Snorkeling is an option for non-divers who wish to experience Sipadan‘s magical underwater kingdom.
As with diving, permits are compulsory for snorkeling in Sipadan.
Most dive operators offer snorkeling tours to Sipadan at lower rates compared to dive packages.
Sipadan snorkeling packages
What to expect
As a snorkeler, you would depart early in the morning for Sipadan to spend the whole day there with other divers.
The reef is easily accessible from the beach on Sipadan and a boat may be used to reach parts of the reef that are further out.
Please note that currents and boat traffic are major hazards in the offshore areas whereas stone fish may be a hazard in the shallows.
On the ‘safe’ side of the jetty is a buoyed-off area, giving snorkelers potentially the safest and most productive area for snorkeling in Sipadan.
A wide number and variety of corals, reef fishes, and with a bit of luck, barracuda, sharks and turtles can be seen from the surface.
The phenomenal, 600m Drop-off (vertical coral wall) that makes this island so special starts towards the end of the jetty.
As you’ll likely be on a boat with others who’ll be diving in Sipadan, you may even get to snorkel in the shallower parts of some dive sites under the watchful eye of the boat captain.
While waiting for the divers, you may also take a brisk walk around the island, which is surrounded by beautiful, sandy beaches.