About an hour’s drive away from the busy, bustling, cosmopolitan vibe of Kuala Lumpur lies a quiet, unassuming, idyllic place like those seen in TV dramas. As a matter of fact, a TVB drama called Outbound Love is actually set in this little town.
Sekinchan is indeed a hidden gem that not many people, even Malaysians, know of. It is located in Sabak Bernam, Selangor, and is ideal for a day trip for those who are looking for a day’s respite away from the noisy city. The beautiful village is a small fishing village, and there are several attractions there which can easily be seen within the day. It would be ideal if those visiting have their own transportation, but if not, it is possible to rent a bicycle from one of the many bicycle rental companies in town.
The ideal time to visit Sekinchan is March-May and September-November, when the paddy fields are lush and a beautiful sight to see. Most of the landscape of Sekinchan are dominated by these paddy fields, despite being a fishing village. The picturesque blue skies which horizon meets the paddy plants is a welcome sight for the weary city-dweller’s eyes. The Paddy Gallery is available for those who are interested to learn the entire paddy harvesting process from start to finish. The Paddy Gallery is a unique concept because it is not merely a museum; it is also an active rice-processing facility. Visitors will learn every step of the process from the harvested paddy plants to the rice grains sent to supermarkets. To top that off, the Paddy Gallery is located right in the middle of the paddy fields! And down the road from the Paddy Gallery, most Malaysians would love to visit the Mango King stall, especially when the day is hot, where they serve up fresh, sweet mangoes and mango smoothies.
One who visits Sekinchan should not miss making a stop at the Sekinchan Wishing Tree. It is located at the Redang Beach. After donating to a temple nearby the tree, visitors can collect a red ribbon tied with an ancient Chinese coin. Wishes are written on these ribbons (and kept a secret), and the bearer tosses their ribbon on the tree. According to legend, the higher the ribbon lands, the more likely the wish is to come true. Then they can go on to have a relaxing time at the Redang Beach, enjoying the sand between their toes, flying kites, and doing a whole host of beach-related activities.
Seafood enthusiasts will have the time of their lives in Sekinchan. Since it is a fishing village, there are numerous seafood restaurants and vendors around the village selling seafood. Visitors can start by strolling along the jetties and see all the boats and equipment fishermen use to go fishing and stop at any seafood restaurants to grab some fresh, deliciously prepared seafood.
For those who plan to spend more than a day in Sekinchan, it is worth making the trip to the neighbouring Kuala Selangor, where the top two attractions in Malaysia are located: The sky Mirror and fireflies. Firefly-watching in the pitch-dark mangroves of Kuala Selangor is a lovely sight to behold. The Sky Mirror is a shallow sandbank that is only accessible during low tides, when the whole ground reflects the sky around it.
The pandemic has affected many local businesses and people who rely on these businesses day-to-day to make a living. Perhaps travelling locally once the pandemic is over may revive our local sights. Besides, it is definitely easier on the pocket to travel locally to affordable places. They are just as beautiful and worth visiting.