Following our pilgrimage to the Church of Our Lady of Fatima in Banting on October 11, 2009, 2 vans and 3 busload of pilgrims then proceeded to Tanjung Sepat for the leisure tour, the next stop in the itinerary.
We left Fatima Church about 1.15 pm, accompanied by Fr. VA Michael and Margaret, who generously spent the rest of that day with us. Thank you both!
Our tour of Tanjung Sepat, a neighbouring town that took about half an hour's journey from Banting was truly an eye-opener for my darling John and I. We were surprised to see that this previously small fishing village in Kuala Langat district, southwest coast of Selangor, has become a popular tourist attraction with the emergence of many seafood restaurants, fruit orchards that included Longan, Dragon Fruit, Coconut and others, Mushroom and Ganoderma (Ling-zhi) farm and other home-grown industries over the last decade.
Our first stop was the Longan orchard.
It's located somewhere after the Tamil School and about 1.5 km away from the main road. A relatively large-sized orchard with so many fruit trees, though most of them were devoid of longan bunches! Apparently, fruits must have been harvested earlier to cater to the great demand, judging by the busloads of tourists that converged there that Sunday afternoon.
All kinds of fruits (longan, dragon fruits, coconuts, pineapples, bananas, starfruits etc.), some vegetables (corn, sweet potatoes, tapioca) and tidbits were sold at its shop, set up nearby. Prices were quite reasonable and goods readily snapped.
Tanjong Sepat's longan are very juicy and sweet, no doubt about that. If you're not careful, the water just spurts out when you take a bite, so be careful! Advisable to chill it before eating to firm its juice and flesh too! Anyway, I prefer the Thai variety that has thicker flesh, and juice better contained.
Next visit was to the Tapioca (Cassava) factory and shop
It was my first time to such a place, which really stinks of stale starch! I was surprised to discover too that flies were attracted to the skinned tapioca tubers, exposed and contained in large baskets. Got to see how the tapioca were cleaned and machine-sliced by an operator who had to feed each tuber manually.
Beside the factory is its outlet that sells all kinds of tapioca food products. I didn't buy anything here as I don't particularly like to eat tidbits!
Arowana Malayan Food Industries Sdn Bhd
2926 Jalan Kampung Tanjong Sepat
42800 Tanjong Sepat
(Tel: 603-3197 3888)
Thence to Ocen Seafood Restaurant for lunch
By now, we were all hungry as it was slightly after 3 pm. Fifteen tables were already set ready for us and dishes were quickly served. We enjoyed the following dishes that accompanied our rice :
- Fish ball soup (lovely springy balls, fresh too)
- Sir-fried vegetables (okay, but I would have preferred an alternative stir-fried vege with sambal belachan and dried shrimps)
- Deep-fried cuttlefish, coated with batter (fresh cuttlefish, though a little too heavily coated)
- Steamed pomfret, teochew style (fish very fresh, sweet and just lovely)
- Tiny oysters pan-fried with egg and flour base (nice and moist, with more oysters and eggs than flour)
- Sweet and sour prawns (tasty, with very fresh and springy prawns)
- Crabs with salted eggs (delicious crabs, very fresh but too small-sized)
- Iced longan for dessert (refreshing)
Ocen Seafood Restaurant is built on stilts and has the best view of the Lover's Bridge. It seems that when the tide comes in at night, you can barely see the stilts.
Ocen Seafood Restaurant
Lot 109, Jalan Laut
Tanjung Sepat, Selangor
(Tel: 603-3197 4443)
Get more information on other food haven at Tanjong Sepat here.
After lunch, we proceeded to GanoFarm
Monkey Head Mushroom (Hericium erinaceus)
I was amazed to learn that the cultivation of the various kinds of mushrooms at GanoFarm is totally different from what I envisaged. Sawdust substrate are used instead. You can observe numerous sawdust substrate bags stacked on wooden racks. I thought that mushrooms were ground-grown or like those growing naturally on fallen tree trunks/logs. How naive and ignorant!
