Kapalai Island

An alternative to the more popular Mabul and Sipadan Island, you visit this island for the same diving reasons as the former and the latter. However, if you’re considering something more romantic, this island has to be it. There’s a water bungalow for accommodation here.

Recommend
The icing on the cake here is – you’ll find the white sandy beaches during the low tide, which also happens to form romantic paths for you lovebirds. Reefs and marine life aplenty. Just as stunning as Mabul and Sipadan, this island is no flop.

Season
It’s open all year round, so hop in now!

Miri City

Who says you need an island as the natural setting for your diving trip? And who says the water in Miri is polluted by the oil and gas industry? Folks, one trip is all we need to prove you wrong. The water off the coast of Miri boasts both nature and wrecks for divers who craves both.

Access
Miri is easily accessible from Kuala Lumpur and Singapore as there are direct flights from the former and the latter’s international airport. Make your way to Marina Bay Jetty of Miri and you will have access to the dive sites from there.

Recommend
Jump into the sea with no sights of shore and island. As far as we are concerned, divers usually flock to other more well-known islands like Perhentian and Sipadan. However, dive sites here could be a sunken oil rig, or a giant rock 50m in depth under the sea. Corals here are also one of the healthiest in the world. Come over now and witness it for yourself, we will prove you wrong.

Gemia Island

It’s more fair to say, this paradise is a new born tourism spot. This tiny little island is blessed with a coral garden and a very colourful marine life.

Access
It’s situated only 800m off Pulau Kapas, which is accessible via the town of Marang. As of now, this island is still less known to tourist. If you’re a good swimmer, you can even swim around the island as it’s only 9 acres of size. Birdwatching is the main draw on this island, as sightings of eagles are common here. Wildlife just thrives on this small piece of rock here.

Season
The same thing applies, no visit during rainy season.

Recommend
To date, there’s only one resort on the island. However, the same cannot be said for the future as the number of tourists is raising.Before it gets crowded, now’s the best time to enjoy this hidden gem.

Semporna Town

Similar to Kota Kinabalu, this city serves as a stopover and a departing point to the islands by the shores of Borneo in Celebes Sea. One way or the other, this city attracts youthful travellers from around the world. They have come to experience the unique Borneo culture and most of all, to hop onto the number one diving spot in the world, Sipadan Island. Tun Sankaran Marine Park can be a refreshing stopover spot before one moves on to the one of the many islands out there.

Access
The city is just an hour’s drive away from Tawau Airport, Sabah. Sibuan, Kapalai, Mataking, Sipadan, and so on are all paradise like islands which you should highly consider during your stay in the city.

Mataking Island

This island possesses areas which are becoming to be one of the most famous diving spots off the east coast of Sabah.

Access
This paradise is accessible via Semporna Jetty. Marine life encounter and sightings are as common as it gets, while divers can expect a combination of slope and wall diving.

Recommend
Wildlife conservation is also a big thing here. Be vigilant you fellow divers. The island is open 365 days a year, we welcome all. Swim over now!

Payar Island

One of the finest dive spots in the west coast of Peninsular Malaysia, this water around this island boasts a protected marine park with a variety of fishes for the appreciation of divers and snorkelers alike.

Access
Finding your way to this island is simple. Pulau Payar is just a speed boat away from Langkawi Island.

Recommend
As stated above, this area is protected marine park. Be it scuba diving or snorkelling, expect to find plenty of reef and fish here. This region is beginner friendly, so first timers are welcome! Also, there’s no monsoon interruption in this part of the world. If you’re already feeling bored with the commercialized atmosphere of Langkawi, speed off on your speed boat to Payar Island, instantly!

Sapi Island

Sapi is one of the five islands making up the Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Park, a national park established in 1974 covering 50 sq km of the islands and their surrounding reefs.

Access
Sapi Island is one of the most popular places in Sabah to swim, snorkel and relax and it is just 20 minutes boat ride away from Kota Kinabalu. 

Sibuan Island

Sibuan Island is said to be one of the most beautiful islands in the Celebes Sea. It is part of the Tun Sakaran Marine Park (also known as Semporna Islands Park), which contains the following islands besides Sibuan; Bodgaya, Boheydulang, Tetagan, Sebangkat, Selakan, Maiga and Mantabuan. There are no resorts on the islands, and also no public facilities. A few sea gypsies live on the island; unfortunately clearly noticeable by the rubble they often leave behind on the island. Fortunately diving schools in the area organize occasional reef and beach cleanup sessions. 

Don't forget to bring enough water and snacks with you when you visit the island. A visit to Sibuan Island is usually part of a day trip from one of the other islands (like Mataking), or part of a day trip from Semporna (at Sabah's southeast coast). Sibuan is especially great for swimming, scuba diving, snorkeling and sun bathing.

Teluk Dalam Village

Considered the best beach on Redang and one of the best in Malaysia, this private beach is home to the exclusive Taaras Beach & Spa Resort (previously known as the Berjaya Redang Beach Resort). The sand is soft and clean and the sea is calm (at least it was during our stay). Rocky outcrops at each end of the beach attract some colorful fish but this is not the best beach for snorkeling unless you hire a boat to take you to the nearby coral gardens.

Pom Pom Island

Access
Pom Pom Island is around 45 minutes by boat from Semporna, Borneo’s coast; it has rich tropical vegetation and is surrounded by white sand and the turquoise waters of the Celebes Sea. It is on part of this beautiful island that Pom Pom Island finds it home.

Recommendation
This little atoll, which takes about an hour to walk around, is often a shelter for both Green and Hawksbill marine turtles that during the night return to the beach to nest. During your vacation, if you are lucky, you might witness the hatching of the eggs and release of baby turtles to the sea.