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Sabah, Malaysia

Mabul Snorkelling

The rays of sun pierce through the water to reveal a world of color. Schools of fusiliers and large eyed trevally, as well as all the small critters darting in and out of the coral, will have you captivated. But do hold your breath for an encounter with a turtle. Choose the provider that will show you the spots that you want to see most.

The snorkelling takes place on the islands around Semporna. To get to Semporna you need to arrive overland either from the Tawau airport which is about an hour away (which can be reached by flight from a few major city airports in Malaysia) or overland from within Borneo by bus transfer. Snorkel sites are reached via boat transfer in less than an hour from the Semporna jetty. The providers will provide water transport from Semporna jetty.

Other than providing all the necessary gear, an experienced guide can provide you a more relaxed and enjoyable experience by pointing out all the small (and sometimes big!) underwater creatures that you might otherwise miss.

Snorkelling is physically not very demanding, but you should have moderate levels of energy to swim/flounder in the water for a few hours. Swimming ability is not absolutely necessary, as you can wear a life jacket, but you should be comfortable in the water.

You can dive in Sabah all year round, however visibility can be slightly lower during monsoon season from November to March each year.

The activity usually starts at approximately 8am and ends between 4-5pm on the same day (depending on the option chosen).

The main difference is in the operator you go out with - they're all really friendly, so just pick the one that best matches with you!

Stop by Fat Mom's Restaurant for great local Chinese food while staying in Semporna. If you're looking for a place to stay, a cool spot to stay in Semporna is Aloha Hostel. It has futuristic pods, which are quite cozy and make you feel like you are helming a space ship while you sleep.