Didn’t meet George in GeorgeTown
Oh dear the skies are grey and it’s raining, that’s the last thing we wanted for our ride to George Town, we waited for about an hour until the rained turned to drizzle, OK that looks as good as its going to get…and I’m sure there will be many days ahead that are going to be rainy…
Lucky for us the drizzle soon turned into bright sunshine…yay…
The roads in Malaysia are in great condition, great for motorbikes …better than at home!
The ride should have only taken 2hrs hours, but we got caught in a REALLY long traffic jam, it went on for Kilometres, we did the right thing and waited like everyone else, but bike was getting heavy for Clive, so we did a bit of weaving through the traffic and to our amazement trucks and cars moved to let us through, that would never happen at home…as we neared the accident we could see that it was bad, 3 vehicles were involved, the children that were involved looked fine thankfully a couple of men looked hurt but not too bad, but to our amazement there was a dead man lying on the ground for everyone to view…I can’t believe he wasn’t covered up.
The Penang Bridge which incidentally is 13.5 km (8.4 mi) was jam packed with Buses, cars, scooters and trucks all going head to tail with each other, we did what most scooters do and go down the inside lanes and when we couldn’t get through we weaved in and out through the traffic…something that Clive doesn’t normally do, but when in ‘Rome’…
Anyway a little while later we got to the Star Lodge hotel, which is right in the heart of China town, the old toothless guy that runs the hotel, checked us in, after we had settled the bill (RM 60= $18 a night) he promptly showed us our room which was nothing flash, but it was spotless, the reviews on Trip advisor were spot on!
Later that afternoon we walked up to Fort Cornwallis
The star shaped Fort Cornwallis marks the starting point where Francis Light and his crew from British East India Company landed in Penang on 11th August 1786 to “take possession” of the island from the Sultan of Kedah. It was later named after the Governor-General of Bengal, Charles Marquis Cornwallis.
For more information on the Fort go to:
Next on our list was some dinner, lock up the bike then bed ready for another busy day!
The next morning we packed up with bike …with our swimmers! And went exploring to look for a quiet beach to swim and relax on, we didn’t have to go far to find one…’Moon light Bay’ is a small cove like beach and no one on it, we headed down the beach, plastered on the sun screen them went for a swim in the calm, warm clear waters…what a life!
After all the excitement of the day at the beach we headed to the Mall to find some lunch, we to Clive’s favorite bakery ‘Roti Boy’ it does the best rolls ever!
Georgetown has a lot street art dotted around and is very good, we wish we had more time to check it all out, anyway that might be an excuse to go back!…..
Then back to the hotel for a shower and rest, then out for dinner…we seem to do a lot of eating on this trip!!!
This place had great food but you had to wait awhile for it,so they encourage you to write something on there wall,so a bit of self advertising!!
On with the story, the next morning we set off for Penang Hill, but on the way we stopped to watch the Hindu Penang Thaipusam Festival.
When the moon is full on the tenth month of the Hindu calendar, the Tamil celebrate Thaipusam, a major Hindu festival in honor of Lord Murugan. Followers come together for a procession, carrying signs of their devotion and gratitude.
They also carry milk pots and simple wooden kavadi. Some followers take to piercing their cheeks, and tongues as their burden! A few have piecing in their back which look like fish hooks all in a row up and down their backs and some had huge hooks in their backs, I reckon you would have to have had a lot to drink to have any of the piercing’s!
The procession is colorful and loud, I’m glad we got to witness it.
Next was Penang Hill-also known as Strawberry Hill, owing to the history with Francis Light! When the British settled Francis Light commissioned the area to be cleared so they could grow strawberries, it wasn’t a success, not a surprise there! As it was difficult for them to carve out the forest area! To get up the ‘Hill’ as its 830 meters above Penang, we went on the Train it cost us RM 30 but for locals RM 8!!!
It was packed (Sunday) when we arrived I think it was about an hour before be got to ride up the mountain and the ‘trip’ only took about 5 minutes as the train was really fast, I reckon it was as steep as the Katomba Rail in the Blue Mountains!
Once up the Hill, you have a fantastic view of Penang and all the high rise buildings along the coast, at the summit there’s a Mosque, Hindu Temple, kids play ground and of course a food hall… We decided to follow the path around the summit and came across some beautiful English style cottages… that I believe were built when the British came to town!
With Penang firmly crossed off our list we went back to the hotel to catch up on some blogging and start packing so we could get an early start for country number 2.
We decided to catch the ro ro ferry off Penang Island to Butterworth on the mainland, it was pretty busy early in the morning and it was free for motorbikes, bonus!!…