andaman scuba

Hin Muang - Koh Haa Overview

Hin Muang – Hin Daeng, Koh Haa and the Southern Islands: the hidden underwater garden!

Still a little known destination, the archipelago of the Southern Islands surprises more than one diver during each diving cruise.

Hin Daeng – aka the red rock – with its three rocks in a triangle emerging in the middle of the ocean from a few meters, hides an incredible pinnacle up to 50 meters.
The reefs around the rock, covered with hard and soft corals, offer an incredible variety of marine life, the quality and richness of which is on par with that of the Similan Archipelago.
Schools of fish, including barracudas, tunas, fusiliers… welcome the divers.

200 meters west are the 2 peaks of Hin Muang, a world class site and certainly one of the most incredible reefs of the Andaman Sea.
Its 2 peaks are 16 meters from the surface and drop down to about 60 meters, forming a reef covered with soft and hard corals in pinkish-purple tones.
At any moment, oceanic species can make its unexpected apparition in the magical blue of the Andaman Sea: grey reef shark, stingray, eagle ray, manta ray…

Hin Daeng and Hin Muang dive sites are comparable to Richelieu Rock, like a real magnet for manta rays but also whale sharks, offering the opportunity of a unique and magical encounter in the life of a diver.

Further north is the magnificent archipelago of Koh Haa, a group of 5 islets still little known by boats, with its caves and drop offs sheltering a varied and colorful fauna.
Night diving is also one of the highlights with rare endemic species: ghost pipefish, harlequin shrimp, seahorse, and even pegasus!

Closer to Phuket the sites around Phi Phi Islands including Koh Bida – Shark Point – Anemone Reef and the King Cruiser wreck offer a great variety both in the geology of the sites and their biodiversity as well as in the richness of the varieties and quantities encountered.

Our discovery dive cruises in the South Islands last from 2 to 3 days and can be coupled with a Similan Richelieu cruise.

Location

Most Famous Diving Sites in the Southern Archipelago

The amazing Hin Daeng referred to as the tropical iceberg! Three rocks break the surface and hide an incredible pinnacle down to a depth of 50 meters. Some reefs around the rocks provide an overwhelming variety of marine life with a quality and richness that is comparable to the Similan Archipelagos. Hard and soft, the corals along with the schools of fish, including giant barracudas, tunas and fusiliers are engaging divers while swimming along with the magnificent whale sharks and its fellow cobias. 100 meters from Hin Daeng, lies the world-class diving site of Hin Muang with one of the most amazing reefs in the Andaman Sea. Reaching the same depth as Hin Daeng, its reef is totally covered with hard and soft corals while a wide variety of oceanic species decides to appear: silvertip and whale shark, big stingrays…

The rock formation of Hin Daeng (Red Rock) breaks the surface and slopes gently down to a depth of around 70m. The walls and rocks are covered with red and purple soft corals and anemones. These corals are home to millions of small reef fish, boxer shrimps, octopus, and giant morays. Schools of jackfish, barracudas and rainbow runners circle around this reef to feed.
Between the months of November and May, Manta Rays are often found around here and you might even come eye-to-eye with the gentle giant, the Whale Shark, which is spotted several times a year at this site.

Part of the wonderful archipelago of Koh Haa – meaning the 5 islands in Thai – a group of sedimentary limestone islets, the Koh Haa Lagoon dive site is one of the most beautiful and easiest to discover.
Koh Haa Lagoon is located between 2 islets, where there is a wild creek with one of the smallest white sandy beaches in the world.

Diving at Koh Haa Lagoon is done around one or two of the islets between 5 and 18 meters deep.
It is home to many endemic species: ghost pipefish, sea horses, harlequin shrimps… but also pairs of pegasus which are usually not seen at this latitude. Although their color blends into the sand, their gender dimorphism makes them easy to recognize: the female, with a dark hooked nose resembling that of an eagle, and the male with a flattened and clear duck nose, follow each other.
The night dive at Koh Haa Lagoon, one of the most colorful, is a must on any cruise tour in the Southern Islands.

The Koh Haa Cathedral dive site is located on the southwest side of Koh Haa Yai Island.
It is the largest underwater cave in the archipelago made of sedimentary limestone and its erosion over time.
Unique in its brightness, its contrasts and its play of colors, it is a very special dive that should not be missed.

The Koh Haa Cathedral dive is located in a shallow, calm and clear area. Coral blocks form a garden around the main entrance of the cave at 14 meters. Two communicating chambers make up this cave, which remains connected to the surface at very low tide.
The interior volume and the presence of stalactites create the sensation of a magical place illuminated by a geometrical set and crossed bluish rays.
Inside, a school of batfish swirls permanently with the divers.
For image lovers, the wide shots in both photo and video are truly exceptional.

The Koh Haa Islands dive sites offer one of the highest concentrations of rare endemic fauna on the Thai west coast of the Andaman Sea.

This is also the case for the Koh Haa Chimney dive site – a large site southwest of Koh Haa Nua, the northernmost island of the group, where there is also a small network of connected caves created over thousands of years by the erosion of sedimentary rocks.

The site begins at a shallow depth with a cliff lined with corals, and small cracks in the rock that shelter a large and varied sedentary tropical fauna. The entrance of the cave is at 8 meters and it takes about 10 minutes to discover it.
Afterwards, the dive goes down to 28 meters, along the colored wall and the slope of white sand.
There is a magnificent giant forest of alcyonarias – octocorallia of white, pink and mauve color – spreading over hundreds of square meters.
It is said to be one of the largest, if not the largest, existing forest in the world. All the divers who have discovered it so far, some of them having explored the five continents, are convinced that it is the biggest they have seen!

