We were there in June and after reading reviews decided to go to Layang Layang rather than Sipadan. The diving was fantastic (we used to own a diving business so have plenty to compare with). The briefings were excellent with the divemaster and skipper being conscious of our extra needs - after my partners back operation we needed a slower more comfortable boat speed and donning gear in the water rather than fully kitted entries. Prior to entering the water the divemaster always checked currents and updated all on dive plan. On our trip we were lucky as there were 19 divers in total (I think) spread over 3 boats. Everybody dived conservatively rarely dropping below 35-40m range or getting into deco - yes you are responsible for your own actions and dive profiles so do not blame the divemaster if you go too deep - nowadays with computers there is no excuse or any one else to blame. It was late in the season (the next group after us I think only had 8 or 9 guests) but we still saw hammerheads on several dives and on the walls the macro life was excellent. The only downside on the dives were the photographers- if you found something interesting to show your partner these would barge through with their cameras or chase things away. This annoyance can be reduced by the divemaster briefing warning photographers to be more courteous of other divers or putting all the photographers on one boat to fight it out amongst themselves or as in our case if all else fails a blast of bubbles from below them!. We stayed in a deluxe room which was quiet and in a block of its own and found we had the block to ourselves as they were doing the other rooms up. Layang Layang has obviously had its hayday gone down and now picking itself up so you can see things are being improved - the extra cost of return flight to the remote island is probably a bit of a barrier to many compared with more accessible places but well worth while. The staff to guest ratio seemed to be high easily 2:1 as we were a small group. Nothing seemed to be a problem with all staff being courteous and friendly. The regional food was great with plenty of choice and quantity throughout the 5 daily feeds. Our group of 19 comprised 2 Australians, 1 Canadian 2 Italian, with the rest being Malaysian, Singaporean, Chinese - there was plenty of food for all and if something was wiped quickly by others all you needed to do was ask and it was replenished. Internet access and speed was a concern when we booked as some reviews were negative - although we went for the diving I did need to do daily bookings/enquiries emails for our Allambie Cottages back in Bright Victoria. We never had any internet or phone problems - you just have to remember you are in the middle of a huge ocean and do not need it in your room and not necessary to download big files. The Internet service works great down in the reception area and the speed was great for what we needed to do.
Finally would we go back/recommend this dive resort - you bet - unfortunately due to the weather conditions the resort is only open for a few months a year so we will have to wait until next year and cannot wait to go back - already counting down the days!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Layang Layang Island Resort Sdn Bhd is an exclusive resort that dominates the Layang Layang island - an oceanic atoll of Spratly Islands situated approximately 300km northwest of Kota Kinabalu in Sabah, Malaysia. Fondly known as "The Jewel of the Borneo Banks," it is truly a diver's paradise. As many as 14 coral reefs have formed here, creating a breathtaking underwater scenery. The dive sites are well known for the intriguing hammerhead sharks and pygmy seahorses among other rare creatures. An hour's flight north of Kota Kinabalu, the island on which Layang Layang Island Resort Sdn Bhd nestles lies in 2,000 m of ocean and, due partly to the depth, this atoll has become famous for sightings of large pelagic species and for wall diving. Layang Layang Island Resort Sdn Bhd is the only resort on the island besides a Royal Malaysia Navy base. The resort, designed to look like the traditional Long House, comprises 86 cosy rooms, restaurant and bar, outdoor swimming pool, dive center with certified diving instructors and a variety of diving courses among other facilities for modern comforts. Come for the exclusive and intriguing diving experience at this remote destination out of the world, where rare and uncommon underwater creatures await you! ... more less
- Also Known As:
- Avillion Layang Layang Island Hotel Layang Layang
- Layang Island Hotel
- Avillion Layang Layang Sabah