Koh Payu, or Island #6, is another gem to visit among the Similan Archipelago that is mainly known for its dive sites. Unlike most of the other islands that make up the Similan Archipelago, Koh Payu has no beaches. However, diving and snorkeling enthusiasts will find Koh Payu to be a great place to take into consideration.
Most divers who travel to Koh Payu tend to choose the eastern shores of the island to dive and snorkel as the beauty of wildlife can be experienced marvelously. The preference is mainly due to the presence of both soft and hard corals, sea fans, and the variety of fish. Not surprisingly, Koh Payu features a myriad of diving sites with exotic names that can be explored from a diving liveaboard.
One of such aptly called snorkeling and dive sites on Koh Payu is the East of Eden. Located on the southeast corner of Koh Payu island, East of Eden is fringed by a shallow reef of plate and staghorn corals, highlighted by a couple of massive sea fans. With powdery, pale sand, that lies beneath the ocean – the view is impressive. The reef slope of the East of Eden ranges from 5 to 40 meters. This spectacular reef consists of a good mixture of both soft and hard corals on the north side and made up of a series of bommies, or better known as coral heads, on the southern part. The National Geographic channel even featured one large bommie in introducing the gorgeous dive site on Koh Payu. This dive site is where schools of fish, including the long nose emperors and trumpet fish, can be seen. East of Eden is also known as Morning Edge.
Altogether, East of Eden is a great dive site of Koh Payu that offers excellent visibility all year round, with the best months being from December until March. Those who are more experienced can opt to dive at another dive site located on the northern shore of Koh Payu, which is known as Deep Six. Still, extreme caution should be taken as currents can be quite strong. With at least three more notable dive sites, the reputation of Koh Payu remains a top diving destination in Similan Islands.