Semporna is made up of many smaller islands such as Pulau Sipadan, Pulau Kapalai, Pulau Mataking, Pulau Pom Pom and Pulau Mabul. In the Malay language, the word ‘sempurna’ means perfect. It is a word that springs to mind for those visiting Semporna as it fittingly describes the region’s perfect setting through the crystal-clear waters, sandy beaches, and idyllic diving spots.

Read also: Kampung Mabul: Home to the Bajau Laut at Pulau Mabul, Sabah


Mabul Island Borneo

Pulau Mabul is one of the best muck diving sites in the world. The small island off the south-eastern coast of Sabah often astounds its visitors with just how close the corals are to the shore. This destination is also home to many exotic small marine lives, such as hybroids, ascidians, hingebeak shrimps, Pipefish, leaf fish and paper scorpionfish. Mabul Island initially gained its share of attention from divers in the 1990s due to its proximity to the famous Sipadan Island, which is only 15 kilometers away. In 1992, Sipadan-Mabul Resort (SMART) purchased a section of the land on the east of Mabul, and with that, a location is set to welcome visitors to make wonderful memories in this once inaccessible island.

Read also: 10 Best Things to do in Mabul Island

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Beautiful floating Sipadan-Mabul water chalets
Pulau Mabul Best Resort
A jetty to welcome visitors at the Sipadan-Mabul Resort


Best Resort in Pulau Mabul: Sipadan-Mabul Resort (SMART)

The Sipadan-Mabul Resort first opened its doors in 1993. Nestled in a coconut grove, there are 45 land-based chalets here. Each cozy wooden chalet is furnished with a rustic feel that reflects the rural village lifestyle of the island. Despite the comfort it provides, the sound of the rolling waves, the sight of the sea, and the sandy beaches would instantly tempt you outside.

Mabul Water Bungalow Room Types

Out of the 45 chalets, there are 22 standalone units and 23 semi-detached units. The chalets are air-conditioned and are thoughtfully equipped with Wi-Fi access, mosquito screens and hot shower facilities in the bathrooms. Choose from Standard Chalet, Standalone Chalet or Suite Chalet for your stay at at the Sipadan-Mabul Resort.

Read also: Seaventures Dive Rig: PADI 5-Star Resort in Sabah

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The resort is made up of semi-detached bungalows scattered across a coconut grove
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A form to fill in upon arrival at Sipadan-Mabul Resort (SMART)
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Choose from Standard Chalet, Standalone Chalet or Suite Chalet for your stay at at the Sipadan-Mabul Resort
Sipadan-Mabul Resort (SMART)
Enjoy hot shower, AC and TV in your room at  Sipadan-Mabul Resort


Diving Courses at Sipadan-Mabul Water Chalets

Sipadan-Mabul Resort has several diving packages tailored for its visitors. The resort also runs courses such as the NAUI and PADI Diving Courses - from ‘Open Water’ to ‘Divemaster’ level, as well as the Scuba Skills Refresher Course. On top of that, the ‘Discover Scuba Diving’ and snorkeling activities are also currently being offered.

Sipadan-Mabul Resort Activities & Facilities

For those who prefer to stay within the resort, rest assured that there are plenty of amenities provided on-site. There is a jacuzzi whirlpool spa with an incredible view of the sandy beach and the beautiful sea, where one can spend a wonderful time soaking – both in the tub and in the view that lies ahead! There is also a swimming pool within the resort. With the towering coconut trees providing shade from the sun paired with the picturesque view of the Celebes Sea, it will certainly make for a blissful time.

During meals, a large dining hall serving scrumptious food offers the perfect setting to socialize with the other guests. Here, you can also find a bar selling coconut drinks, carbonated soft drinks, beer, and wine to quench your thirst. Bring along your dancing shoes as you can jiggle to music to your heart’s content.

Other activities offered at the Sipadan-Mabul Resort (SMART) include ocean kayak, snorkeling, beach volley ball, diving trips to nearby islands, and table tennis.

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Jacuzzi whirlpool spa at Sipadan-Mabul Resort (SMART)
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Speedboats to bring visitors to diving locations are roomy with overhead shelves for dry gears
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Beautiful sunset at Pulau Mabul, Sabah


How to Apply for Entry Permit to Sipadan Island

Every visitor is required to apply for a daily entry permit from the Sabah Parks Management in order to dive or to visit Pulau Sipadan. Please be informed that the total number of visitors allowed is limited to only 176 people a day as conservation measures by the local government. Priority will be given to divers during peak season.

The fee for the Sipadan Island entry permit is RM140 (excluding 6% service tax) per day for all visitors, including divers, non-divers, adults and children. The payment is to be made upon arrival at the resort.


Sipadan-Mabul Resort Diving Package & Price

Sipadan-Mabul Resort accommodation packages range from 6 days/5 nights (US$1,516) to 9 days/8 nights (US$2,214) for divers and 2 days/1 night (US$545)  to 5 days/4 nights (US$925) for non-divers. Every extra day will be charged US$257 and US$212 for divers and non-divers respectively.

Each dive package at the Sipadan-Mabul Resort (SMART) includes transfers between Tawau – Semporna Jetty – Sipadan-Mabul Resort – Tawau using van and speedboat. Food and beverage (excluding fresh juices, alcohol and carbonated drinks) will be provided throughout the stay at the resort.

Divers can also enjoy 3 boat combination dives per day in the presence of a divemaster at Pulau Mabul and other nearby islands, as well as a one-day guaranteed 3 boat dives at Pulau Sipadan if your entry permit to the island has been approved. Unlimited jetty diving is also available at the Mabul's House Reef with air tanks, weights and weight belts available for use.

For the latest hotel price and rates, please refer to the Sipadan-Mabul Resort official website.

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Food and beverage is provided during your stay at Sipadan-Mabul Resort (SMART)
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Food is served buffet-style at Sipadan-Mabul Resort (SMART) 
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Savor local food such as kuih-muih during your stay at Pulau Mabul!



How to Get to Mabul Island

From the Tawau Airport, either take a bus, minivan or taxi to Semporna. Once you have arrived at the Semporna Jetty, take a boat to Mabul Island. A speedboat ride from the Semporna jetty to Mabul Island typically takes around 35- 45 minutes, depending on weather conditions.

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The route to get to resort is: Tawau – Semporna Jetty – Sipadan-Mabul Resort


In the Malay language, the word ‘sempurna’ means perfect. At the Sipadan-Beach Resort, there will be ample opportunities for you to craft perfect memories with the perfect sunsets and diving experiences.

Sipadan-Mabul Resort (SMART)

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Address: Pulau Mabul 88100 Semporna, Sabah, Malaysia
Contact number: +6088-486 489
Email address: sales.sipadanmabulresort@gmail.com

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