Sipadan Island

Dive Map Sipadan Island Semporna Sabah

Description :
Ever since the late Jacques Yves Cousteau raved about Sipadan’s biodiverse marine life, this diving mecca is indisputably one of the most sought-after dive destinations in the world. Strong currents and steep walls plunging 2000m down are the hallmarks of Sipadan, giving you a diving experience like no other. Please note that visits to Sipadan Island are on a permit basis, up to 120 permits per day, therefore it’s best to plan your trip well in advance to increase your chances of securing a permit.
Where is it :
Semporna, Sabah, East Malaysia
Number of dive sites :
Type of Diving :
Guided – boat, deep, drift, cave diving
Skill Level :
Intermediate to advanced
Main Diving Attraction :
One of the world’s premier dive destination synonymous with the ultimate diving experience known for its world-renowned wall diving and pelagics. Common sightings include: various sharks, eagle rays, devil rays, manta rays, schooling (read: tornado-like formations) barracudas and big-eye trevallies, bumphead parrot fish, turtles, and the list go on…

* Not to mention its close proximity to one of the world’s muck diving mecca (Mabul Island) and one of Sabah’s macro ‘paradise’ – Kapalai Island

Average Water Temperature :
27°C (80.6°F) to 30°C (86.0°F)
Seasonality :
All year round (ideal months to go between April to December)
Typical Visibility :
10m (32ft) to 30m (98ft)
General Current Conditions :
Mild to strong
Family / Non-Diver Friendly :
Availability of Other Leisure Activities :
Availability of ATM / Foreign Exchange Bureau :
None in Sipadan. Available at Semporna.
Availability of Medical Facility :
None in Sipadan. Available at Semporna.

* Kindly note that as of 2005, a quota has been imposed on Sipadan Island with a maximum of 120 (divers and non-divers) to Sipadan daily. It is highly recommended to book your trip well ahead of time.

Here are some of our favorite dive sites 🙂
Barracuda Point :
• Maximum depth: 40m
• Currents: Moderate to strong
Regularly voted as one of the best dive sites in the world. There’s simply nothing like being engulfed by a tornado of barracudas in the thousands. You will also see dozens of turtles in one dive, schools of white tip sharks, batfish, jacks, and everything from nudibranchs to hammerhead sharks.
South Point :
• Maximum depth: 40m
• Currents: Strong
Dive down a wall filled with brilliant colored corals. Strong currents wrap around the island making it a magnet for pelagics such as schooling grey reef sharks. Sometimes you may even see the hammerheads or thresher sharks here. Rays are also common, from eagle rays to devil rays, and also the manta rays. Thousands of reef fish add color to every dive. The dives are often done deep, but the shallow area should not be underestimated, leaf scorpionfish can be spotted, along with porcelain crabs, anemone shrimps, bubble shrimps and more. Turtles are almost a guaranteed sighting.
Turtle Tomb :
• Maximum depth: 23m
• Currents: Mild to moderate
If you’re a certified cave diver, this is a special dive every cave diver must see once in your life. This dive site is a cave system located after Turtle Cavern, which goes all the way through the island. The Turtle Tomb’s floor is about 8m wide, covered with a thick layer of sand and dust composed of numerous turtle skeletons, as unfortunate turtles got lost in the cavern system, resulting in death from asphyxia. There is also remains of a dolphin.
West Ridge :
• Maximum depth: 40m
• Currents: Moderate
The west side of Sipadan is the deepest part of the island, plunging 2000 meters straight down. Needless to say these walls are steep! Drift diving is the name of the game here. While you may not see as many sharks as the other sites, you will be overwhelmed by the beauty and sheer sense of scale when diving here.
Drop Off :
• Maximum depth: 40m
• Currents: Moderate
This is in many ways the signature dive of Sipadan. The dive site is accessible from the beach where a 600m drop would welcome you to the underwater splendors that Sipadan has to offer. As you swim along, you can appreciate the hard and soft corals on one hand as schools of barracudas, mackerel, and batfish swim by on the other. Enjoy the wall’s overhangs but also keep an eye out for white tip reef sharks and the occasional leopard sharks.
Nearest Jetty :
Semporna Jetty
* Depending on your lodging locale, Sipadan is about 1hr away from Semporna, or around 20mins from Mabul and Kapalai Island.
Address :
Taman Bandar Semporna, 91308, Semporna, Sabah
Nearest Airport :
Tawau Airport (IATA: TWU)
Estimated Travel Time to Jetty from Tawau Airport :
1.5hrs (by car), with average one way taxi fares of ~RM100
Estimated Travel Time to Jetty from Kota Kinabalu :
8hrs (by car), or 10hrs (by bus) with average one way bus fare of ~RM80

Price reference based on 4D3N diving packages

  • Mabul Island, Semporna, Sabah

    Borneo Divers Mabul Resort

    Packages from RM2,940

    Founded in 1984, Borneo Divers is the pioneer of Sipadan and the first PADI 5 Star Resort in Mabul Island. Your best choice for dive travelers who seeks the best Sabah has to offer.

  • Kapalai Island, Semporna, Sabah

    Sipadan Kapalai Dive Resort

    Packages from RM4,181

    Exquisite water chalets on stilts above the shallow sandbanks of Ligitan Reef that spans almost a mile long stretching into the horizon offering the purest image of natural serenity.

  • Bum Bum Island, Semporna, Sabah

    ND Divers

    Packages from RM1,450

    Dive with the locals, that is their motto. A simple homestay styled dive center with its private house reef offering the best local experience around Semporna.

  • Mabul Island, Semporna, Sabah

    Seaventures Dive Rig

    Packages from RM3,600

    Looking for something unique? Seaventures is the world’s first oil rig module converted into a dive resort with a PADI 5 Star accreditation to its name with outstanding service and dive quality. Sipadan permits can be guaranteed with minimum stays of 3 nights.

  • If you are looking to travel to Semporna, you are inevitably looking for a weather forecast. So here’s a forecast for the next 7 days. Although weather forecasts are not always accurate with ever-changing weather patterns, it does provide a good guess on what’s to come. Every little bit helps! 😀



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