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Dive Malaysia/Borneo » Mabul Island

Scuba Diving Mabul Malaysia - Dive Adventures AustraliaScuba Diving Mabul Malaysia - Dive Adventures AustraliaScuba Diving Mabul Malaysia - Dive Adventures Australia





Mabul Island is located off Semporna, just a 20 minute boat ride away from Sipadan Island. The small, coconut-palm covered tropical island is surrounded by sandy beaches. Previously there was only a small a fishing village on the island. However, due to its proximity to Sipadan, Mabul has become populated with dive resorts, homestays and backpacker accommodation and now contains two villages built on stilts extending over the water.  There is a mosque, school, community and fishermen’s hall on the island.

Mabul is considered to be one of the world’s best “muck diving” sites and a macro haven for its diversity of tiny exotic marine life.

  • Mabul Geographical Information

    The oval shaped island of Mabul is located 12 km from Sipadan off the south-eastern coast of Sabah. Perched on the corner of a 200 hectare reef, and right on the edge of the Continental Shelf, the sea bed surrounding the reef slopes out to a depth of 25 – 30 metres.

    To reach Mabul Island, you will need to take a flight from Kuala Lumpur or Kota Kinabalu to Tawau. From Tawau Airport it is a 90 minute road transfer to Semporna Jetty. From Semporna, a 45 minute to 1 hour boat transfer will have you reaching your dive resort.

  • Things to do in Mabul

    Most visitors come to Mabul purely for the quality of the scuba diving and snorkeling right on its doorstep. Underwater photographers enjoy the macro photography opportunities found around Mabul and Kapalai, whilst reveling in wide angle options to capture the pelagics and reef wall around nearby Sipadan Island.

  • When to Travel to Mabul

    Mabul’s climate is equatorial/tropical — generally hot and sunny all year round. Scattered, unpredictable rains can occur frequently.

    Diving in Mabul is conducted on a year-round basis with the best conditions occurring outside the rainy season of December and March. Visibility is better outside of the rainy season too, with March to September being the best months for visibility, although anytime is good to view the macro life.

    Water temperature is consistently around 27°C to 29°C.

    Mabul is a popular destination with the local Malaysian and Asian market, so if you’re planning on traveling between March to August, Christmas, New Year and Chinese New Year, it is recommended to book well in advance.

  • Hotels and Resorts in Mabul

    Borneo Divers Mabul Resort Borneo Divers Mabul Resort
    On Mabul Island
    Budget: $$S
    Pool: Yes
    Beach/Beachfront: Yes
    Bar: 3
    Restaurant: 1
    Wifi: Yes
    Onsite Shop: Yes
    Gym: No
    Spa: No (Beach massage available)
    Onsite Dive Centre: Yes
    Sipadan Mabul Resort Sipadan Mabul Resort
    On Mabul Island (sister property to Mabul Water Bungalows)
    Budget: $$$$
    Pool: Yes
    Beach/Beachfront: Yes
    Bar: 2
    Restaurant: 1
    Wifi: Yes
    Onsite Shop: Yes
    Gym: No
    Spa: No
    Onsite Dive Centre: Yes
    Mabul Water Bungalows Mabul Water Bungalows
    On Mabul Island (sister property to SMART)
    Budget: $$$$
    Pool: No
    Beach/Beachfront: overwater
    Bar: Yes
    Restaurant: 1
    Wifi: Yes
    Onsite Shop: Yes
    Gym: No
    Spa: Yes
    Onsite Dive Centre: Yes
    Sipadan Water Village Sipadan Water Village
    On Mabul Island
    Budget: $$$$$
    Pool: No
    Beach/Beachfront: overwater
    Bar: yes
    Restaurant: 1
    Wifi: Yes
    Onsite Shop: Yes
    Gym: No
    Spa: (massage service)
    Onsite Dive Centre: Yes
    Seaventures Dive Rig Seaventures Dive Rig
    Near Mabul Island
    Budget: $$$
    Pool: No
    Beach/Beachfront: No (over the sea)
    Bar: Yes
    Restaurant: Yes
    Wifi: Yes
    Onsite Shop: Yes
    Gym: No
    Spa: No
    Onsite Dive Centre: Yes
  • Scuba Diving in Mabul

    Scuba Diving Mabul Malaysia - Dive Adventures AustraliaAlthough Mabul is within close proximity to Sipadan, the seascape and the diving is completely different. Mabul is renowned for being one of the best “muck-diving” sites in the world. There is an almost endless list of small, exotic marine life critters residing around this wonderous island. Most diving is in calm, shallow waters with an average depth of only 10 metres. A few sites slope down to 30 metres.

    There are numerous types of cephalapods including cuttlefish, blue ringed octopus, mimic octopus and bobtail squids. Crustaceans include boxer crabs, sea stars and harlequin shrimp. Giant painted and clown frogfish are plentiful. Moray eels and many types of snake eels, along with almost the entire scorpion fish family also inhabit the area.

    Scuba Diving Mabul Malaysia - Dive Adventures AustraliaDifferent types of gobies can be found such as the spike-fin, black sail-fin as well as the metallic shrimp goby. A huge assortment of nudibranchs and many other interesting critters can be easily spotted in this magical macro area.

     

     

     

    Mabul popular dives sites.

    Crocodile Avenue

    Scuba Diving Mabul Malaysia - Dive Adventures AustraliaA flat sandy area from 5 - 20 metres. Seahorses, crocodile fish, garden eels, pipefish, humpback, parrotfish, cuttlefish, nudibranchs and lots of crabs can be found here.

    Lobster Wall

    There are a collection of small caverns in the wall which slopes down to 20 metres, providing homes for hydroids, nudibranchs, anemones and shrimp. Currents can be strong along this colourful reef. This is a great location for night diving.

    Ray Point

    Look out for the resident crocodile fish resting on the coral or a patch of sand. On the sandy bottom you can see lots of garden eels poking their heads out over the sand. Blue spotted stingrays also hunt for food here.

    From Mabul, the dive boats also head out to the dive sites around Kapalai and Sipadan.

     

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