Scuba Diving and Snorkelling Holidays in
Sabah, Malaysian Borneo
Ideal for: Singles, groups, couples and families of all diving and snorkelling abilities"
Sabah is situated on the north east corner of the island of Borneo, with coasts on the South China, Sulu and Celebes Seas, and is teeming with some of the most diverse marine life in the world. Borneo has long been a dream destination for those wanting to get out into the wild and experience something different, and in recent years has sprung to the forefront in the minds of divers, and for good reason.
Situated right in the middle of the "Coral Triangle" and with nutrients brought up from the depth by strong currents, Sabah's dive destinations attract an array of underwater life. There is phenomenal reef life at the more remote sites such as Sipadan and Layang Layang where giant Whale Sharks, Manta Rays and Devil Rays cruise for plankton. Grey Reef Sharks hang in the current, White Tip Reef Sharks rest in preparation for the evening hunt and Turtles and Bumphead Parrotfish graze on the reefs, and at the right time of year Hammerheads show up to excite divers.
There is also some great muck and macro sites in Mabul and Kapalai, where the fringing reefs hide gems such as Blue Ring Octopus, Flamboyant Cuttlefish, Pipefish, Seahorses, Frogfish and more. This diversity makes Borneo the ideal destination for divers and snorkelers.
- Sipadan is a permanent feature in the top five dive destinations in the world, and for good reason. The currents swirling around the seamount drive nutrients up from the depths creating the perfect environment for coral to grow and flourish, and with it comes the reef life on a scale that most divers will not have experienced anywhere else. As Sipadan Island is a protacted marine park, there is no accommodation on the island itself, but the island of Mabul and Kapalai with thier idyllicvbungalows on stilts are close by.
- Mabul and Kapalai are often somewhat overlooked as dive destinations in themselves and seem to only serve as a jumping off point for Sipadan, but the diving off these and the surrounding islands is fantastic, with a mixture of coral, artificial reefs and muck diving. While the reefs don't have the wow factor of Sipadan, they have just as much to offer especially to those looking for the weird and wonderful.
- Layang Layang is part of the Spratley Islands and its remote location provides pristine reef and great biodiversity with fewer divers and the possibility of some pelagic encounters with Hammerhead Sharks, Whale Sharks and Manta Rays.
- Experience Level: All
- Big Stuff:*****
- Reef Life:*****
- Life on Land:***
- Budget: £££
- Time: GMT + 7-8hrs
- Flying Time: 14-18hrs (twin centre recommended)
- Language: Bahasa Malaysia
- Climate: Malaysia has a hot and humid, tropical climate. The dry season on the east coast of the peninsular runs from the end of March to November and this is the time to visit as some of the islands completely shut down to tourists during the off season. Malaysian Borneo has year round diving weather.
- Currency: Malaysian Ringgit £1 = MYR 5
- Visa Requirements: A 90-day holiday visa is granted on arrival for many EU passport holders