So my friend Alex and I decided to get PADI certified during our trip to Thailand. The second cheapest place to get it done in the world is Koh Tao! Which works out great because Koh Tao is stunning. The waters are warm, clear and habits a ton of fish.
I did a ton of research beforehand to find the best place and I was really happy with our final choice: Simple Life Divers!
Here’s a quick recap:
- Great location
- Great instructors
- Good Price
- Good accommodations
I really enjoyed my time here. Our instructor was really nice and helpful and brought us to see the best dive sites in Koh Tao. I saw my first ship wreck!! It was incredible 🙂
It’s located on Sairee beach, which is where all of the “action” is. We would walk down the strip every night to check out some new stuff. There are tons of bars and restaurants. The resort also gives you a ride to and from the pier which is nice 🙂
There are two parts to this resort. I didn’t get to check out the other part (which is just a resort I believe), but I would recommend staying at the one directly on the beach because that’s where you are going to complete your training and classes.
As for accommodations, Make sure you book a villa. Pay a little more money and it’ll be worth it. Some of our friends had a typical fan room but they switched right away because it was small and very hot. After a long day of training and carrying a heavy oxygen tank you’re going to want a nice comfortable air conditioned room!
The Open Water course is 3 and a half days long, which flies by honestly! The first night is just a couple of training videos in class which lasts about 2 hours (starts around 5pm). The second day is the hardest day in my opinion. This is when you learn all of the techniques, the lingo, and the equipment. You do a couple of other online videos in class in the morning and the afternoon is all in pool training. I have to admit this is pretty scary but if I can do it, you can do it!! Day 2 you head out on the sea and complete your first 2 open water dives. You still do drills and tests under water but you’re in the ocean now! Day 3 are your last 2 dives where you go down to 18 meters but these are completed in the morning so you have the late afternoon off 🙂
I highly recommend getting PADI certified! Whether you do it at Simple Life or anywhere else, it’s an experience like no other. Being able to explore the underwater world is incredible and I am definitely going to dive many times again.