Perhentian Islands's Scuba Diving

The Perhentian Islands is an archipelago in western Malaysia consisting of 5 islands of different sizes. Earlier, the archipelago was a transit hub for trading with Bangkok. Nowadays, a popular tourist complex is situated there. Almost all infrastructure is distributed between two main islands: Besar and Kechil.
Divers are attracted to the archipelago by an opportunity to see pelagic fish and turtles. Typical reef dwellers of Southeast Asia represent local marine fauna. You can practice underwater photography thanks to the abundance of corals and molluscs of various shapes and colours. The Perhentian Islands have several wrecks and picturesque walls along which you can dive and drift.

Getting There

The Perhentian Islands are close to the northeast coast of the peninsula Malaysia. You can reach the islands by taking a boat from the coastal city of Kuala Besut. The last boat departures at 17:00. The nearest airport is in Kota Bharu. It takes 1.5 hours to get to the city from Kuala Besut by bus. You can also take a bus here from Kuala Lumpur.

Dive Shops in Perhentian Islands


This region is in the tropical climate. For the major part of the year, the weather is fine and hot, but the monsoon season is still present here, too. From late October till March, everything is closed for the "still" season. Therefore, on the Perhentian Islands, diving is open from early April till late October. The water temperature varies between +27-32 °C.

Dive Spots near Perhentian Islands

"Sugar" is a cargo ship which lies at a depth of 18 meters. The ship sank in 2000 during the monsoon season. The body is now covered with corals and shells. Shoals of Lutjanus, caranxes, scorpionfish swim near it. If you go to the cargo department, you can see stingrays and bamboo sharks.
Shark Point / Light House is home for turtles, black tip reef sharks, pipefish, fugu, barracudas.