Borneo Divers Mabul Dive Resort

Mabul Island / Sabah


Tour Code : PA/050/SPD08

Located at the South Eastern coast of Sabah and about 20 minutes from Sipadan, 30-40 minutes (weather permitting) from Semporna, perched on the edge of the Continental Shelf lies the island of Mabul - rated as the "Mecca of Muck Diving". Mabul is surrounded by Celebes Seas with white sandy beaches. While the luxury scenic on top is enhanced by the new Borneo Divers Mabul Resort - pioneer in recreational diving tourism in Sabah and the Dive Resort management in Sipadan), the underwater at Mabul houses the most incredible marine habitats that even divers today continue to discover new stuff. 

Borneo Divers Mabul Resort boost of 30 units of semi-detached room, each with twin-share/ double beds and private verandah overlooking at the Celebes Sea. Air-conditioned and with private hot/ cold shower and bathrooms, ceiling fan, dressing table and ample spaces. Deluxe rooms are available with coffee/ tea making facilities, hair dryer and local sarong. The resort also offer 5 units of comfortable tents with air-conditioned for the adventures diver.

Facilities : restaurant, event hall (100 paxs theatre seeting), three (3) bars, recreational and sport facilities, professional underwater video and filming center, full service dive center, library and TV room. Swimming pool, Gazebo beach side massage, manicure and pedicure. Seadoo DPV (diver propulsion vehicle). Free wireless internet broadband access.



DAY 01
Meet and greet by Borneo Divers staff at the hotel lobby for flight MH 2121 @ 0700/ 0745 hrs for Tawau or meet at Tawau Airport at 7:45 a.m. in the morning. Transfer to Semporna by van/coach for approximately 1 hours journey. Arrive in Semporna and proceed to Mabul Island by boat around 10:00 a.m. for approximately 45 minutes to 1 hour journey, depending on the sea or weather condition. Expected to arrive Mabul Island at 11:00 a.m. and proceed for briefing, registration and check-in. Lunch will be serving at noontime. There will be 2 boat dives on your first day arrival and one of the boat dives will be an orientation dive with our Divemaster (Subject to 1st Schedule Arrival)

2nd Schedule Arrival - 2:20 p.m. from Tawau Airport to Semporna. From Semporna to Mabul Island will be at 4:00 p.m. NOTE: For those arrive on the 2nd Schedule Arrival will not be able to do any diving on the arrival day. They will do 3 boat dives on the 2nd day, one of which the boat dive is the orientation dive.


DAY 02, 03, 04
6 boat dives with our Professional Divemaster - Combination of Sipadan or Si Amil or Mantabuan or Kapalai Island.

3 boat dives with our Professional Divemaster - Mabul Island.

Total 9 Boat Dives with our Professional Divemaster

Unlimited Jetty House Reef Dive in Mabul Island

 Diving in Sipadan is NOT guaranteed. Sipadan Entry Permit is based on APPROVAL from the Government Authority; in this case we are referring to SABAH PARKS and MKN (Majlis Keselamatan Negara).

* Unlimited Jetty Buddy House Reef Dive is available at our new jetty. Please refer to the Terms and Conditions at the registration counter.

* The above PROPOSED Dive Itinerary is based on the current Quota system. Should there be any changes of quota allotment; the Proposed Dive Itinerary will be amended accordingly.

* The announcement of Sipadan Entry Permit Approval list is available 3 to 4 days before the actual diving date. THUS, the resort shall display the approval list (Namelist) 3 - 4 days ahead. Payment of Sipadan Entry Permit shall be made in the resort.

* The management reserves the right to amend or change the above proposed itinerary without advance notice. (This is due to the change of allotment of permit should there be any)

* Sipadan Dives subject to Quota and Weather permitting. Diving at Sipadan may be anytime of the day.


DAY 05
Free at leisure in the morning. Check-out. We have two departures from Mabul to Semporna. First Schedule at 06:00 a.m. and Second Schedule is at 11:00 a.m. NOTE: Advisable no diving on the last day. However, if you wish to do so, you will have to sign a separate Liability/ Release Waiver form. The latest recommendation from DAN, Training Agencies, etc., indicate that you should wait a minimum of 18 hours and sometimes up to 24 hours after diving before you fly. However, Borneo Divers recognizes that people, agencies and even computers/ tables differ on this. For those who do morning dive (one morning boat dive at MABUL ONLY) on day out. Please note Bar Bill must be settled the night before, all belongings must be cleared and checked out before the first morning boat dive.










