Richelieu Rock Liveaboard Diving

The Junk

The Junk

from US$ 162 / day
9.1 "Superb"

ThailandUSD1,021 from

The Junk underwent a renovation transform it into a 33m authentic sailing vessel to explore the best dive sites of the Thai Andaman Sea from November-April. She has 6 AC cabins with en-suite bathrooms

    The Junk
    Hallelujah

    Hallelujah

    from US$ 202 / day
    9.2 "Superb"

    ThailandUSD1,012 from

    Explore the Similan Islands aboard the MV Hallelujah liveaboard. She is one of the most comfortable & largest dive liveaboards cruising the Andaman Sea from November - April. She has 13 en-suite cabins to cater to 25 guests

      Hallelujah
      Sawasdee Fasai

      Sawasdee Fasai

      from US$ 149 / day
      9.4 "Superb"

      ThailandUSD801 from

      • Free Nitrox

      The recently renovated Sawasdee Fasai liveaboard offers dive and snorkel cruises in the Andaman Sea. Explore the Similan Islands and Richelieu Rock in comfort with AC cabins, huge sun dfeck and outdoor lounge area

      Sawasdee Fasai

      What to expect on a Richelieu Rock Liveaboard

      Liveaboard diving in Richelieu Rock ensures a trip to one of Thailand's best dive sites and a firm favourite amongst Thailand liveaboard itineraries. Approximately 45km off the Andaman coast, to the south east of the Surin Islands, this site somewhat resembles the form of a horse-shoe with a central limestone pinnacle and several smaller rock outcrops on either side. The topography of this site matched with its geographical remoteness attracts a great variety of marine life. Shifting tidal currents in this part of the Andaman Sea create upwellings of plankton, providing a feeding ground for small to large. Richelieu's remote location is not sheltered from the open water and recommended for the more advanced diver due to changing currents which can be mild to strong, but also mean that the best way to experience Richelieu Rock is via dive liveaboard.

      Aboard a Richelieu Rock liveaboard divers can expect around 3 dives per day, with a choice of liveaboards ranging from simple low budget to luxury liveaboard. Most Richelieu Rock itineraries depart from Khao Lak and include a trip to the Similan Islands.

      What You Can See

      Sailing in Richelieu Rock offers divers the best chance to experience this iconic dive area. Richelieu was named by Jacques Cousteau after Cardinal Richelieu, of the Three Musketeers whose scarlet cape reminded him of the purple soft corals adorning the limestone rocks. Rising from the sandy bottom, the pinnacles are decorated with shelves and ledges, cracks, crevices and caves. The shallows are covered in sea anenomes and not far below an abundance of soft coral fields adorn the edges, surrounded by thousands of shimmering glassfish. The black coral bushes and gorgonians are found slightly deeper all providing shelter to the diverse marine life. This continuum of colour can be seen throughout the excellent multi-level diving that goes down to a maximum depth of 35m.

      The biodiversity of the marine life and topography at Richelieu Rock is astounding. As you descend you can sometimes see the swirling blue masses of jacks, barracuda and fusiliers in a funnel like formation. Big schools of trevally, funneling barracuda and dogtooth tuna maraud the area in search of their next meal. The winter months of February to April bring with it more opportunity for whale shark sightings and other pelagics like the Manta Ray, feasting on plankton. Seeing these creatures gliding around you seemingly effortlessly is considered the ultimate experience for most divers and why most visit Richelieu. Although sightings can be rare, once they are spotted, they tend not to disappear quickly as it is their feeding ground. It is an exhilarating honour to share the waters with these gentle giants.

      Do not be detracted by the larger marine life alone, as Richelieu is also home to a plethora of critters such as porcelain crabs, tiger tail sea horses, pipefish, robust ghost pipefish, mantis shrimps, harlequin shrimp, frogfish, leaf fish, nudibranch…the list goes on! Seahorses and harlequin shrimps can be found in the small caverns at the bottom of the rock. The larger marine life such as the cuttlefish, octopi and groupers can also be spotted going about their mating business, unaware of the peering scuba divers. For the photography inclined, it is worth having an interchangeable lens here as there is so much to capture or simply dive it a multitude of times, we can assure you it will never get boring.

      Getting There

      The best way to get to Richelieu Rock is on a Thailand liveaboard trip which will depart from either Phuket or Khao Lak. Further from Phuket than from Khao Lak, (200 km north of Phuket and 80 km northwest of Khao Lak), it is worth checking what port you prefer to depart from. Please check your itinerary before purchasing flight tickets. There are international flights into Phuket and / or domestic flights from Bangkok to Phuket. Khao Lak is about 100km north of Phuket and can be reached overland.

      Dive cruises may vary but you can expect at least a 4 night cruise to the Surin Islands which will undoubtedly include Richelieu Rock on the itinerary. Please note that it is prohibited to dive in this area outside of the high season that runs from October to May due to rough seas.

