1D PADI Discover Scuba Diving

Gaya Island in the Tunku Abdul Rahman Park in Kota Kinabalu is ideally suited to beginner divers who are “Fit To Dive”. Providing warm, shallow, sandy confined water environments which slope to slightly deeper coral reef habitats. We have a very quiet lagoon for our PADI Discover Scuba Diving program, a very special house reef with lots of marine life. You will also enjoy an additional boat dive with this one day experience.

The PADI Discover Scuba Diving program in Kota Kinabalu introduces people to scuba diving in a highly supervised and relaxed manner. It dispels common misconceptions about scuba by letting individuals try it for themselves. As part of the Discover Scuba program, and under the guidance of a PADI professional, new divers learn basic safety concepts, put on equipment and swim around underwater in a closely supervised environment.

  • PADI dive safety briefing with flip chart
  • Practise of dive skills
  • Extra boat dive to a coral dive site
  • Idyllic island setting
  • Under direct instruction of PADI Pro’s
  • Small group instruction to build confidence

Program Overview

The PADI Discover Scuba Diving program consists of three parts: a knowledge briefing, a confined water dive in shallow water and an open water scuba dive to our ‘house reef’.  An afternoon boat dive for those people that successfully complete the discover scuba diving program is also included within this program. The knowledge briefing segment covers basic safety information.  We use an easy to understand PADI  illustrated flip chart, so even if English is not your first language you can easily understand the concepts.  The confined water dive is conducted in water shallow enough to stand and allows participants to practice basic scuba skills and become comfortable in the water before progressing to deeper water. Under the direct supervision of our PADI Instructor beginner divers experience the underwater world safely having no prior experience.

After trying the PADI Discover Scuba Diving program, many new divers may decide to repeat the experience. If not immediately, then on other occasions or in different areas. Others will choose to pursue certification by enrolling in a PADI Scuba Diver or PADI Open Water Diver course. During this one day Discover Scuba Diving program enjoy a 3rd dive with one of our PADI instructors to a maximum depth of 12m. Instead of the 3rd dive, you can opt to enjoy a fully guided snorkelling session from the boat at no extra charge instead.

Your Safety is Our Priority!

At all times you are in safe hands. We pride ourselves on small group instruction ensuring our clients get the very best of attention from the instructor. Safety is paramount, we adhere to PADI standards and procedures and HSE Guidelines. Our boats are equipped with marine radio, GPS & First Aid kits and our qualified snorkel guides always bring a life ring with them. All our guides are trained in Emergency First Response.

All Inclusive Rates!

We run daily picks ups from Kota Kinabalu City to our dive centre. Our all inclusive price means that you pay one price which includes everything you’ll need for a great day out. That’s return transfers from your hotel (KK City Centre only including Tanjung Aru – subject to confirmed bookings), boat transfers, park and jetty fees, activity equipment, refreshments – free flow water / tea / coffee and freshly cooked lunch. All programs last for the full day and our return boat transfer to the mainland is at 16:00. If you would like to leave earlier this is classified as a private transfer and the cost is RM110.00 per boat.

Itinerary at a Glance

  • 08:15 – Hotel pickup (KK city centre & Tg Aru) transfer to marina (07:15 pick up for outside KK City)
  • 08:30 – Meet Downbelow staff & transfer on boat to Downbelow Dive & Adventure Centre on Gaya Island
  • 09:30 – Dive & equipment briefing
  • 10:30 – Confined water dive
  • 12:00 – Open water dive / 13:00 – Lunch.
  • 14:00 – 3rd dive or fully guided snorkelling
  • 16:00 – Boat transfer to marina /  16:30 – Return to hotel (KK City)
Hotel transfers (KK City), boat transfers, freshly cooked lunch and refreshments, park entry & jetty fees, guide/instruction, 3 dive sessions, learning materials, certification fees, equipment rental, plus water, tea & coffee.
Alcoholic or carbonated beverages, items not explicitly stated
Change of clothes, sun lotion, sun cream, towel, personal toiletries, insect repellent, hat, personal medication.
Important Information

Due to weather conditions, activities may be subject to re-scheduling to best meet operations, as well as clients health and safety.

Don't forget your SUN-CREAM. We are in the tropics where the sun is very strong and although you will be underwater the sun rays penetrate.

Liability Forms

Clients will be asked to complete PADI standard liability forms at the mainland departure jetty and dive centre. Parent or guardian must sign for participants under 18 years of age.


This program is not suitable for children below 10 years of age.

Clients must complete a medical form and any positive (yes) answers require a doctors assessment and signature for dive fitness. More information can be found here: Are you Fit to Scuba Dive?

After scuba diving, current PADI Flying After Diving guidelines state that you should not go to altitude (this includes flying and climbing) within 18 hours when completing multiple scuba dives. This means that the day after your diving program you can take a flight after 0930 hrs in the morning. Or you can choose to not take part in the afternoon dive and therefore take a flight after 0600 hrs in the morning the following day. Please note that since all our programs last a full day there will be no refund offered for missed dives since you have the option to stay on the island or enjoy snorkelling and trekking activities.