Top 8 Coolest Creatures To See Diving From Koh Lanta

Koh Lanta, on the west coast of Thailand, has perhaps the best land-based diving in all of Thailand. It boasts easy access to some great dive sites, including Hin Daeng, Hin Muang, Koh Ha, and the dive sites of Koh Phi Phi are also only a short trip away. During your dives on these great dive sites, you are sure to bump into some amazing creatures along the reef. Starting with the smallest, here are my favourite eight reef denizens to spot on your dives…

  1. Harlequin Shrimp

Koh Lanta, Thailand, Harlequin Shrimp, IDC, Divemaster

The colourful harlequin shrimp is perhaps the funkiest and coolest of all shrimp. They are commonly encountered hiding in the reefs around Koh Lanta, often munching on a sea star. Harlequin shrimp don’t stray too far once they have found a nice spot with plentiful supply of food, and when your dive guide knows where they are hiding out, they can be found quite easily…

2. Ornate Ghost Pipefish

Koh Lanta, Thailand, Ornate Ghost Pipefish, Divemaster, IDC

The ornate ghost pipefish is another cool visitor to the reefs surrounding Koh Lanta. They come in a variety of colours, and can be seen in pairs or as solitary individuals. Ornate ghost pipefish can change their colour to suit their chosen home among the branches of gorgonians, in floating weeds, or feather stars. They can be tricky to spot, but again, once found, they often stay in one location for a while…

3. Seahorse

Seahorse, Koh Lanta, Thailand, Divemaster, PADI IDC

Seahorses are another common spot amongst the reefs of Lanta. They can even be spotted very close to shore on Lanta’s beaches, but are also common on dive sites such as Koh Ha. the tiger tail seahorse is the most commonly encountered seahorse on Koh Lanta’s dive sites, and are spotted year round…

4. Frogfish

Frogfish, Koh Lanta, Thailand, Divemaster, PADI IDC

Perhaps a less frequently spotted critter in the area is the frogfish. These cryptic creatures are a master of disguise and can be difficult to spot. The are still seen quite often on the dive sites around Koh Ha and Hin Daeng, as well as on the wrecks around Koh Phi Phi…

5. Turtle

Turtle, Koh Lanta, Thailand, Divemaster, PADI IDC

Hawksbill turtles are a regular sight on all the dive sites around Koh Lanta. They are often encountered munching on bubble coral, or just cruising by in the blue close to the reefs. Green turtles are also occasionally spotted in the area…

6. Leopard Shark

Leopard Shark, Zebra Shark, Koh Lanta, Thailand, Divemaster, PADI IDC

The leopard shark, also known as the zebra shark, is a commonly encountered shark in the waters around Koh Lanta. They like to rest on the sand, and are often seen at dive sites like Hin Bida, Bida Nok, and Bida Nai. When they are resting on the bottom, you can get close enough for a good photograph if you approach them very slowly. They are also a great photo subject when they are swimming, with their distinctive long tails scything through the water…

7. Manta Ray

Manta Ray, Koh Lanta, Thailand, Divemaster, PADI IDC

If you want to dive with the majestic manta ray, then you need to book yourself on a trip to Hin Daeng & Hin Muang – two sea mounts in the open ocean. These two stunning dive sites are home to many cleaner fish, and the mantas come to get preened. You just hang back and watch the spectacular show as the mantas circle the cleaning stations. Mantas are my favourite animal to just hover and watch…

8. Whale Shark

Whale Shark, Koh Lanta, Thailand, Divemaster, PADI IDC

And last, but definitely not least, we have the giant whale shark – the biggest fish in the ocean. Whale sharks are very common, but you still need a little luck to be in the right place at the right time. They are commonly encountered at Hin Daeng, Hin Muang, and at Koh Ha. They are also sometimes seen at Bida Nok, close to Koh Phi Phi. Diving along and then seeing the unmistakable shape of a whale shark emerging from the blue is a truly unforgettable experience…

