Big Blue Diving - Koh Tao - Thailand - News
Saturday, 08 December 2018 08:28

Happy 2019 Buddies!

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Happy New year to everyone.

Who wants a FREE T-shirt?
What better way to start the new year than with a present.

Send us a photo of you in your Big Blue T-shirt anywhere recognizable in the world & put it up as your Facebook profile for the whole month of January & we will send you a Big Blue T-shirt absolutely free.

We've stocked up on over 300 shirts to give away so we're super excited to see all your photos so get posting guys. The mailman is awaiting!

Saturday, 08 December 2018 08:00

Advanced Night Dive

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Start your SSI Advanced Diver Program the easy way. Have you ever been out on a boat dive with friends exploring a new dive site and upon surfacing discovered that the boat wasn’t quite where you thought it was? Perhaps you’ve been interacting with schools of fish but never really known what type of fish they were … or what they did at night? Maybe you’ve been to dive sites that go deeper than you’re allowed to go and wondered what it’d be like to dive a little deeper? If you’ve answered ‘yes’ to any of these questions then you’d definitely find our SSI Advanced Adventurer program an enjoyable and educational experience. SSI Advanced Adventurer program is designed to give you an insight into 5 areas of scuba diving and best of all there is no theory or exams to worry about – just a pre-dive safety brief by your SSI Instructor and then you’re off and diving! SSI Advanced Adventurer program will improve your skills and introduce you to Buoyancy control, Diving at night, Diving from a boat, Navigation, Diving in low visibility, Wreck Diving and deep diving. The program is divided up into 5 dives over 2 days & costs just 10000 Bt and for an additional 60 baht you can even buy your Instructor a beer afterwards for having had such an awesome time!

photo credit Huw Penson Photography

Monday, 17 December 2018 11:42

Meet our Head Divemaster

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Claire is our longest serving Divemaster at Big Blue so if it all goes wrong it’s completely her fault! Way too intelligent for this job, Claire from the West Country in England, trained hard all her life to be a Doctor, right up until that year she spent at Uni and discovered boys & Cider. It all went downhill from there as Claire missed the dizzying heights of Doctordom only to become a lowly drug runner dishing out Scrumpy, Viagra’s and Canestan cream at her high street Pharmacy! But gradually Claire worked herself out of the pit of despair and trained with us here on Koh Tao to become a diving professional when she signed up for her Divemaster course. Now a fully-fledged member of the SSI Divemaster team, Claire has put the distant memory of being a drug pushing, alcoholic country bumpkin Doctor behind her... until she reads this I guess.

Monday, 17 December 2018 11:23

Is Sail Rock Koh Tao's best Divesite?

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Sail Rock. The Gulf of Thailand’s best Divesite. Max depth: 40m- A real open water site, Sail Rock can be found equidistant between Koh Phangan and Koh Tao, or the equivalent of about 2 cans of beer on the return journey back. Not suitable for complete beginners or muppets, Sail Rock is considered to be one of the best sites in the Gulf of Thailand. Comprising one large granite rock pinnacle, which stands 15m above sea level and drops off to a max depth of 30m and outer lying smaller pinnacles, it thoroughly deserves the 2 dives we make at the site every Full Day trip we do. The famous feature of Sail Rock is ‘The Chimney’ - a large vertical swim through which can be accessed at 5m, 12m and 18m. Inside you will find wonderful clam and coral formations, dancing shrimp and much more. A full circuit of the whole rock takes approx. 35 - 40 minutes & enroute you will encounter mountain ranges, cascading coral gardens, vertical walls and delightful gullies. The marine life at Sail Rock abounds, with the smaller coral fish - Blue Ringed Angel Fish, Banner Fish and Butterfly Fish to name a few, found closer to the rock. The larger pelagics - Chevron Barracuda, Whale Shark and Sail Fish - can be found cruising the deep blue, just out from the rock. When conditions permit a whole dive can be made at The Secret Pinnacle which lies east of the main rock and delights with Giant Grouper, huge schools of Spanish mackerel and Big Eyed Trevally. The favorite site of all our dive team, Sail Rock deservedly maintains its position as the No 1 dive site from Koh Tao. A Full Day Trip to Sail Rock is a must so wear something sexy!

