If you have seen everything – on land and at sea, we invite you to dive! Diving and snorkeling in the islands of Malaysia is an incredible adventure that will amaze you with its splendor.
Sipadan Island, 500 meters long and 200 meters wide, formed by living corals that have grown on an extinct volcano over many thousands of years, is located east of the island of Borneo, is one of the best dive sites in the world. Back in 1933 the island was declared a bird sanctuary, in 1964 — included in the Sabah Turtle Nature Reserve.
Here, in the Sulawesi Sea, the underwater world is unusually rich in flora and fauna. Hundreds of varieties of corals, more than three thousand species of fish, whale sharks and manta rays – all this attracts tourists from all over the world. Especially after the film by Jacques-Yves Cousteau, who called this island “an untouched work of art.” The Malaysian government was forced to impose a restriction on visiting the island, and in 2004 all resort complexes were moved from the island. Now this is a real nature reserve, and divers who want to visit it stop at the neighboring islands — Mabule and Kapalai.
Hot and sunny weather reigns here almost all year round. The island does not know monsoons and typhoons, but heavy rains are frequent here from January to March.
The best time to visit the island is from April to December, the peak tourist season is July and August, and many tourists come here for New Year and Christmas, for Chinese New Year.
The average temperature is +30 °C + 32 °C.
Water temperature: +27 °C +30 °C
The island can be reached from Kuala Lumpur, Singapore or Kota Kinabalu. From these cities, you need to fly to Tawau, and then continue the trip to the port city of Semporna. It takes about 45 minutes by boat to reach the islands from here.
Sipadan itself is a real uninhabited island that can be circumvented in its entirety in just half an hour, with magnificent tropical vegetation and beautiful white sand beaches.
There are no cafes or restaurants here, but you can admire untouched nature: turtles, huge monitor lizards, exotic birds. Since 2005, only 120 people can visit this island at the same time – this requires a permit issued by the Sabah Parks Authority. Stay on the island is limited in time from 06:00 to 15:00. All divers' dives are also limited by this time. Permission to visit the island can be obtained from the hotel where the stay is booked, they all have quotas. Each hotel issues tickets in accordance with its own rules, but in most cases the chance to get into the lucky list depends on the length of your stay at the hotel. For those who are unlucky, any day you can see the underwater inhabitants near the islands of Kapalai and Mabul.
Diving in Sipadan is restricted to Advanced Open Water Divers or experienced divers with at least twenty dives.
Unfortunately, underwater cameras are not allowed. Also, you can not use gloves, so as not to damage the corals. Guests of Sipadan are provided with food, diving equipment, transfer from the resort and back, which will last from 15 minutes from Kapalai Island to 30 minutes if sailing from the city of Semporna.
A unique accommodation option offering daily diving permits in Sipadan except Sundays is accommodation aboard the MV Celebes Explorer. Its eight cabins can accommodate up to 16 divers. Every morning, a ship based off the island of Mabul arrives at 6 am to the island of Sipadan. This accommodation does not include the luxury of land-based hotels, but it will allow you to make up to 4 dives per day near Sipadan, one dive per week at Kapalai, a night dive near Mabul Island and a day near Siamil Island.
Recommended to book a trip in advance as small island hotels can be full.
A new diving resort located in the Semporna Marine Park. In fact, these are two islands connected by a sandy spit, along which you can walk on foot at low tide. On the larger island — Besare — located private hotel Mataking Reef Dive Resort. The small island – Kesil – is uninhabited. Real tropical jungle, white coral sand beaches and azure waves – all this creates an incredible, heavenly beauty.
The Reef Dive Resort offers accommodation in 5 villas, 8 chalets and 24 rooms, the maximum number of guests in the resort is only 32 people.
It is not easy to get to the hotel, you need to buy a diving package or a non-diving package, you need to book at least 2 nights. The “no shoes” rule applies throughout the complex. Jamu spa complex is located in the north of the island. The hotel fits perfectly into the surrounding landscape, and the rooms provide everything you need for a comfortable stay. 16 hectares allow guests to feel private, and “points of attraction” — a bar, a cafe and a dive center will not let you feel sad alone.
Mataking Island seems to be created for snorkelers and beginner divers. However, even more experienced divers will not be bored here.
The best time to travel is from February to November, the peak season is July-August.
You can get to the island from Kuala Lumpur, Singapore or from Kota Kinabalu. From these cities, you need to fly to Tawau, and then continue the trip to the port
city of Semporna. The boat ride from Semporna to Matake takes about 40 minutes.
The underwater world of Mataking is incredibly diverse. Here you can see blue-ringed octopus, blue-spotted stingray, flaming cuttlefish, clown fish, frog fish, stone fish, seahorses, moray eels, parrot fish, red-toothed triggerfish.
Much attention is paid to the safety of divers. The first, trial, dive is always carried out under the guidance of an experienced instructor on the “house” reef.
If desired, a trip to Sipadan Island can be organized from the island.
The island is located in the Sulu Sea, in the northeast of Borneo, almost at the border with the Philippines. It is part of the Marine Protected Area. Four and a half hectares of the island are covered with tropical forest and surrounded by white sandy beaches.
Accommodation on the island is possible in 23 chalets of the only hotel — Lankayan Dive Island Resort.
The best time to visit the island is from February to September, with the monsoon season starting in November. From March to May, there is a lot of plankton and sand in the water, but at this time there is a high probability of meeting whale sharks.
You can get to the island by boat from the city of Sandakan, the largest Malaysian port on the Sulu Sea, in one and a half to two hours.
Diving in Lankayan is interesting not only for exotic species of fish, octopuses and crabs, the opportunity to meet whale sharks, but also for the presence of three sunken ships in the immediate vicinity of the island – Lankayan Wreck, Jetty Wreck, Mosquito Wreck, descents to which will delight researchers.
< p>This island is also a great place for snorkelers. The coral reefs around the island are filled with life. Here you can enjoy meeting with exotic fish and turtles.
The minus of the island is the presence of a poisonous species of jellyfish — physalium
From July to October, green turtles and hawksbill, the only representative of the genus Eretmochelys, lay their eggs on the beaches of the island. There is a turtle study station here.
Ask our consultants for individual tours to Malaysia.