The dive site of Sipadan is one of the top 5 places to go to as a diver. Its extreme beauty and marine diversity has been discovered for the first time by J. Cousteau in the early years. The island of Sipadan has a huge reef all around with a massive wall that goes 600 meters deep, decorated by the most beautiful hanging corals and fishes.
Diving in Mabul and Sipadan was the final destination of our trip to Malaysia. It lies on the south-west end of the Malaysian Borneo region. The island of Mabul is the central hub to go diving all around in the region. It is a small island filled with dive shops, some local Malaysians and a lot of Filipino refugees having found a home there. The big contradictions are typical there; such a beauty underwater and still the beaches are full of garbage of all kinds. The locals don’t really care, having dumped everything in the sea for generations and without proper ecological education and knowledge, they will continue doing so in the future. Underwater there is the most spectacular marine bio-diversity a man can dream about: anemone fish, batfish, cowfish, damselfish, pipefish, stingrays, eagle rays, moray eels, loads of nudibranches (colorful sea slugs), frogfish, crocodile fish, groupers, sweetlips, cuttlefish, big turtles, and loads of reef sharks. The highlight for me was the encounter with a flying gurnard (which I didn’t know existed) and a Leopard shark swimming 20 meters under me!
Even if you don’t have a diver’s license there is plenty to see just by snorkeling around the island! I can really recommend the dive shop “Scuba Jeff”. He is such a great guy and the most welcoming place on the island Mabul. He is a great guy, local diver, and party animal! To get there you need to go to Semporna, witch is the main hub from where all the boats leave. Its 2 hours away from Tawau Airport and 8 hours from Kota Kinabalu. So, have a lot of fun fish watching and if you ever go there, let me know all about it!