Pleurotus species - Grey Oyster Mushroom and Yellow Oyster Mushroom
These sequential steps are followed in mushroom cultivation:
- Substrate preparation
- Bagging of saw dust
- Capping of bag
Ganofarm is managed by Ganofarm Sdn Bhd, one of the leading companies in mushroom cultivation, manufacturing and marketing of ganoderma mushroom products and other mushrooms related products in Malaysia.
Check out its website: www.ganofarm.com/ to know more.
It has a wide range of mushroom products as seen in its shop within the farm's compound, ranging from beverages, health care, personal care and cosmetics.
Fresh farm produce, such as Japanese sweet potatoes, tapioca (cassava) and maize are sold there too and dirt cheap. For instance, a kilogram of Japanese sweet potatoes cost only RM2, whereas supermarkets in Kuala Lumpur are selling more than 2.5 times that price.
Check this out, Ganofarm has a homestay too, if you're interested.
Ganofarm Sdn Bhd
Lot 700, Jalan Laut Membiru, Taman Pelangi
42800 Tanjung Sepat
(Tel: 603-3197 5600)
Some interesting Ganoderma information from Answers.com.
Onwards to Hai Yew Heng, our next stop
We were informed that this famous 'Hai Yew Heng' shop, very popular for its Hainanese-styled steamed Chinese buns ('pau') sells about an average of one thousand buns every Saturday, Sunday and public holidays. A trip to Tanjung Sepat is incomplete without visiting this must-stop outlet which receives a constant influx of tourists.
Nonetheless, I think that the shop is too small to cater to such a big crowd, absolutely congested and 'jammed'. Queuing to order and purchase one's buns can really be a 'turn-off' for the impatient potential customer, or a curious visitor who just wants to observe the dough-making and filling process in the kitchen, which is also housed therein! The whole area is probably similar to a medium-sized 12x14 ft room.
It has another coffee shop, located just opposite it where you can sit to enjoy a cup of aromatic coffee and buns, that too unless you can find a place as it is as crowded there.
Six varieties of steamed buns are sold, with fillings as follows, with nos. 2 and 6 being the most favoured :
- Pork meat ('sang yuk' with hard-boiled egg) @ RM2
- Preserved vegetables with minced pork ('mui choy') @ RM1.80
- Red Bean ('tau sa') @ RM1.10
- Kaya @ RM1.10
- Peanut @ RM1.10
- Vegetable @ RM1.20
Hai Yew Heng
405, Jalan Pasar
42800 Tanjung Sepat
Kuala Langat, Selangor.
(Tel: 603-3197 4144, 012-272 9009)
Finally, to the fish market, our last stop
We arrived at the fish market at about 5.45 pm. We had already overshot our tour's time schedule. Hence, one of the tour buses, the one ferrying pilgrims from Brickfields Fatima Church, Kuala Lumpur decided not to join us here and had already departed for home after the previous stop.
Fishes and other seafood apparently still looked very fresh even as evening had set in. Some purchases were made by those interested. Not us, as we found that the fishes were relatively too large for the two of us. Anyway the prices were almost similar as in K.L., so pointless to be adding to our already heavy load from purchases at the various stops earlier.
It was almost 6.30 pm when we finally said goodbye to Tanjung Sepat, a lovely town that has much to offer. And, home sweet home, in less than 2 hours travel, by 8.20 pm.
For my darling and I, it was definitely a wonderful day, well-spent and enjoyed - spiritually uplifted by the pilgrimage to Church of Our Lady of Fatima in Banting and more knowledgeable after touring Tanjung Sepat. One day's trip, excluding our purchases, for just RM45 per person...isn't that awesome!
We praise and thank God for this blessing. Thanks to George, who organized this pilgrimage tour, and Fr. VA Michael who introduced Tanjung Sepat's favoured spots, to make this trip more memorable! :-D