Situated at the entrance of the Darvel Bay off the east coast of Sabah, near the town of Semporna, is the Tun Sakaran Marine Park. 20 km away from the shores of Semporna it is accessible by speedboat, and is the largest protected concentration of coral reefs in Malaysia at 350 km square of sea and corals along with 10 square kilometers of land under its protection. It consists of 8 islands; Pulau Bodgaya, Boheydulang, Tetagan, Sebangkat, Selakan, Maiga, Sibuan, Mantabuan, and its surrounding reefs and sea. Geologically, the islands are formed from the Quaternary pyroclastic material ejected through pass explosive volcanic activity.
Named after the then Head Of State of Sabah, Tun Sakaran Dandai, it was gazette in July 2004 as Sabah’s 7th park with the main objective of protecting their environment and to promote sustainable use of natural resource.
Currently there are no facilities on the island for visitors, but the Bajau Laut community still lives a nomad lifestyle on the island with their fishing boats. Divers who visit this park come visiting from the neighboring islands such as Mataking. The waters at Tun Sakaran Marine Park are immensely rich with marine life that it challenges the diversity of those found at Sipadan. With plenty of big reef walls, and an exotic array of incredible macro-life, the Park is gaining more favor in the diving community. A statement further supported when Dr. Elizabeth Wood, who for a period of 20 years carried out a scientific study on the island, found that the richness of the marine life in Tun Sakaran Marine Park is standing on par with the marina life found at the “Great Barrier Reefs” in Australia.
Prior to visit, visitors need to obtain a permit from Sabah Parks.