us and eight other travelers with our entire luggage to the pier in Koh Lanta, the place were all ferries depart. The ferry appeared to be kind of a yellow submarine, which luckily didn’t really submerge during our trip. Around 15u30 we arived in front of Koh Lipe on a floating ponton in front of Pattaya beach where we were transfered to much smaller long tail boats, wich took us to a floating pier on the beach. Sure a floating pier, three pieces of luggage each weighing twenty kilos, two handlugages, and our wobly selves, adventure LOL
Once Leen had found a bellboy in our hotel Bella Vista, who took our luggage in a trolley over the beach, we settled in and by that time it was time for food and a nap :-). Hey we were on holidays after all.