Lesser known than Sipadan Island, Layang Layang Island, also known as “Swallows Reef” is an oceanic atoll of 13 linked coral reefs. It is part of the many islands and reefs of the disputed Spratly Islands. The atoll is not of a significant size with an area of approximately 14 square kilometres and a central lagoon. The part above the sea with reclaimed lands now measures 1.5 km long and 200 metres wide. A calm shallow lagoon is on one side of the island and the other is a deep drop into the open ocean.
With the nearest city over 300 km away, Layang Layang remains untouched and undisturbed by any fishing activities or man-made pollution. Located in waters 2,000 metres deep, Layang Layang has been rated the top 10 dive sites in the world with its mesmerising coral gardens, pristine reefs and excellent visibility.
Layang Layang is considered a man-made island, constructed for the Malaysian Navy in the past. Upon arrival, you may not be greeted with the lush tropics that one might imagine of a tropical island but it is magnificent in its own unique sense.