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Semporna is a nice place to visit in Sabah Malaysia, the place where you can enjoy snorkeling, diving and laying on the beautiful sand.

There are two kinds of accommodations in semporna, one is hotels in semporna town, the other one is resorts in semporna islands.

This article compares and contrasts these 2 kinds of accommodations in semporna.


Semporna Town

The environment of the Semporna town is more colorful and lively, but it can be hectic sometimes.

Living at the semponra town, you could explore the local coffee shops nearby and be soaked in the morning hustles and bustles among the locals.

There is a stretch of restaurants just below the hotel and many live bands playing.

In a central part of Semporna town with easy access to the shops and food.

Semporna Islands

As for hotels in semporna island, there are way less tourists than semporna town.

The environment of the island is relatively quiet, private and some islands are even residential only.

You could get a really relaxing and healing atmosphere from the sea surrounding you.

semporna mabul water bungalow balcony chair


Semporna Town

Staying at semprna town is very convenient, just a walking distance from Watson, Giant supermarket and several banks.

It’s easy access to food, all diving centers, restaurants, cafe, convenience stores, pharmacies and jetty too.

Some hotels in semporna have rooms facing the seafront with great seaview, such as xxx,xxxx

Given its location and amenities, it is a value for money place to stay in Semorna town.

Semporna Islands

Transport from semporna island from one place to another is solely by speedboat.

So it’s not as convenient as living in semporna town.

The isolating island lifestyle in semporna island gives you the unique chance to embrace the beautiful sea. 

Lovely coral and fishes are best for snorkeling and diving in semporna islands.

Semprna island is a good place for sightseeing, the emerald green ocean is very beautiful and calming.

semporna mabul water bungalow woman yellow


Semporna Town

Although the area of ​​Semporna is small, there are many seafood restaurants, hotels, grocery stores, Watsons, and banks.

It’s quite easy to find a hotel near the semporna jetty even for walk-in customers.

You could get a good decent room in semporna town anytime.

Almost all hotels in semporna town are built on land.

The hotel price in the semporna town is cheaper than the resort in the semporna island.

Semporna Islands

Resort options in semprna island are limited.

Kapalai, Mataking and Pom Pom island are at the concept of One island, one resort. 

So choosing the island means choosing the only resort on it. Resorts in these 3 islands are all water chalets.

Mabul island has around 8 resorts on it, there are 2 accommodation types in mabul– garden villas and water chalets.

If you’re diving or snorkeling, you could spend a little bit of extra money and stay in a resort on Semporna Island for a more relaxing stay.

Since the hotels and rooms are quite limited, the rooms are always selling fast.

If you want to stay in semporna island, you’d better book the room a few weeks in advance.

semporna mabul water bungalow breakfast seaview


Semporna Town

There are many affordable restaurants and diving centers in the semponra town.

Seafood restaurants are everywhere which makes it convenient to head down to for late dinner, early breakfast, or meal at any time.

Semporna Islands

If you are staying at a resort in semporna island, you will eat at the resort’s own restaurant. 

There are not many other restaurant choices.

Normally the restaurants in hotels give a variety of choices to satisfy guests from different countries.

It’s also recommended to take some of your favorite snacks with you in case you are hungry at non-meal time in semporna islands.

semporna mabul woman bikini snorkeling


Semporna Town

You could choose the Semporna snorkeling or diving package and stay in town.

Living in the town, you can arrange day trips for snorkeling, diving and sightseeing in Semporna Town.

There are several diving shops around the semporna town and most snorkeling routes are day trips.

You can snorkel, dive or visit different islands.

<the three popular routes of island hopping link>

Semporna Islands

Living on a semporna island, you can have leisure time such as snorkeling or diving nearby.

 Also, you can go for a swim or snorkeling at another semporna island by joining island hopping packages in the resort you are staying.

It feels so relaxed when sitting and drinking on the balcony of your water chalet,  looking at the seaside. 

You will get the Best view of the sunrise and sundown at sea. 

semporna kk flight island trip


Semporna Town

Semporna town is a great and budget place to stay on your semporna vacation.

It’s of great value for the money.

There are numerous homestays and hotels in Semporna town, it is close to all restaurants and dive shops.

This place is the perfect spot to have a last, nice hot shower before heading off to the semporna islands; and another one on the way back, on the night before your early flight.

Semporna Islands

If you like a tranquil, peaceful environment, you better stay on the semporna island.

Surrounded by absolutely crystal clear sea water, it’s a once in a life amazing experience.

It’s best to stay in a resort on semporna island  if you want a vocational, leisure island trip.

semporna island resort hand holding icecream


Would you choose Semporna town or island accommodation?

Let us know in the comment section below~