After 3 weeks on the island we were starting to go stir crazy, it was time to move from the beaches and get back to some actual Asian culture. A 15 hour bus journey, well 4 buses, saw us cross the border in Malaysia (after cuing at the wrong border control point for 40 minutes).
Arriving in Penang at 11pm we set off to the hostel, thought it was a great start when we turned down the street to see a group of prostitutes chilling out. Then Tash broke her flip flop and hopped the last few metres, but we made it safely to one of the best hostels of our trip. A late night snack of pizza and burgers, because in Malaysia you can actually use your credit card to pay for things! And we were settled in for the night.
Penang was one of my favourite places so far. It has a beautiful mix of old and new, it's embraced western styles without loosing it's culture or charm. But most importantly, the food is out of this world!!!!!
There is little India, where I had my first taste of Dosai and filled chappathi. On the first night we walked in with no idea what to order, and a family next to us ordered for us - replicating their dinner which looked amazing. The second night we got brave and ordered ourselves, it wasn't anything like we thought, but amazing none the less.
Two mornings we went to the Chinese restaurant at the end of the road for Dim Sum breakfast. I have no idea what we ate, some was tasty, some was just strange.
The other thing Penang does very well is coffee! Searching for the 3D coffee shop, we found the selfie coffee shop! I know Asians love selfies, but I never thought about plastering your selfie across the top of your latte. It had to be done, and there was a bit too much enjoyment at poking the straw through our pictures mouths! The 3D coffee art, when we found it 2 days later, was a little more disappointing. I think we had hyped it up to ourselves over the few days and getting the basic creatures was a bit of a shame.
Our last night in Penang was New Years and a group of us went out for a Chinese we had been recommended. It didn't disappoint as our last meal that's for sure.
Penang wasn't just about food, altho it was mainly about food. The upside down museum was a great fun, posing in upside down rooms for some great photos. The street art in Penang was also fantastic, we spent a couple of days walking around the city searching for hidden bits. The only thing I wasn't so impressed at was Penang hill, we got up early to miss the ques and I didn't really get the point of the whole place - a good view yes, but there wasn't much more to it, and then there was the 90 minute vertical walk down - our legs were still hurting 2 days later!!
In all Penang was epic. I'm not sure if it was the food, the place, the hostel or the epic people we met in the hostel, but it made for an amazing week.