A Trip to See the Kuala Selangor Fireflies

I took the girlfriend to see the fireflies at Kuala Selangor last night. I’m not too crazy about riding sampans on a river that reputedly has crocodiles (I prefer riding a dhow across a river filled with jellyfish like in Dubai) but the fireflies themselves made the trip really worthwhile. They were beautiful!

We share a sampan with two British old-timers. It’s embarrassing to hear that one of them had been to Kuala Selangor several times to see the fireflies, but hey, it’s never too late. The boatman went out of his way to bring his boat up close and personal to one of the larger mangrove trees and caught one of ’em light bugs.

I can feel a little warmth from the underbelly of the little fella. Slow lighters are female while those fast blinkers are male bugs. Just make sure it’s “catch and release”, and not “catch and bring home” as you’ll be fined a wallet burning RM 1,000 if you are caught. The little fella flew off after a short ride on the boat with us.

The Best Days To Visit

And I got some tips on what are the best times to see these wonders of nature. The best days are from the 1st to 6th and 18th to 26th of every month on the Chinese Lunar Calendar.

This is when the Sungai Selangor (Selangor River) is at its deepest (15 metres) and the fireflies are grouped together (due to the trees being submerged). Also, don’t let a little drizzle deter you as it’s more important to have no wind blowing (the fireflies don’t like windy conditions).

How to Get There?

It’s pretty easy if you are heading from Klang, as you just need to make your way to Kuala Selangor. There’s a junction before the Kuala Selangor down, turn right and head towards Kampung Kuantan. The firefly tourist complex is pretty hard to miss, it’s on the left hand side 6 kilometers from the junction.

If you have heard rumours that these little fellas have gone extinct, don’t listen to them! Head on down to Kuala Selangor to see for yourself. The fireflies start their show at around 7.45 in the evening so be there early, especially during peak season.

Each sampan can seat four people and it costs RM 40 a boat. 4 bottles of water are provided so you do not need to bring your own. Umbrellas are provided as well in an event of a light drizzle. Each ride takes about 20-30 minutes, and yeah, there was a croc floating around against the current when I was there. Heh.

What I Had for Dinner

No trip to Kuala Selangor (especially at night) will be complete without a mention about the food. Kuala Selangor is an excellent place for seafood and these seafood restaurants are concentrated in the Pasir Penambang area. What you’ll need to do is drive through Kuala Selangor town, cross the bridge (you should be able to see the restaurants lining the river bank from the bridge, just look left if you are heading from Klang), and stick left down a narrow road right after the bridge.

Drive through the narrow road and soon you’ll find yourself in a fishing village. There are signs put up by restaurant propertiers so just follow ’em. We had dinner at Restoran Kuala Selangor, with a meal capable of feeding 3-4 people. Razor clams, mantis prawns, oyster omelette and asparagus made up the order and the bill was just RM 57!

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