Snorkeling in Mabul
Typical day snorkeling in Mabul. © Ewen Bell

The main appeal of snorkeling in Mabul Island is the opportunity to get acquainted with special types of marine life not seen elsewhere.

Snorkeling in Mabul is an entirely different experience from snorkeling in Sipadan, where it’s all about big fish sightings.

As one of the best muck diving destinations in the world, snorkeling here is a great way to observe some of the tiniest and rarest marine life you’ll ever see in a natural setting, without the special equipment and skills required for scuba diving.

Day trips to Mabul

You do not have to stay in Mabul in order to snorkel or dive here. Many visitors prefer staying at a hotel in Semporna, where accommodation and day trips are generally cheaper.

Mabul diving packages

Learn more: Mabul day trip + diving package


  • Transportation from/to your hotel in Semporna
  • 3 guided diving sessions in Mabul
  • Stop by the Bajau Laut village located in Mabul
  • Packed lunch and refreshments

Day trips from Mabul

Those who wish to venture further or deeper may join a snorkeling or diving trip from Mabul to nearby islands, which may be combined with a lunch picnic by a deserted beach or even a trip to an uninhabited island.


Most Mabul resorts organize day trips to Kapalai and Sipadan.

Further out

Other islands in the area include Mataking, Pom Pom, Bum Bum, Kulapuan, Siamil, Timbun Mata and those in Tun Sakaran Marine Park.

Before you go

At the beginning of your trip, you will likely receive a brief introduction from your highly experienced guide, who will cover basic safety, equipment usage, what to look out for and conservation instructions (corals are fragile organisms that are easily damaged).

Snorkeling requires no special training, only the ability to swim and breathe through the snorkel.

As with scuba diving, it is recommended that one should not snorkel alone, but rather with a “buddy” or a group.

Special life vests for children may be available upon request.

Be sure to take home memories of your underwater adventures by renting an underwater camera, if you don’t already own one.