The Dive Asia Staff Party was the highlight last weekend here in Phuket.
Our team occupied the entire karaoke lounge at the Ruan Tamachart Restaurant in Chalong Bay and clinked glasses for the last and the upcoming season.
Delicious food, cold beer, and lots of fun made the evening a huge success.
The karaoke machine played international and Thai songs throughout the night. The Dive Asia team and a few guests gave their very best performances at the microphone and earned standing ovations.
Many people danced — driven by the hard beats — until the late night hours and enjoyed themselves very much. You can watch the video at YouTube.
One of the most beautiful view points of the island and a future landmark , the construction of the Phra Puttamingmongkol Akenakkiri Buddha Statue, will be completed later in 2008.
The monumental Statue of Lord Buddha is 45 meters high and reachers 25 meters diameter at its base. The Buddha is sitting on a huge podium designed as a lotus flower. From Nakkerd Hill (Khao Nakkerd) he is looking to the east towards Chalong Bay.
The view is enormous and a ride up to the summit of Nakkerd Hill is always worth the trip. The road up to Big Buddha is between Chalong Circle (Ha Yeak Chalong) and Wat (Temple) Chalong. You can’t miss the turn as you see huge signs with “Big Buddha”. This road to the peak is 5.5 km — mixed partially paved and dirt. If you drive up with a motorbike you should keep an eye on the many pot-holes.
From the car park you go through a big hall before climbing up another 78 steps. In the big hall you can find information about the building progress, souvenirs, Buddhist amulets and a model of Nakkerd Hill including a little Big Buddha.
The magnificent view compensates for the little exercise exerted in getting there and you will enjoy the silence and wonderful view overlooking southern Phuket. To the east you can see Chalong Bay with its fleet of boats moored there; to the south is Rawai and to the west you have a nice look over Kata Beach.
For a donation of 100 Baht you will receive a small marble tile which you can sign with your name and thoughts. The marble tile will be used to cover the Big Buddha to give him a noble finish.
On Sunday 13th July, our IDC candidates completed their PADI Instructor Examination; after a 9 day training program, countless hours of preparations, presentations, diving skills’ practice and lots of fun.
Participants from Denmark, Switzerland, Germany, Philippines, South Korea, England, Brazil, Sweden, France & Japan bonded and became close friends; a truly international team.
Our PADI Course Directors, Bjorn and Akio, worked with enthusiasm and as hard as usual to prepare the future PADI instructors for the real world.
We wish the newest members of the PADI Instructor family all the best for the future, lots of success and of course, a lot of fun.
Phuket is well known for its seafood restaurants and the Kan Eang 2 in Chalong is certainly a “must see” attraction. Not only is the delicious food worth a visit but also the stunning view on the bay where dozens of boats are anchored.
Directly on the beach you will find the spacious restaurant just a few hundred meters north of the Chalong Pier on the way to Phuket Town. The menu is comprehensive and to make a choice is difficult. Lobster or prawns, fish or squid, fresh vegetables, or perhaps you prefer chicken or pork; at Kan Eang 2 you can find anything in every variety. A cold beer or a nice wine makes your seafood dinner perfect. For your entertainment you can enjoy well known Western music from a two-person live band.
Even if you stay in Patong it is worth the 30-minute ride to escape the hustle and bustle. It’s a pleasant experience to dive into a typical Thai seafood restaurant on the beach. You can’t hear any cars or motorbikes, there is always a slight breeze from the sea coming, and the price for the food is decent with 80- 180 Baht per dish being the average. Highly recommended is the snapper in sweet & sour sauce and Yam Pla Dok Fu (fried catfish with mango salad and cashew nuts).
The Department of Marine and Costal Resources, a body of the Thai Ministry of Environment, and the Science Department of Ramkhamhaeng University — one of the leading Universities in Thailand — invited leading Dive Center Management to a meeting discussing coral reef protection. This was held on 2nd July.
Present were management staff from the Marine National Parks, the Tourism Authority of Thailand, as well members of the Phuket Provincial Administration. Dive Asia’s instructor Bee also attended.
Bee is a active member of Greenpeace Thailand and she implements the United Nations- sponsored Green Fin Program at Dive Asia. Her attitude towards environmental protection makes her the perfect person to join such an important meeting between industry and government on our behalf. It was a
great honor for her to share her experiences from the front line with science and government officials.
The objective of the meeting was to gain ideas and establish workable coral reef protection guidelines to sustain the Andaman Cost as a beautiful dive destination. To be continued…