Whale Sharks in the Similan Islands

By Leticia Sanchis

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The National park of the Similan Islands is open again to the public, much to the delight of divers and snorkelers! Considered the jewel in the crown of Thailand diving, the Similan and Surin Islands won’t disappoint you! Thriving reefs with over 200 species of soft and hard corals and impressive sea fans abound, as well as an incredible variety of marine life including ghost pipefish, color-changing cephalopods, schools of barracuda, nudibranchs and even beautiful seahorses. There is also plenty of larger life to see with sea turtles, Napoleon wrasse, bumphead parrot fish, leopard sharks, manta rays and of course the majestic whale shark!

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Whale sharks wander the warmer seas of the world, either alone or in large numbers, in areas with abundant plankton, their main source of food. One of the main dive sites for seeing whale sharks is Richelieu Rock, some 50 miles or so north of the Similans and a mainstay on every Similan itinerary. This limestone pinnacle covered with soft corals slopes steeply to a sandy bottom at 35 meters (120ft). The surrounding deep waters of this pinnacle bring up nutrient-rich currents providing the whale sharks with a steady supply of plankton. The presence of plankton indicates healthy seas. Known to be seen regularly from January to March, The Junk liveaboard has already seen whale sharks from her first trip in November, so expect a bumper season ahead!

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The Junk is a 33m restored teak wood Chinese merchant sailing vessel that can take up to 18 divers in 6 air conditioned cabins, with a choice of double cabins, triple cabins and quads. Each cabin has its own private bathroom with hot water. There is a choice of 4 and 6 night cruises departing from Taplamu Pier, near Khao Lak, or Patong, Phuket. If you want to live this unforgettable experience, bear in mind that if your gear is serviced and ready to go then you can dive the Similan Island right now!

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Photo by Mark Strickland

Contact The Junk today to book your next diving vacation in Thailand! 

Limited spaces are available so don’t wait too long!! 

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Website: www.thejunk.com

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Ocean Geographic Explorer (OGX) is a diving adventure resource with a special focus on marine photography and ocean conservation. Our content is divided up into six primary categories: Travel, Sea Science,  Equipment, Photography &Video, Conservation, and Lifestyle. We endeavor be a portal for people with all levels of interest in the marine environment  to learn about and become part of a community of like-minded ocean lovers who enjoy sharing their knowledge of and experiences in our fascinating ocean world.

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