Mangrove has been destroyed and reforestation is often undertaken, but whether a regenerated forest could restore its ecological function is not clear. This study compares microbial community structure and function in sediment of the 17-years old natural regenerated mangrove forest (Y17) with the original forest (Y74). No significant differences in phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) profiles and microbial metabolism of most carbon substrates were found between these two forests. However, activities of dehydrogenase, protease, cellulase and phosphatase were lower in Y17 than Y74, and some specific microbial functions were also different. Both forests exhibited significant seasonal differences in enzyme activities and microbial characteristics, but such difference was larger in Y17 than Y74, indicating the regenerated forest was more sensitive to season. Correspondence analysis based on PLFA profiles and enzyme activities revealed the microbial community in Y17 was comparable to Y74, suggesting sediment microbial characteristics in natural regenerated mangroves could be restored.