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Koh Lanta Budget April 2019

Discussion in 'Thailand' started by divinh, May 31, 2019.

  1. divinh

    divinh Photographer

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: San Francisco
    769
    313
    63
    I did 46 dives over 20 days from Koh Lanta, from mid-April to beginning of May 2019. I thought I'd share a bit of the cost...

    San Francisco->Tokyo->Bangkok->Tokyo->San Francisco via ANA $710.25 USD
    Bangkok->Krabi via NokAir $44.77 USD
    Krabi->Bangkok via Thai Airways $56.39

    Krabi Airport to Koh Lanta via shared minivan 3.5 hrs 500 THB
    Koh Lanta to Krabi Airport via shared minivan 1.5 hrs(!) 300 THB

    Hostel in Bangkok ~$10/night, including toast/fruit breakfast
    Hostel in Koh Lanta ~$6.25-8/night, including a descent breakfast (soup, eggs, pancakes, French and plain toast, etc.)

    46 boat dives ~$1937 USD or about $42.11 USD/dive, which includes full breakfast and lunch, marine park fees and discount for having my own gear
     
    Bubble Junky and Tippytoes12 like this.
  2. outofofficebrb

    outofofficebrb HARRO HUNNAYYY

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: San Francisco, California
    2,883
    2,186
    113
    This is a perfect example of what I mean by it being so affordable to dive in SE Asia. Many people don’t realize this. For the same cost or less than going to the Caribbean, too, and in general better diving. I hope you had fun. I wish I had known you would be there. My buddy went to Koh Lanta after we parted ways and our guide went down there after our liveaboard. How was the diving?

    Thanks for sharing!
     
    Buadhai and Lorenzoid like this.
  3. Tippytoes12

    Tippytoes12 Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: UK
    1,031
    451
    83
    Wow , well done on doing this trip on a tiny budget..... 5 British Pounds a night for bed and breakfast....did you enjoy the diving ?
     
  4. chillyinCanada

    chillyinCanada Solo Diver Staff Member

    15,668
    9,947
    113
    Questions: did you have 2 breakfasts every dive day in Koh Lanta?

    Did you have to share room in the hostel? If not did you have to share toilet/shower?

    Did you have aircon?

    How was the diving and what/where would you compare it to, please?
     
  5. divinh

    divinh Photographer

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: San Francisco
    769
    313
    63
    Hahah... I mostly had breakfast on the boat and planned to only indulge the hostel breakfast when diving was canceled due to high waves, which happened once. I also indulged on the last two days, "drying gear day" and the day I left. I was surprised how nice the breakfast was and it was a nice change of pace from the boat breakfasts, which didn't have pancakes or French toast.

    It's a hostel, so yes, I had to share the room, with up to seven other people, but since it was low season, most days were only three other people. There's a shower/toilet ensuite, which I made sure to have, so that I could easily rinse some gear without having to leave the room. I was up before everyone else and when I came back, usually around 3-5 PM, I had no trouble getting in the shower and rising gear. The only drawback was sometimes coming back and finding sand in the shower, which makes me worried for my camera gear, but I would just spray the sand down the drain with the showerhead.

    I would say Koh Lanta is similar to Komodo for having big and small things, though I wasn't fortunate to see a Manta or Whale Shark this trip. For small things, there were plenty of Nudibranch, Mantis Shrimp, and shrimps in general. For sharks, I only saw one Black Tip Reef Shark and a Leopard Shark, which I especially wanted to photograph. (I was able to pull off a few shots before a fleet of GoPro sticks came in and scared it away.)

    Koh Lanta is famous for Hin Daeng and Hin Muang, for the possibility of seeing Mantas or Whale Sharks, but the diving there itself is pretty boring for me, as you basically circle the pinnacles in hopes of seeing one, and if you don't, there isn't much else to see/photograph, as you're constantly moving. I'd rather concentrate on the small stuff, and be surprised when something big comes by. To that end, the dive sites of Koh Ha and Bidas are much better. Koh Ha consists of mainly five islands and a lagoon at the center. Bidas is two islands next to each other. Both sites are rich in creatures. Over 20 days, I repeated visiting Koh Ha (x9) and Bidas (x8) quite a lot, which is what I wanted, because my goal was to photograph and getting multiple chances gave me opportunities to fine tune my settings and happen upon creatures that I might miss one day, but see on another.
     
  6. outofofficebrb

    outofofficebrb HARRO HUNNAYYY

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: San Francisco, California
    2,883
    2,186
    113
    @divinh I felt that way about quite a few of the Similan Island dive sites, mainly the ones that are very granite boulder based. I don't think that you would have substantially increased the amount you spent had you not gone with a hostel. Private accomm with AC and ensuite private bathroom arrangements in Thailand are extremely affordable.
     
    Bubble Junky likes this.
  7. Centrals

    Centrals Barangay Pasaway

    # of Dives:
    Location: Hong Kong
    6,177
    1,520
    113
    I would only stay in a diver hostel on a diving trip because everyone has the same agenda ie. diving. Go to bed early and get up early. No one comes back roaring drunk early morning or high on something else. The only draw back is the rest room but that had never caused any problem with me.
     
  8. divinh

    divinh Photographer

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: San Francisco
    769
    313
    63
    Here's the Leopard shark... taken with a Canon G12 with flash diffuser. I didn't get close enough for the flash to be effective, so the photo is pretty monochrome anyway...

    IMG_4559_2k.JPG
     
  9. chillyinCanada

    chillyinCanada Solo Diver Staff Member

    15,668
    9,947
    113
    So cute, love these guys
     
    divinh likes this.
  10. Centrals

    Centrals Barangay Pasaway

    # of Dives:
    Location: Hong Kong
    6,177
    1,520
    113
    Would you mind to disclose the name of the dive operator in Koh Lanta please?

    Thanks.
     

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