Kuala Selangor

Petaling Jaya

Kuala Selangor is a coastal town about 50km away from Kuala Lumpur/Petaling Jaya, perched next to a large river mouth that feeds into the sea. Hence, its name means 'Confluence of the Selangor River'. Once the center for a tin mining industry that helped define the early history of Malaysia, Kuala Selangor is now a popular eco-tourism destination to see fireflies - nature's very own Christmas lights.

Every night, boats ferry tourists from surrounding villages to watch these natural wonders light up mangrove trees along the river banks. Other tourist attractions in Kuala Selangor include Taman Alam (Nature Park) Mangrove Sanctuary, Bukit Melawati Hill (viewpoint and historical monuments), boat tours to Sky Mirror and seafood restaurants/shops of Pasir Penambang.

Some time in the 14th Century, Bugis traders (and pirates) arrived at the coast of Selangor, having searched out new lands with an intrepid spirit. Establishing their foothold, they lived peacefully under a matriarch until her passing. Without a proper leader, the land came under the rule of the Malacca Sultanate in the 16th Century. It became an important trading dock, attracting merchants from around the world.

Later, the Bugis would set up a state and install Raja Lumu as ruler in the 17th century. The Dutch, having conquered Malacca, were the first to set their sights on Kuala Selangor, the capital of this new state. Battles raged, mostly around what is known as Bukit Melawati today, until Selangor fell to Dutch control in 1784.

Later, it reverted back to Bugis rule, but fell again during the Selangor Civil War, when rival sultans made alliances with Chinese gangs to control newly discovered tin mines. The British entered the fray, looking out for their own economic interests vested in tin mining. Backing their chosen Sultan and Chinese gang, they stamped their authority with gunboat diplomacy until the colonial era had passed.