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“Would like to come again”
Review of Assava Dive Resort

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Assava Dive Resort
Ranked #25 of 153 Speciality Lodging in Koh Tao
Reviewed 10 September 2013

Great resort with a nice view and a really good ambiance. The rooms are clean and spacious.
We came for a OpenWater course. And we had the best time with our instructor Bnooz who is as professional as friendly. The rest of the staff was also helpful and kind.
Definitely a place to recommend to discover diving in Koh Tao!

Stayed: September 2013, travelled as a couple
Thank soolamas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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43 - 49 of 158 reviews

Reviewed 9 September 2013

Please note this review concerns the dive operation, not the hotel; they are separate entities.

I recently spent 5 months (Feb-Jun 2013) with Sunshine Divers obtaining my professional level ratings. The course director Natalia is an unstoppable bundle of positive energy. Her ability to always be there for everybody is astounding.

The DM program at Sunshine goes beyond just the minimum requirements. Each candidate gets experience assisting on multiple classes of different levels. Sunshine is a medium size, well respected, and fairly busy dive shop, so professional level students encounter the actual realities of life in the dive industry, working with real students, and working with fun divers.

Before choosing Sunshine, I researched several dive shops. Sunshine stood out among the crowd for both the responsiveness of Natalie to my many inquiries as well as the length of its IDC program, which includes 15 days of instructions with a couple of off/make-up days sprinkled in. The IDC program was intense, challenging, and thorough. If you put in the effort, you will be rewarded. I cannot imagine having been better prepared for the Instructor Exams. My IDC class totaled 2 students. We averaged 4.9 out of 5 on the various evaluated presentation during the IE. Who could ask for more? The written IE exams were also a breeze after Natalie's IDC.

After the IDC, I stayed an additional 2 months to complete the MSDT program. I was able to team teach along side several seasoned instructors and conducted some classes on my own. That type of experience is invaluable in truly learning what it means to be instructor.

I would certainly recommend Sunshine for any level of dive instruction. Life permitting, I am considering returning one day for Staff Instructor training.

Michael

Stayed: June 2013, travelled solo
Thank Michael F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 August 2013

This review is for Sunshine divers and not the accommodation.
Having walked along the beach dropping into different dive shops for information on the open water course for my 10 year old son, we decided on sunshine divers. From the word go everyone was very friendly and professional and I had every confidence that they would take good care of my son. Sunshine is one of the smaller dive shops on Chalok Bann Kao which equates to smaller groups and therefore a more tailored diving experience. I am a dive master and they managed to cater for me as well as my son. Would highly recommend sunshine as we had a great time! Thanks guys we will definitely be back at some point!!

  • Stayed: August 2013
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Thank Niclovestodive
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 August 2013

Very friendly people, excellent diving courses, nice rooms and everything right in the middle of paradise (also know as Ko Thao).
We started the course right away and had a hell of a lot of fun. The room was very nice and clean and the instructors real professionals. Thanks Natalie and co!

  • Stayed: August 2013
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Thank DavidBue
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 August 2013

Over the years I've returned to the Island that is Koh Tao, and always to the "use to be great" Sunshine Divers. This years return left me disappointed, Sunshine Divers is not what it use to be in my opinion. They use to leave to dive from their very own beach Chalok Ban Kao but dont seem to be offering this service any more even though it is still advertised, so its off to the main pier with every other dive school, after what seems to be slightly dangerous at times, obstacle course over many boats to get on to there's you finally get on your way for some diving. The diving is still good and they still go to many dive sites on the other side of the island which is nice for variation and quietness, on the other hand their small dive boat sometimes seemed to be "over filled" which was a little uncomfortable at times. I was lucky enough to not be in a huge dive group when Fun Diving but i did notice when i was there that they have started taking on big groups of 8 when teaching, which was disappointing to see considering they advertise no larger than 4 in a group.
The smallness of groups and leaving from their own beach was always a big attraction for me sending friends to Sunshine Divers, I wanted my friends to really enjoy the whole experience and not to be just another number amongst the many like so many of the other big dive schools, I do hope they return to their fantastic ways otherwise I shall have to look for another dive school that offer what they advertise

Room Tip: Try the bed and check the shower room
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  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled with friends
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2  Thank Dan B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Management-Team-2010, Manager at Assava Dive Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 29 August 2013

Thank you for personal experience at Sunshine Divers. Yes, the island Koh Tao has changed considerably, however, Chalok Baan Kao still remains a quiet and relaxed beach front resort option. Apologies for any inconvenience during July/August 2013, as it was the high season on Koh Tao.
We still hold the policy of maximum 4 students to instructor as advertised. However, we were also conducting Instructor Internship programs, so although there were 8 students in the group, there were two or more instructors in this ratio, to accommodate for the busy season.
The reason for leaving from the pier at that time, was also because it is low tide in Chalok Bay and most dive centres need to leave from the pier.
To avoid the crowds on the island in general, i would recommend coming at the end of August and early September where the weather and conditions for diving are still fantastic!

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 August 2013

We spent six fantastic days on Koh Tao with our three teenage/adult daughters, and it was the highlight of our Thailand trip thanks to the wonderful team at Sunshine Divers, who patiently coached us through our PADI Open Water Cert. Course Director Natalie is an inspiration; even when things were busy she always had a friendly smile and took time to chat to the guests and make sure they were happy, even going out of her way to organise activities in the evenings, despite being on duty from the crack of dawn every day. She heads up a team of great guys and girls; we had a really good time with the ever-effervescent Kim, and all of the instructors were similarly enthusistic, good-natured, and attentive to every learner in the group. They struck a perfect balance between taking things absolutely seriously — diving is after all an activity where things can go wrong in a heartbeat — and yet at the same time keeping it fun at all times. In fact, all the staff at Sunshine couldn't have been nicer or more helpful — a special shout out to "strong, silent" Joe, driver and all-round fixer, and thanks to everyone for an unforgettable experience. Hope to see you again next year! :D

Room Tip: The accommodation here is separate from the dive school, but if you do a course the prices are heavi...
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  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled with family
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Thank DJSan2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 August 2013

When I went to Koh Tao on the Ferry I had no idea where to take my diving course. Until I met a great dive instructor, Emma, she was very helpfull and told me about her divingschool and other among the island. I decided to give it a shot and go the "Sunshine", and boy I did not regret it a single moment! Located at the very beautiful southern bay of Chalok Baan Kao.

One of the things that make this school unique is the fact that it's very up close and personal. Big possibility that you can get the diving course in your own language and the groups are never bigger than 4 persons. Which means the instructors can give you all the attention you need. My instructor was Michael, a very skilled and professional instructor. Although I'm Dutch and English isn't my first language he made me understand everything perfectly.

I actually felt they really want us to understand the theory and make sure we, or I for that matter, was safe and well instructed in the water. I spoke to a fellow Dutchman in the resort next to Sunshine's and he told me he had a group of 20 people and when they took the exam people would say the answers out loud and nobody, even the instructors, took it seriously. Sunshine is totally the opposite!

At Sunshine's it's not about the money, but about the experience delivered and to arouse interest, hopefully to become a member a frequent diver and member of the PADI family!

  • Stayed: June 2013, travelled solo
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Thank Belthaus
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Assava Dive Resort

Address: Chalok Bann Kao, Koh Tao 84280, Thailand (Formerly Sunshine Divers Resort)
Region: Thailand > Surat Thani Province > Koh Tao
Amenities:
Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #25 of 153 Speciality Lodging in Koh Tao
Price Range: £14 - £48 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Assava Dive Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 40
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Also Known As:
Sunshine Divers Hotel Koh Tao

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