SCUBA diving Phi Phi Island

SCUBA diving.

My dive guide this weekend put it appropriately when he asked, with a knowing grin, “So, you’ve found yourself an expensive new hobby, ay?”

I can’t stay away from it.  And I’m realizing, more and more, that a large part of that is my/Indonesia’s fault.

I have been incredibly spoiled by starting with some of the best diving in the world. In the world. Literally.  And seeing as the world is the only place that we know of to dive, this leaves me with few better options and very high expectations.

Thankfully, some of the other great diving that this beautiful earth has to offer is also in my backyard.

While I can’t say that Phi Phi had diving that compared to Bunaken (photos here) or the Gili Islands, it was absolutely breath-taking.

It was especially fun to dive with Hannah, a friend from home, as it was her first time!

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We saw the most endless school of fish that I have ever encountered, an octopus (!), lion fish, and countless pufferfish and moray eels amongst many other fish.  It was rumored that there was a leopard shark in the vicinity, which I would’ve loved to see, but the low visibility due to a heavy rain the day before and a choppy ocean made it impossible to find him.

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We dove with Hippo Divers, and absolutely loved them.  You should ask for Andy or Jamie.

We went first to Bida Nok, where the visibility was a bit better.  One thing of the many things that I love about this part of Thailand is the beautiful cliffs jutting out of the water.  Even the boat ride to the site was enjoyable.

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After a Thai lunch on the boat, we headed to Malong.  The visibility was only 5-10 meters here, but it is a popular place to see octopi and leopard shark.

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Another thing that made me realize how ridiculously spoiled I have become is the fact that I was FREEZING the whole trip.  In a wet suit.  In 84 degree water.  I had goosebumps the entire dive.

My blood has officially thinned, and I will probably die (or refuse to ever emerge from my heavily blanketed bed) upon my return back to Cleveland/Chicago/anywhere more than 10 degrees from the equator.

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