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staying in Cape Panwa - for diving

San Diego...
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staying in Cape Panwa - for diving

We are heading to Phuket in a couple weeks, and was wondering the best location to stay to dive. We don't want to travel longer by boat than necessary since we heard the water could be rough. We were thinking of staying in Cape Panwa, hoping dive boats leave from that area to the Phi Phi Islands. (looks closest to islands) and maybe be able to snorkel from the beach. Any suggestions is much appreciated. It's our first time to phuket and we are aware it is monsoon season. (trying to stay on the east side for calmer seas) Looking forward to the trip!!!!!!!

Phuket, Thailand
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1. Re: staying in Cape Panwa - for diving

The diveboats leave from Chalong Bay. In most areas (Kata, Karon, Patong, Rawai, Nai Harn, Chalong, transfers are included, but from Cape Panwa for most boats transfers will be extra (1 or 2 offer transfers included but are much dearer anyway).

So for diving I would recommend to stay elsewhere.

San Diego...
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2. Re: staying in Cape Panwa - for diving

Thanks for your reply. What about the west coast being rough and unable to go into the water. I heard the undertow has taken a few lives so that is the reason I was thinking of Cape Panwa. We are taking my kids who are 29 and 25, which the youngest is a Marine Biologist and all he wants to do is dive. The most convenient place would be a place we could also snorkel outside the hotel, kayak, sail,etc. and relax with restaurants around us. My husband and youngest are the avid divers, I am not a diver at all but I do like to snorkel and watch the little (and I mean little) fishies. I guess I am just trying to make everyone happy. Just afraid of the time we are going, (wet weather and rough waters) but it is the only time we all could get together. Getting worried of picking the wrong area. I guess I want it all.........thanks again for all your help. Any other suggestions are much appreciated. We will be there for almost 2 weeks.

Kuala Lumpur...
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3. Re: staying in Cape Panwa - for diving

The dive boats leave from chalong pier. The operators will send vehicles to pick up guests in various parts of the island, transport them to the pier, and board the boats. Its a busy and commercial pier with lots of boats.

You do not walk out to the beach and board a boat.

So to some extend, it does not matter where you stay as long as you are within the free pickup zones, mostly around patong, karon and kata beaches.

Phuket, Thailand
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for Phuket, Kata Beach
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4. Re: staying in Cape Panwa - for diving

"What about the west coast being rough and unable to go into the water. I heard the undertow has taken a few lives so that is the reason I was thinking of Cape Panwa. "

Yes, that can happen. The West Coast can be rough, can be calm and safe as well. And yes, Panwa is about the only place where you can walk into the water this time of year, but nothing to sea there and the sea is not very nice. Perfectly ok though for a relaxed swim.

Panwa could be ok for you, just take a surcharge of 800 Baht (return transfer) for the car into account. Charges may vary depending on operator though, but the mentioned 800 Baht which we would charge are a good indication.

Steven from phuket-scuba

Edited: 28 June 2013, 02:39
Kuala Lumpur...
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5. Re: staying in Cape Panwa - for diving

You could actually join them on a dive trip. Some dive boats cater to both snokellers and divers. The boat drops off the divers at deeper waters and then proceed to shallower waters for you to Snokell.

San Diego...
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6. Re: staying in Cape Panwa - for diving

Thanks you guys for your help. Since it doesn't really matter where we stay for diving, and snorkeling from the hotel is not going to be possible, what about the best for kayaking? Any one been to Coconut Island? We could book a timeshare there or where do you feel is a best place to stay, Kata, Karon, Rawaii, Cape Panwa?. Since this is our first time to Phuket, I just want to make sure we see it all. It looks sooooo beautiful!!!!!!!

Phuket, Thailand
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7. Re: staying in Cape Panwa - for diving

Kayaking is mostly done in Phang Nga Bay, off the Phuket Eastcoast. There is some kayaking on the west coast as well, but very limited.

From Coconut Island: no diving.

I would prefer Kata, but Panwa definately also has its charms and seems to fit your requirements (except for the diving).

San Diego...
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8. Re: staying in Cape Panwa - for diving

Thanks for your reply. I'll check out Kata and Cape panwa. How long does it take to get to good diving, like to Phi Phi Island? Hopefully it is less than 30 minute by boat. No matter where we stay, we are all looking forward to coming to paradise. Any other suggestions of must things to do is highly appreciated. Thanks again.

Chester, United...
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9. Re: staying in Cape Panwa - for diving

Phuket to Phi Phi island takes between 45 minutes to 1 hour by speed boat.

Kuala Lumpur...
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10. Re: staying in Cape Panwa - for diving

Dive boats take about 3 hours to reach Phi Phi.

They might do a dive on the way to Phi Phi at koh doc mai, or on the way back, or not do the mid way dive at all.