Dive Similan Islands
On the east coast of Similan Island No.5 you can find Anita's reef. This is a gentle sandy slope boasting some stunning coral bommies and areas of both table corals and staghorn corals. Some of the fish life you can expect to see here are lionfish, the colourful Oriental sweetlips and the gorgeous but less commonly seen clown triggerfish.
The coral bommies are covered in soft tree corals and sea fans that hide longnose hawkfish. The dendronephthya coral, in shades of golden brown and purple are the ideal hideouts of glassfish and juvenile fish. If you keep watching you'll see bluefin trevally darting in and out swiftly as they hunt the smaller fish.
Moving southwards there are often groups of spotted garden eels on the sandy bottom and blue-spotted Kuhl's stingrays buried in the sand. Here you can also see a type of filefish called a blue blanquillo as well as plenty of sea cucumbers. Look closely and you may be lucky enough to spot a whitepatch razorfish.
The Similan Islands are well known for their shrimp-goby symbiotic partnerships; the goby fish sharing its underground home with a snapping shrimp. The shrimp having poor eyesight relies on the goby to look out for danger, and the goby makes the most of having its very own cleaner! Speaking of cleaners, don't miss the sight of the common cleaner wrasses, among the coral bommies, cleaning the ears of divers!
The different coral areas are formed from staghorn and bottlebrush corals, sheet corals, knobbly finger corals, and the bigger species of lobed and star coral. Hiding in the nooks and crevices are Diana's hogfish and slender grouper.
Schools of blue damsels and jewel fairy basslets surround you, along with an amazing number of slender fusiliers. Larger fish here are the roundhead parrotfish and titan triggerfish feeding on the hard coral which are closely followed by yellowfin goatfish scrabbling for the scraps. Out in the blue you may see a majestic fantail stingray cruising past, looking very impressive at a full 2 metres long.
Watch out for the giant trevally as they hunt around the boulders and large table corals that are typical of the underwater landscape when you dive the Similan Islands.
Anita's Reef is an easy dive site with gentle currents, making it an ideal check-out dive on a Similan liveaboard dive cruise.
Anita's Reef Reef Basics: Fringing reef with sand patches
Depth: 5 - 26m
Visibility: 20 - 40m
Surface conditions: Can be rough
Water temperature: 27 - 29°C
Experience level: Beginner - intermediate
Number of dive sites: 1
Diving season: October to May
Distance: ~90 km northwest of Phuket, 65 km west of Khao Lak
Access: Liveaboards and daytrips
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• Similan and Surin Islands - Thailand
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