Saturday, 08 December 2018 13:19

Instructor iof the year 2018 is...

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Congratulations to Gus – who has had a tough year but has put it all aside so as to show how focused he is on his job which is teaching people to dive while having a good time. Congratulations mate.

Looks a little like wolverine, well his sideburns do at least, Gus left the thrilling life of being a Safety Officer on board an Oil rig to learn how to really enjoy life by becoming a Scuba Instructor with PADI, SSI & RAID, and has pretty much managed to keep the scuba retail industry on Koh Tao alive and kicking single handedly. Gus is a big character and a good time guy and he has a genuine passion for diving & people, so can make any course highly entertaining, as verified time and time again by the people reviewing Gus on Trip Advisor with the razor sharp adamantium retractable claws held to their necks!

Saturday, 08 December 2018 08:18

PADI or SSI? Hmmm...

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Question- What's the difference between PADI & SSI?

Answer : Very little! Each individual training agency is 100% recognised throughout the world.
The differences between these training organisations are quite small but at the end of the day,
The main differences are...
i) with PADI you have to buy the training manual whereas with SSI the online training manual is included with the course price.
ii) with PADI the skills on the Open Water Course are done in a certain order & if you have trouble with a skill you must persist with the skill untill you get it right before we can move on with other skills. With SSI we can leave the skill that is troubling you, move on with the other skills & then come back & do that skill again later on in the session.
iii) The PADI video is painful to sit through! The SSI video isn't quite as painful but it still smarts!

Friday, 07 December 2018 15:10

Twas the day before Christmas...

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Wishing everyone of you a very Merry Christmas & hope that you get lots of dive equipment & travel vouchers.

And thank you all for all your support, reviews, recommendations & for most importantly of all ... spreading the love.

Merry Christmas

Friday, 07 December 2018 15:24

Going from strength to strength

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So looking forward to what we have in store for 2019. Its been a brutal couple of years here in Koh Tao but we feel the bad times are over & 2019 is going to be all about making the good times roll again. We got an amazing set up, years of experience, 4 dedicated Dive boats, the best Tech Diving operation on Koh Tao, a very exciting new manager at Big Blue Freediving, an exciting new project for Billy & the boys at Big Blue Movies, Rachel at Big Blue Conservation is expecting a little boy shortly, and Simo & his team at Big Blue Pro are fast becoming the global leaders in Diver Pro training. Meanwhile Big Blue Diving have our eyes on expansion next year so keep your ears to the ground and you won't be disappointed. 

Big Blue Diving- breaking down barriers since 1991!

Friday, 07 December 2018 21:00

To our buddies around the globe...

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Just want to give a shout out to a whole load of our ex staff who are strewn across the world now, and wishing you all a very Merry Christmas. Big Ho ho hol's to all our guys & gals in Europe especially those of you in the UK. Hope you all have a wonderful Christmas. And to those of you still living the dream over in Australia, New Zealand, Indo, Japan, the boys in PNG with Matt at Nomadic Scuba and to so many of our old friends who are all now hanging out and enjoying the many splendours the Caribbean has to hold, poncing around in the Caymans there. Merry Christmas one & all with lots of love from Koh Tao.

Tuesday, 20 November 2018 14:46

Divemaster Training on Koh Tao

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Koh Tao is a very popular choice for those wishing to undertake their Divemaster training or ‘DMT’, and with over 90 dive centers to choose from finding the one most suitable for you has never been harder, and that's not even thinking about the dive centers on our neigboring islands of Koh Samui and Koh Phangan!
 
