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Mataking and Sipadan are two of Borneo’s finest diving locations and combine well for an excellent twin centre itinerary.

Mataking, together with the surrounding islands of Pandanan and Bohayan, boasts over 30 dive sites; from slope diving at the western shores, offering macro fauna and nudibranch heaven, to wall diving at the eastern shore, offering pelagic marine life in the Alice Channel which is over 100 metres deep.

Sipadan's varied marine topography makes it an astonishing place to dive, with caves, walls, canyons, plateaux and overhangs attracting a variety of pelagics such as manta and eagle rays, scalloped hammerhead and whale sharks. Green, hawksbill and leatherback turtles are also regular inhabitants of Sipadan Island

Please note the UK foreign office advice currently relating to this region. Please speak to our dive team for further advice and information.

Suggested itinerary

  1. Day 1: Depart the UK for Tawau

    Depending on flight schedules, an overnight may be required in Kuala Lumpur or Kota Kinabalu.

  2. Days 2-8 : Arrive and transfer to Mataking Island

    Transfer by road and boat to the Reef Dive Resort for a 7 night stay. 

    Mataking and the surrounding islands of Pandanan and Bohayan, boast over 30 dive sites; from slope diving at the western shores, offering macro fauna and nudibranch heaven, to wall diving at the eastern shore, offering pelagic marine life in the Alice Channel which is over 100 metres deep.

  3. Days 9-15 : Mabul and Sipadan

    Transfer to your chosen resort in Mabul for a seven night stay. We recommened SMART Resort, Sipadan Water Village or Mabul Water Bungalows.

    Mabul Island is only a 15 minute boat ride from Sipadan and, like Kapalai, is famous for its macro diving and has gained a reputation as one of the best ’muck diving’ sites in the world. 

    You can also dive Sipadan from Kapalai Dive Resort nearby.

  4. Day 16: Depart

    Option to extend trip with a stopover in Kuala Lumpur. Please ask for details.

  5. Day 17: Arrive UK

You should note: Diving at Sipadan is subject to locally obtainable permits and not guaranteed. On days where permits are not obtained, diving around Kapalai and Mabul will be offered as an alternative.

Key info

Our trip ideas are offered to inspire you and can be tailored to suit your requirements.
  • Dates and prices: Please contact us for details.
  • When to go: Jan-Dec: Daily throughout the year. April to October best diving conditions.
  • Included in the price/package:
    • Flights from the UK
    • 14 nights accommodation
    • Full board meal plan
    • Transfers
    • 12 days diving
    • Tanks and weights
Featured locations:

Sipadan

Rising from the depths of the Celebes Sea, Sipadan is a must for all divers: the varied topography makes it an astonishing place. Turtles are regular inhabitants, as are schools of barracuda and bumphead parrotfish, reef sharks, mantas and hammerheads.

  • Ideal for viewing: green turtle, bumphead parrotfish, white-tip reef shark, scalloped hammerhead shark, black-tip reef shark
  • Excellent for: Liveaboard diving, Resort based diving, Reef diving

Mataking Island

Mataking and the surrounding islands of Pandanan and Bohayan boast over 30 dive sites: from reefs teeming with macro life to pelagic encounters. Green & hawksbill turtles come to lay their eggs, while a magical sandbar connects the island to Makating Kecil.

  • Ideal for viewing: green turtle, giant jawfish, pygmy seahorse, mandarin fish, common cuttlefish
  • Excellent for: Resort based diving

Mabul

Mabul Island is a short boat ride from Sipadan and, like Kapalai, is famous for its macro diving, gaining a reputation as one of the best ‘muck diving’ sites in the world. It is the jumping off points for those visiting Sipadan with a number of resorts catering for divers.

  • Ideal for viewing: giant frogfish, green turtle, ornate ghost pipefish, flamboyant cuttlefish
  • Excellent for: Liveaboard diving, Resort based diving, Muck diving
Suggested accommodation is shown below. Please contact us for further recommendations.

Reef Dive Resort

Situated on the quiet island of Mataking in the Celebes Sea, this exclusive romantic resort is the perfect choice for divers, accommodating up to 100 guests in a variety of delightful rooms and beach villas.