Located in the north of the South Islands archipelago, these dive sites are essential. Leopard sharks and black reef sharks are often seen there. The wreck of the King Cruiser, a ferry that sank in 1997, is now covered with colorful soft corals and has become, over the last decades, the habitat of thousands of fish.

The main attraction here, in addition to the sharks and the vast schools of tropical fish, is the density of colorful soft corals that decorate this huge limestone pinnacle. The reef can be divided into three main sections, and most divers could spend several days exploring the many interesting facets of the site, which is probably the most popular of all day diving trips.

Anemone Reef and Shark Point look like a small Richelieu Rock, covered with pink, blue and purple alcyonarians. Just underneath, life is abundant: sea anemones, clown fish, angel fish, fusiliers, triggerfish, rays…
Knowing that the Hin Daeng – Hin Muang experience is a favorite for divers, Andaman Scuba specifically organizes 3 night / 3 day cruises to these sites as often as possible.

King Cruiser Wreck, an 87-meter ferry operating on the Phuket Phi Phi route that sank in 1997 after hitting Anemone Reef, is the largest artificial reef in the area. It lies on its right side in 32 meters of water, and the top is 16 meters.
Over the last two decades coral life has developed abundantly and the wreck is covered with colorful hard and soft corals supporting many common reef species.

The King Cruiser dive is a great exploration for wreck lovers with easy and safe penetration through large openings where surprises are hidden inside…
Very amazing dive, the incredible density of the schools of fish constantly circling around the wreck sometimes even darkens its brightness.

Shark Point is one of the main reefs between Phuket and Koh Phi Phi, along with Anemone Reef and King Cruiser.
A true marine sanctuary, the site was named after the presence of leopard sharks resting on the sandy bottom surrounding the reef.
Today, this place is rightly one of the most famous local dive sites.
Shark Point appears as a tiny rock in the middle of the sea, with a small lighthouse on top for safe navigation between the islands.

Under the surface, the rock formation is covered with pink, blue and purple alcyonarias, but also with giant orange gorgonians where underwater life is omnipresent: clown fish, groupers, lutjans, angel fish, fusiliers, surgeons, parrots, butterfly…
The Shark Point dive takes place around the reef in its south/southeast axis, and ends by going around the reef at shallow depth. There is an alignment of coral blocks going down to 26 meters, where it is common to observe blue spotted rays.

Anemone Reef is one of the best dive sites between Phuket and Phi Phi islands.
Underwater pinnacle located up to 3 meters below the surface, its shape reminds us of a small Richelieu Rock. In the first few meters, we find ourselves in front of a huge field of anemones, like a thick carpet, where whole colonies of clown fish have taken up residence.
Just underneath, marine life abounds: turtles, cuttlefish, pharaoh squid, seahorses, zebra morays, pteris, nudibranchs, crustaceans.

The Anemone Reef dive takes place between 5 and 24 meters. Around the rocky formation with pink and purple colors, there is a large area of light sand where blue spotted rays and sometimes leopard sharks are often seen.
The most interesting area is the 15 meters, because of its density and variety of tropical marine life: orange gorgonians, alcyonarias, glass fish, celestial groupers, schools of small snappers, barracudas, and sometimes, during the migration season, whale sharks stop there.

andaman scuba

Hin Muang - Koa Haa Itinerary

2 Days / 2 Nights / 7 Dives

  • 20h30 – Boarding and navigation
  • 08:00 – 1st Dive Hin Muang
  • 09:00 – Breakfast
  • 11:00 – 2nd Dive Hin Daeng
  • 12:30 – Lunch
  • 14:00 – 3rd Dive Hin Muang
  • 17:30 – Koh Haa Beach
  • 19:00 – Night Dive
  • 20:30 – Dinner
  • 07:30 – 1st Dive Koh Haa Nua
  • 09:00 – Breakfast
  • 10:30 – 2nd Dive Koh Haa Yai
  • 12:30 – Lunch
  • 13:30 – 3rd Dive Koh Haa Lagoon
  • 15:00 – Navigation back
  • 18:30 – Disembarkation in Phuket

3 Days / 3 Nights / 11 Dives

  • 20h30 – Boarding and navigation
  • 08:00 – 1st Dive Koh Haa
  • 09.30 – Breakfast
  • 11:00 – 2st Dive Hin Muang
  • 12:30 – Lunch
  • 14:00 – 3rd Dive Hin Daeng
  • 17:00 – Koh Rok Beach
  • 19:00 – Night Dive
  • 20:30 – Dinner
  • 07:30 – 1st Dive Hin Muang
  • 09:00 – Breakfast
  • 10:30 – 2nd Dive Hin Daeng
  • 12:30 – Lunch
  • 14:00 – 3rd Dive Koh Haa Yai
  • 16:00 – Koh Haa Beach
  • 19:00 – 4th Dive Koh Haa Lagoon
  • 20:30 – Dinner
  • 07:30 – 1st Dive Koh Haa Nua
  • 09:00 – Breakfast
  • 10:30 – 2nd Dive Koh Bida Phi Phi
  • 12:30 – Lunch
  • 14:00 – 3rd Dive Shark Point
  • 18:00 – Disembarkation in Phuket