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2022 - Malaysia (Part 4 - Penang)

To the island of Penang and its historic capital of George Town.

View 2022 Malaysia on nzhamsta's travel map.

Saturday 20 August

After breakfast, there was a walk up to the laundry hoping that he had managed to have everything washed, dried and folded by the requested 11:00am deadline. To my relief, everything was done, and for a very reasonable RM16. Given it was very hot and humid, another cool shower was required before we took the taxi to the railway station and our train to Butterworth.

The train again was on time, clean and tidy, fiercely air conditioned and lunch was provided.

The ferry to George Town was cheap and swift. They have replaced the old, open sided car ferries with modern speedboat style boats that get you across the strait in about five minutes.

The E&O Hotel is not a shabby place to stay and we had a great room in the new part of the building overlooking the waterfront. Given that Malaysia had just re-opened it borders and all the hotels were offering significant discounts to attract clientele, we took advantage of that to stay somewhere nice.

The E&O Hotel.

An afternoon relaxing and then dinner at the Red Garden Food Court. This has many tables in the centre all surrounded by various food outlets. You find a table, take a note of its number, wander around ordering your food. You pay when it is delivered. In all, a very simple system, in a place about a five minute walk from the hotel.

Wall art in George Town next to the food court.

The Red Garden Food Court.

Dinner at the Red Garden Food Court.

Sunday 21 August

Most of the morning was spent wandering around town, checking out the old colonial architecture, shopping and avoiding the rain.

The George Town waterfront.

Fort Cornwallis.

Old architecture in George Town.

Traditional shop houses.

Old colonial artchitecture.

A random hotel.

Old colonial architecture.

Hung and friends.

Traditional shop houses.

The afternoon was spent at the pool.

The view from the pool.

Evening view along the waterfront.

Dinner was at the same place.

Monday 22 August

Caught a Grab (the local equiavlent of Uber) to the Gurney Plaza shopping centre. Nothing spectacular about it.

We had booked a tour of the interesting sites / sights through the hotel and found we were the only ones on it. We had our own car and driver for fours hours. The driver, whose name I sadly cannot remember, was excellent. He was from an old local family, knoew everything and took us to places not necessarily on the itinerary.

First was up to Penang Hill. The cable car took us to the top from where there are spectacular views over the island and the mainland.

The view of George Town and Butterworth.

Dusky langurs (also called Spectacled langurs) on Penang Hill.

Sri Aruloli Thirumurugan on Penang Hill.

The next stop was Kek Lok Si Temple. This is a large temple complex, again with good views.

View from Kek Si Lok.

The gate guardians at Kek Lok Si Temple.

Us up at the Kek Lok Si Temple.

Kek Lok Si Temple.

The we stopped at a coffee shop that does the famous three in one coffee mix. Quite nice.

From there we had time to go wherever we wanted so we went to the clan jetties. These are jetties created by the original Chinese settlers and are still owned and lived in by the families.

The Chew Family jetty.

The Chew Family jetty.

View from the jetties over to Butterworth.

He then showed us the large amount of wall art that exists in George Town. Some of these were created by the Lithuanian artist, Ernest Zacharevic. The wire art is also very good and portrays life in the city.





Street art.

He gave us a couple of recommendations for dinner and the Teksen Restaurant was very busy but good indeed. This whole tour cost us RM60 per hour, so only RM240 / $NZ85, for a private tour and an excellent guide.

Tuesday 23 August


Sunrise with a cruise ship coming into Swettenham Pier.

A lazy day, more shopping, afternoon swim etc.

The Teksen restaurant was closed and so we went back to the Red Garden.

Another decent meal at the Red Garden.

In all, I liked Penang. They claim to have the best street food in Asia. A big call, but the meals we had were all very good. The ice cold Tiger was also appreciated although due to the heat and humidity, it had to be drunk quickly as warm Tiger is not very nice at all.

Posted by nzhamsta 00:00 Archived in Malaysia

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sounds like a great trip, hope you got to try kuchings famous laksa!

by joffre

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