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Surin Islands - Thailand - Nature

  • Koh Surin Terrestrial Flora & Fauna
  • Koh Surin Pinnacles & Coral Reefs
  • Koh Surin Marine Flora & Fauna
koh surin from the air

The Surin Islands themselves are layered with ancient rainforest which provide a home to a number of interesting species.

These include Monitor Lizards, Flying Fox, Reticulated Python and Pig-tailed Macaque to name but a few. There have also been over 90 species of birds reported on the islands.

hard corals in surin national park

In the water the nature is even more impressive. An extensive coastline imparts a long fringing reef all the way around the islands. On the east side there are numerous bays, sheltered from the the open sea. These sections display the most impressive coral reefs slowly tapering from the shallows to greater depths. With more than 200 coral species present here this affords the observing visitor the most impressive range of corals in Thailand.

The West side has steeper reef structures but also is dotted with a number of interesting undersea pinnacles, much like the structures found in the Similan Islands. These make exciting dive sites and are generally the locations where the large pelagics are spotted, swooping in from the open sea for a meal.

andaman pipefish

There is also an abundance of other marine life surrounding the Surin Islands. Almost a thousand different species of fish are reported to live within the Surin archepelago. Diving here regularly reveals some diver favourites, such as reef sharks, seahorses, ghost pipefish, napoleon wrasse and octopus. Additionally, we sometimes witness some even more remarkable types of animals; this includes shaded batfish, frogfish, manta rays and the majestic whale shark.

Turtle lovers will be thrilled that 4 species of Turtle can be seen at Surin. The Hawksbill and Green Turtle are known to nest on the islands. They can be regularly observed whilst diving or snorkeling. What is more exciting is that there are also sightings of Leatherback Turtles and the rare Olive Ridley Turtle. The National Park Authority of Thailand states the case most succinctly "Mu Ko Surin is the best place in Thailand for anyone who want to swim with sea turtles."

water monitor lizard

The Water Monitor Lizard is tropical carniverous reptile growing to over 3m long. The Thai name for this lizard is also used as an insult.

surin islands flying fox

Flying foxes navigate by sight & smell. They must flap their wings until horizontal to the ground before they can let go of a tree and fly.

pig tailed macaque in surin national park

Pig-Tailed Macaques are omniverous primates with short curling tails. They live in troops of 18+ animals. They are intelligent & mischeivous.

andaman sea turtle

Broad coral reefs are characteristic of the eastern side. The beaches at Ao Tao are a protected turtle nesting site.

surin islands wrasse

The Napoleon Wrasse is a large fish with intricate patterning and large lips. They are threatened by the aquarium trade and live fish food trade.

manta rays surin national park

Manta Rays are the largest type of ray with a wing span of over 7m. They are also known as devil rays though they are harmless to divers.

richelieu rock whale shark

Whale sharks are the largest fish in the ocean. They can grow up to 14m long and live for about 70 years. They are regularly observed in the Surin Islands.

leatherback sea turtle

The Leatherback Sea Turtle lacks a bony shell. Instead it has an oily tough skin. They can dive down to more than 1,000m