A town in the state of Sabah, Semporna is commonly regarded to be one of the most beautiful places under the realm of Malaysia. The name ‘Semporna’ itself is inspired by the Malay word for ‘perfect’. Semporna is the main gateway to Tun Sakaran Marine Park which is a collection of magnificent islands with numerous attractions to visit and activities to do within them. Below is a list of a few of those islands to visit as well as a few things to do when in Semporna.
If diving is your forte, you will not be dissappointed.
Things to do in Semporna
1. Dive at Sipadan National Park
Sipadan National Park on Sipadan Island is the sole oceanic island in the entirety of Malaysia and is regarded as one of the top diving destinations in the world. The island is able to achieve this prestigious title is due to its location upon one of the world’s richest marine habitats with turtles, sharks, barracudas and many more sea creatures swimming the waters. Divers at Sipadan National Park have described a very unique and diverse range of marine life at this site and it is certainly the top recommendation for those seeking a high quality diving experience!
2. Next, Plan Your Trip at Tun Sakaran Marine Park
The Tun Sakaran Marine Park, also referred to as the Semporna Islands Park, is a collection of 8 islands which serve as attractions and particularly dive sites for scuba diving and snorkeling. From this site, you will be greeted by a magnificent view of the deep blue sea, the small islands within it and the lush greenery surrounding them. It is highly recommended for visitors to book a package at one of the many travel agencies at Semporna that allows for island hopping to get the most out of your trip to the town.
3. Visit Kapalai Island
From Semporna, you can travel to Kalpalai Island which is surrounded by crystal clear waters and is considered to be one of the best diving sites in the state. Within the island is 40 chalets erected upon stilts that abide by traditional architecture; the chalets are equipped with basic amenities to make your stay comfortable. The Dive Centre on the island offers diving, snorkeling and kayaking gear for rent so that visitors can go about their underwater activities. Kalpalai Island boasts some of the most incredibly beautiful natural landscapes you may see in your lifetime and the atmosphere on the island is to match!
4. Visit Bohey Dulang Island
The Bohey Dulang Island is described as a paradise island by those who have travelled to it and it a hotspot for hiking as well as water activities. This mountainous island was formed by the remnants of an ancient volcano is thus is a popular spot for hikers who aim to reach the top of the highest peak on the island in order to secure a magnificent panoramic view of the archipelago. If you are an avid birdwatcher or simply a bird lover, Bohey Dulang will serve as your haven for it has rich biodiversity and is home to a wide range of a great variety of birds. Bohey Dulang Island is also a highly recommended site for snorkeling. Bohey Dulang is definitely worth a travel to if you are in the town of Semporna!
5. Visit Pom Pom Island
Pom Pom Island is a small coral reef island with a white sand coral beach that serves as a sanctuary for both green and hawksbill turtles. The island received its name from its abundance of pom pom trees. Yet another recommendation for a dive destination, Pom Pom Island is a perfect place for a scuba diving trip and is often sought after by visitors for its comfortable and cozy water villas with beautiful views. If you’re planning on staying overnight at Semporna then Pom Pom Island is certainly where you are guaranteed to have an amazing experience!
6. Climb Bukit Tengkorak
Bukit Tengkorak or Skull Hill is an archaeological heritage site hill that is a volcano rock shelter site. Bukit Tengkorak has great historical significance as it was identified to be the largest pottery-making factory in the South-East Asian region during the Neolithic period. A wide range of archaeological findings were discovered during various excavations including potsherds, chert, obsidian, agate, bone artefacts and food remains amongst many others. Bukit Tengkorak is now a tourist attractions for visitors who aim to climb to the four viewing platforms to enjoy the majestic scenery.
7. Tropical Research and Conservation Centre (TRACC)
The Tropical Research and Conservation Centre is a conservation organization located in Pom Pom Island and is the place for volunteer divers to go. If you have the intention of protecting the biodiversity of marine life by taking on projects which include replanting coral reefs and the likes then you can submit your application at TRACC to be a volunteer diver! TRACC also offers educational courses such as Marine A-Levels, Padi Courses and Dive Master Internships. If you are looking for something to do in the area that is considerably long-term and for a good course then you know TRACC is the answer for you!
Other places of interest in Sabah
Semporna is just one small city in Sabah. There’s a lot of other interesting places that you can visit.
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When you arrive at Semporna, you will be awestruck by the mesmerizing beauty of its surroundings but don’t let that distract you from all the things you could be doing in the town whilst simultaneously admiring the beauty of it all!