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Dive Review of Sea Bees/Peach Hill Hotel and Resort in
Thailand/Phuket

Sea Bees/Peach Hill Hotel and Resort, Apr, 2005,

by Karen Guthrie, CA, USA (Sr. Reviewer Sr. Reviewer 9 reports). Report 1665.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 101-250 dives
Where else diving Fiji, La Paz Mexico, Belize, Grand and Little Cayman, Bahamas (Cay Sal Bank), Great Barrier Reef, Hawaii (Big Island and Kauai)
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny Seas calm
Water Temp 82 to 89 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 0
Water Visibility 20 to 100 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile ?
Enforced diving restrictions First drink last dive. One hour dive.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks 1 or 2 Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles None Whales None
Corals 4 stars Tropical Fish 5 stars
Small Critters 4 stars Large Fish 4 stars
Large Pelagics 2 stars

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter 4 stars Boat Facilities 3 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 3 stars Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments Boat had plenty of cubies and tables and one plug that I saw someone using for recharging. Rinse tanks were big and dive staff handed your camera in carefully. The viz wasn't that great and so backscatter (even with my strobe) was significant at times. Still I was kept snapping away on most dives.

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations 4 stars Food 5 stars
Service and Attitude 4 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving 3 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 4 stars
Advanced 4 stars
Comments Peach Hill accomodations were very good but not lavish. The AC worked VERY well, comfortable beds, tv with a couple of english stations, Mini bar, only one outlet for charging batteries was in the bathroom. Could have unplugged the tv but that would have been unpopular with my 17 year old diver daughter. Power in room shuts off when you remove the key from the fixture by the door. Thankfully, the AC did not as they were having a very hot and humid month. (Typical of April) The Thai New Year 4/13 was fun. They throw water on everyone. This meant that when being transported to the dive shop, in seats in the back of a small pickup truck, people would throw pans of water from the side of the street. Saw a couple of teens riding scooters drenched from head to foot grinning like mad. Life is good. It is so hot that it is just refreshing and fun. The Thai people are very kind and friendly. I felt sorry for the tailors who were desperate to make you up some suits. I guess business has not been too good since the Tsunami.

Sea Bees is run by Germans. Everything runs like clockwork, from your pickup at the hotel, to the appearance of your dive gear on the boat, located near your buddies gear. You do all your own setup and tank switching but they take care of hauling the gear onto and off of the boat in milk crates with your name on them. One guide for at most 4 people. We were three and mostly had our own guide. This allowed a nice slow pace for taking pictures. We could have asked for no guide but he helped us find things, inflated the surface marker buoy and when my weight pouch ditched itself loaned me a couple of pounds. :) Saw a couple of good size Zebra Sharks (Leopard Sharks if you are from the southern hemisphere). One blue spotted ray, loads of cleaner shrimp, banded shrimp, moray eels, a couple of sea snakes out doing their thing. Giant clams, soft corals, beautiful schools of fish so big you had no idea how far they went or how many there were. Many trigger fish mostly titan or red toothed. One of them took offense to our presence and bit my fin really hard and shook it. I knew my family and guide were just ahead of me so when I turned around I expected to see a diver having an emergency. I was so surprised when it was a fish. They had told us about them being aggressive at that site but I never saw him coming. I am so glad he picked something inedible. I watched my back at that sight after that and caught one stalking me. He knew he was busted and moved off. Lots of anenomies with clown fish in them. Stone fish, garden eels etc.

Food on the boat was mostly hot Thai dishes that were prepared fresh during the morning dive. GREAT food, (I mean that I would go to a restaurant at home serving this). If you hate spicy stuff I think they would change things if you asked. One day for reasons I didn't understand the food was not spicy but still good. Loads of foam mats covered places on the boat both sunny and shady to lay down and rest during the sometimes long commutes to the dive sites. Large comfortable boats. (a little less so if completely full) Our group varied from 13 to 32 divers on the same boat during the week. One day they were going to be full and split the group into two on their 2 boats to give us more space. I thought that was nice. Many dives done as drift dives. They make it look easy to keep track of all the small groups. We never had long swims or upcurrent battles to do.

Didn't see any Tsunami damage on land or at sea but we have never been there before. Peach Hill is up a hill so if you are nervous you would know you were safe up there. If you liked beaches you might have been disappointed but hey we were on the dive boat all day so who cared.

Some mosquitos, no malaria the cdc said. Most restaurants are open air but there are a few shopping malls (try Central Festival) for Pizza Hut in the cool for a change.

Great prices. The dive boat fed us breakfast and lunch each day. For 3 people six dive days, air from LA, hotel, food, transfers, and trinkets included, we spent less that $5000. Dinner usually set the three of us back $10. Not per person, total.

The diving was great. The only place we have been that was better diving was Fiji last summer. (see my 2 reports on that trip). We heard the Similans were even better but the livaboards didn't fit our tight school schedule and Khao Lak, which has a Sea Bees that can reach them with long day trips, was devistated by the Tsunami. They hope to be up in Oct 2005. :)

If you have been diving the Carribean because it is cheaper than the pacific do yourself a big favor and try this place. It is not quick to get to but well worth the trip.
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Note: The information here was reported by the author above, but has NOT been reviewed nor edited by Undercurrent prior to posting on our website. Please report any major problems by writing to us and referencing the report number above.

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