Richelieu Rock - World Class Dive Site
is a dive site in Thailand in the Andaman Sea about 200 km northwest of Phuket. It is part of the Mu Koh Surin marine park although being about 18 km east of Surin Island.
The horseshoe-shaped reef discovered by Jacques-Yves Cousteau is known for its purple corals as well as diverse marine life ranging from small fish and harlequin shrimp to large pelagics like whale shark, manta ray, barracuda, and grouper.
Partly due to its unique geology as a solitary pinnacle standing out from around 30m. depth to just under the surface it is said to attract a variety of different pelagic species of all different sizes. Reports claim regular appearance of Snappers, Bannerfish, Lionfish, Triggerfish and Shovelnose Rays.
Several sources also report sightings of filter feeders like manta rays and whale sharks, and scavengers such as barracudas though fishing is said to have made their appearance less frequent.
Richelieu Rock is also well known for its large variety of small and rare marine critters, such as sea horses, frogfish, harlequin shrimp, pineapplefish, orang utang crab and several other species of crabs and shrimp.
Richelieu Rock is considered by many to be one of Thailand's most iconic dive sites.It is usually accessed by diving boats during several-day cruises, as it is too far off the coast to be reached by usual dive boats. There are speedboats that can go to Richelieu Rock as a day trip or liveaboards. Richelieu Rock is part of the Surin National Marine Park and is closed from 15 May until 15 October each year.
Due to the large scale of Richelieu Rock, it is not possible to explore the whole site in one dive. You should plan at least two dives here to see all it´s glory. Amazement awaits divers in every square meter of Richelieu Rock.
Type of Dive: Boulder/Wall
Depth: 40 meters
Visibility: 5 - 30 meters
Temperature: 27 - 29 degrees C
Difficulty: Intermediate / Advanced