(top photo : women at Marang Village wrapping Dodol with palas leave. Dodol is a heritage candy make from glutinous rice flour and coconut sugar, produced for over hundreds of years ago. Its very unique taste.)
Marang is 20 km from Kuala Terengganu. It is a gateway to the famous Kapas Island and Gemial Island.
It was once a tiny fishing village with only two rows of wooden houses in the town center, and other old wooden Malay houses with zinc roof spreading in the village which is separated from the town centre by a shallow river. This little town was called the ‘cowboy town’ in those days. Several groceries shops and guesthouses lining on the street, joining with old residential houses, making Marang a favourite stopover for tourists especially free-independence-travelers or backpackers before they jump onto a boat and head to the island.
However, the rapid development in the state especially the tourism industry in mid 90s, these old houses were demolished and replaced by modern concrete shop lots, leaving only the fishing village.
Even so, Marang today remains greenly with lush vegetation and old Malay village houses. The villagers are still maintaining their simple traditional life style and belief while the remaining little old fishing village is still standing among the coconut trees. If you are keen for photography, the fishing village can let you snap at any time, in any topic, till you are satisfied.
Marang river safari is another good attraction, you can book the trip with the tour operator, the boat will take you cruise along Marang river where you can enjoy a picturesque view of mangrove forest. You also can see animals that live along the river such birds, monitor lizards, monkeys, crabs etc. The boat trip stop at Jenang traditional village, where you can witness the villagers making coconuts sugar, weaving for attap roof and monkey plucking coconuts.
April to June is time for fisherman in Marang to go for squid jigging (Candat Sotong ). If you do not have seasickness problem, try candat sotong, boat departs around 7.00pm and reach the jingging point near Kapas Island in 45-60 minutes. Then you may try your luck. The squid are attracted to the light and tent to cluster around boats where fluorescent lamps are lit. A jig is a weighted lure with nine hooks arranged in a circular pattern at one end. The other end is secured to a fishing line. Normally the fisherman can land 30kg to 40kg squid a night, if the boat anchored at the right squid shelter or lubuk, its can easily land up to 100kg during a night of jigging.
During fruit season, market in the town center is a good place to get all kind of local fruit for the season. Villagers from inner Marang area will bring their harvest to sell their products in the market every Wednesday and Saturday, the market also know as pasar minggu (weekly market). If you happen to be in Marang on Sunday (Marang market) or Friday (Kg Sungai Kerak), visit the night market that start around 4.00pm end 8.00pm.
You can visit this fishing village by taking a bus from Kuala Terengganu to Marang or Rantau Abang.