George Town

When I arrived at the bus station in George Town in the Penang region in northern Malaysia, I met an older traveler named Osama. He’s in his 60s I think. He lives in Jordan and has lived and worked in the United States. We shared a Grab taxi to my hostel since his hostel is also near mine. I didn’t let him pay because I was already going to the hostel anyway. I quickly learned that he’s a very smart man and even his kids are smart, too. One of them graduated from Harvard and works for United Nations I think.

I stayed in the Swing and Pillows @ Muntri hotel for two nights, but then I decided to stay in a hostel to meet other travelers so I switched to The Century Boutique Hotel, where Osama was staying. Unfortunately, when I was checking in, Osama was leaving the hotel for his next destination.

On the first night in George Town I met up with Miriam, the German girl I had met in Kuala Lumpur. She was staying at Red Inn Court. Together with her hostel friend from Poland named Wiktor and another Chinese girl, whom we don’t know her name, we walked around the northern part of George Town where there were trippy lights hanging down from the trees. We had a brief meal near there and chilled on the shore before walking back.

The next day, I explore more of historic George Town. This part of the town is a UNESCO Heritage Site. It was so hot and humid with temperature reaching 100 F degrees. I saw some famous street art such as the girl and the boy on a bicycle before heading back to the hotel.

That afternoon, Miriam, Wiktor, and another hostel friend of Miriam’s named Adi invited me to visit Batu Ferringhi, which is a local beach. I didn’t wear my swim trunks thinking that there will be jelly fish, but later I went into the water anyway in my underwear since the heat was unbearable. The ocean felt really warm and it was nice to cool down. The four of us ended up having dinner right on the beach watching the sun setting behind the clouds.

The next day, I changed to The Century Boutique Hotel. It’s both a hotel and a hostel. I was surprised at its architecture. It’s very traditional with old style furnitures. It also has a small swimming pool that I enjoyed a couple of times. However, the travelers here weren’t very social.

The temperature was so hot that I didn’t do much for the next two days. I mainly stayed in the hostel except going out to eat.

For the last two days I did more exploring and went into town again to see more street art. Yesterday, the weather was cooler due to the morning rain so I walked 45 minutes to two temples, one is Dhammikarama Burmese Temple and the other is across the street from it called Chaiya Mangalaram Thai Buddhist Temple. I was impressed with both temples. The Burmese temple had panels telling the story of Buddha, which was interesting. The Thai temple has a giant reclining Buddha.

There was a miscommunication between me and Miriam. We were supposed to grab dinner together last night, but neither of us texted each other thinking the other would text. I had a very late meal at 10:30 PM when I went out to a bar called Micke’s Place to meet several Couchsurfers. There was a band playing, but I didn’t like them very much. I came home around 11:30 PM so I can get enough rest to catch my 1:50 PM flight to Phuket, Thailand.

Overall, I enjoyed Malaysia. I like how English is widely spoken here, Chinese as well. The food is good and there is a variety of cuisines. The highlight was the Terra Tree House with Eileen. It inspired me to get a copy of The Yellow Emperor’s Book on Chinese Medicine so I can learn more about acupuncture and Chinese medicine. To enter Thailand I had to have an onward ticket, so I bought a plane ticket to Siem Reap, Cambodia. I’ll be going there on April 25 after Bangkok.

George Town street at night

Trees with trippy lights

On the shore of George Town

Queen Victoria Memorial Clock Tower

Penang Municipal Town Hall

Penang City Hall

Fort Cornwallis

George Town street art

Boy on motorcycle

The most famous street art in George Town

Armenian Street


Boy on chair street art

More street art

Malay Central Mosque Lebuh Acheh

Had an ice ball to cool me down in the heat.

Choo Chay Keong Temple

Batu Ferringhi Beach

Wiktor, Miriam, Adi, and me

Sunset on the beach

Entrance of The Century Boutique Hotel

Swimming pool inside the hostel

Antique furnishings in the hotel

This is called Kuih.

This dish is called Laksa.

More street art

Local Indian food

Street scene in George Town

Another cool street art

Inside Kapitan Keling Mosque

Kapitan Keling Mosque

An old bicycle shop

More street art

Chew Jetty

Yet another street art

A very cool building

Dhammikarama Burmese Temple

Buddha statues at the Burmese temple

A giant standing Buddha at the Burmese temple

May your prayers be answered.

People tried to toss coins into the bowls.

Chaiya Mangalaram Thai Buddhist Temple

Inside the Thai temple

Dragons with multiple heads

Giant reclining Buddha in the Thai temple

Selfie with the Buddha

Indian food on banana leaf

One of a few Starbucks in the world that employs deaf people

Love Lane at night

Live band at Micke's Place