To further promote angling tourism in Perak, Tourism Malaysia Perak has come up with packages for one of the state’s top fishing spots around the waters off Pulau Sembilan and Pulau Jarak. These packages are tailor-made to meet the requirements of anglers, depending on the species of fish they target.
Those aiming for Grade A species like jenahak, kerapu, gerut-gerut and merah, will be taken to an area about five hours from the LKIM (Lembaga Kemajuan Ikan Malaysia) jetty in Sg Acheh, Sitiawan, in the Straits of Melaka for bottom fishing. Here battery-operated fishing reels are used to fish from depths of 50 to 90 metres. The recommended time period for fishing these species is between 7pm to 9am, as that is their feeding time.
According to fishing expedition organiser, Mizie of D Kaki Pancing, the fish here, due to strong undercurrents, do not have the trademark muddy taste; hence they fetch a higher price in the market.
There is no particular fishing season, but anglers are advised to stay away one week around the middle and one week at the end of the month, according to the Muslim calendar, because the sea is too rough. Boats have to be booked at least two months in advance, due to its popularity, as anglers consider this area to be the second top fishing spot in Malaysia.
Depending on the size, a boat can accommodate up to 12 anglers and will be manned by at least three men per boat. The 2D/1N package is approximately RM2800 while the 3D/2N trip is about RM5200. Rate depending on the boat chartered, is inclusive of full-board, ice, live bait, and three meals a day. Special menus are available if requests are made in advance. A guide can be arranged for those who have no fishing experience, while those who lack the equipment can rent them.
To give media representatives and travel agents first-hand experience, some 30 participants from Kuala Lumpur, Selangor and Perak were taken on a 2D/1N angling expedition on three boats. Participants, mainly with zero knowledge on fishing, were taught on finding suitable locations in the sea, the varying depths required, ocean tides, baits and identifying the different species of fish.
Though considered novice, some participants were lucky to land a sizable fish for dinner. They did so after going through the process of first fishing for small fish and squid and then using them as live bait for a larger catch.
Some unfortunate participants failed to gain a footing on board and felt dizzy. Wan Munirah Dato’ Wan Puteh, a sales and marketing director of a travel agency, was one of those who suffered from seasickness. Even so, she said that she would not mind going on board the Seagull again, for a new experience. According to her, RM2800 for a 2D/1N angling expedition is reasonably cheap, especially with the good choice of food on board.
While experienced anglers know what to expect on fishing boats, Wan Munirah cautions beginners not to expect too much when it comes to living conditions. “Basic amenities are in place, but they are definitely not 5-star,” she remarked.
Muhammad Faiz, a fishing journalist with a magazine called “Umpan”, who was on board “Peter”, was not satisfied with his catch. He attributed it to Lady Luck.
After almost 24 hours on board, particularly for those who stayed up till the wee hours of the morning for a better harvest, it was a tiring end to the expedition. That was indeed the most fruitful hours for serious anglers. On the whole, it was a great experience for new and seasoned anglers alike.
There are currently about three local organisers who cater for such angling trips. Certain travel agents are also in the midst of putting angling packages together.
For details on angling tourism call Tourism Malaysia Perak at 05-255 9962.