This year’s annual trip to Thailand took me down to Phuket to meet Poseidon Dive Travel and I had an absolutely, wonderfully signature day’s diving. I call it signature because the team were different in so many ways. I didn’t once feel that the ethos of this company was to make money or to have a full boat or count the number of tanks they put in the water, instead I felt totally convinced that Klaus Orlik and his team were driven to take me and the other customers on the boat diving for the pure love of it. This feel was evident from the moment we were met at Chalong Pier.
Klaus who was the first accredited dive centre in Phuket back in the 70’s was an absolute treasure to meet and I must say I felt quite honoured to meet him and inspired by his tales of life in Thailand. He was extremely reserved about his long and established career and in fact I had to dig to find out more about him, which again I loved. There was no sense of bragging or slipping into that arrogant dive pro role that you often come across. Klaus was a pleasure and I got lost in his stories and felt in awe of his dive experience. I felt quite lucky to be diving with him and felt safe and in good hands on board and underwater. A chap with over 35’000 dives under his belt and an obvious deep respect for the environment and the ocean, he felt like a very special personality to have met.
Klaus, donning his equipment for the dive and jumping in with nothing more than his booties, gloves and swimmers on was relaxed and motivated to point out the small and fragile critters that adorned the sea bed and reef that we glided over. Wearing a 3mm wetsuit I looked at him puzzled at first as he got ready for dives and so I asked, ‘Do you get chilly on dives?’ he responded, ‘I need to feel the water on my skin to feel closer to it.’ I, a complete softy for people who share such an affiliation with nature melted when he said this. What a dude I thought!
Dive groups were kept to the absolute minimum and dive sites organised in relation to where other boats were on the day to offer dive guests a non busy dive experience to fully immerse themselves in the Andaman without interruption or distraction.
We hung out with lovely Stefan Kasweber on board who displayed total professionalism and charm and was 110% attentive to all of our needs at all times. Stefan who is responsible for all diver training was relaxed and clearly as excited as we were to be heading out for the days diving. He chatted to all guests on the transfer out to the dive sites as we sipped hot coffee and nibbled on fresh fruits. It was a genuinely lovely day and I enjoyed my time on board as much as I did under water. There were so many subtle attentions to details throughout the day that made me realise that the high quality of this company was at the forefront of its ethos. A clean and tidy boat, comfy bean bags to relax on, flowers on the tables, fresh smelling towels handed out, ample space to move, sit and relax and an incredible lunch. There really is nothing negative to say about this company but on the other hand I am struggling to say just how awesome it was.
I would recommend this company to absolutely anyone heading to Thailand to dive. A jolly good days diving with a more than exceptional team. It’s worth it just for the conversation even if you don’t go diving. A must to look up!