December 2016 - January 2017
  • Day35

    Langkawi Island, North beaches by moped.

    January 5, 2017 in Malaysia ⋅ ⛅ 28 °C

    As the island has no public transport, we resorted to two wheels again - this time powered, which gave us the chance to find the out of the way places (James piloted, Louisa Nav'd but had to wear a childs Minions helmet as head too small!). As the island is 70km around the perimeter, roads are quiet and any drivers are very courteous. Explored the North of the island with its jungles, white sand beaches, inlets and rubber plantations. Many of the beaches were pretty much deserted until small boats arrived later in the day with day-trippers. Found a couple of impossibly beautiful locations (sorry but it's true and doesn't help when the UK weather is so dreich!) which the photos don't do justice to.Read more

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  • Day34

    Langkawi Island

    January 4, 2017 in Malaysia ⋅ ⛅ 26 °C

    On the move again, but by ferry this time. Took a three hour journey on a full ferry northwards this morning. Heard it can be very rough and was two days ago so we were very relieved when it was a smooth crossing. We are staying at the main tourist area of the island and are very pleasantly surprised that it is a quiet, sleepy place that we really like. Enjoyed a swim at the beach this afternoon, then a dip in the 'plunge' pool before heading out for the evening. Impressed with the price of beer and spirit at last... It's a duty free island where you can pick up a litre bottle of Bombay Saphire for £7! Even better was the gin that is sold in a 3 litre box for £8. Needless to say, we finally had a beer with dinner.Read more

  • Day32

    Penang National Park

    January 2, 2017 in Malaysia ⋅ ⛅ 27 °C

    Bus to Penang National Park on the North West coast which at 23 sq miles is the smallest in Malaysia, however is probably also the least visited judging by the overgrown, rugged and snake friendly jungle. Hiked for a couple of hours to get to a beautiful beach in a clearing where the jungle meets the sea on either side and turtles visit to lay eggs. Started raining for the return journey, making the trails a little more 'interesting '! Watching a group of cheeky otters trying to outwit guard dogs and attempting to steel a meal from the floating fish farms was also pretty entertaining.Read more

  • Day31

    New Years Day, more bikes and buildings

    January 1, 2017 in Malaysia ⋅ ⛅ 25 °C

    Ventured further out of the city to see the architecture of the older residential part of Georgetown. So many beautiful colonial houses and club houses, many of which have seen better days but have a certain charm about them. Near by is the Botanical gardens started in the late 1880's, a lovely peaceful place away from the city. Cooled down in the stream that runs through it. More parading of religious statues around the streets - but even they need to stop for red traffic lights! We seem to be asked for more photos by passers by, often not speaking each others language but good fun trying to communicate (one lady said her father really wanted a photo and would that be ok!!).Read more

  • Day30

    New Yeas Eve, Georgetown

    December 31, 2016 in Malaysia ⋅ ⛅ 26 °C

    Happy New Year to everyone! Out and about on the bikes again round the city. Visited some of the old colonial buildings and the Chinese Clan jetties. These are where the Chinese settlers originally had wharfs to bring in food but over time have morphed into homes over the water. There are about 8 individual jetties - each occupied by a Clan or family group from China. There are up to 50 homes along each jetty and are pretty self contained. Quiet New Years Eve near the hostel with a few fireworks and a couple of gins!Read more

  • Day29

    Georgetown China Town and Little India

    December 30, 2016 in Malaysia ⋅ ⛅ 28 °C

    Walked miles in the China Town region of Georgetown, taking in the old architecture, food, culture and shops - including some bizarre medical ones. The photo that looks like horse droppings are compacted tea bales!! On the way to dinner, came across two separate street processions for the Hindu and Hare Krishna faiths in the Little India part of Georgetown. Lots of noise, crowds, oxen and chanting from the considerable crowds. Two Chinese dragons were also involved....Read more

  • Day28

    Protestant Cemetry and Art Bus Depot

    December 29, 2016 in Malaysia ⋅ ⛅ 27 °C

    Used their equivalent of Boris bikes to get around again today. The Northam Road Protestant Cemetery was created soon after the British East India Company established a settlement in Penang in 1786. Tropical diseases, like malaria, cholera and hepatitis were leading causes of death, with frequent outbreaks of diseases, it is ironic that the island was regarded as a 'change of air' for British civil servants and military personnel based in India. The majority of people buried are aged between 18-30! It closed in the late 19th century and was left untouched although suffered badly from Japanese bombing in WW2. We visited an old bus depot that hasn't been altered much but is now used as an art gallery.Read more

  • Day27

    Penang Street Art

    December 28, 2016 in Malaysia ⋅ ⛅ 27 °C

    Spent a hot day wondering on foot and by bike around the old part of town where there is street art dotted all around. Street names are explained in both writing and metal art work. Mainy of the art work is painted with 3D elements on random walls all over the place. There are so many coffee shops too which we will gradually work our way around.Read more

  • Day26

    George Town, Penang Island

    December 27, 2016 in Malaysia ⋅ ⛅ 29 °C

    James finally got around to having a haircut and it turned out alright! Had a look around Little India and enjoyed a proper tandoori and tandoor naan. Like the look of this Unesco Heritage town.

  • Day25

    Christmas at Kota Kinabalu

    December 26, 2016 in Malaysia ⋅ ⛅ 27 °C

    Christmas Day snorkelling on the island of Manukan again, following a relaxing night in the hostel with a film, take away pizza and a G&T of course! Back to Kuala Lumpur tonight with a lovely view of the island we were on yesterday from the plane. Where else in the work can you buy frozen fish to take on a plane with you?Read more