Firefly Watching

October 19, 2012, Sekinchan, Selangor, Malaysia

I have barely entered the hotel room that S and I will be sharing for a couple of days when she started filling me in on the firefly watching trip that she has arranged for both of us the following day.

We were in Sekinchan, Selangor. S has been in the hotel a few days earlier having a head start with some accounting stuff. I came a few days later. I enjoyed some days off to celebrate my birthday.

The hotel is nice. It is located in one small fishing village or kampung as what locals call it and boasts of a nice sea view and an ikan bakar or a fish restaurant to complete the experience.

The place has just opened last August so everything is still relatively new. We love the room because it is spacious with nice fixtures save for the rug that S hates to bits and the bathroom which should have seen a better planning. Anyway, the combination of green and white adds freshness to the place. We enjoyed our time there.

Going back, S has been so excited about the fireflies because she was informed that there are only two of this kind in the world, one in Brazil and one here in Malaysia. I very well informed her that we have that very same attraction in the Philippines and it is divine.

Many thanks to Aan by the way, the front office staff who fixed everything for us and acted as our hostess in their cute little fishermen village. She was so patient and kind driving us around even though we drive her crazy.

Since the hotel is located in some secluded area, it took us about 30 to 45 minutes to go to the park. We were told that lines could be very long sometimes as tourists really flock to see those Christmas lighty insects.

I guess we were lucky. There was no line when we got there. They asked us to wear a life vest before hopping on the quiet motorized boat for safety reasons and then off we went.

The trip lasted for about 15 minutes or so. It wasn’t that long. For the price of 15 RM, S and I thought it was expensive. The distance of the river cruised was very short and no background at all was given about the fireflies for better appreciation. Also, taking photos were not allowed.

I cannot help but compare the recent firefly watching trip I had with my sister last April in Donsol. This trip in Selangor pales in comparison to what we have in the Philippines.

I remember we started gathering by the shore at around 5 PM, just in time  for the sunset. This shot was taken using my point and shoot camera and no editing has been done, I swear. That’s how vivid and breathtaking Philippine sunset can be.

Then we started canoeing through the river as the sun was showing off and the dusk is falling. How romantic can those colors be??? My sister and I were kicking each other in the boat complaining why the hell were we stuck with each other in such a romantic setting meant to be shared with somebody we can hold hands with.

Oh well, we only have each other so we might as well just enjoy it as sisters.

The view was really breathtaking as we cruised the river waiting for night time to fall and see the beautiful transformation of those trees which would appear like burning bushes later on.

A guide hopped on the boat too. He was an out of school youth before who was then trained by the government to provide tour services to guests. He gave us a background about the place, about the river, about the trees that fireflies frequent, what they eat, how they smell, why they sparkle etc. I wasn’t really listening attentively as by that time, the fireflies started appearing and I was smitten.

My trusted point and shoot was not powerful enough to capture the beauty I was witnessing. As what a friend once said, there are some things in life that are meant to be experienced, just experienced. I guess that was one moment. It was just so beautiful.

The guide was able to take hold of one firefly without killing it and showed us how it looks like up close and personal. He also asked us to smell his hands afterwards because he said these insects leave a very aromatic smell when touched. I agree. The insect smells like it has just taken a bath or something.

The trip lasted for about an hour and a half to two. We left the shore around 5:30 PM and was back at around 7:30 PM ready for our lovely meal.

So yeah, the trip in Selangor needs further improvement and more personal touch to be worth the time and distance of people coming to see it.

Anyway, we were famished after. And since the hotel we were in is far from civilization, we decided to eat something that we won’t be able to find in the 10 km radius of the hotel. We had Secret Recipe and Pizza Hut! 🙂

The meal was ok. The staff of the pizza place must be tired or something. They brought us a wrong pizza which was almost half finished when we noticed there were no pepperonis and they were a little bit slow that we needed to follow up our orders several time. The taste of the food was also blah. Thank gad for the cake. That was the life saver.

Still, it is not everyday that I get a chance to go to Selangor, go on a firefly tour and spend time with these lovely ladies. It was very memorable and a lot of fun especially since looking at it now, this could be the last.


Thanks Aan for teaching me how to manipulate those F and ISO setting in my camera. I still cannot fully get it but yeah, I am getting there. 🙂 And, we are looking forward to seeing an addition to your portfolio. Your photos are great. Open a blog soon and let us know the link. 🙂


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