Sail Rock is widely regarded as one of the best dive sites in Koh Tao and in the Gulf of Thailand, and for good reason. This impressive pinnacle rises up from the ocean floor to just above the surface, providing a stunning underwater landscape for divers to explore.
Sail Rock dive site brief
- Access: From boat
- Maximum depth: 100 feet/ 30 meters
- Visibility: 33 – 100 feet / 10 – 30 meters
- Dive time: 45 minutes
- Certification level: Advanced Open Water
- Current: medium to strong
- Type: rock
About Sail Rock dive site
Sail Rock – or Hin Bai in Thai – is located about 7.5 miles (12 km) and an hour and a half boat ride southeast of Koh Tao, making it a popular destination for dive operators on the island. However, not every operator takes on the day trip every day. During high season, it’s probably once a week.
At Sail Rock, divers can expect to see a diverse range of marine life, including schools of barracuda, trevally, and snapper. The pinnacle is also home to a variety of reef fish, including angelfish, butterflyfish, and parrotfish. One of the highlights of diving at Sail Rock is the chance to see whale sharks, which are often spotted in the area between the months of November and April.
The top of the pinnacle is home to numerous sea anemones, which provide shelter for clownfish and other small creatures. There are also several swim-throughs and tunnels that divers can explore, adding to the excitement and adventure of the dive. The main feature is the chimney at Sail Rock.
The dive plan for Sail Rock in Koh Tao
When jumping into the water, divers usually aim for the chimney entrance at 16 feet (5 meters) and dive down to the exit at about 60 feet (18 meters).
From here, you continue your descent along another pinnacle to the east, all the way to 30 meters deep. After you finished this rock formation, you dive along the sandy bottoms at the maximum dive depth of 100 feet (30 meters).
The last pinnacle is towards the west from Sail Rock. Starting at about 105 feet (32 meters), you slowly ascend to the top of 60 feet (18 meters).
While you explore the rocks and corals, always have a look at the deep blue. You might be the lucky one who sees a whale shark swimming by.
Sail Rock is suitable for divers of all levels, although some experience with deeper dives is recommended due to the depth of the pinnacle. The depth ranges from 6 meters at the shallowest point to around 100 feet (30 meters) at the deepest point.
Visibility at Sail Rock can vary but is typically between 33 and 100 feet (10 – 30 meters). Water temperature is warm year-round, ranging from 79 to 86 degrees Fahrenheit (26-30 Celsius).
When is the best time to dive at Sail Rock in Koh Tao?
It’s accessible year-round, although the best diving conditions are typically found between March and August when the visibility is at its clearest. However, it’s smart to line up your visit with the whale shark migrating season in the winter month.
Sail Rock is a must-visit dive site for any diver visiting Koh Tao or the Gulf of Thailand. With its stunning underwater landscape, diverse marine life, and exciting swim-throughs and tunnels, it’s easy to see why this pinnacle is regarded as the crown jewel of Koh Tao dive sites.