If you haven’t dived from Koh Lanta yet, maybe it’s time to add it to your bucket-list and come see the amazing creatures of the Andaman Sea. Lanta boasts a nice mixture of dive sites for both beginners and experienced divers alike. It is also a beautiful island to spend your non-diving days relaxing on the beach enjoying delicious Thai food or even a sunset cocktail…

If you would like to dive Koh Lanta, email Lanta Diver – a five-star PADI IDC centre offering day trips to all the sites mentioned above. Lanta Diver also run all recreational courses, as well as professional-level courses such as Divemaster & IDC programmes. And if you are looking for a great hotel on the island, look no further than Mook Lanta Eco Resort. What are you waiting for ?

Photos by Narcosis Nick and Richard Reardon

Advertisements

Teaching Tips: Hovering…

During PADI IDC training, it’s not uncommon for people to struggle with the hovering skill. This is a basic buoyancy skill, and should be mastered during the Open Water course, but all too often it is not – it is taught, but not to a mastery level. There is one simple trick I learned which made it much easier for me to get my Open Water students to mater this skill – and it comes down to understanding the situations in which we would hover whilst diving…

Another factor in helping your students master this skill is how you have taught the preceding skills up to this point in their training – they should already have a basic understanding and feeling of neutral buoyancy at this point.

In Confined Water Dive #1 we teach the ‘breathing underwater‘ skill. This should be the first skill to teach, and if you haven’t lazily over-weighted your students, they should already have a good understanding of how breathing effects buoyancy. When we reach Confined Water Dive #2, we have our students master the neutral buoyancy skill – usually by the ‘fin pivot’ method. Now the students really get to grips with how changing lung volume changes depth too as they ‘rise and fall in a controlled manner, during inhalation and exhalation’.

PADI IDC Thailand, Neutral Buoyancy, Platinum Course Director, Best CD

Making the transition to the hover in Confined Water Dive #3 should now be relatively easy, but you can make it even easier for them still. During the briefing for the ‘fin pivot’, I explain to students that this slow deep breathing is a good pattern for when they are swimming around a dive site – slow, relaxed, deep inhalations and exhalations. When it’s time to brief the hover, I remind them of this, but add that if you want to stop to look at something, it’s best to change that breathing pattern to slightly shorter breaths. If the lung volume is changing less, the change to the diver’s depth will be less, and they can have a good look at that nudibanch on the wall…

The next thing I do, to make it easier for them, is to give the student a visual reference. I stand next to them with my hand in front of them, and brief that the idea is to use their lungs to keep their eyes level with my hand. If their eyes go above my hand, they should exhale a little, and if their eyes go below my hand, they need to inhale a little. Once they have the level right, the shorter breaths will help them hold that position.

PADI IDC Phuket, Thailand, Platinum Course Director

This visual reference makes the skill much easier to master for the student. In Confined Water Dive #4, when hovering is repeated with oral inflation, I start the skill the same way, but then remove the visual reference once they have their level, and now they should be able to hover perfectly without a visual reference, as they may have to do during a safety stop on a real dive…

If you would like more tips on teaching PADI courses, come join us for your PADI IDC or PADI IDC Staff Instructor courses at Go Pro In Paradise

Email for further details – info@go-pro-in-paradise.com

PADI IDC Thailand, IDC Staff Instructor, CDTC Prep, Divemaster Internships

Platinum PADI Course Director and Elite 300 Award.

We had a visit during our current PADI IDC today from the PADI Regional Manager to present me with two awards.  Andy came by the dive centre to present me with the two highest awards in the PADI system – Elite 300 Instructor, and Platinum PADI Course Director !

PADI Platinum Course Director, Elite 300 Instructor, IDC Thailand, CD Richard Reardon

The Elite 300 Instructor award is the highest award in the Elite Instructor programme. This is awarded to PADI Instructors who certify three hundred or more students in a calendar year.  For 2016 there were seventy-five PADI Instructors worldwide who achieved this milestone.

