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Dive Review of Sipidan Water Village in
Malaysia/Sipidan, Kapalai, Mabul

June, 2006, an Instant Reader Report by Tracey Bennett, NV, USA
Reviewer   (5 reports)
Report Number 2764
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
251-500 dives
Where else diving
Indonesia, Fiji, French Polynesia, Costa Rica, PNG, Palau, Honduras,
Belize, Grand Cayman, St. Vincent, Bahamas, Hawaii
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

sunny, windy, rainy, cloudy, dry  
calm, choppy, currents  
Water Temp
80   to 82    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
45   to 85    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
Depth restrictions, dives maxed at 1 hour   
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
Whale Sharks
> 2 
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  3 stars
Tropical Fish
3 stars  
Small Critters
  4 stars
Large Fish
4 stars  
Large Pelagics
  3 stars
Underwater Photography  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Subject Matter
5 stars  
Boat Facilities
3 stars
Overall rating for UWP's  
5 stars  
Shore Facilities  
5 stars  
Water buckets on boats upon request. Ample rinse facilities on dock. Small
camera rooms near shop available for rent.  Staff experienced handling
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
5 stars
4 stars
Service and Attitude
5 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
Dive Operation
5 stars  
Shore Diving  
4 stars  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
3 stars   
5 stars    
From LAX it took two days to get to Sipidan Water Village and it was well
worth it. It is an amazing accommodation, with potted plants and trees
along the boardwalks that lead to private bungalows. My deluxe room was
large, with a separate sitting area, huge bathroom and wrap around deck. If
you are at the end of the boardwalk it is a brisk 5 min. walk to the dive
shop. Not easy with a heavy camera. There is a full bar and the restaurant
serves meals buffet style with choices of American, Asian, and local

The dive shop is extremely organized and necessarily so, as it catered to
40 plus divers most days I was  there.  Your name will be posted under the
boat you are assigned to and you can choose all combinations of diving
Sipidan, Mabul and Kapalai in a single day.  You can change boats daily to
dive the areas desired, and the divemasters are eager to fulfill requests
for particular sites. 3 dives per day with a possible 4th dive in Sipidan
or a dusk dive at 5:30.  Night dives allowed only for groups traveling on a
dive shop sponsored trip.  

Sipidan divers are now required to pay a US$10 levy to the government each
day they dive the reefs around the island.  The boat will stop by the
guardshack on the way to a site and pay for the whole boat.  If you prepay
the levy with the rest of your reservations and decide not to dive every
day in Sipidan, the resort will not refund the unused levy.

Sipidan diving is known for barracuda, batfish, schools of jacks,
turtles, and sharks.  They were all there. Favorite sites, Barracuda Point,
South Point, and Mid Wall were repeated several times. Sometimes currents
would start to rip and we would tuck in and fly together through valleys
and channels until we reached an area that was not affected. There were
areas with healthy hard corals, but many areas void of coral .  Hopefully
the recent closing of the accommodations on Sipidan will allow the corals
to grow back. Many  whitetips on most dives. A few huge grey reef sharks
and three leapard sharks. June and July is great time to see sea turtles as
it is mating season.  We saw huge turtles on most dives.

Muck diving at Mabul and Kapalai was excellent.  Tons of nudibranchs,
painted frogfish, orangutang crabs,giant mantis shrimps, soft coral crabs,
blue ribbon eels, leaf fish, whip coral shrimp,ornate ghost pipefish,robust
pipefish, cuttlefish, longnose hawkfish, pigmy seahorses, and a rare pink
hairy octopus made it hard to decide where to dive the next day. Guides at
the resort were excellent critter spotters.
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Other dive reports on Sipadan Water Village

All Malaysia Dive Reviews and Reports
Diving Guide to Malaysia
Diving Reviews for All Dive Destinations

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Note: The information here was reported by the author above, but has NOT been reviewed nor edited by Undercurrent prior to posting on our website. Please report any major problems by writing to us and referencing the report number above.

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