Similan Island No. 4: Chinese Wall
Located on the Southern tip of Island No. 4, Chinese Wall is rarely dived now-a-days and in a way has become a “secret dive site” known only to us “Old-timers”
At the time of writing there is 1 mooring line on this dive site secured to a large concrete block in the sand at a depth of around 20m. Therefore it is recommended that you use the mooring line for decent, or at least as a reference point. To start the dive we would normally descend and head directly South. All you need to do is just follow the large chain of rocks that someone once thought resembles the Great Wall of China. Hence YES you guessed it, this is how this dive site got it’s name.
In the sand you can expect to find Kuhl / Blue Spotted Stingrays, Gobies and hundreds of Garden Eels. If you head West into the bay there is a large field of hard corals, in particular Table Corals, Staghorn Corals and Finger Corals. If you want to dive Phuket before you Liveaboard we can arrange a Phuket Diving Day Trip for you and introduce to some of the corals and marine life you will encounter on The Similan Islands dive sites.
Chinese Wall is usually a great place to spot both the Green & Hawksbill Turtle ...
Have you ever wanted to Dive the Great Wall of China?
To start the dive, we would enter the water from the dive platform. The boulders begin above the surface and continue down underwater to a depth of almost 30m. However as there is a mooring line it is recommended that you use it.
At the bottom of the mooring line you will find yourself at depth of around 20m. If you look you can sometimes find a Ribbon Eel in-between the boulders, normally black, with a yellow stripe. Additionally, between the boulders, are flat sandy areas where there are more Garden Eels and Gobies. This is a cool place to spot Giant Moray Eels resting between the rocks during the daytime. Moreover, Honeycomb Morays can also be spotted here on occasion.
Looking out from the bottom of the mooring, you will see large granite boulders. These continues down to a depth of between 20-25m. You follow these for some time before getting to a depth of at least 50m. Hence be careful to follow your dive plan and keep an eye on your depth.
How to dive Chinese Wall
As you get further out onto the large chain of boulders, you will find yourself on The Great wall of China. These boulders create swim-throughs and canyons which can make this Similans dive site a diver's playground. There is a good selection of soft corals with some very large Sea Fans. This dive site is an excellent place for mid-water activity with large schools of Glass Fish being pursued relentlessly by Trevallies, Tuna, Barracuda, Snappers and Fusiliers. Also in the mid-water, you find the very large Surgeon & Unicorn Fish, like those that can be found at Boulder City and Shark Fin Reef.
Chinese Wall has all the various species of Angel Fish you can find in the Andaman Sea. This includes the rare Korean Angelfish in addition to Box Fish, Butterfly Fish and Clown Fish. There are several different Trigger Fish, including the beautiful Clown Trigger Fish. These always make great photos if you can get close enough. If you continue South you should be very aware of your depth and No Decompression Limits / remaining dive time. This is because the depth remains at between 20-25m, above the rocks, for quite some way. As such it is recommended that when your remaining dive time reaches 10 minutes you should turn around and head back towards shallower water.
BE CAREFUL: If you do not do this there is a good chance you will go into decompression. This is strongly advised against and is NOT permitted by many Thailand Liveaboard operators.
Can I take a PADI Nitrox Course in The Similans?
Consequently, Enriched Air Nitrox (EANx) is a great option here. EANx would almost DOUBLE your dive time here. If you plan your dive correctly that is. Therefore, if you aren’t already certified as a Nitrox Diver we can easily arrange this. Relax, enjoy and double your Dive Time.
In the deeper areas of the dive site you can spot Leopard Sharks sleeping in the sand, along with the occasional Whitetip and Blacktip Reef Sharks. Manta Rays have also been spotted here, but sightings are rare.
Chinese Wall remains an extremely popular dive site with Rebreather CCR divers. This is due to the amount there is to see here in terms of marine life and marine life diversity. Similarly, the topography is perfect for a 2-3 hour rebreather dives, especially if you are carrying an underwater camera with you.
Currents on this dive site can be very strong, especially at full or new moon, however there are plenty of rocks for protection. Sometimes divers need to get beneath the current to make any progress.
Try not to overexert yourself. Sometimes it’s easier to abandon the dive rather than try to get back to the shallows. Therefore, always make sure you have a safety marker (SMB or DMSB) so you can be clearly seen by your dive boat. When you head back into the shallows, look between the rocks for Cowries, in particular the Tiger Cowrie. There are also plenty of Banded Boxer Shrimps, Cleaner Shrimps and Dancing Durban Shrimps. It is also possible to see the Jann’s Pipefish between the rocks and Multibar Pipefish.
Close to the Island at depths of less than 10m, and back in the shallows the current is normally no longer a problem. All in all this all makes for a very nice end to a dive.
We think this is one of the most beautiful dive sites in the Similans, especially below 20m. Here the soft corals and large Sea Fans remain in pristine condition, as very few dives operators come to this dive site.
VERY FEW dives operators come to this dive site as there is no map in any of the dive books. Consequently, you can often get the site to completely yourselves ...