PADI Elite 300 Instructor, Platinum Course Director, Richard Reardon, PADI Award, IDC Thailand, Phuket,

The Platinum PADI Course Director rating is the highest rating a PADI Course Director can earn – the highest level of PADI Instructor !  It is awarded to the top Course Directors around the world who issue a certain number of PADI Instructor-level certifications each year.  For 2017, there were less than one hundred Course Directors globally who reached this landmark.

Platinum PADI Course Director, Richard Reardon, IDC Thailand, Phuket, Elite Instructor, PADI Awards

Here’s to a busy 2017 and more PADI awards to come next year !

If you are interested in becoming a PADI Instructor in Thailand, with an award-winning PADI Course Director, please send us an email for further details on our PADI IDC programmes

Teaching Tips: The most important skill…

PADI IDC Thaialnd, Confined Water, Go Pro, Scuba Instructor

Mask clearing ? C.E.S.A. ? Neutral buoyancy ? No, for me it’s ‘breathing underwater’ from Confined Water Dive 1. Not only is it essential to stay alive, but it the basis of everything that happens underwater…

PADI IDC Bali, Indonesia, Confined Water, Teaching Diving, Scuba Instructor

Quite often on an Open Water course this skill gets brushed over and taught too quickly. But if you spend the time explaining the importance and the effect of breathing correctly underwater, you might find that your entire Open Water Course will flow more smoothly. As an instructor, do not be too quick to place extra weight on the student’s belt when they can’t descend at the start of Confined Water Dive 1. Instead, take the time to explain the correct breathing pattern, and the importance of emptying the lungs on exhalation. Once the student divers do this, they should descend more easily, and now right from the beginning, they have understood the correlation between breathing and buoyancy/depth control.  Their instinct now, should they start to rise in the water will be to exhale, rather than to reach for the deflate button.

PADI IDC Phuket, Thailand, Platinum Course Director, CDTC Prep

Sometimes at the beginning of an Open Water Course, the students are a little nervous, and this can affect their breathing pattern too. Once underwater, I then take the time to teach the correct breathing pattern before attempting mask clearing or regulator skills. I treat this skill underwater as an introduction to the fin pivot. I ask them to lie down from the first moment they go underwater – never on the knees –  practising equalising as they do so.  Then I ask them to watch my hand as I coax them into a relaxed, correct breathing pattern. As they do this, I add little amounts of air to their BCDs to get them neutrally buoyant, so they are essentially ‘fin pivoting‘, and I will let them continue with this for several minutes – just breathing. After they are relaxed with this, I can continue with the rest of the skills in this ‘diving’ position. If I find that I need to add a significant amount of air, then I will remove a weight from their belts, as they are over-weighted. Now the students will truly start to understand the importance of the correct breathing pattern underwater and the effect this has on buoyancy, depth, and position in the water, and your Open Water Course will be easier to teach, and more importantly, your students will be better divers…

To learn more tips about teaching PADI courses why not enrol in one of our PADI IDC or PADI IDC Staff Instructor courses – email for further details – rich@go-pro-in-paradise.com

www.go-pro-in-paradise.com

Go Pro In Paradise PADI IDC Courses You tube Channel
Subscribe to our YouTube channel too…

New 2014 PADI Instructor Manual

The New PADI Instructor Manual is available !

PADI IDC Thailand Koh Phi Phi Koh Lanta Phuket

The updated 2014 version of the PADI Instructor Manual is available for download from the PADI Pros website.  Log-n to the Pros site, and then hover the mouse over ‘Training essentials’, then click on ‘Digital Instructor Manual’.  Make sure you’re teaching the latest standards, so download the latest version today !  At present the new manual is available in the following languages – English, Dutch, Italian, Spanish, Japanese and French, with other languages to follow…

If you are not yet an instructor, but would like to be, visit our website to learn how you can make your dream a reality.  Or you can simply e-mail us for further information…

 

PADI IDC Thailand Koh Phi Phi Lanta Phuket

PADI IDC Thailand
Follow me on Facebook too…

 


Fancy a change of lifestyle…?

