Kapalai Island

 

Kapalai island – The mere name conjures the image of crystal clear waters and a floating paradise like no other. A 45­minute trip from Semporna via speedboat, Kapalai island is one of the many beautiful diving havens in this part of the world. However, Kapalai is truly unique because it is not quite an ‘island’.

The 40 chalets are built on high wooden stilts in the middle of the ocean. Visitors can enjoy the sights of marine life in action as they stroll along the boardwalk, a sturdy construction that connects the various sections of the floating resort. The resort has 40 chalets, equipped with basic amenities, including tea and coffee making facilities.

You will never have to gripe about having a less than desirable view: you have a breathtaking view of the Celebes Sea no matter where you turn! The restaurant is a wooden deck, where diners can eat indoors or al fresco. There’s even a viewing area in the middle of the restaurant which allows you to see the myriad of marine life passing below.

Kapalai Dive Spots

Cleaning Station

The Cleaning Station is famous for its colourful nudibranchs and resident turtles that are always hanging around the old wooden boat wreck.

Gurnard Point

This dive site is abundant in sea life and offers you the option of exploring the lively reef wall. Keep your eyes peeled for several varieties of boxfish, moray eels and batfish!

Mandarin Valley

Mandarin Valley is a very popular site for photographers due to its relatively shallow profile and multifarious critters, such as the longnose hawkfish, crocodile fish and vibrant mandarinfish.

Blackray Channel

The Blackray Channel offers a relaxing dive in relatively shallow water and an opportunity to spot a variety of marine life, such as the tropical octopus, lavender-coloured frogfish and dragonfish.

Mid Reef

The Mid Reef houses a wealth of small underwater critters, such as the harlequin ghost pipefish,frogfish, stonefish, octopus, Mandarin fish, mantis shrimp, lobsters and ribbon eels.

Eel Garden

The Eel Garden is famous for its garden eels that rises out of the seabed. This dive site also features a variety of rose red, blue and black coloured frogfishes giant mantis shrimp, blue ribbon eels, batfish and more.

Stingray City

The shallow water of Stingray City offers a scene of blue spotted stingrays sitting on the sandy bottoms, as well as octopuses, dragon nets and shrimps.

Coral Garden

The Coral Garden is a great site to spot vibrant corals and marine life. Manta rays, turtles, and reef sharks are known to be spotted here.

Little Okinawa

The Little Okinawa is a great place to spot nudibranchs and stonefish. Occasionally, you will also get to spot other macrolife, such as banded pipefishes, blue ribbon and yellow ribbon morays and blue spotted stingrays.

Goby Land

As depicted by its name, Goby Land is teeming with the cute and shy goby. You can also expect to see the flamboyant cuttlefish, mandarinfish and blue ring octopus during your dive.