One Day Tour To Rustic Kluang, Johor, Malaysia

Wanton Mee RM 5

Last Saturday, I went on a one day trip to Kluang, Johor, Malaysia with my folks. The trip was organised by Dad's friend, the same uncle whom we went to Malacca with two years ago.

Just like the previous time, we dropped by Gelang Patah for breakfast. There were several coffeeshops here and we chose the one furthest away located under Hotel Linkway.

I ordered Wanton Mee but it was no where in sight after 20 minutes despite not being very crowded. I was just this close to beating up the hawker when I found out that his helper is serving those who ordered after me first. Well, I have a coach to catch and we only had 40 minutes for breakfast.

When my order finally came, what struck me first was the small bowl and its even smaller contents. Next would be the mee pok. Isn't Wanton Mee usually mee kia by default?

Nonetheless, the sauce coating the noodle is pleasant - the kind that I like, although the puny wantons and char siew are quite generic.

After breakfast, our first itinerary is 永平天保宫 which is actually a Ji Gong temple (济公庙).

The temple had a very big compound and welcome donations for further expansion

Flanked by two rows of Arhats, the Ji Gong statue measure at
68 meters, the tallest of its kind in Malaysia! 

Address: No. 20 Jalan Satin, 83700, Yong Peng, Johor
GPS Coordinates: N 02.00471° E 103.07074°

While we are still in Yong Peng, what better place to bring us shopping for local products than YOYO? I like how clean and spacious the place is. They even have their own kitchen/machinery to produce their own biscuits/snacks.

Free sampling is available for most products, sometimes still piping hot out from the kitchen. 

YOYO Native Food Products
Address: No.19 & 21, Jalan Cahaya Baru 1, Taman BCB, 83700 Yong Peng, Johor

A majority of the Chinese population in Yong Peng are of the Fuzhou (福州/Foo Chow/Hock Chew) dialect hence, it is not difficult to find shops selling Fuzhou foodstuff. We visited a factory making Fuzhou noodles.

Alighting from the coach at the main road, we had to walk to the back entrance of the factory along a small lane leading to some kampung houses.

Even before reaching the door, I can already hear the sounds of the machine churning out the noodles. We had a tour of the small factory showing how the noodles were made.

Unfortunately, I have no idea of the name of this factory or its address but it is within walking distance from the next destination - Eng Hin.

Kedai Membuat Kuih-Muih Eng Hin (永兴福州饼面厂)

Not far from the noodle factory, we came to Eng Hin, a shop specializing in making Fuzhou biscuits. The shop on the left with the blue folding door is where they make the biscuits fresh daily while the shop on the right is their retail shop where the biscuits and other Fuzhou specialties are sold.

Fuzhou biscuits

There are a few varieties of Fuzhou biscuits: the plain sweet ones, the plain savory ones with sesame seeds, and the ones filled with peanuts. 

Mum bought some of the plain sweet ones which I like and some of the plain savory ones which are very tough to the bite. 

Kedai Membuat Kuih-Muih Eng Hin (永兴福州饼面厂)
Address: No.14, Main Road, 83700 Yong Peng, Johor
GPS Coordinates: 2.011265, 103.060086

After hours of travelling on the coach, we finally arrived at our first destination in Kluang, the Kluang Coffee Powder Factory. The moment the coach opened it's door, the aroma of the coffee infiltrated the entire bus. I already feel refreshed simply by taking a deep breath!
We were given a quick tour around the factory with a brief introduction of how coffee bean is turned onto coffee powder. It is said that the Sultan of Johor is a fan of the coffee here and his photos graced the walls of the factory.

The photos of Mediacorp artistes Mark Lee, Ng Hui and Sharon Aw can also be seen alongside the photos of the Sultan too.

A coffee plant outside the factory

At the end of the tour, we were treated to complimentary coffee with biscuits. The kopi-o (black coffee) is aromatic and robust. This is definitely one of the best coffee we had. No wonder the Sultan is a fan!

Kluang Coffee Powder Factory

We stopped for lunch at Cin Cin Restaurant. 

Lunch is superb with the restaurant's specialty Pipa Duck, a fish with different fruits among others. Unfortunately, there are no photos to show as we are sharing a table with seven other strangers who are ready to strike the dishes with their chopsticks. There would be nothing left except bones if I am not fast enough.

Having visited Malaysia so many times, I realized this funny phenomenon in their Chinese restaurants. While one half of the restaurant is having a wedding, the other half is still available for walk-ins. The thing is, they do not seem to mind!

Actually, I feel so bad for the couple as if we are gatecrashing their wedding!

