Clive has always had a close affinity with the sea; he grew up in the south of England from the age of 12 and the sea was never far away. The ocean beckoned from a young age and he spent a lot of his childhood either sailing or windsurfing. Clive’s induction to the underwater world was instilled in him from the age of 17; this is when an uncle introduced him to the exciting sport of Scuba Diving. Clive gained much experience diving many of the wrecks located around the UK and a local sea encroached mineshaft!
Later in life Clive had a successful career within the engineering industry, but finally the lure of the ocean became too great. In 1999 Clive made the decision to relocate to Phuket to pursue a career in the diving industry. In the early days his focus was on making video diaries of day trips, “I was lucky enough to be involved in this industry at the beginning of the digital age”, he says.
Interests in Diving
After the opening up of Myanmar, formally known as Burma, the prospect of being one of the first people to explore and map the region was enticing. Liveaboard safaris were to be the only way forward into the Mergui, so Clive set about building a reputation as one of the most knowledgeable guides and photographers in the region.
In 2001 Clive once again relocated for his diving passion, but this time to Khao Lak. This little village in Phang Nga is the closet point to the Similans, so was at the start of the diving industry that was too boom here. Khao Lak was at that time also the easier access point to the mystical Mergui Archipelago. Very few boats visited Burma diving, but Clive managed to seek them out, working on the MV Shortcut, MY Mermaid and MY Anggun.
In 2006 Clive settled into a position on board the MV Jazz, a Similan liveaboard that was at that point just starting it’s voyages into the Mergui. Given a free reign over the liveaboard itinerary, Clive was instrumental in plotting out a typical Burma liveaboard route, one that is used by most liveaboards today. They had the freedom to really explore the area and found many interesting and exciting dive sites.
Over his years of diving Clive has had many highlights, these have included private Superyacht charters, involvement in important Marine Biology Research such as having assisted DR. Andrea Marshal with her global research and the Manta tagging Ray of Hope project and many Discovery trips. The experiences that will resonate with Clive forever will be the discovery of many dive spots in Burma that he is still diving today.
Clive White and the Mergui Archipelago
Clive has spent 14 years diving the Mergui Archipelago and is a published author of the Lonely Planet dive guide and is a published photographer. Clive has a keen focus on ethical tourism and he co founded the See and Sea Organisation to support the indigenous people of the Mergui, which he continues to actively be involved with today.
For Clive, the future is in sustainable Eco tourism to the region with an emphasis on education. For the 2014/2015 season Clive will join the Aggressor fleet for their maiden season to Myanmar and will continue his exploration of the region.