What ‘Diving Lifestyle’ Internship program did you complete?
What where you doing before you joined Crystal Dive’s team to complete your scuba diving internship (Diving Lifestyle Program) on Koh Tao?
For the past 4 years I’ve been travelling on and off around Asia and Australia, with a year back in the UK. Mainly working as a Marine Engineer or Welder. I visited Crystal Dive 3 years before my Divemaster course, and that is when I completed my Open Water and Advanced Open Water having never dived before.
I instantly got hooked into the sport, I was lucky enough to have a 6 metre Whale Shark swim over my shoulder at Chumphon Pinnacle, on my 8th ever dive! From there I went on to dive in Australia and England where I completed my Rescue Diver Course.
For the past 7 months I have been living in china teaching English, when I heard I was getting 5 weeks off for Chinese New Year there was only one place I was heading to do do my Divemaster course!
How long have you spent completing your scuba diving internship?
I was on the Island just short of 5 weeks. For the first few days I spent my time fun diving and getting to know everyone at Crystal. Once I had my orientation I began to get through and meet the requirements of Crystal’s Divemaster course.
I did have a few days off to spend time with my sister and friend who had travelled from England to visit me, and also to go to Koh Samui for my visa extension. The guys at Crystal helped make sure I would complete the course in my time frame though so it was great.
What was your favourite part of the scuba diving Internship and why?
My favourite part was probably just getting to know everyone at crystal! The diving and course itself is awesome but the people at Crystal really made it an experience of a lifetime. The DM team were brilliant and helped wherever they could, as did the instructors, the staff and customers that have come back to Crystal to dive.
You hear it a lot that ‘Crystal is like a family’ and I felt that it is definitely true, everyone is friendly and helpful and you soon become part of it all. I was also very lucky to be amongst a great bunch of Divemaster Trainees, they made it even better!
On top of that the Snorkel Test for me was an amazing experience! Everyone from Crystal come to cheer and support and celebrate the Divemasters last test. It was a great night and perfect way to end an incredible experience.
What was your least favourite part and why?
I would probably say Knowledge reviews and exams only because they stopped me from diving more. But that wasn’t a great deal of time as you can do most of this in the evenings.
Who was your favourite Instructor and why?
Ha, ha! If I choose one I’m going to upset a few people as a lot of instructors were fantastic and really went out of their way to help me complete various tasks in the Course. To name a few I’d say Matt, Keri, Tina, Manu, Niek, and Carsten really went out of their way to help me, even if it wasn’t required of them. Some giving me pointers on assisting courses or good dive practices or some meeting me in their own time to assess me on tests.
I have to say a big thank you to my mentor Macca as well! He was awesome throughout, guiding me and ensuring I was getting through the course in the time frame I had, and he looked after me on my snorkel test and made sure I had a good send off! Top bloke!
As a qualified PADI Divemaster what are you future plans with regards to scuba?
After my current contract expires I hope to return to Koh Tao. Before that I intend to dive in Hong Kong (new experience) on weekends. When I return to Koh Tao I hope to find work as a Divemaster and at some point do my Instructor course with Crystal. The more I dive the more I want to travel and dive around the world so its a hobby I will never stop doing. If I can work as an Instructor as well then I would be living dreams.
And what about Koh Tao?
Koh Tao has always been a favourite place of mine since the first time I visited. I love the relaxed vibe and atmosphere the island has, the Dive community brings like minded people to the island who enjoy the nature of Koh Tao and so respect its beauty.
There’s also plenty of places to enjoy a beer or night out after a good day diving.
And your favourite restaurant on Koh Tao?
A favourite is hard to say because I tried so many, and some of them I simply just walked into without acknowledging the name. However Cafe del Sol is a good one and Yangs is a popular one amongst the guys at crystal. If your eating breakfast I would definitely recommend Zest!
How did you spend your non diving days on Koh Tao?
Most my days off, consisted of fun diving however on the couple of days I didn’t I hired a bike out and went exploring round the island and snorkelling in different bays with the other DMTs. There are many beaches or viewpoints or bars and restaurants round the island that are worth looking at.
Where are you heading next?
I have come back to China to finish the next teaching semester, after that I’m going to return to Koh Tao, get more Diving experience and courses done and see where that takes me!