Bagan Tengkorak - Hidden seafood restaurant at Tanjung Karang

Bagan Tengkorak Seafood Restaurant
First thing comes to mind is  - Where on earth is Bagan Tengkorak? Or what is this place? I am sure 95% of you would not have a clue to where this place is. How did I find this place? Read on.

I used to be an avid fisherman in my late twenties and on one of my last trips out to sea at Tanjung Karang with some seasoned fishermen, some uncles introduced me to this place. Mind you this was way back in 2004 if I recall correctly.

Tucked away hidden from the outside world only those who have been here would know of it's existence. Then one day in May 2009, I thought, why not make a trip to Bagan Tengkorak again sans the fishermen and to my surprise, the place is still there. Nothing much has changed too.

Bagan Tengkorak Fishing Village
The quiet fishing village in Bagan Tengkorak
To get there, one must take the Kuala Selangor Road heading towards Tanjung Karang. Half way to Tanjung Karang, you will see a road sign on the left (which was not there last time I went) as in the first picture.

Follow the lone road all the way straight for about 4km passing through a 100% Malay Kampung. Eventually you will be greeted by surprise on seeing a Chinese Temple at the end of the road.

The road then curves to the left and about 100 meters ahead, you should see a wooden restaurant on your right. There is a small little coffee shop in the front by the road but this restaurant is further behind towards the water. Parking is available in front of a Chinese Temple/Opera like structure. Then walk on in!

Bagan Tengkorak KualaSelangorThe wooden walkway to the restaurant

The walkway is a typical fishing village wooden platform over water. So if you are bringing kids, just be cautious. If you are riding a motorbike, then by all means, ride all the way in and park right in front. (This review was done in 2009)
Seafood Restaurant at Bagan Tengkorak
The famous seafood restaurant in Bagan Tengkorak
You will see the Bagan Tengkorak restaurant as in the picture above. Find your table and let the journey begin. Mind you that they only serve seafood there. No chicken or beef and so on.

Also, be prepared to wait it out as there is the one-and-only-cook there catering to all the tables. An estimate wait would be around 30 mins to 45 mins depending on the crowd. On occasion, they seem pretty full during lunch hour.

There are about 10 to 12 tables in various sizes catering to large groups (10 pax). They also have an outdoor area but by the looks, locals seem to eat there more. It is a make shift area over the water which is not really user friendly.

But hey, if it floats your boat, why not ? Toilets are available too. Also, please bring some snacks if you are the very hungry and angry type of person.

Seafood Restaurant Kuala SelangorView of the restaurant


So, what is the name of this place? haha, I still do not have a clue. On asking the lady boss, she smiled and said in Chinese 'Restoran Bagan Tengkorak la'. There is a phone number on the wall but mind you this is NOT for reservations.

It is only to call and find out if they are open. That is what was conveyed to me on asking about the number. Sorry I cannot translate what it means in Chinese. Maybe someone who knows can help me.

View behind the restaurant

The cook in action

The cook at Bagan Tengkorak is an interesting character who wears a face mask to cook. Seriously! There has always been one cook and it is the boss himself. Has been like this for years. He tends to yell at his staff on occasion so do not be alarmed if you hear him shouting in the kitchen.

Also, there is a table just outside of the kitchen, where we sat and if you look, you can see what is going on inside.

Bagan Tengkorak SeafoodBagan Tengkorak - Claypot Catfish

Kuala Selangor Seafood PhotoBagan Tengkorak - Close up of the catfish

So, while waiting for the food, I managed to walk around and explore the village but there was nothing much going on at 1.30 pm. Anyway, by then the food had arrived and we were starved. The first dish was his famous Claypot Catfish.

By the style of his cooking, I would consider it to be Szechuan style cooking as he used a lot of dry and raw chili's. On a side note, I personally do not like catfish but trying this dish made me rethink my dislike for catfish.

Kuala Selangor SeafoodRed snapper cooked Szechuan style

We had also ordered the Ikan Merah (Res Sea-Perch or Red Snapper) recommended by his wife cum chief waitress. The sauce was amazingly tasty considering the amount of chilies thrown in. It was not over spicy too.

And the red snapper fish, what else can I say but it was super fresh from the sea. The restaurant IS in a fishing village after all, so they get the stock fresh daily.

Close up of the red snapper with the sauce

Malaysia Lala LaLa clams

We also had some lala clams stir fried with a lovely chili based sauce. Honestly, till today, I do not know the English name for LaLa besides Clams. I am pretty sure that someone out there would know and help post it here. Thank you for doing that.

Malaysia lala clamsClose up of the Lala Clam

malaysia baby crabsSome freebie mini crabs that came with the lala clams

Overall, the food at Bagan Tengkorak was really fantastic compared to the city-style restaurants. The dishes were very personally done with passion and perfection. Nothing came wrong and everything tasted just different.

We also had a plate of vegetables stir fried with garlic and also a plate of Calamari or deep fried squid. The squid was really fresh. For drinks, nothing special but the usual. Chinese tea in pots or basic canned drinks. They have baby chairs too.

There were four of us and the meal cost us RM 75.00 which made my friends jaw drop. On a rating scale of 10, I would easily give this place a 9/10!

Seriously. And if you think Fatty Crab is the greatest thing ever for seafood, then you are totally a city junkie!

Famous restaurant in Kuala Selangor
The seafood restaurant here

The Bagan Tengkorak Restaurant opens from 9am till 6pm. Yes, they live a healthy life so don't think you can go there for a sunset dinner. Best time to go is either before the lunch crowd or after lunch about 3pm.

Don't be surprised when you see lots of expensive cars with single digit number plates there too. This is one of the few hidden secrets of Tanjung Karang. Oh yeah, if you are going to compare this with Kuala Selangor seafood restaurants, they do not even come close.

So, happy exploring and feel free to comment on your experience there, if you make it. Again sorry no GPS coords, it was explored using old school methods.

The journey from KL/PJ to Bagan Tengkorak, Kuala Selangor will take about 1.5 hours on a casual drive. but I believe that Waze will have this listed so go ahead and check it out if you plan to visit here.

The Bagan Tengkorak fishing village photos

Small fishing jetty next to the restaurant

Fishing village in Bagan Tengkorak Tanjung KarangRoad leading to the homes along the vilage

Malaysia puppy photoCute mongrel

While walking around the Bagan Tengkorak village, I bumped into this cute little puppy under the wooden walkway. It was happily running around scavenging for anything that looked like a snack. Looking at the little dirty paws, I called it and it responded willingly as in asking me to pick it up. I gave it a pass. 

Puppy giving me the pitiful look

Malaysia cute PuppyAnd again saying 'please take me home'

Bagan Tengkorak local village art

Tanjung Karang Fishing VillageA typical fishing village house....with Astro

Next time you are out for a food hunt around Klang Valley, do consider this place as it is quite an experience to have seafood in a traditional and local fishing village here. If you are planning to visit this state, do check out my other article on Places to Visit in Selangor for an exciting list.

Life is so much more simple at these kind of villages that I admire the people living here and I feel a really nice vibe when visiting places like this. Maybe one day we will all learn to enjoy life in the simplest ways. Just like in Bagan Tengkorak at Tanjung Karang, Selangor.

16 comments