After the Khao San madness in Bangkok and a nice day at Thailands second capital Ayuthaya i went by train to Malaysia. The original destination was Butterworth, but of the delay of the train all passengers was moved after the thai-malayian border to the bus.
Pulau Penang is a nice mix of different cultures: Indian, Chinese and of course Malayan. I left immediatly Georgetown, needed some quite after buisy Bangkok, so I went by local-bus to Teluk Bahang and moved in Miss Lohs GH. Great stay for a little money, and a beautyful garden. From here the Penang National Park is within walking distance. In the NP there existing a few trails. I choosed the one to Turtle Beach. After 1 hour through the jungle, where i saw Longtail Maquaces in the trees, i arrived at the beach, and visited the turtle sanctuary. More or less 30 1 week old tiny Green-turtles swam in a basin until they're old enough for the ocean. Don't forget to bring drinking water, cos the climate was extremly humid. Another highlight for me on Pulau Penang was the Snake Temple. I got soooo close to the poisoness Temple Vipers. I was never that close to an venomous snake. But these snakes are not agressiv. The snakes just lay on the altar, and stands for religious items, very impressive. More of these pit-vipers hanging on the tree in the garden of the temple. Beside the temples exist a snakefarm, but the conditions for the reptiles quite poor.
I'm quite surprised about Pulau Penang. Great mixture of different cultures, delicious cousine, but not Thai cousine! Good and easy transportation with local busses (just go to the jetty, from there all busses leave around the island ), and plenty of places to visit. For those who like to stay in a more luxury hotels, you have a wide range of accomodation. I definetly liked Penang!
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