Friday, May 09, 2008

Klang - North and South Ports

Royal Town of Selangor

IN the 70s, Klang is well-known for its crows. In fact, it is one of the most obvious features the minute you travel beyond Shah Alam into Klang. Today, however, there are not many of them. Perhaps the lack of food or drawn by the bright lights of the city of Petaling Jaya and Kuala Lumpur, the crows have abandoned Klang - much to the delight of the locals.

In fact, some of the local elders have confided in us that the crows' disappearance is somewhat a mystery and much missed by those who grew up with this royal capital of the state of Selangor, located about 32km south-west of Kuala Lumpur.

Klang is believed to have been derived from the Klang River which runs through the town - and the river was said to have been derived from the Burmese word of Klong. South of Klang are the two main ports - North Port and South Port. These are the busiest sea ports in Peninsula Malaysia. Not far from the two ports is West Port where the Star Cruises terminal is located.

What can you find in Klang? Well, to the Chinese, Hokkiens especially, Klang is famous ofr its Pork Ribs Soup or Bak Kut Teh. This is a concoction of Chinese herbs stewed pork ribs and believed to be an aphrodisiac. In the old days, this formed the basic breakfast for the coolies working at the port and warehouses, eaten at roadside stalls and under makeshit tents.

Today, this meal is accorded a much higher status as Bak Kut Teh restaurants expand far and wide and even internationally - some even with the Klang Bak Kut Teh proudly emblazoned across its facade.

North Port/Tanjung Harapan

Foolhardy father and son trying their luck at the sewer at North Port. If the waves don't get them, the bacteria in the fish would.
The North Port, known also as Tanjung Harapan, is the Esplanade of Klang. This is a favourite venue for picnickers and anglers in the evenings and during weekends.

At the other end is the Bagan Hailam, which is well known for cheap seafood and commercial fishing ponds.

For RM30 per three hours, you get to try your luck in a fishing pond where there are more lines than fish.

These fish, mangrove jacks (also known as Bangla, by fishing jokers), can be hooked up at the many commercial ponds here.

South Port
South Port is the launch point should you wish to go to Pulau Ketam. There is a jetty here where you can board the jet-ferry. This jetty also serves as the launch point to Tanjung Balai, Indonesia.

Getting There:
Taxis and buses ply the Kuala Lumpur-Klang-Port Klang route. KTM Komuter also offers regular service (about 30 min intervals) from Sentul through the KL Sentral and South Port's Pulau Ketam terminal jetty.

If you intend to drive there, you can either use the North Klang Valley Expressway or the Federal Highway. Signboards are plentiful so you should not be in trouble. When approaching Klang, however, drive with caution as there are many trailers plying the route to the ports.

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