After lunch, we came to Yuen Fatt Biscuit for more... biscuits. 

The specialty here is their odd-shaped Shanghai Mooncake. Strangely, the tour guide did not "promote" this to us. I know because I am still reading up other blogs the night before the trip.

I suppose this shop did not give a lot of commission to the guide? 

The Shanghai Mooncake is in this odd elongated shape with two pointed ends. It comes with either two yolks, one yolk or no yolk and flavors such as Pandan, Tau Sar (Red Bean Paste) and Lotus Paste.

Seeing the bloggers describing the taste as "buttery" and "melt-in-your-mouth", I really regretted not buying any but they do deliver to Singapore.

Check their Facebook page (link below).

Char Siew Siew Pau

Yuen Fatt Biscuit Sdn Bhd (源發餅家)
Address: No. 39, Jln Hj. Manap Nordin, Kluang Baru, 86000 Kluang, Johor, Malaysia

Kluang RailCoffee is located just right beside the Kluang railway station. It was started way back in 1938 during the pre-war times as a canteen to serve the train passengers arriving at this town.

The business is now run by the third generation Chinese owner who employed Muslim staff at this original shop. They now own a few other outlets.

We arrived at two in the afternoon when they were having their break so the entire bus load of us filled up all the tables in the space-limited shop waiting for them to open for business. 

According to the blogs I read about this establishment, the bloggers have nothing but praises for the Nasi Lemak and Mee Siam here so that is what I really wanted to try. The parents who only wanted coffee and toast turned pale in the face...

"But we're going for dinner after this! Later too full how?" they said.
"Walau, you come so far you don't want to try meh???" I argued.

Since the bloggers say good then it must be good. Right?

Our coffee came first. Dad's kopi-o (black coffee) is too thin and lacked the aroma that coffee should have. My kopi peng (ice coffee) tasted better (probably due to the addition of condensed milk) but is too sweet for me. 

Our Nasi Lemak and Mee Siam took quite a while to come. And when it came, the tour people around us turned to look as we were the only ones who ordered that.

I think the portion is like only 1/3 of the regular packets. We stared at each other, trying to suppress the laughter that is erupting from within. All that worries about not being able to finish the food for nothing! 

The Nasi Lemak is very basic with just rice, a couple of ikan bilis, a few stale peanuts and very nice sambal. I think it is just RM 70 sen which is just about SGD 30 cents. At that price, I have no complaints.

The Mee Siam is the dry version without soup and the Mee Siam flavor is not very distinct. To be honest, I would have thought it is just normal fried beehoon if I did not know it is Mee Siam beforehand.

The next time, do not believe everything bloggers say! But this blogger you definitely can trust because I pay for my own food so I am not obligated to say only the nice things.

Coming up next is the charcoal toasted bun with kaya and a slab of margerine. 

The homemade kaya with a cold slab of melting margerine sandwiched between the heated buns tasted heavenly but it is too sweet for my sensitive tooth. 

With the top bun removed

They are quite generous with the kaya which had a hint of  gula melaka.

Kluang RailCoffee
Address: Stesen Keretapi, 86000 Kluang, Johor

For the last itinerary of the day, we were brought to Kluang Mall, the largest mall in Kluang.

Initially, we wanted to go to the Pacific Hypermart but I find it off-putting that we need to leave our bags at the counter outside.

I am not going to spend my money at a place where customers are being treated like shoplifters. On the contrary, I am more worried about having my camera, tablet, powerbank, etc going 'missing' under their care.

My only loot were these priced at RM 4.90 per box which is only SGD 1.60. 

I am so excited that I bought 12 boxes of it including Spongebob, Iron Man and a couple of dinosaurs.

We are not too interested in shopping malls since they are all the same. Perhaps, we are spoilt for choice having come from the city. Apparently, small towns like this typically do not have a good variety of retail outlets to choose from that is, until the arrival of Kluang Mall.

We spent the two hours there waiting for the coach to come pick us up for dinner.

Dinner at Sing Guan Restaurant is another superb experience. I really love the food in Malaysia's Chinese restaurants. They are fresh, delicious and affordable! I especially love the kampung chicken here. They are way better than Ipoh Lou Wong's!

On our way back to the second link, we came across an accident involving a heavy vehicle and three cars. One of the cars turned turtle and was almost flattened. I hope no one is in any of those cars. I applaud the auntie's commentary at the background as if she witnessed the entire accident. She can go apply to be a detective already.

My trip to rustic Kluang is an enjoyable one though I wish we could have visited more places like UK Agro Resort, Zenxin Organic Farm and perhaps even Gunung Lambak. 

Next time, perhaps?

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