top of page


Unveiling the Underwater Paradise: A Snorkeler's Guide to Pulau Besar, Johor


Pulau Besar, a tropical island nestled off the coast of Johor, Malaysia, transforms into a gateway to a vibrant underwater world. Pristine beaches and crystal-clear turquoise waters beckon snorkelers of all skill levels, promising an unforgettable aquatic adventure.

A Kaleidoscope Beneath the Waves: Top Snorkeling Spots


Monkey Bay: A Gentle Introduction

Perfect for first-timers and families with children, Monkey Bay provides a calm and sheltered environment. Gentle currents and excellent visibility make it ideal for those new to snorkeling. Here, a vibrant array of colorful fish flit amongst healthy coral formations. Observe angelfish, butterflyfish, and clownfish darting in and out of their anemone homes, all within a safe and manageable depth.

Coral Bay: A Symphony of Colors

Coral Bay lives up to its name, offering a breathtaking underwater spectacle. Schools of vibrant fish like clownfish, damselfish, and parrotfish weave through intricate coral structures, creating a mesmerizing display. Keep your eyes peeled for larger inhabitants like turtles, known to frequent the area. Occasionally, you might even encounter a reef shark, adding a thrill to your exploration.

Teluk Dalam: A Challenge for the Experienced

For seasoned snorkelers, Teluk Dalam (Deep Bay) beckons with its stronger currents and deeper waters. Navigate these currents with caution, always snorkeling with a buddy for safety. The increased depth unlocks a wider variety of marine life. Here, you might encounter majestic rays gliding gracefully or schools of vibrant fish species not found in shallower bays.

Beyond Pulau Besar: Exploring Nearby Snorkeling Havens


A short boat trip away lies Pulau Tengah, a smaller island renowned for its exceptional snorkeling spots. Discover vibrant coral reefs teeming with diverse fish species. Explore intricate coral formations pulsating with colorful damselfish, angelfish, and butterflyfish. With excellent visibility, you can observe a multitude of underwater creatures in their natural habitat.

Pulau Tengah caters to both beginners and experienced snorkelers. Sheltered bays offer calm waters for novices, while deeper areas cater to those seeking a challenging underwater experience.

A Responsible Snorkeler's Pledge


The captivating underwater world of Pulau Besar thrives on a healthy marine ecosystem. Here are some essential tips to ensure a sustainable snorkeling experience:

  • Respect the Reef: Avoid touching or standing on the coral reefs. These delicate structures are the foundation of the underwater world and take years to recover from damage.

  • Maintain Buoyancy: Proper buoyancy control is crucial. Avoid kicking your fins against the coral and maintain a safe distance from these fragile structures.

  • Leave No Trace: Pack out all your trash and dispose of it responsibly in designated bins.

  • Minimize Feeding Fish: Appreciate the fish by observing them in their natural habitat and avoid disrupting their natural feeding patterns.

  • Be Aware of Marine Life: Familiarize yourself with common marine life in the area.

  • Snorkel with a Buddy: Always snorkel with a buddy for safety reasons.


By following these simple guidelines, you can ensure a sustainable snorkeling experience and contribute to the preservation of Pulau Besar's magnificent underwater world.

  • Pulau Besar's former name was Pulau Babi Besar, which translates to "Big Boar Island" in Malay. A legend says a fisherman's wife transformed into a mermaid after eating seaweed, and her angry husband called the island Pulau Babi. There are no wild boars on the island today.

  • The island was once a popular hideout for pirates.

  • The Hollywood film "Overboard" starring Goldie Hawn and Kurt Russell was filmed on Pulau Besar in 1987. The movie was remade in 2018.

  • Pulau Besar is a relatively small island, yet it boasts a high point of 258 meters (845 feet) above sea level.

  • The island is known for its pristine beaches with powdery white sand and crystal-clear turquoise waters.

bottom of page