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The big catch in neighbouring Malaysia

#94_travel_malaysia_fishIf you love fishing or if you’d like to pick up a fun and challenging sport, Malaysia is just the place for you

For a country with a majority of its borders enveloped by coastal waters, it comes as no surprise that fishing is a natural pastime in Malaysia.

While it may have once been the lifeline of Malaysia’s inhabitants, it has, today, become a thriving leisure industry serving domestic and international visitors alike.

‘Secret’ Spots

For amateurs to professional anglers, there’s always a sweet spot or a hidden gem of a mangrove or a ‘secret’ area off many of the country’s scenic coasts that continue to entice fishing enthusiasts back each time, regardless of tide or season, day or night.

Whether they are 24-hour commercially-operated saltwater or freshwater fishing ponds throughout the length and breadth of the country, prawn or squid jigging or even deep-sea trolling, there is a large interest in sport fishing here, often drawing foreign anglers, especially during competitions.

Water Treasure

While commercial ponds offer anything from average barramundis and carps to snakeheads, more exotic species that were once indigenous to the Amazonian region such as the teeth-baring pacu and even 30kg Amazonian redtail catfish are now readily available around the clock to satisfy the cravings of avid anglers.

Daily, weekly, monthly and annual competitions are also held. Not surprisingly, you’ll find fishing enthusiasts who are practically glued to their rods and reels into the wee hours of the morning, whether at manmade ponds in the cities or afloat on wooden platforms known as “kelongs” that are located a few kilometres out to sea, or even alongside piers, esplanades, mangroves and beaches. The options are almost limitless.

Private boat charters for shallow waters and deep-sea fishing or trolling are also vastly popular with anglers making repeated visits to Malaysia around the year for the big boys in sport fishing – the marlin and the sailfish, located along the coasts of Cherating and the islands of Langkawi, Tioman and Pangkor.

Fishing Frenzy

Malaysia’s sports fishing scene becomes frenzied each year, thanks to one of its most popular and renowned sports fishing competitions – the Royal Pahang Billfish International Challenge. Held at the idyllic Kuala Rompin beach area in the state of Pahang, this competition draws scores of professional and amateur Malaysian anglers as well as from the neighbouring countries of Singapore, Thailand, Brunei, Indonesia, China, Hong Kong, Australia and New Zealand.

This three-day-long team competition offers more than just the excitement and challenging battle between the angler and fish or the landing of hundreds of billfish or even the prize money and trophies.

Rather, its biggest prize is that of bragging rights to having caught the largest, heaviest and meanest of fighting billfish. That, as they say, is priceless.

For more information on the Royal Pahang Billfish International Challenge, log onto www.rpbic.com.my.

For more information or enquiries, please contact Visit Malaysia Year 2014 Secretariat, at +601300885050 or log on to www.vmy2014.com.