One best and unique place in the world to go for scuba diving in Sipadan Island. This is the single oceanic island you will find in Malaysia. It is a home to numerous fish and sea animals. It is also very rare to find sea turtles but you will get see them in Sipadan. It is a little challenging to tour this Island since the only place to get accommodation is in other islands in its surroundings such as Kapalai and Mabul. It has become even more challenging to dive on the island since you will have to be given a permit. You get the permit to Sipadan Island by booking a non-diving or a diving package.
The regulations here only allow 120 people to dive per day and thus it is crucial to book in advance. Another thing that you need to know is that accommodation in Kapalai and Mabul is a little expensive. Sometimes you will find the facilities in the two islands fully booked and end up staying at Semporna village. The fishing village is the entry point not only to Sipadan but also to Mataking, Kapalai, and Mabul which are other great spots for scuba diving. Semporna has numerous fish eateries where you can get awesome food through some people find it a little dull.
How To Get To Sipadan Island
Taking a flight is the easiest and best way to get to Sipadan. This flight will land you at Tawau. You will then take a minivan or a taxi to get to Semporna and the journey is approximately one hour. From here you can take a jetty to Sipadan islands. Making a reservation with a luxurious resort in Sipadan surrounding includes transportation to Tawau. You can travel to Tawau from Kota Kinabalu by taking a flight which will take you a shorter time.
When To Take A Trip To Sipadan
There isn’t a definite time of the year to visit the Sipadan Island for you can dive any time of the year. There is no low season on the island. However, the weather is a little unsettled in January and march and thus there will be more currents when diving. You can dive to 50m in the months of June and April. Turtles lay eggs in Sipadan beaches in the months of August and May.
Scuba Diving In Sipadan
Diving in Sipadan will give you an opportunity to encounter with several sea creatures and fish. Some of the sea animals you will come along area group of tunas, eagle rays, giant mantas, humphead parrotfishes, several turtles, big eyed trevallies, different types of sharks and the list is endless. The rates of diving are Sipadan are quite high compared to the other diving spots in Malaysia. You will be charged over RM120 to dive in Sipadan. Make sure to dive into schools with proper permits. You can dive any time between 6 am and 4 pm and not earlier or later than this. The regulations in Sipadan do not allow people to dive at night.
Permit Based Scuba Diving
Sabah National Parks begun to use Scuba diving permits began to be used in 2005. Their aim for introducing the permit was to reduce tourism footprints on this pristine destination for scuba diving. The permits would also make sure that this spot for scuba diving will remain as fabulous in the many coming years. Sipadan decided to close the many small resorts to safeguard the environment. Permits to get to Sipadan are not given on the spot. You will need to do an early booking. You are also not guaranteed that you will get the permit to dive here. The permits in Sipadan are not sold before. They are circulated to the resorts in the surrounding and you will be given a day or some few days prior to your dive. The main aim of taking a trip to Sipadan is to dive and thus you should make sure you do not miss a permit for it. you can also dive in other islands such as Mataking, Kapalai, and Mabul and the experience will just be as great as that of Sipadan. These three Islands are perfect for people who love muck diving.
Accommodation In Sipadan, Mabul, And Semporna
Sipadan Island on itself does not have accomodations and thus you will need to get accommodation in the surrounding Islands. Be ready to pay several dollars per night in these exclusive resorts. The cost is, however, worth it for you will be able to dive into the world’s best diving spot. Semporna has some of the most affordable accommodation and thus ideal for budget travelers. For instance, a standard room in Borneo Global Sipadan Backpackers will cost you RM90 for a night while a night in a dorm will cost you RM22. Accommodation in Mabil is also inexpensive for a night can be charged RM120 in My Scuba Diver’s Mabul Homestay. This cost is for an ordinary room with an aircon and solo travelers are not charged more. ensure you make the reservations in advance since most restaurants only have few rooms as guesthouses.