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Where is best place to snorkel

Perth, Western...
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Where is best place to snorkel

Hi all

we are hoping to go to Kota with our 13 yr old this year sometime (looks like any time of year is good re weather etc). Can you let me know where to go for best snorkelling, would be ideal if we could stay near the snorkel sites and travel to other places of interest from there if that's possible.

look forward to hearing from you :) Deb

Kota Kinabalu
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1. Re: Where is best place to snorkel

Hi deb0zziediver,

if you are looking at places near to the city, that would be the islands around Tunku Abdul Rahman Park (Manukan, Sapi, Mamutik, Gaya). It only take an approximate 20mins boat to get there.

If you are looking for GOOD snorkeling point and do not mind going a little further, then Mantanani Island is highly recommended. It takes 1 hour by road + 1 hour by boat to get there. But the experience is amazing! I just went back to Mantanani last week, did 2 times snorkeling from boat, lotsa underwater creatures to be seen. Colourful Corals, star fish, even Giant Clams. I say, it is worth every penny and time spent.

Nickie

Perth, Western...
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2. Re: Where is best place to snorkel

cheers for you quick reply Nickie, much appreciated, :)

Kota Kinabalu
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for Sabah
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3. Re: Where is best place to snorkel

You r welcome!

Enjoy Sabah!

Nickie

Singapore
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4. Re: Where is best place to snorkel

Time of year and weather really do make a difference to the snorkelling in KK.

During the rainy months, there is a lot of runnoff which leads to low visibility. During the dry season (hypothetically Jan-Mar but you wouldn't know it at the moment) the water clarity is a lot better.

Check out the forecast the week before you go here:

www.met.gov.my/index.php…

If (like now) it says rain all week - go further afield, it will be worth the travel.

Mantanani is great snorkelling, but Ususkan cove is almost as good and you don't have the hour by boat. My personal favourite snorkelling is in Kudat district so if you're planning on travelling a bit don't feel you HAVE to snorkel in TARP.

Perth, Western...
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5. Re: Where is best place to snorkel

Thanks so much, especially the bit about the weather, will bear in mind before we go to book :)

hong kong
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265 posts
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6. Re: Where is best place to snorkel

sorry to barge in on this thread. is the sea around usukan cove as calm as TARP? coz all of us can't swim, so probably can't handle big waves or currents. but we would like to see colorful corals, preferably in shallow waters. i've used a life vest and snorkel a few times but my friends have never even went into water, so i have to make sure they would feel safe.

thanks!

Kota Kinabalu...
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7. Re: Where is best place to snorkel

If safety is a concern, especially with a group that's not so confident about swimming, then go with DiveDownbelow.com on Gaya island in the TAR Park.

Gaya island has a quiet, lagoon type bay in front of Sabah Park's offices, so it's all in great shape, clean with plenty of critters. There is weak or very little current, so that's not an issue.

Snorkel vests are giving to everybody and the snorkel guides will watch you like a hawk, making it safe and fun for both children, adults and groups with or without good swimming skills.

Gaya island is just 10 minutes with a boat from KK.

It also has plenty to see on land, so during lunch or in between snorkeling sessions you can go for a walk in the jungle and see if you can spot hornbills, macaques, various sized monitor lizards, bats, butterflies, etc. all of which are actually found on the island.

Singapore, Singapore
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8. Re: Where is best place to snorkel

How are the facilities on Gaya Island? I thought of bringing my kids to manukan but it does seem a bit commercialised. Gaya sounds interesting, especially with the wildlife!

Kota Kinabalu...
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9. Re: Where is best place to snorkel

Gaya island is quite big - there are 2 5-star resorts on some parts of the island, and on the tip near the city there's a water village with a substantial population

The part where Sabah Parks' HQ is though, roughly in the middle of the side that faces the city, has some basic-but-clean public toilets. Downbelow's dive station has lots of dive equipment as you can imagine and they provide lunch and whatever equipment you may need.

Other than that there's no facilities as such, which is a good thing as the droves of tourists don't go there. But you've got beach, jungle, trekking, snorkeling and diving all in one place, so plenty of activities for a day (or two) out.

If you go there to dive or snorkel the packages are all inclusive (boat, food, equipment, fees).

hong kong
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10. Re: Where is best place to snorkel

thanks! i've been to sapi and most of the corals are dead. is gaya at least a little better?