The Island | Koh Tao

Situated 70km off the mainland in the Gulf of Thailand, Koh Tao is an idyllic small tropical island. Translating from Thai, the name means ‘Turtle Island’, due to the many hawksbill and green turtles that the early visitors discovered.

Only 21 square kilometers, Koh Tao was previously used a prison then colonized by coconut farmers from nearby Koh Phangan, Samui and the mainland, cultivating plantations and settling on the island.

During the 1980’s that the first travelers made their way to Koh Tao, discovering an island paradise. Since that time Koh Tao has grown in reputation and popularity. In fact, Koh Tao was recently featured in the UK Times Newspaper, as no.4 of Lonely Planet’s top ten must see destinations worldwide.

Koh Tao’s small size, steep terrain and location mean it has remained much less developed than other tourist destinations in the region. White sand beaches, coconut tree groves, and jungle covered slopes, the scenery is amazing.

But the main attraction lies below the water. The island is surrounded by coral reefs, which are home to an huge range of marine life. Scuba diving from Koh Tao you can see countless species of aquatic life, including turtles, stingrays, reef fish, moral eels, sea snakes, squid and much more.

Further off shore, there’s a scattering of deep, submerged pinnacles which make truly world class dive sites. These are home to larger marine species including giant grouper and bat fish. Pelagic species such as great and chevron barracuda swarm around the pinnacles, and we even get the biggest fish in the sea – whale sharks, migrating through the area.

Nowadays Koh Tao is especially popular with young travelers in the 18 – 35 age range. Alongside the amazing diving and scenery, Koh Tao has a laid back, island-style ambience, great nightlife and restaurants, and the level of development is just about right.

Koh Tao Today

By now, everything you need is available on Koh Tao; Mostly reliable electricity, decent internet, comfortable accommodation, beach bars and restaurants, shops and ATMs and small post office. Yet development has been restricted so there are no high rise hotels, and Koh Tao retains a small island charm.

Most development has taken place on the western side of the island, especially around the pier area and popular Sairee Beach. The eastern coast of Koh Tao is much less developed, with steeper terrain and rough roads over the mountain.

Located within the Gulf of Thailand, Koh Tao is sheltered and so experiences low wave heights and little wind. The climate is ideal; we have all-year round scuba diving and tourism, only receiving a brief monsoon each November. Koh Tao is busiest between late December and April, then again during July through till late September.

Why Koh Tao for a Dive Internship / Gap Year?

Koh Tao is the ideal choice for Divemaster or Instructor training for many reasons.

Firstly it’s an incredible place to spend a few months; Exciting atmosphere, stunning scenery and fantastic scuba diving.

From a training and working perspective, Koh Tao is a popular dive destination with a steady stream of divers and students. That means lots of real hands on experience whilst training and plenty of opportunities for paid gap year work once you qualify.

Plus it’s the perfect setup for diving. All our dive sites are only a short boat ride from the island. Coral reefs, pinnacles, even ship wrecks on our door step. Which means less time sat on a boat travelling back and forth and more time diving. (This also means fuel costs are lower, so ultimately the cost of diving here is a lot more affordable than elsewhere).

Plus there are plenty top-side attractions when you’re not diving, lots of exploring to do and lively nightlife if you want to let your hair down!

Money goes a long way in Thailand. And each day you can enjoy delicious spicy Thai cuisine, cold sunset beers on the beach in the evenings, experiencing an amazing time in a beautiful part of the world.

Scuba Diving Internships

Past Crew

Astrid

Astrid, Denmark

‘Kind teachers, we highly recommend everybody who wants to explore underwater wonders, go with simple life’

Jim

Jim, UK

‘3 week stay at Simple Life Divers, can truthfully say we had an amazing time! A big shout for all the Pinacoladas’

Jacelyn

Jacelyn, Singapore

‘We definitely have no regret choosing simple life as the starting point of our dive journey. Kudos to all the simple life crew’

Sarena

Sarena, Ontario, CA

‘My husband and I did our PADI open water dive course and was absolutely fantastic! ’

Thailand Dive Internship News

Koh Tao Divemaster internship snorkel test

Divemaster Internships: End of Course Party!

Posted in Diving Internships

Pictured: The gang get dressed up to celebrate completing their Divemaster training. A good crowd assembled at Simple Life bar […]

Beach clean-up by dive internship gang for father's day

Beach Clean Up for Father’s Day

Posted in Diving Internships

December 5th, the birthday of King Bhumibol (Rama IX) is fathers day here in Thailand. Marking the occasion a number […]

Koh Tao Thailand PADI Divemaster skills circuit

Internships Update: Divemaster Skills Circuit

Posted in Diving Internships

Image: Instructor Steve briefs Arnaud, Sarah, Coral and Theresa ahead of their Divemaster skills circuit. PADI Divemasters are role models […]

Dive internships in Thailand

Dive Internships: Rescue Training Session

Posted in Diving Internships

Pictured: Chris from Koh Tao Rescue debriefs the team @ Simple Life Talay Bar Wonderful afternoon out on the Simple […]

Simple Life Divers on Whatsapp