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Dive Review of Sipidan-Kapalai Dive Resort in

Sipidan-Kapalai Dive Resort, Aug, 2014,

by Paul Barrett, NM, US (Reviewer Reviewer 5 reports with 4 Helpful votes). Report 7721.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 251-500 dives
Where else diving Bonaire, Caymans, Cozumel, Honduras, Truk
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny Seas calm, currents
Water Temp 82 to 86 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility 30 to 70 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions [Unspecified]
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? no

What I Saw

Sharks Lots Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles > 2 Whales None
Corals 4 stars Tropical Fish For Subscribers Only
Small Critters For Subscribers Only Large Fish For Subscribers Only
Large Pelagics For Subscribers Only

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter For Subscribers Only Boat Facilities N/A
Overall rating for UWP's For Subscribers Only Shore Facilities For Subscribers Only
UW Photo Comments [None]No fresh water tanks for cameras on the boats. Rental camera shop at the resort but I don't know how well they can service private cameras. ... Subscribe to get the full story. For Subscribers Only  Active subscribers continue reading here

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations For Subscribers Only Food 3 stars
Service and Attitude For Subscribers Only Environmental Sensitivity For Subscribers Only
Dive Operation For Subscribers Only Shore Diving For Subscribers Only
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ For Subscribers Only
Beginners 3 stars
Advanced For Subscribers Only
Comments [None]Whenever I meet a new experienced scuba diver I ask "where is the best place you've ever been diving?" One friend that spent a year traveling the world as an itinerant diver and now manages a dive resort in the Caribbean responded "Sipidan." Later he set up a trip to the island my wife and I decided to join him.

In the late 1990s Islamic guerrillas kidnapped several persons from Sipidan and held them hostage on the Philippines for years. More recently there have been other incidents including one in the spring of 2014 where a Chinese tourist was killed and his wife taken hostage and on July 12, 2014 police had a shootout with guerrillas on Mabul Island and one policeman was killed while a second taken prisoner. These incidents caused me to take pause but, perhaps because they were so recent, the Malaysian government has responded by sending a substantial naval force to monitor the Sulu Sea. The Kapalai Resort itself has eight policemen and forty-eight military personnel on the resort. Sipidan Island can be visited but no longer houses permanent dive operations. It does however have a permanent military base for security. In short, after arriving and witnessing the upgraded security I had no concern for my safety during my stay.

A quick aside about the names. Sipidan is an island, Sipidan-Kapalai is a resort a short distance from the island. In this review, unless otherwise specified, when I refer to Sipidan I am discussing the Island and environs and when I ref ... Subscribe to get the full story. For Subscribers Only  Active subscribers continue reading here
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Subscriber's Comments

By report author: Paul Barrett in NM, US at Sep 02, 2014 22:41 EST  
Sipidan should be Sipadan - my bad!
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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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