Friday, January 16, 2015

Adventures in Penang 2014! : Walking Around Aimlessly (Day 1)

This is quite a 'basi' (expired) post to be honest with you, however it's not as 'basi' compared to other posts in the future. HAHA! Only here in this blog, where fresh/recent blog post is a rarity and expired write up is a guaranteed. Not proud of this but that's me. Procrastination is in my blooooodd. XD Sigh. 

So here goes, last month or more exact on 4th of December 2014, we went for a little getaway trip to Pearl of The Orient, Penang. It was also the first time I went on a trip with Grace, yay! lol. Thanks to Airasia, we managed to buy cheap flight tickets for this trip during the zero fares offers. Me and Airasia, we have our ups and downs but it's still the best airline company in Malaysia in my opinion. :) They have definitely improved since the move from LCCT to KLIA2. 

The last time I was in Penang was when I was in my early teens. I have bad memories so naturally I don't remember anything the last time I was in Penang, except the fact that we stayed near Gurney area and ate Tandoori chicken and that's about it. Sad, I know. We probably did a lot more than that but unfortunately that's all that I remember. Yeah, my parents wasted money by bringing me on their trip. XD 

Anyway, due to our idiotic planning, we had to stay a day at KL before we fly off to Penang the next morning at 8AM. Hence we had to stay at Tune KLIA2 for a night because it's more convenient that way. And the hotel was actually not bad, it's comfortable, clean and near the airport (10 mins from departure hall). That night we slept. Duh. LOL!

Time to fly to Penang! 

It was only an hour flight and the flight was smooth with no turbulence whatsoever which was always nice. I also met a Karen Ang, a blogger which I've not seen for a long long time and she was seated just right behind me. HAHAHA! At first I thought where I've seen this girl before and after a while I realised she was that blogger. I guess she must think I'm a douchebag at first because I kept staring at her, yeah that's what I do when you look familiar, I'll stare at you a lot! hahha! Finally I decided to talk to her and we chatted for a bit and before you know it, we're already in Penang. Nice to meet you, Karen (if you're reading this) That was a really short Sibu-Kuching flight is even briefer, I remember I picked up the magazine to read and a few pages in, the announcement to land goes on and I was like WTF? If there's one thing I really really liked about flying with Airasia, it was their inflight magazine, travel 3Sixty. Love it. Before I started straying off to other topics again which I just did, let's get back to Penang.

Landed at Penang, used the bus to get to downtown Penang where our hotel is located, not a pleasant ride but it's cheap. Not pleasant because we have luggages and no places to put them, so we have to hold on to it in the bus while standing. Not fun. Plus, no offense to Penangnites, they drive their bus like a maniac there. Holy shit. It might even worse than KL bus drivers. lol. We stayed at Tune Hotel Downtown Penang which was located near Jalan Burma. It's a good place to stay but a bit away from the main attractions of Penang so we have to walk for a bit. The hotel rooms on the other hand was good. It's clean, spacious, comfortable and affordable. Although it can get quite noisy at a times. The cons is just that we have to walk (10 minutes, maybe more) to get to the historic city of George Town where everything touristy is located there. That's about it.

Dropped our bags and everything and time to explore Penang! 

(Pictures below are what we saw while walking aimlessly there.)

Old sundries shop

I absolutely love Penang, it feels like an older and more well preserved state of my hometown, Kuching. It's absolutely beautiful and everything looks awesome and interesting. It feels like I'm back in Kuching but not really. I'll definitely come back here again soon just to explore more of this city. 2 days is not enough to be honest. 

Sundried oranges peel/skin.

It might not look hygienic to dry oranges peels near the roadside, who cares. HAHA I'm not a clean freak so I'm okay with it, it's how they do it in the olden days. Me likey.

Traditional metal workmanship. 

And another one. 

After walking for what feels like an hour but actually it was only for about 15 mins, we finally reached the main area of Penang. It felt so long because the weather was extremely hot that day and also I HATE walking, unless the weather is cool then it's alright. HAHA! 

First stop of the day, Yeng Keng Cafe. I've read about this place while planning where to go in Penang, and this was one of the recommended place to stopped by for the Hainan Chicken Chop or Hainan cuisine in general. Stumbled upon it so in we go! (Main reason is we wanna escaped the hot weather for a while. XD) Yeng Keng Hotel is just right next to this cafe.It's a boutique hotel.

Yeng Keng Cafe

Beautiful interior of the cafe. 

