Destination Overview:
Malaysia is located in central Southeast Asia. It borders Thailand on the north, Singapore and Indonesia on the south and the Philippines on the east. It is composed of Peninsular Malaysia and the 2 states of Sabah and Sarawak on the northern part of Borneo island. It is one of the most pleasant and hassle-free places to visit in Southeast Asia. It offers great diving, sun-drenched beaches, enchanting islands, diverse flora and fauna, forest retreats and magnificent mountains.

Diving Details:
The legendary Sipadan Island should be on every diver’s life list. Jacques Cousteau called it an “untouched piece of art”. The coral is pristine and the reef inhabitants are colorful, widely varied, and plentiful. The dramatic drop-offs nearly all the way around the island form breathtaking walls that are fed by a healthy current, carrying with it lots and lots of big fish. Tremendous schools of jack and barracuda, bumphead parrotfish, sharks, and turtles are virtually guaranteed. You can expect to see turtles on almost every dive, munching, napping, or curiously checking out divers.

Insider Information:
Yes, Sipadan is the jewel in the crown of Malaysian diving, but it would be a shame to travel so far and not take a look at the other gems. A few minutes away are Kapalai Island, a critter haven of shallow coral communities and Mabul Island, one of the best “muck-diving” sites in the world! And then there are Layang Layang and Lankayan…..are you sure you don’t want to extend your stay?

Dive Operators

Dive Sites


image Borneo Divers Mabul Resort
image Sipadan Water Village
image Sipadan-Kapalai Dive Resort
image Lankayan Island Resort
image Layang Layang Island Resort


Non-Diving Activities

  • Tour Kuala Lumpur
  • Visit the Petronas Towers
  • Climb Mt. Kinabalu
  • Visit the Sepilok Orang Utan Sanctuary
  • Spot proboscis monkeys, hornbills, and other wildlife on a Kinabatangan river cruise
  • Go snorkeling
  • Golf a few of Malaysia’s finest courses
  • Visit Sarawak’s Gunung Mulu National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and home of the amazing Mulu Caves
  • Embark on a guided jungle trek through the Borneo Highlands
  • Visit a longhouse
  • Enjoy a spa treatment
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Frequently Asked Questions

Malaysia is located in the heart of Southeast Asia. It is divided into 2 main regions: Peninsular Malaysia which lies south of Thailand and East Malaysia which is north of Indonesia on the island of Borneo.

For divers, your entry into Malaysia will usually be through Kota Kinabalu. The flight from Los Angeles to Kota Kinabalu is approximately 19 hours and 35 minutes. If you fly into Kuala Lumpur, the flight will take between 19 and 20 hours.

Malaysia uses the Malaysian Ringgit. It comes in denominations of RM100, RM50, RM20, RM10, RM5, RM2, and RM1. There are coins of RM 50, 20, 10, 5, and 1. The February 2009 exchange rate between US dollar and Malaysian Ringgit is US $1.00 = RM 3.67.

Malay is the official language. English is widely spoken, as are Chinese dialects such as Mandarin and Cantonese.

You will need a passport that is valid for at least 6 months from date of entry. US citizens do not need a visa for stays not exceeding 3 months.

For legal reasons, we cannot make official recommendations regarding shots or immunizations. Please consult with your physician or visit for more information.

220-240 V, 50 Hz. Square three pin plugs are generally used. We recommend carrying your own adaptor or converter.

Please always check with your airline for luggage requirements and restrictions.

Yes, we always arrange for transfers to and from the airport. Your name and flight information will be given to a transfer company and they will be looking for you.

Mabul and Kapalai – Mabul is known for great muck diving, while Kapalai boasts great macro life. Both are excellent for photography. Most of the diving is at shallow depths ranging from 10-60 ft. You’ll see squid, cuttlefish, anemone shrimp, gobies with blind cleaner shrimp, porcelain crabs, juvenile batfish, harlequin ghost pipefish, mushroom coral pipefish, mandarin fish, dragonets and more.

Sipadan – This 40 acre island is surrounded by a pristine reef that plunges dramatically into the abyss nearly all the way around. The vertical topography and rich currents provide perhaps the best wall diving in the world! On an average day of diving, you’ll see 50 turtles, a dozen sharks, enormous schools of jacks and barracuda, and an abundance of reef fish and macro life.

Lankayan Island – It is a macroworld paradise with subjects like juvenile fishes, clown anemone fishes, decorator and spider crabs, coral shrimps, nudibranchs, prawn gobies, and rarer subjects like jawfish, ghost pipefish, and frogfish. Hard corals, soft corals, feather stars, sponges, and sea fans provide the backdrop. You may also spot schools of scad, yellow tail barracudas, and jacks. A few lucky divers have seen large rays, guitarfish, and manatees. There are even a few wrecks in the area.

Layang Layang – An atoll of 13 linked coral reefs that offers outstanding wall diving. A great place to catch hammerheads during their April and May mating rituals and whale sharks when in season. Known for great visibility, large animals, and drift dives. The resort closes between November and January.

While the water can get warm enough to go without, we recommend divers wear a 3mm wetsuit for protection.

Most dive sites are within a 15-20 minute boat ride of their respective resorts.

Sipadan Water Village offers 3 dives a day.
• Borneo divers offers 3 dives a day and unlimited beach diving.
• Sipadan Kapalai Dive Resort offers 3 dives a day – 2 dives at Sipadan, the last dive back at Mabul or Kapalai. Night dives and sunset mandarin fish dives are available free of charge with a dive buddy.
• Lankayan Island Resort offers 3 dives a day. Night dives and beach diving are available free of charge with a dive buddy.

Airport taxes, marine park fees, dive equipment rental

E-tickets and vouchers are sent approximately 3 weeks prior to your departure.