Tag Archives: Sea Turtles

SCUBA Diving in Sipadan with Sharks, Sea Turtles, Barracudas, & more!

SCUBA Diving in Sipadan  might be the best in the world! It’s teeming with colorful fish, sharks, and has great visibility.

SCUBA Diving in Sipadan

Sharks in every dive!

While it can’t be promised, some see sharks in nearly every dive. They’re everywhere, and don’t seem to care much about the divers swimming a few feet away.

I’ve included multiple Sipadan dive photos below, including sharks, Sea Turtles, and Harlequinn Sweetlips. It was also my first time seeing big eye emperors, school of jackfish, purple antihas, Unicornfish, and more. I’ve also included photos of surgeonfish, yellow mask angelfish, triggerfish, butterfly fish, parrotfish, and more!

Whitetip Reef Shark while SCUBA Diving in Sipadan
surprise visitors during our dive – sharks!

How to take better diving photos

Taking (good) photos underwater is really challenging!  You’re aiming at a moving target in less than optimal lighting conditions. At this point I’m still very much a beginner diving. I’m still getting comfortable equalizing and improving my buoyancy. I couldn’t really focus on the photography as much as I would have liked.

See all of my Sipadan photos from my Semporna Archipelago diving experience in Borneo (Malaysia). This includes more photos of white tipped reef sharks and sea turtles.

school of Jackfish
school of Jackfish
1st underwater SCUBA Diving photo of me
1st underwater SCUBA Diving photo of me
colorful fish in in Sipadan Borneo
what kind of fish is this? Please add it into the comments if you know
Harlequinn Sweetlips
Harlequinn Sweetlips

A graceful Sea Turtle swims next to us during our SCUBA dive

A graceful Sea Turtle swims next to us during our SCUBA dive
A graceful Sea Turtle swims next to us during our SCUBA dive

These dives were some of the best variety of fish I’ve ever experienced. You’ll see underwater photos of Yellowtail Barracudas, Lionfish, Jackfish, Parrotfish, Yellowmask Angelfish, Vlaming’s, Big Eyed Emperors, Triggerfish, and more. I loved diving in Sipadan so much!

I was surprised with the variety and colors!

Below is the slide show with captions on the fish:

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Sipadan Borneo diving – best in the world?

Sipadan was the best SCUBA diving I’ve ever done. It’s often rated by many as one of the top dive destinations in the world. The whole Semporna Archipelago was amazing! Let’s go Sipadan Borneo diving right now – I want to go back!

Jacques Cousteau referred to Sipadan as ‘an untouched piece of art’. He said the crown jewel of the diving is Sipadan. I agree!

Lucky for you, I rented an underwater camera to capture some of the experience. This included lots of sharks!

Sipadan Borneo Diving Underwater photography

Underwater photography is challenging as a new diver. I was still learning how to dive (buoyancy, breathing, equalizing, etc) at the time. Then I added underwater photography to the mix, so there’s much improvement to be made in future dives. These Sipadan Borneo diving photos should give you a feel for the experience.

Green Sea Turtle while on a Sipadan Borneo diving trip
Green Sea Turtle
Whitetip Reef Sharks while diving in Sipadan Borneo in the Semporna Archipelago
I saw plenty of these Whitetip Reef Sharks in Sipadan


About Sipadan:

Sipadan is the only oceanic island in Malaysia. It’s 600 metres (2,000 ft) above the seabed. It is located in the Celebes Sea off the east coast of Sabah, East Malaysia on the island of Borneo.

Sipadan was formed by living corals growing on top of an extinct volcanic cone that took thousands of years to develop. It’s located at the heart of the Indo-Pacific basin, the centre of one of the richest marine habitats in the world. More than 3,000 species of fish and hundreds of coral species have been classified in this ecosystem. Wikipedia.

Getting to Sipadan

To get there from KL, fly to Tawau, on Malaysian Borneo. Then take a road trip to a sleepy fishing town called Semporna. Next, take a boat out to Mabul island. Mabul will be your SCUBA home base for Sipadan Borneo diving. Some areas in Borneo take a long time and effort to get to, but this is worth it.

Around Sipadan Island

Sipadan might have the diving in the world, but that’s not all. It is beautiful around Sipandan island too! Look how beautiful that water is!

Around Sipadan Island - beautiful water color

Around Sipadan Island in Borneo - beautiful water color!

I’ve posted more of my dive photos of white tipped reef sharks here. In addition, check out the photos of sea turtles, as well underwater photography of Yellowtail Barracudas, Harlequinn Sweetlips, Sea Turtles, and more.

Finally, for the largest shark I’ve ever seen, a whale shark, check out this post.