Diving and snorkelling
Though Pattaya’s reefs are far less spectacular than those along the Andaman Coast, they can be dived year-round, and underwater visibility is consistent. Most dive trips focus on the group of “outer islands” about 25km from shore, which include Ko Rin, Ko Man Wichai and Ko Klung Badaan, where you have a reasonable chance of seeing barracuda, moray eels and blue-spotted stingrays. There are also three rewarding wreck dives in the Samae San/Sattahip area. Be careful when choosing a dive operator as there are plenty of charlatans around. All tour agents sell snorkelling trips to nearby islands, the majority of them going to the reefs and beaches of Ko Larn. You can also make your own way to Ko Larn by public boat from the Bali Hai pier at the far southern end of Walking Street.
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Beachfront stalls in Pattaya and Jomtien offer waterskiing, parasailing and jet-skiing, but you should avoid the last-mentioned: the jet-ski jockeys are notorious for finding scratches on the machine at the end of the rental and trying to charge an exorbitant amount in damages.
In among the full-body soaps and “full-service” massage joints, you’ll find the traditional Soi Yodsak, where you can have a proper Thai massage, or a herbal compress, oil or foot massage; it also offers two-week massage training courses.
Happy Home offers morning (including a market visit) and afternoon classes, with vegetarian versions of all dishes available, and including a weekly dessert class.