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The small island of Kapas, located a few minutes by boat from the mainland, is relaxed tropical hideway. Its west coast, fringed by a coral reef, is home to several snorkeling spots, including the Kapas Turtle Valley, named after the beach hotel located just across the beach. If the reef is good for observing colorful reef fish (angelfish, butterflyfish, clownfish…), turtles and rays are also pretty common in the area.
Kapas is a small island located a few kilometers off Terengganu. 2 to 3 boats per day serve the island from the fishing village of Marang. The boat trip to the island takes only 15 minutes. It is possible (and recommended) to spend the night on the island, which offers several accommodations, from campsites to guesthouses.
The snorkeling area is located southwest of Kapas Island, around the light tower that overlooks the coast. The reef stretches mainly along the beach of the Kapas Turtle Valley Chalet, and extends to the front of the Captain Longhouse, bypassing the rocks – See map.
The best way to explore the reef is to get in the water in front of the Kapas Turtle Valley Chalets and snorkel the surrounding area, getting out of the water in front of Captain Longhouse. The sandy beach makes the water entrance very easy.
Along the coast, after a few meters on the sand, we reach pretty healthy coral reefs. The underwater visibility is random, but very good most of the time.
The corals are colorful and beautiful to see, and shelter a multitude of fish. Porcupinefish (several species – see complete list at the bottom of the page), groupers (blacktip grouper, honeycomb grouper…), butterflyfish and wrasse are among the most common species.
Many clownfish also call the reef home, huddled in their anemones. You may also have the chance to spot the beautiful blue ring angelfish, which can measure up to 45cm, the bluespotted stingray, as well as morays. Octopus and cuttlefish can also be seen.
Rays sometimes rest on the sand, while at greater depths, hawksbill turtles and green turtles are often seen.
In usual sea conditions, this spot does not present strong currents, nor any particular danger.
The Kapas Turtle Valley Chalet is located on the beach, right in front of the reef. Other accommodations are available nearby, including Captain’s Longhouse, Duta Puri Island Resort and Kapas Island Resort.
These snorkeling spots are accessible to beginners and kids. You will enter the water gradually from a beach, or in a less than 3ft. deep area. The sea is generally calm, shallow, with almost no waves or currents. These spots are usually located in marked and/or monitored swimming areas. It is not necessary to swim long distances to discover the sea life.This level only apply when the spot experiences optimal sea and/or weather conditions. It is not applicable if the sea and/or weather conditions deteriorate, in particular in the presence of rough sea, rain, strong wind, unusual current, large tides, waves and/or swell. You can find more details about the definition of our snorkeling levels on our snorkeling safety page.
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Snorkeling spots are part of a wild environment and their aspect can be significantly altered by weather, seasons, sea conditions, human impact and climate events (storms, hurricanes, seawater-warming episodes…). The consequences can be an alteration of the seabed (coral bleaching, coral destruction, and invasive seagrass), a poor underwater visibility, or a decrease of the sea life present in the area. Snorkeling Report makes every effort to ensure that all the information displayed on this website is accurate and up-to-date, but no guarantee is given that the underwater visibility and seabed aspect will be exactly as described on this page the day you will snorkel the spot. If you recently snorkeled this area and noticed some changes compared to the information contained on this page, please contact us.
The data contained in this website is for general information purposes only, and is not legal advice. It is intended to provide snorkelers with the information that will enable them to engage in safe and enjoyable snorkeling, and it is not meant as a substitute for swim level, physical condition, experience, or local knowledge. Remember that all marine activities, including snorkeling, are potentially dangerous, and that you enter the water at your own risk. You must take an individual weather, sea conditions and hazards assessment before entering the water. If snorkeling conditions are degraded, postpone your snorkeling or select an alternate site. Know and obey local laws and regulations, including regulated areas, protected species, wildlife interaction and dive flag laws.
Fringing reef with clams, anemones and colorful fish
Level: Free shore access
Coral reef with sharks and colorful fish
Rocky islet edged by a coral reef with colorful fish
Fringing reef with colorful fish
Level: Free shore access Resort nearby
Fringing reef with colorful fish and a few sharks
Vibrant fringing reef with colorful fish and rays