Live The Dream – Make The Ocean Your Office !!

How do you get to work ?

 

Imagine a job where you actually look forward to work. Lead a life others fantasise about. Sailing into incredible sunsets could be the rule not the exception. The commute to work could be as easy as a ten minute boat ride or a stroll down the beach. Work becomes an adventure in itself. While experiencing new cultures and lifestyles, you’ll be surrounded by people who are always happy. When you take people diving all day, everyone’s happy. It’s not all fun and games in paradise, but the rewards are well worth the effort.

It’s a hard life…

 

The first step is the PADI Open Water Diver course. This is the most widely recognized and respected rating in the world and on attaining it you have the freedom to dive with a buddy independent of a professional.

PADI Open Water Course: It all starts in a pool…

 

After completing five more adventure dives you achieve the PADI Advanced Open Water Diver rating which will give you more experience, make you feel mor comfortable in the water and let you enjoy your diving even more.

PADI Advanced Open Water Course: Learning to navigate…

 

The Emergency First Response Primary & Secondary Care courses are pre-requisites for the PADI Rescue Diver course but more importantly gives you basic life saving and first aid skills that could be beneficial in everyday life.

Emergency First Response: CPR & First Aid

 

The PADI Rescue Diver course is both rewarding and fun. Rescue Divers learn to look beyond themselves and consider the well-being and safety of others. Although serious, this course is an enjoyable way to build your confidence.

The PADI Rescue Diver Course: Serious fun

 

The PADI Divemaster course is your first step on the professional ladder. Working closely with instructors you will expand your dive knowledge and hone your skills as well as developing your leadership abilities by learning to supervise dive activities and to assist instructors with student divers.

PADI Divemaster Skill Circuit: Learning to demonstrate skills…

 

The first portion of the PADI Instructor Development Course (IDC) is the PADI Assistant Instructor course where you’ll gain additional experience as a PADI professional and start to learn the PADI system of diver education.

The PADI IDC: Learning how to teach…

 

Continuing with the IDC leads you into the PADI Open Water Scuba Instructor program which is your final step in the quest to become a PADI Instructor. The PADI Open Water Scuba Instructor rating earns respect from both students and peers and sets you apart from the crowd.

The PADI IDC: Learning how to correct problems…

 

PADI Instructors do things others can only dream about. If you want to live an extraordinary life e-mail me for further information…

Go Pro In Paradise !!

 

Follow me on Facebook too…

 

July’s PADI IDC & IE In Thailand…

Happy new PADI Open Water Scuba Instructors…

(Click on images to enlarge.)

Following July’s PADI IDC on Koh Phi Phi and the Instructor Examinations in Phuket, we now have three new PADI Open Water Scuba Instructors and a new PADI IDC Staff Instructor !!  Sarah and Andy from England, and Miki from China all did very well during their course and passed the examination process with ease.  Nick, also from China, completed his IDC Staff Instructor course during this IDC too…

Sarah teaching in the classroom…

 

Miki practising rescues, as Nick watches on…

 

Andy demonstrating in Confined Water…

 

After a fun-filled IDC on Koh Phi Phi and lots of hard work from the candidates, the Instructor Exams in Phuket went swimmingly well.  The IE started with everyone’s favourite section – the Written Exams !  All the candidates were very happy to see the end of these exams, and were all smiling after passing this section with no problems.  The following day we headed off to the swimming pool in the morning for the Confined Water section.  Again, there were no problems here, with all candidates recording very high scores.  Following the Knowledge Development presentations that afternoon, we were just left with the Open Water presentations for the final day, and then it was time to celebrate…

One happy instructor…

 

And another one…

 

And a third !!!

 

And let’s not forgot Nick who did an excellent job throughout his PADI IDC Staff Instructor course

Nick evaluating in Confined Water…

 

If you too would like to follow in the footsteps and Andy, Sarah and Miki and change your life, then e-mail me for further details.  Also if you’d like to become a PADI IDC Staff Instructor, feel free to ask for more details…

 

Follow me on Facebook too…