We've just eaten so we decided to order just one Hainan Chicken Chop to share among us. Looks like such a cheapskate thing to do right? hahaha! Don't care, we're on a budget and we have a lot more things to try in this trip so can't splurge aimlessly. Our main point is to just get a taste of the dish. And it was yummmy~~ So good. I'm glad we decided to stopped for awhile at this cafe.

Yeng Keng's Hainan Chicken Chop

Snap a picture with the place before we moved on. :)

Address : 362, Lebuh Chulia, Georgetown, 
10200 World Heritage City of George Town, Pulau Pinang.

More walking to don't know where. Honestly we just walk aimlessly and just looking at things along the way.

Rattan weaver and his spoiled/lucky fat cat. XD

Another reason why I love Penang, there's a lot of happy cats and dogs around. And it's a city of animal lovers which is AWESOME! A city that knows how to treat cats and dogs right is a city for me. :D

There's also a lot of these wrought-iron caricatures with anecdotal descriptions of the streets that they adorn which is unique and interesting. However I didn't take pictures of them except for a few. Lazy ma. lol

"Rotan", this is located at Lebuh Chulia

While walking along in an alley because we're trying to get to Camera Museum, only because we saw a little signs when we walk around. Which was a totally unplanned location to go to, there's a few stray dogs there that started to bark at us so "calmly" we divert our pathways and into this shop instead to get a way from the dogs. lol. And we stumbled into this shop totally by accident! I honestly didn't plan to go to this Nyonya Kuih shop but it turns out to be one of the must go place in Penang. haha! Thanks doggies. The Camera Museum was just right next to this place.

Moh Teng Pheow Nyonya Koay

This turns out to be a little Nyonya Kueh factory located at Jalan Masjid, off Chulia Street. Pretty difficult to locate also if you're looking for it to be honest because it's located inside a quiet alley. When I went inside, there's two guys making jams and a bunch of Nyonya Kueh there. The friendly towkay (boss) came out and asked us if we wanted to buy some Kueh, and of course I did. I bought 3 of every kind of kueh they have available at the time. It was not exactly cheap but it's alright because the kueh was actually good and freshly made.

The kueh available that day.

The towkay also told us that he was planning to convert the other side of the factory into a canteen or some short. Something like a cafe for people to hangout, eat and drink coffee. Atleast that's what I understand from the conversation, I'm not that well versed in Mandarin. I thought it was a good idea and I would totally love to hangout here. Freshly made pastries and cakes and also with a good cup of coffee or tea. Perfect.

The lady towkay making base for the pizzas.

They were planning to serve pizza when the canteen opened which if I remembered correctly was a a week or so from the time he told us. 

Freshly made pizza bread.

With the permission of the towkay, we went to take a look around in the factory and also to snap a few pictures for fun/memories. 

Us. Super Bad Angle. WTF

Me. I love the brick walls.

After the nyonya kueh shop, we walked to The Mugshot Cafe which was just nearby. This was one of the cafe that we've planned to visit because it was well, it was awesome. haha! The interior was beautiful, the coffee was reasonably priced as well as the foods offered. A good place to hangout at Penang. It's a good proper cafe.
Mugshot Cafe

Address : 302, Lebuh Chulia, Georgetown, Penang. 

Easy to find, you can't miss it. If you do, use Waze. It's a really good app, we used this app alot while we're in Penang just so we didn't get lost there.

A Long Black, Flat White and a Cream Cheese Bagel. 

The bagel is highly recommended, for the one we ordered above, it only cost RM 5. Super cheap if you asked me, you can't get bagel with that price anywhere in KL, I think. Atleast from cafe that's easily reached by non-locals living in KL anyway. The coffee was good and accompanied with the 'kueh' we bought earlier, delicious. A little tea time snack. My favourite piece of kueh on the other hand is the blue one with kaya on top. It's so good with the fragrant and smooth coconutty 'kaya' on top. Scrumptious. More on Mugshot Cafe in a post soon. (Yeah right, "soon")

Another one of those iron thing.

More aimless walking after the coffee.

Marge Simpson. lol Pretty creative.

Then we reach the place where street arts of Penang is in abundance. Finally!

Cultural Girls with girl carrying a red plastic bag. XD

This is located somewhere at Lebuh Armenian

Boy on Chair with shorty. HAHA!

Then we found the Khoo Kongsi and to our dissapointment, we found out that we have to pay RM10 in order to look at the temple. We opt not to, because it's quite an expensive price to pay just to look at a temple. My personal opinion,I don't really fancy paying to look at temples. That's just me. I'm the kind of person who rather pay to eat than looking at buildings. There should be a price just for Malaysian. haha!

