The resort of Borneo Divers Mabul, Borneo’s longest established dive operation, is located on the South Eastern coast of Sabah in the Celebes Sea, about 20 minutes from Sipadan and 30-40 minutes from Semporna. To get there fly with Malaysian Airlines via Kuala Lumpur or Kota Kinabalu to Tawau. The bus ride from Tawau to Semporna takes about 1 hour.
Borneo Divers Mabul Resort occupies a beautiful stretch of white sandy beach on Mabul Island. Easy access to the water provides for effortless shore and boat diving.
The resort features a well equipped conference center and gift shop. The dining hall complex is the center of social activity at the resort. It also serves as the “Front Desk” and entertainment center.
Borneo Divers Mabul Resort pampers you with delicate entrees and great service. The resort chef and his team specialize in Malaysian, Asian, Japanese, Chinese and Western Cuisines.
Enjoy a relaxing dip in the resort’s own swimming pool. Beach cabanas are provided on the resort’s white sandy beach. The beach side gazebos are THE place to be for a soothing massage, manicure or pedicure.
The resort consists of 30 semi-detached chalets. Each chalet has two deluxe rooms, each with either twin or double sized beds and private verandah overlooking the Celebes Sea. The chalets are constructed of beautiful hardwoods in a local style. It boasts 17 Deluxe Twins, 7 Deluxe Doubles, 4 Runggus Deluxe Twins and 2 Runggus Deluxe Doubles. Ceiling fans and balmy tropical breezes provide ample cooling, but each chalet is also fully airconditioned for the guests comfort. Amenities such as coffee/tea making facilities, hair dryer and reading lamps are available in all deluxe rooms.
Sipadan Permit System (as of April 2010)
Due to the tremendous popularity of the Sipadan drop off, the Malaysian government was forced to introduce a permit system to safeguard the fragile underwater environment and limit the number of divers to 120 per day on this particular site. As a consequence, each dive center must compete for a total of 120 permits per day to dive the Sipadan reef walls. These permits are allocated only 24 hours prior to each new dive day.
As a result, agents and operators alike are unable to guarantee the number of dives at Sipadan Island to be allocated to any resort guest for the duration of their stay. Getting one of these permits seems to be based on luck as much as on the general booking situation in the region (an argument to schedule travel into the off-season), and we have indeed not noticed certain resorts being favoured over others. Resort managements do what they can to keep this system as fair as possible, and to give everyone a chance to visit the Sipadan dive sites at least once in a 3-4 night period. To make the most of this precious opportunity, day boats often schedule 4 dives per day in rather quick succession for those carrying the Sipadan permit.
Borneo Divers has FREE broadband wireless access available for all guests. You can use your own laptop or one of the resort’s computers at the “Internet Corner”. You can catch up on your email, or update your trip blog in your leisure time between dives.