Friday, May 09, 2008

Kuala Selangor

Estuary of the Selangor River

You have arrived! See the transmission tower atop the Bukit Melawati?

Kuala Selangor is a seaside town that has gained popularity over the last half decade. It is a favourite destination among cityfolk who throng this sleepy hollow for its cheap seafood fare as well as marine products, including fresh fish and crustaceans.

Lying about 70km to the northwest of the city centre, Kuala selangor is approachable via the coastal road from Klang town or from the city via the Sungai Buluh rural mainroad. Either way, expect an eventful ride as you cruise through the tiny villages that dot both sides of the road until Kuala Selangor.

Stalls selling traditional made pillows feature prominently along the roads as you approach Kuala Selangor. These pillows are stuffed using natural fibers taken from the 'kapok' tree pods. They are softed and more springy than goose feathers or cotton and much cheaper.

You will also see signboards advertising another tourist attraction within Kuala Selangor - the fireflies at Kampung Kuantan. Although these nocturnal creatures are getting fewer these days, you just might want to check them out if you have not see fireflies. Just follow the signboards to Kampung Kuantan and you will be taken there.

Meet Nathan, the ginger ale man. Not exactly ale, but close. Ginger soup, with over 50 herbs he claims. Very good!

As you approach the Kuala Selangor town, you will notice a hillock in the distance, on top of which is a telecommunications tower. This is Bukit Malawati, a tourist attraction itself. Atop this hillock is an old fort, complete with ancient cannons and observation decks. This old fort was used in the old days to spot invaders coming from the sea.

The mudflats of Selangor can be seen over yonder.

You can drive up Bukit Malawati although caution is advised as the road is a single-lane one-way traffic setup. There are limited parking areas, so you might as well consider a walk which is a better alternative.

The cannons that once guarded the hill and shore from pirates and invaders.

On top of Bukit Malawati are several attractions, such as the Lighthouse (which is not open to public), mausoleums, rock structures and the star attraction - a whole colony of the silvered leaf monkeys which have made the hillock their home.

The lighthouse at the peak, still in use to guide ships through Malacca straits. Indonesian illegal immigrants are believed to use this to get to Malaysian shores, too.

Chances are that you will be tempted to feed them as most visitors do, but we suggest you don't. These are sensitive creatures and while their friendly gestures beckon you to pass a pretzel or a peanut to them, they are still wild creatures. And what is in your diet may not be suitable for for their diet.

Getting to know each other. The silvered hair monkeys are not shy. No, the smaller ones that is.

Another natural resident of Bukit Malawati are the eagles, white-breasted sea eagles and the Brahminy kites. These can be seen riding the thermals searching for prey in the afternoons.

On the foothills of Bukit Malawati lies the Kuala Selangor Nature Park. Accommodation is available here for a nominal fee if you decide to stay overnight and discover the mangrove flora and fauna. You can get more reading material about the Nature Park just by Googling for it here.

The Kuala Selangor town can be a sleepy hollow during weekends and public holidays but will be quite a busy thoroughfare on weekdays as locals go on their daily work.

Here you will find a quaint mosque, old shophouses amid new ones and some restaurants.

Some of the restaurants serve quite reasonably priced seafood if you wish to check them out.

The taxi stops and bus station are located within the town area which is fast expanding.

If you wish to visit a fishing village nearest to Kuala Selangor, take a drive over the bridge northwards to Pasir Penambang.

Game for seafood? You've come to the right place.

Getting There:
You can use the Klang coastal road if you are coming from the south or if you are from Kuala Lumpur city, use the Sungai Buluh rural thoroughfare. There is only one road to Kuala Selangor and there are ample signages to lead you there, so no worries.

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