A quick guide on where to snorkel with Reef Sharks on Koh Tao! Remember to respect wildlife and be responsible!

If you’re in Koh Tao then you are already aware of the epic underwater world that surrounds the island. One specific sea creature that seems a little harder to catch a glimpse of is the Black Tip Reef Shark.

Although these guys sometimes visit the popular dive sites around the island, they can be regularly spotted if you know when and where to look. Read on to find out where you can swim with sharks in Koh Tao. 

Where are the Black Tip Reef Sharks on Koh Tao?

Black Tip Reef Sharks usually frequent shallow sandy flats, anywhere from under 1m to 10m in Shark Bay, also known as Haad Tien Beach. Shark Bay is located in the South end of Koh Tao island, just past Chalok. The easiest way to get there is to leave your bike at Taatoh Seaview Resort and walk down the windy cliff walkways until you get to the water. 


Once you have reached the bottom, simply swim out to the shallows and keep an eye out for that black fin! Some of the juvenile sharks in Koh Tao are very small, only around 60cm long! However, keep watch because we frequently saw some up to 1.5m long, sometimes up to four at a time circling us. 
Although these sharks can be found everywhere in the bay, we found that we were more likely to spot them in the area pictured below.

Go Early

Many people that I spoke to were positive that there were no sharks in Koh Tao, this is definitely not true. You can see sharks in Koh Tao daily, but it is important to go early in the morning between 6.30AM and 9.30AM. It seems that the sharks only ever visit the bay around this time of the morning, which means an early wake up if you really want to catch them!

Keep an Eye Out for Turtles

Turtle Island isn’t the sanctuary for turtles like it used to be. Many have migrated to other smaller nearby islands to escape the scuba crowds. However, it is still very common to find large sleeping or cruising turtles in the quite sanctuary of Shark Bay. Once the sharks have headed off for the day, swim out a little deeper and keep an eye out for the chilled dudes. Remember to give them some space and let them enjoy the relative quietness of this hidden gem.

turtle swimming in koh tao thailand

More Koh Tao Guides

I hope that this quick guide to snorkeling with Reef Sharks on Koh Tao has been useful. Remember, always respect wildlife and only enter the water with sharks if you are comfortable and have experience. If not, I’d recommend avoiding them altogether.

For more Koh Tao travel blogs, take a pick from the list below. Alternatively, start with this comprehensive guide to the Best Things to do on Koh Tao or this guide to Koh Tao’s Best Beaches.

7 Best Things to do in Khao Lak, Thailand
Fighting Muay Thai In Thailand as a Foreigner
Tanote Bay – Cliff Jumping Beach on Koh Tao
BEST Secret Sunset Spot on Koh Tao, Thailand
Best Secret Freediving Location on Koh Tao, Thailand


sharks in koh tao

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