3rd Pax Triple

 * Inclusive :
* Airport - Hotel return transfer within Kota Kinabalu on arrival and departure day
* Schedule land transfer from Tawau Airport to Semporna return by van / coach
  (1st Schedule - 07:45am and 2nd Schedule - 02:20pm)
* Schedule boat transfer from Semporna to Mabul Island return
* Semi-Detached chalet at Mabul Island
* 3 meals a day plus light snacks and beverages while at the Dive Resort
  (Except alcoholic and/ or carbonated soft drinks)
* 3 boat dives a day between Mabul, Kapalai, Sipadan, Si Amil or Mantabuan Island
   with our Professional Divemaster (Refer Proposed Dive Itinerary)
* Unlimited Jetty House Reef Dive (Conditions Applied)
* Boat, tanks, weight and weighbelt


* Note :
* Excluded Sipadan Entry Permit RM 40.00 per person per day

* FOC 10 + 1. FOC will require to pay RM 450.00 for Boat and Land Transfer Fee
* General Rate - group of 8 person and above, please email us for special rate.

* Child 12 years old and above is chargeable on Adult Rate Per Night
* Child below 12 years old will be Triple-Sharing with Parents / Guardian
* Child below 4 years old is Free of Charge (Triple-Sharing with Parents / Guardian)

* Unscheduled Tawau to Semporna land transfer (FIT) is chargeable.
* Tawau Airport to Tawau Hotel (FIT & Group) are chargeable.
* Any other changes will refer to our " General Information " update from time to time


* Quota System :
The resort is having 14 quotas at the moment to enter Sipadan island.  (Should there be any changes of our quota allotment ).  The resort maximum capacity is 60 pax house in 30 units of chalet.  Under super peak period which is over 50 pax capacity, we are sure with every 5 days 4 nights package we are able to offer our guest 1 day diving experience in Sipadan which is normally 4 tank dives or we term it 4 boat dives with our professional dive master. 

If during NON super peak period, you will be able to dive more than 1 day in Sipadan.  This is how it works - If the resort have only 30 pax on location, the permit is 14 per day, with 2 days rotation, 14 x 2 days we actually able to bring all the guests to dive at Sipadan every 2 1/4 days during your 5 days 4 nights stay.  Thus you have more than 1 day chance to dive at Sipadan or another word you will probably dive at Sipadan at 1 1/2 day or 2 days, this is all depend if you get the extra sipadan permit on which day of your trip, if you get the extra day in between than you will have 2 full days or 8 boat dives.

If you get the extra permit on the last night and check out the next day, you will do only maximum 2 boat dives with the second permit as you need to fly out the next noon.  Unless otherwise you are not flying out instead overnight in Semporna or Tawau.


Information :


HOW TO GET THERE You will fly from Kota Kinabalu to Tawau (40 minutes) and then take a coach of about 90 minutes to a coastal fishing town of Semporna, from here you are ferried to Mabul Island in about 30-40 minutes.



Situated only about 15 minutes by speedboat from Sipadan, and 30 minutes from mainland Semporna, Mabul is recognized as one of the world's best "muck-diving" sites, has a shallow reef profile with sandy bottom and patches of sea grass and also one of the richest single destinations for exotic small marine life in the world.

The coral reefs at first glance do not look very picturesque and inviting, however it is the diversity of macro animals inhabiting the coral rubble and sea grass sites that put Mabul on the diving map. Flamboyant cuttlefish, blue-ringed octopus, mimic octopus, gobies and frogfishes are everywhere, as are moray, snake eels and practically the whole scorpion fish family. There's no doubt about it, Mabul is a magical macro site! The beauty of Mabul will also appeal greatly to non - divers as well.

There are about 8 dive sites in Mabul area such as: -

* Eel Garden (18 - 20 m)
* Ray Point (15 - 25 m)
* Panglima Reef (5 - 20 m)
* Lobster Wall (40 - 75 m)
* Nudibranch Centre
* Crocodile Avenue (2 - 15 m)
* Froggy Lair (5 - 20 m)
* Coral Reef Garden (5 - 15 m)
Some of the dive sites' descriptions are...



~ Located towards the southern end of Pulau Mabul. Eel Garden is one of the deeper dives around the area. Divers descend to a sandy flat between 20 to 25 metres sloping towards the open sea.

~ Fining carefully and avoiding stirring up the silty bottom, divers can observe gobies seeking refuge in the tiny crevices and moray eels occupying larger holes. Looking towards the sandy patch, you will see what appear to be blades of long grass swaying with the current. These are the elusive garden eels (Heteroconger Hassi) living in colonies that quickly dart back into their burrows on approaching shadows or excessive movement in the water.



Also located on the southern tip of Pulau Mabul, this site slopes to about 30 metres at the sandy bottom. Currents sweeping through this point bring clear water and good visibility. Sea fans and soft corals that thrive in current areas are home to gobies, blennies, moray eels, butterfly fish, damselfish, parrotfish and stonefish (Synanceia Verrucosa).