      Richelieu Rock Diving Reviews

      8.9
      Fabulous (out of 10) 10
      Average score from 30 Verified Review(s) Only people who have booked through Liveaboard.com and joined the Liveaboard can write a review.
      Canada
      9.2
      Superb

      Best dive I think I ever did was to this dive site.

      Diving Richelieu Rock in March on the Dolphin Queen
      France
      9.6
      Exceptional

      Amazing

      Diving Richelieu Rock in March on the Diva Andaman
      Germany
      10.0
      Exceptional

      Just amazing

      Diving Richelieu Rock in March on the Pawara
      Canada
      6.8
      Review score

      excellent in March, but crowded

      Diving Richelieu Rock in March on the Similan Explorer
      Belgium
      9.2
      Superb

      Simply great

      Diving Richelieu Rock in March on the Manta Queen 1
      United Kingdom
      8.0
      Very good

      One of the best Dive Sites I have been too

      Diving Richelieu Rock in February on the Sawasdee Fasai Liveaboard
      Germany
      10.0
      Exceptional

      Lilafarbene Korallen und zum ersten Mal Seepferdchen, ghostpipefishs, unbeschreiblich schön!!! Ebenfalls der Nightdive hier, war sehr aufregend!

      Diving Richelieu Rock in February on the Similan Explorer
      Canada
      8.0
      Very good

      Gorgeous. 4 Dives.

      Diving Richelieu Rock in February on the The Junk
      Canada
      8.0
      Very good

      Wow... Juste Wow!

      Diving Richelieu Rock in February on the The Junk
      South Korea
      9.6
      Exceptional

      Fantastic! we can see various species with beautiful undersea-landscape.

      Diving Richelieu Rock in February on the The Junk
      France
      9.6
      Exceptional

      Exceptional. Great to do 4 dives on one smallish site. And not too many people / boats.

      Diving Richelieu Rock in February on the The Junk
      Chile
      8.8
      Fabulous

      Best spot i ve dived so far incredibleamount of life and corals

      Diving Richelieu Rock in February on the Similan Explorer
      France
      10.0
      Exceptional

      Excellent! 1 full day on this dive site with 4 dives incluning a sunset dive

      Diving Richelieu Rock in February on the The Junk
      Brazil
      8.0
      Very good

      Very good. Fantastic place for diving.

      Diving Richelieu Rock in February on the Hallelujah Liveaboard
      France
      8.8
      Fabulous

      Excellent dives with wonderful submarine landscape

      Diving Richelieu Rock in February on the Dolphin Queen
      Brazil
      7.2
      Good

      Very good dive site but with strong current

      Diving Richelieu Rock in February on the Deep Andaman Queen
      Denmark
      9.6
      Exceptional

      5 out of 5

      Diving Richelieu Rock in February on the MV Pawara
      Belgium
      7.2
      Good

      Wonderfull !

      Diving Richelieu Rock in February on the Deep Andaman Queen
      Italy
      9.2
      Superb

      Really interesting, lot of life

      Diving Richelieu Rock in February on the Manta Queen 6
      China
      9.2
      Superb

      Awesome! One of my favourite dive sites on the trip

      Diving Richelieu Rock in January on the Diva Andaman
      United States
      8.4
      Very good

      Amazing! I'm very happy we got to do 3 dives there.

      Diving Richelieu Rock in February on the Hallelujah
      Germany
      7.6
      Good

      The best diving spot of the trip. Not so many divers and really many fishes.

      Diving Richelieu Rock in January on the MV Pawara
      Singapore
      8.4
      Very good

      Good, no large fishes, but plenty of marine life

      Diving Richelieu Rock in January on the Similan Explorer
      United Kingdom
      8.4
      Very good

      Fish soup

      Diving Richelieu Rock in February on the Manta Queen 3
      China
      10.0
      Exceptional

      Fantastic!!! Must go!!!!

      Diving Richelieu Rock in January on the Hallelujah Liveaboard
      United Kingdom
      10.0
      Exceptional

      One of the best places I've ever dive! Beats Maldives, Australia....

      Diving Richelieu Rock in January on the Similan Explorer
      Canada
      8.8
      Fabulous

      a pinnacle in the middle of nowhere was pretty amazing

      Diving Richelieu Rock in January on the MV Pawara
      United States
      9.2
      Superb

      The water was pretty muddy due to the recent storm. Nonetheless, the reefs were simply gorgeous. Did not get to see manta ray

      Diving Richelieu Rock in January on the Thai Sea
      United States
      10.0
      Exceptional

      The highlight of our trip. Could have spent days there and every dive would have been great.

      Diving Richelieu Rock in January on the MV DiveRACE Class E
      United States
      9.2
      Superb

      Best dive site of the trip with endless schools of fish in every direction.

      Diving Richelieu Rock in December on the Diva Andaman
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