Difference between revisions of "Port Dickson"
Revision as of 06:54, 6 August 2012
Port Dickson is a popular beach destination in the state of Negeri Sembilan, Peninsular Malaysia. About 60 kilometers from Kuala Lumpur, Port Dickson, or PD to locals, is about an hour's drive from Kuala Lumpur along the North-South Highway and about 32 km from Seremban.
Back in the late 1990s, Port Dickson went through a boom of hotels and resorts. Some of these projects never took off the ground and the unfinished construction projects can still be seen along the tourist town. However, today, with the economy improving and tourism booming in Malaysia, the projects are being revived.
The 18 km extent of beach from Tanjung Gemuk to Tanjung Tuan is now a popular holiday destination for visitors coming as far as those from Kuala Lumpur itself. Many Singaporeans have invested in holiday homes in and around Port Dickson.
Port Dickson is well-linked to the rest of Peninsular Malaysia by roads.
The Seremban-Port Dickson Highway (E29) links Port Dickson with Seremban and directly onto the North-South Expressway (E2) which spans the length of Peninsular Malaysia. For Port Dickson town, you should exit at the Lukut interchange (Exit 316) while those heading to the beach resorts south of town can continue either to Si Rusa or the end of the highway near the hospital at Teluk Kemang. To access the Seremban-Port Dickson Highway from the North-South Expressway, exit at the Port Dickson interchange (Exit 219) between Seremban and Senawang interchanges.
Port Dickson is on Federal Route 5 or the Coastal Trunk Road, linking it to Malacca to the south, and Klang to the north.
Frequent buses - both direct express which use the highway and local which use the old toll-free road - link Port Dickson with Seremban. Travel time is about one hour and cost RM4. On weekdays there only seems to be one company offering buses between Seremban and Port Dickson, one per hour. If coming from other parts of Malaysia, the easiest way by bus will be to travel via Seremban.
Local buses also link Port Dickson with Sungai Pelek in Sepang district in Selangor, where there are connections to the Kuala Lumpur International Airport. To the south, local buses go to Pengkalan Kempas and Tanjung Agas (these buses actually go right up to Kuala Linggi in Malacca) where there are connections to Malacca city.
If coming from Malacca via Seremban by bus, allow about 4-5 hours to get to Port Dickson. It's not worth it.
Although Port Dickson has a rail link, there are no longer any train services. The nearest train station is in Seremban which can be easily reached from Kuala Lumpur. You have to catch a bus or taxi from Seremban to Port Dickson.
Daily ferries connect Port Dickson with Dumai in Sumatra, Indonesia. The Acob Express (Jetty office Tel: +60-6-6471599) leaves from the jetty in the middle of town at 1030. Return trips depart Dumai at 1300. Tickets cost RM80/150 one-way/return.
Taxi rank is right next to the bus station. Happily, it seems to be the only main town in Malaysia where taxis get commission for taking you to certain hotels. You shouldn't pay more than 15RM to get as far as Blue Lagoon/lighthouse which is right at the end of the strip. There is also a local bus that toodles along the coast to the Blue Lagoon and back max 2RM
The Portuguese built the Cape Rachardo lighthouse in the 16th century. The lighthouse guided ships to the Port of Malacca. It is still operatoinal today. Gong up the narrow spiral staircase and see the panaromic view of the coastline of Sumatra, 38 km across the Straits. The cape is also the stopover point for migratory birds. From September to March, flocks of sparrows, honey buzzards and swifts can be seen here together with hawks and eagles. Walk down the 63 steps next to the lighthouse and follow the jungle trek to a secluded beach. The footprint embedded in a rock, about 50 metre to the right of the track, is said to be that of Hang Tuah, the legendary Malay warrior of the 15th century. Legend has it that upon acquiring innate strength and knowledge, Hang Tuah chose to meditate here. The footprint marks the spot where he first landed at Tanjung Tuan. A well closeby whose cool chilled water is a haven for the tired and thirsty, is also said to have been dug by him. Local devotees have known to pay their homage at this spot.
Located near next to a Malaysian Army Camp Port Dickson Based. This Museum is the latest attraction in Port Dickson. Some vehicle and aircraft used by Royal Malaysian Army before is display there. There also a Communist Tunnel.
Fort Raja Jumaat is about 7 km from Port Dickson. He was a 19th century Bugis warrior. The fort was built in 1847 to control the lucrative tin trade in the area. Today the muzzle loading guns used to defend the fort can be seen within the grounds of the District Officer’s residence and outside the Police Station in town. In the area of the fort are also the remains of the foundation of an old palace and a royal burial ground.
About 23 km from the lighthouse, there is a small village called Keramat Ujung Pasir. Here you will find a 15th century tomb of a leading historical personality, Ulama Sheikh Ahmad Makhtum, with its famous carved megalith. Next his grave are the famous stone inscriptions or "Batu Bersurat" which depict his struggle and victory. The enigma surrounding the stone remains unsolved to this day. Of special interest is the ‘ordeal stone’, an ancient lie-detector, through which a person puts his arm when answering questions. If he lies, the stone tightens like a vice.
There's an extremely colourful (literally and figuratively) night market on Saturday nights near the town centre, where you can buy everything from fresh fish and vegetables to shoes and t-shirts.
For those who are into gastronomic activities, one can get a taste of the hot and spicy local cuisine. There’s fish cooked in thick gravy of coconut milk and the killer cili padi which is guaranteed to make your mouth and eyes smart. One can also try the rendang (beef cooked with coconut milk and a rich assortment of spices). This is normally eaten with ‘Lemang’, glutinous rice cooked in bamboo.
A few famous restaurants are 'Seaview' and 'Curry house' along Jalan Pantai, 'Mak Mah' located next to the Shell gate entrance and 'Restaurant SN Mohhamad' in Port Dickson town area next to the post office. Every first Saturday of the month, there is a night market in Port Dickson Town, which is full of varieties of food and fruits. Besides that,'Country home' also a very famous restaurant in Lukut which famous with its delious foods. The Famous PD Eating Point is popular with chinese and western delicacies. In Port Dickson also you all cannot miss to try Nasi Lemak stall known as 'Wak Rahman' consider as one of the most famous nasi lemak stall there.If you go to town side there is a bunch or restaurants choices waiting such as Restoran Abu Bakar, SN Mohammad and a lot out there. Marketplace is another interesting food festival in Port Dickson at which you are exposed to variety of foods ranging from Chinese, Indian, Malay and international cuisine. Among the famous and well known is home made Putu Mayam sold by Abdul Rahman bin K. Ismail, the founder and owner of Bismi Putu Mayam. Don't miss to try out the delicious homemade Putu Mayam by Bismi Putu Mayam. These Putu Mayam are also available for orders for many functions and gathering.
If you happen to have a craving for "Western" food, El Cactus cannot be beat. They do absolutely top-notch Mexican food: nachos, burritos, fajitas, quesadillas etc.; they are as good (or even better) than anything I've sampled in my many trips to Mexico. The owner takes his food quite seriously and insists on obtaining all of the correct spices and the best ingredients. They also have pizza, pasta, etc. which I haven't tried. Oh and the frozen lime margaritas are amazing!
As with other towns in Malaysia, alcohol is expensive and there are no bars as such. Some of the resorts have bars though, which can get lively at weekend and during Malay holidays. For midweek off-peak drinking, it will be like making love to someone you truly love. You'll be doing it on your own.
There are numerous resorts, hotels, villas and bungalows which have sprung up along the coast, providing a variety of accommodation facilities.
It is tempting to just write 'while you can', but refer to 'Get In' section if you actually need information instead of witticism.