We're travelling around Malaysia after Chinese New Year (end of Feb) and are planning to visit Sabah. Can anyone recommend a decent location for a combination of experienced and a novice divers, ideally with something in the area besides just diving. Thanks
I live in Sabah and run a diving business here. My advice is based on my experience of diving conditions in February in Sabah and I hope it helps you choose the best diving location in Sabah to meet your needs.
Sabah is not impacted by the 'North East monsoons' during February. It is still the 'West Season' here but we can still enjoy some very pleasant tropical weather during this time.
The best conditions for diving in Sabah at the start of February are on the south east coast - Sipadan, Mabul, Kapalai. This coast line is more protected from the north east trade winds. There are dive sites to meet all levels of experience here. If you get permits to dive at Sipadan you need to be aware the dives are often drift divers here along a drop off so the novice divers in your group need to be comfortable at diving and confident in managing their buoyancy.
There is also diving in Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Park near Kota Kinabalu during this period too. The diving here is more protected so easier diving for newer divers. But obviously less pelagics here ;).
If you want a location that offers a choice of activities to do then Kota Kinabalu is a good choice. Maybe you do both locations . . . .
Hope this helps. Have a great holiday! almost 10 years ago