So we ended up just taking picture at the entrance... :D

Moving along and more street arts to discover along the way.

Kids on Bicycle

Saw this place for cendol nearby the "Kids on Bicycle" street art and stopped for a while to enjoy a bowl of cendol. There's quite a few celebrities that have patronised this little cendol shop. Not exactly the cheapest cendol in Penang but what the heck, it's a hot day, I lazy wanna walk around, lots of people taking picture with the street art and while waiting might as well get a bowl of cendol to enjoy.

I realised everything in Penang starts with the word "Penang Famous bla bla bla" lol

RM3.50. Pretty good. Perfect on a hot day.

Skippy the cat! 

Honestly this is the only street art that I really wanted to see because it's a huge ginger cat painted on a wall and I happen to love cats so, go figure. How cute is this street art? Also the other reason why I love this street art is the meaning behind it. This mural is one of the mural painted by ASA (Artist for Stray Animals) to create awareness of the need to protect animals be it your pets or strays. This mural was painted using environmentally friendly paint that will eventually wash off in a few years. Definitely one mural to visit while it's still there.

How awesome is this painting? I wish I could paint murals of cats and dogs all over Kuching town. Or just a mural of a huge bowl of Kolo Mee somewhere in Kuching. LOL I would probably get arrested if I were to do that. haha And also I don't know how to draw let alone paint. XD

Love Me Like Your Fortune Cat. There's a little rat in the corner. HAHA

Old Motorcycle. 

By this time we've reached a place where all the murals are easily found everywhere and while Grace busy going around snapping pictures of the murals, my sis and I just goof around and taking pictures with the murals, haha

I don't know what's this street art but it's pretty cute. lol A T-Rex on a leash, come on la, so cute man!

Bruce Lee

Another murals that I really liked just for the reaction of the cat painted. LOL. Poor cat. What did he do to deserved getting kicked by Bruce Lee? XD

After a while, we decided to head back to out hotel using a different route that we've used to go to the heritage city. And along the way we saw Kedai Kopi Seng Thor. Looks like any other kopitiam but I remembered this kopitiam was quite famous for the Orh Chien or Oyster Omelette. So what we're gonna do? Stop by and eat it of course! Thank goodness they still have it by the time we got there, it was already 5pm at the time.

Kedai Kopi Seng Thor located at Carnavon Street.

Expertly controlling the flames and frying up the oysters.

Oyster Omelette!

Piping hot and served with a side of sweet chilli sauce. This is one of the best oyster omelette I've tasted in Penang if not the best. So good. A plate like this cost RM 10 if I'm not mistaken. It's definitely different from Kuching's Teochew Style Oyster Omelette which was typically served with fish sauce and white pepper as the dipping sauce. The taste was different as well but it's good in its own way. The oyster is fresh and succulent and taste like the sea. Yums~~ Basically my only reason to go Penang is to just eat, eat and eat. 

We went back to hotel to relac and freshen up for a little bit before heading out again to search for dinner. I've had a place in mind and it's New Lane Hawker Street which was located near our hotel. Basically just any hawker street really, I mean that's the point of going to Penang right? After asking a few locals, finally we found the place and it's not helping that it's drizzling a little bit at the time. Ugh..

Translated as New Lane in English.

Stalls offering street foods along the uh..street.

It was not what I expected in my mind. I was hoping to see a longer and bustling street full of goodies to eat but it's quite a short hawker street. lol. I didn't find the Pork Intestine porridge as well that night. Sigh, I was really looking forward to try the porridge which was highly recommended at that street.

Fried Oyster stall

I love how messy the counter is, haha! 

We ended up ordering a few dishes there as our dinner. 

Curry Laksa. Just so-so, nothing to shout about.

Grace's chicken porridge. She can't handle too much oily food lol.

The oyster omelette.

This is definitely not as good as the one we had at Seng Thor Kopitiam but it was alright. LOL! I have to be honest here, it was definitely not as good as what I've imagined in my head. hahhaha! Reading reviews from the internet makes me look forward to try this but I gotta say it let me down. Maybe because I've had better one earlier? No idea, it's just my personal opinion and preferences.

Duck Egg Char Kueh Tiaw.

Sigh. Need I say more? Definitely not the best looking and tasty CKT I've had in Penang. 

All in all, New Lane didn't left a good impression for me and I don't think I'll pay a visit to this place the next time I'm going to Penang. ahhaha! Other hawker streets maybe.

That's it for Day 1! Day 2 coming up next. :) See ya and have a nice day!


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