Mabul, Crocodile Avenue: Flat sandy area from 5m to 20m. It is a sandy area, so there are empty stretches of sand with oases of life. Our dive guide found some seahorses there every time. The absolute record was 8 seahorses. Then there are sand eels, double-ended pipefish, crocodile fish, special tube anemones, ghost pipefish (Harlequin- and Sea grass-), cowfish etc. I even saw some turtles, humpback parrotfish, barracudas, mackerels and a small eagle ray there. Night dives are also very good here. We found lots of sepias, cuttlefish and special nudibranchs (for example the Spanish Dancer, Asteronotus c.) and lots of crabs. One of the highlights was a small boxer crab, found on some rubble.



Mabul, Seaventures Platform: Flat sandy area on about 17m. This is an old oil platform that has been converted into a hotel owned by Seaventures Dive Resort. It stands on huge pillars. You dive underneath in 17m of water. An amazing dive site! There are several piles of metal rods, look close, and there are always several frogfish (yellow to red, black and gray) sitting on them. Inside the largest pile there is a huge moray eel. His head must have a diameter of about 15cm! Then we also found: ghost pipefish (Harlequin and sea grass), wasp fish, nudibranchs (Halgerda, Cromodoris etc.), stonefish, flying gurnard and close to the pillars always lots of batfish and flute fish.



Mabul, Lobster Wall: Wall, some small caverns. There are many nudibranchs, anemones, shrimps and in a small cave I even found a baby cowfish. Great night dives.



~ Sipadan Island has 11 Marked Dive Sites. All dives are Wall Dives. The following are brief descriptions of some of the sites and marine life you can expect to see.



Just 20 feet from the shore, the wall plunges a staggering 2,000 feet down and is rated as one of the top 5 Beach Dives in the world. The wall is encrusted with different varieties of coral, turtles abound and a multitude of lionfish & smaller reef dwelling fish live on this wall. The entrance to TURTLE CAVERN is also found about 70ft down along this wall.



There is usually a very strong current present at this site. Dives here can take you through up to three marked sites. Very large shoals of pelagic feed here (Barracuda, Jacks, Sharks and Turtles). On the upper reef, a multitude of smaller reef fish abound. Coral is bursting with color, many huge Anemone and Clown Fish at this site.



This wall is covered in a multitude of soft coral. Hawksbill & Green Turtles live on the ledges at this site and the current is usually quite calm. A great spot for photography as colorful corals hang from the interesting cracks and crevices along the wall.



This site is home to a huge number of Hawksbill & Green Turtles. Many reef sharks also frequent this site. It is rather barren in comparison to some of the other sites, but triggerfish and other reef fish dwell on the upper coral reef, making it a well-rounded site.



As the name suggests, Barracuda Point is where a large concentration of Pelagic's converge. Except to see large shoals of Barracuda, Jacks, Grey and White Tip Reef Sharks. The schools number in the high hundreds. Current is strong. It is a fast moving, high voltage dive site.



As with al the sites on Sipadan Island, the name says it all. Expect to see huge Black & White Tip Reef Sharks, Grey Sharks, massive Green & Hawksbill Turtles as well as large shoals of Jack & Barracuda.





Kapalai, Mandarin Valley: Slope to about 20 metres, hard corals then sand with small underwater mound. This dive site has its name from a dragonet that can be found there and that has a beautiful color like the clothes of the Chinese mandarins. It lives during the day under the spines of sea urchins. Go out to the small underwater mound - there were several leaf fish there last time. Leaf fish can shed their skin and in such a way adjust to the surrounding reef. I saw one, where some yellow ascidians were growing on his skin right over the eye. There is also a mushroom coral (Heliofungia a.) on the sand with some white anemone pipefish (Siokunichthys n.) living inside.



Kapalai, Ray Channel: This is a sandy channel with the reef on one side. The special fish, you find here and nowhere else in Mabul is the dragon fish (Pegasus). This small animal lives in pairs on sand and feeds on invertebrates. There are some leaf fish; a spiny devilfish lives close by and there is a small baby-angelfish.


1. Maratua Reef
2. Celebes Reef
3. East Point
4. Snoway Point
5. Danawan Small Wall.  

NOTE: Soft Coral, Hard Coral, Marine life such as frogfish, nudibranch and almost the same as Mabul Island but more to Micro Dive.



1. Mantabuan Reef
2. Coral Garden
3. Kapitan Reef (Sandy bottom)


NOTE: Most of the dives are Muck Dive and sloopy reef down to 50 to 60 meter. Marine life such as barracuda, turtle and the rest similar with Si Amil.



Ping Anchorage Travel & Tours Sdn. Bhd.
77A, Jalan Sultan Sulaiman, 20000 Kuala Terengganu, Terengganu, Malaysia.
Tel : (609) 626 2020  Fax : (609) 626 2022 / 622 8093 E-mail :
(KPL/LN2117 / 209874W)