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Scuba diving at the northwest of Peninsular Malaysia is restricted to Payar Marine Park and Pulau Pangkor.

Inserted/Added by: lars, © Author: Lars Hemel

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The northwest of the peninsula of Malaysia is known for islands such as Langkawi and Penang and not exactly for its pristine scuba diving destinations. However, there are a few destinations worth mentioning. Payar Marine Park (Payar, Kaca, Lembu and Segantang) offers pristine white beaches, healthy blue waters and excellent coral reefs filled with marine fish. Many snorkeling tours, glass bottom boat experiences and dive trips can be arranged to explore the underwater beauty of these islands. To the south of Pulau Pinang you can find diving areas such as Pangkor and the Sembilan Islands offering excellent dive sites, but with often reduced visibilities.

The western peninsula, separated from the east side by its high mountain range, has been known as the commercial heartlands of Malaysia. Being on the more famous trade routes of the 18th and 19th centuries, it has become an area of richdom, many different cultures and diverse but excellent dining. Langkawi is a beautiful getaway island with some nice beaches, spectacular scenery and the famous Cable Car at Oriental Village that offers views all across the island. Georgetown, the capital of Pulau Pinang, offers walks through its Armenian Quarter visiting the Chinese temple Khoo Kongsi.

It is easy to visit these islands. Langkawi can be reached by ferry from Kuala Kedah, Kuala Perlis, Penang and even Satun in Thailand. Penang is connected to the mainland with a long bridge and she even offers ferries to Sumatra, Indonesia. Visibilities are often less than ten meters, mainly because of the muddy bottom and the many boats that go through the busy Malacca Strait. One of the advantages is that diving conditions are at its best here between November and March, while the eastern side of the Peninsula and Sabah experiences heavy rainfall.

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 Kota Kinabalu
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Liveaboard diving is the best way to dive the best dive sites. They are perfect for:maximising the number of dives divers can do on their scuba vacation. Many boats offer 4 or 5 dives per day. Some offer unlimited divinggetting to the places that can't be reached by resortgetting to the dive site before the resort divers and staying there after the daytrip divers have long gone home. meeting like minded divers 

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