Here we will look at my Top 10 reasons why there’s no one better than Big Blue if you want to do your Divemaster training here in SE Asia:
 
1.    Take as long as you like – The DMT can be done in just 4 weeks if you’re in a hurry, but when time isn’t an issue then it’s no problem to spend as long as you like getting to know the dive sites before getting signed off as one of our new Divemasters – after all, with over 25 sites to learn why hurry when you can dive as much as you like during your training!
2.    Large, comfortable boats made for divers – With two large diving boats (rather than the usual small ex-fishing boats favoured by most of our rivals) you can really enjoy the travel time before and between dives with over 90% of the boat covered – essential in the heat (and rains) of Thailand. Also their size and weight makes them a lot more stable in rough seas – take note those of you who get seasick…
3.    More dive sites to learn – With no restrictions on where we can send our boats and regular trips to Sail Rock and Samran Pinnacle when conditions allow us, you’ll get more dive sites than those diving at the smaller dive centres – the bonus of diving at a well-established dive centre with 27 years of experience in these waters.
4.    Separate boats for the certified divers – In my opinion absolutely THE most important factor to consider when committing to at least a month of diving around Koh Tao is whether you’ll have to go to the same beginner dive sites every day, after all Koh Tao has a lot more first time divers than those already certified. If we had just one boat it would mean precisely that, and we do feel sorry for those out there missing out on so many excellent but challenging dive sites around the island. What’s that, Big Blue have three boats and can go wherever we want, regardless of how unsuitable it is for new divers? Where do I sign up!
5.    Make yourself very employable on Koh Tao – directly linked to the previous reason, if you’re planning to look for Divemaster work after your training has finished then do you want to know just a handful of dive sites, or do you want to know them all? Our fresh new DMs generally know more of underwater Koh Tao than 90% of the other DMs on the island that have trained elsewhere!
6.    Learn from the best – Divemasters don’t often stay in the job for too long, as the pull of earning lots as an instructor usually kicks in after a few months of long hours and little pay. At Big Blue however we have a team of DMs with thousands of Koh Tao dives between them (DM Steph alone has over 3000) so when you want to know what that obscure nudibranch is, what to expect when exploring off-site or just how to organize a boat as efficiently as possible then experience wins out every time.
7.    Beachfront location = great atmosphere – With limited space on the beaches, not all of the dive centres on Koh Tao are blessed with what we’re enjoying every single day – sunset facing beachfront classrooms, dorms, bar, restaurant, coffee shop and training pool. We defy anyone to not instantly relax when they see what we’re so lucky to have available to us, and of course the atmosphere around the resort reflects this. Come join us one evening for a sunset drink and see for yourself, you may never leave!
8.    Diving 365 – High season? Diving. Monsoon season? Diving. Christmas Day? Diving. Martin Luther King Day? You get the idea! As one of Koh Tao’s only dive centres that are diving every single day of the year, rain or shine, you can be sure that if you want to really get as many dives as possible during your DMT experience then Big Blue is the place for you.
9.    Fill the tanks on the boat – Now this is one that a lot of potential DMTs don’t think about when shopping around for the dive centre most suitable for them, but it’s something that can really suck when diving every day – moving full and empty tanks to and from the dive boats. Tanks are heavy, so inevitably who gets the job of moving all the cylinders needed for the dive trip: that’s right, it’s the lucky DMTs. At Big Blue however we have our compressors on the boats, so all the tanks we need are sitting there filled and waiting for us when we get there – no need to move them back and forward every day!
10.    Try something else too! –  Big Blue Diving is the only Dive center on Koh Tao offering Tech Diving, Freediving & Photography & VDOgraphy courses in addition to its recreational & professional diver training programme. With Big Blue Pro, Conservation, Tech & Freediving Big Blue Diving is the leader in Diver education and if you are interested in becomming a serious diving professional then why wouldn't you learn from the best!

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