The Andaman coast is a different world compared to the rest of Thailand. Steady rainfall nourishes a huge variety of tropical fauna, with the lush canopy in some areas reaching as high as 80m. In many places, scenic rubber and coconut plantations have been carved out of the jungle by the locals.The Andaman coast is also adorned with awe-inspiring limestone cliffs. These sheer, multi-coloured monoliths, scarred with caves and crags, are also capped with thick vegetation.
Phuket is the main starting point for most visitors to Andaman Sea destinations. The popular trips to islands lying to the south and east of Phuket about 30 minutes to 2 hours away by motor boat, including
Ko Phi Phi’s ancient cave drawings, Phangnga’s exotic backdrop, which appeared in a James Bond film.
Krabi Province’s Phra Nang, often called the most beautiful beach in the Andaman.
Coral Island (Ko He) which offers a dive all year round and has very beautiful natural scenery;
Ko Racha, which have dives of up to 30 meters; Shark Point, a favorite sleeping spot of leopard sharks and stingrays;
Ko Dok Mai which offers an impressive wall dive and a series of cave dives; and Ko Phi Phi where you can see white tip sharks, stingrays and moray eels besides colorful reef fishes.
Khao Lak offers a coral reef a few hundred meters off the beach and a spectacular wreck of a sunken tin miner.
Further south, the remote, rarely traveled beaches of Lanta and the islands of Ko Tartutao National Park offer more amazing natural beauty.
Truly world class diving sites are located farther away including Ko Similan, Ko Surin, Ko Tarutao and Burma Banks. Despite their long distances, tours are organized by some agencies in Phuket regularly during the dry season. All the first three island groups are marine national parks which offer magnificent coral gardens. Burma Banks being the farthest and newest, is in the best condition as a diving site.