Friday, May 31, 2024

Pulau Ketam: Timeless Charm Awaits

Pulau Ketam, or Crab Island, is a name that carries an air of charm. This island, nestled at the mouth of the Klang River near Port Klang, just downstream from Kuala Lumpur, has enchanted others, while it remained a mysterious enigma to me. Friends and fellow travelers rave about it, insisting it's a place you simply must experience. They talk about it with such fondness, always eager to return. My curiosity was piqued. Getting my husband to join in, we invited another husband-and-wife team, much older, to join us. They too were ready to discover what was in store in Pulau Ketam.

When the day finally came,  we arrived at the Port Klang Jetty on a weekday, ready for our journey. We chose to board the Ali Baba Cruises, slightly more expensive than other options, but worth it for the promise of a memorable trip. With return tickets in hand, we felt like we were already stepping into a water world of the streets of Melaka, as we awaited the cruise ship.

Boarding the cruise ship was worth every penny. The ride was a cool and comfortable escape, with air conditioning providing relief as we sailed through the water. For 45 blissful minutes, we enjoyed views of life along the riverbanks, a perfect backdrop for relaxation. The approach to Pulau Ketam was captivating, heightening our anticipation for what lay ahead. This journey was more than just a ride; it was a chance to unwind and savor precious moments. Away from the hustle and bustle of city life and the daily grind, it was a perfect time for me-time. As we stepped off the cruise, it felt like we were entering a gallery of memories on the pavement leading into Pulau Ketam.

The village greeted us with charming decorations, inviting us into its world - a quaint heritage village on stilts. It felt like stepping back in time, where the essence of the past remains untouched. We stopped at a local coffee shop, savoring refreshing coconut water to cool down under the blazing sun. Afterward, we headed to our hotel - a simple, no-frills place that felt more like a home stay.

After settling in, we decided to relax with a drink. We wandered into a random coffee shop - its name escapes me now. Our lady friend highly recommended the ice coffee, while we opted for milk tea and a local favorite called Teh C, which is tea with evaporated milk. We also shared a plate of fried kuey teow, nibbling contentedly and enjoying the simple, flavorful fare.

Later, as we strolled around, a sign for a trip to the Kelong, a fishing farm, caught our eye. Eager for adventure, we hopped on a boat with a few other visitors and set off. It had been ages since I’d seen fish in their natural habitat, and the excitement was palpable.


We arrived at the Kelong and stepped onto a wooden pavement, where we watched fish of all sizes flipping and flopping, twisting and turning, eagerly nibbling on the food thrown to them. It was quite the spectacle, a reminder of the simple joys of nature. We had to be mindful of our steps on the rickety walkway, but it added to the charm of the experience. Once it was over, the boat brought us back to Pulau Ketam Jetty, leaving us with a cherished memory.

By this hour, around 4 pm, it was time for a tea break. We chose another random restaurant and decided to try the fried lala. We ordered two plates of fried lala, a delightful mix of egg, garlic, bean sprouts, soy sauce, and other seasonings, served with a spicy chili dip. Paired with our chilled drinks, the dish didn’t immediately wow our taste buds, but the dip provided the much-needed kick.
To be continued...

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