07 January 2008

Penang, Malaysia

Penang, Malaysia

The bus from Kuala Lumpur to Penang island took a couple of hours longer than expected. We had a bus driver who randomly yelled at people, for example, when someone chucked all their watermelon seed shells on the floor. I thought the main town on Penang island was pretty dirty. Lots of nice open gutters you can fall in and rats running around! The food was okay, generally oily and it is hard to avoid fried chicken!

The best thing about Penang was going to the Snake Temple with an attached snake farm. The temple has vipers living there but these days they are behind glass and sleepy from the incense. The farm though, was excellent. I got to play with a 6m long python which the guys working there treated as pets giving them regular kisses on the head.

The tropical fruit farm and the spice farm were pretty good. The museum was quite good too- it had lots of information about Penang culture and the different ethnic groups. Kek Lok Si temple is a huge temple complex on a hill and looked very modern and new. It had some good views.

I did manage to get the main beach. This beach is the busiest. I couldn’t quite relax because there were children hooning up the beach with quad bikes. Getting into the water would be no different because there were many people on jet skis.

Upon telling the staff member at the hostel in Kuala Lumpur that I’d arrived from Penang he said ‘that’s my home town and I hate it!’. I could definitely see why.

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