The Best Snorkeling in Malaysia

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This is the last in a series of pieces on Malaysia I put together for Travel Wire Asia. You can see the original (Chinese) article here.

All of this writing and research about Malaysia has certainly rocketed the tiny South East Asian nation up the ladder in my estimation. I daresay it’ll be a candidate for New Year’s 2013…

The Best Snorkeling in Malaysia

Malaysia may be renowned for its scuba diving and the beauty of the country, but even the least confident of swimmers can see and experience so much in Malaysia’s crystal clear waters.

Snorkeling right off the beaches in Malaysia is a popular tourist activity. In the safety of shallow water, anybody can experience it. Photo by

It’s not just in the cities, highlands, and forests of Malaysia that you can be astounded by beauty. There’s a whole world of stunning sights to be found just below the surface of Malaysia’s world renowned warm, clear waters.

While I am a scuba dive fanatic myself, I understand that it’s not for everybody – but rest assured, Malaysia’s waters are open even to those without a PADI certificate or confidence in the water. Snorkeling provides a great, relaxing, and safe way to experience the wonders beneath the waves.

A slightly over-dressed snorkeler enjoying Malaysia’s underwater world. Photo by

Brightly colored coral and the kind of fish you might have seen in Finding Nemo make areas like Terenagganu and the Tioman Marine Park offer astounding wildlife experiences just a short wade from the white, sandy beaches. If you want to see a friendly shark or schools of vibrantly colored fish, a spot like Pulau Payar Marine Park in Langkawi is a good option as well.

If seeing some of the ocean’s most beautiful marine life is what you’re after, consider marine parks such as Talang Satang or Similajau, where everything from playful dolphins to sea turtles to sea snakes to sharks can be seen in the deeper waters.

The majestic sea turtle is just one of the beautiful sea creatures you can see while snorkeling in Malaysia. Photo source:

The beauty of snorkeling in Malaysia is that it is so accessible and the variety is so great. Whether you’re looking to snorkel in waist deep water right off your beach or wanting to venture out to one of the coral reef’s farther off shore, there is no shortage of companies happy to rent you equipment or take you on a tour.

And for those who wish to give scuba diving a try, consider that Malaysia is consistently rated as one of the best places in the world for diving. What better place to learn than in the warm waters of Malaysia where marine life is all around?

Whether you’re a first timer or a seasoned explorer, Malaysia’s waters are literally teaming with eye-opening sights. What better way to escape the warm summer sun than with a dip in the crystal clear water with a few thousand of your closest finned friends?

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Ever been snorkeling in Malaysia? Got any favourite sites you’d care to share?

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