Koh Tao Diving - South West Pinnacle
South west of Koh Tao, this dive site is widely acclaimed and regarded as another of the Gulf’s premier diving destinations. With a maximum depth of around 30m this site consists of a series of seven pinnacles that form an underwater mountain range, with the largest peak rising to within 5m of the surface.
Southwest Pinnacles takes around 30-40 minutes to reach from Koh Tao. A depth of 26-28 meters is easily reachable as you swim slightly off the pinnacles making it perfect for those that are doing a first deep training dive.
You will see Cobias and Razorfish and there are several Giant grouper that hang out in the shadows at the deeper depths. If you spend some time looking carefully between the rocks and coral formations it is common to see Blue Spotted Ribbontail Rays and White Eyed Moray Eels. Look very closely and you will see amazing glass cleaner shrimps in the hundreds anemones or boxer shrimps in the cracks between the rock.
Ascend slightly shallower to around 16-18m where you are above the deeper laying rocks and look out into the blue – It is very common to spot schools of Chevron Barracuda or solitary Giant Barracudas that just hand, mid water surveying the site. King Mackerel, Tuna and Trevlley are also regular visitors.
For the more experienced (and more adventurous!), there is also secret pinnacle just a 5 minute swim off Southwest pinnacles. This shouldn’t be attempted unless the conditions are good and you have good air consumption. Diving on Enriched Air is also advisable. It’s smaller but has lots of stuff to see, including Titan triggerfish.
This dive site is also famous for spotting the dream of every diver – the mighty Whaleshark. As Southwest Pinnacle is far enough from Koh Tao, the chance of seeing big stuff here is greater.
Moving to the main pinnacle, which is completely covered with magnificent pink anemones, you can find bearded Scorpion Fish or Boxer and Dancing Shrimps. Smaller groupers and crabs are also very common on the main pinnacle. This dive site is perfect for divers who like underwater photography as you can shoot everything from macro to wide angle.
At the end of the dive your Safety Stop is not just a boring 3 minutes at South West Pinnacles and while hanging above the main pinnacle, you can see Batfish, Needlefish, and Squid along with a variety of different smaller fish close to the surface.
Environmental conditions such as currents and waves can make this site a little more challenging than the average Koh Tao dive site but overall its suitable for divers of Open Water level and upwards.