Travel@HamHamFarm - The World, Here We Come!
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Malaysia 

(Penang)

(23 May 2013 - 26 May 2013)

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Day 3 

(Part 1/2)

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Good Morning Penang! This morning, we engaged Mr Michael Fong from Ocean Jupiter (mentioned in Day 1 of the blog) to bring us around Penang.

Ngo Hiang (五香) in Singapore is actually known as Lor Bak (卤肉) in Penang. This morning, we visited Kafe Kheng Pin located just 2 mins walk from Cititel Hotel (Junction of Penang Road and Sri Bahari Road). According to Michael, this place serves the best Lor Bak in Penang (GPS Coordinates : N05 25.239 E100 19.970; Open from 7am till 2pm only, closed on Mondays). The stall selling the Lor Bak should be the star attraction of this cafe as we could see that every table will have at least a plate of these Lor Bak. We loved the crunchy prawn crackers, the deep fried marinated minced pork that’s rolled in really thin soybean sheets, topped off with perfect sweet sticky gravy and chili sauce.

Just RM10 for this enormous plate of yummy fried fritters!

We ordered the Wonton Mee as well from the same cafe, which was loaded with mushroom, Char Siu and shredded chicken. Unlike Singapore’s style Wanton Mee, chili sauce are not added into the mee (only green chili are provided which is served separately). We were so pleased with both the Lor Bak and Wanton Mee that we came back for Round 2 on the last day of the trip.

Our next stop is Kuantan Road Curry Mee located in Kafe Fook Cheow (Intersection of Jalan Hutton and Lorong Amoy) also recommended by Michael (in the above picture). Kafe Fook Cheow was super crowded when we visited. Hence, we have no choice but to sit at the opposite coffee-shop to have our curry mee. We understand from Michael that the Koay Teow Soup (Flat rice noodles served in a clear soup broth, topped with fish balls, slices of pork, chicken, golden brown garlic bits and chopped scallions etc) is also great. Too bad that Kafe Fook Cheow was full and we couldn’t order the Koay Teow Soup over as there’s another Koay Teow Soup in the coffee-shop where we sat.

For those who miss coagulated pig blood which is non-existent in Singapore, this is the place that you must visit. Made with a scrumptious prawn and coconut milk soup base, the cuttlefish, prawns, tou pok, pig blood and noodles were flavourful and succulent. For Singaporeans, curry mee tasted more like Singapore’s version of Laksa. Curry noodle never tasted so good!

Our next stop is Him Heang Sdn Bhd (馨香饼家) for the Tambun biscuits (aka Tau Sah Peah - 豆沙饼). Address :  162-A, Jalan Burma, 10050 Penang. Tel: 04 – 2286129, 2286130; Hours : 8.30am – 5.00pm: Closed on Sunday. There are a few brands of Tambun biscuits in Penang, but Michael recommend Him Heang as this brand is supposedly better than it’s competitor Ghee Hiang. We understand from him that due to the lack of parking space here, traffic police are often deployed here to control the traffic during peak season. The place was super packed when we visited (amazingly as it was only 9.50am when we arrived). Him Heang was quite chaotic as boxes were flying off the shelves and customers were actually shouting their orders to the counter as there wasn’t enough Tau Sah Peah to go around. Frankly, we don’t find the Tau Sah Peah any special (Too dry and not much beans taste), we still prefer Singapore’s version of Tau Sah Peah :D

Our next stop is the Dharmikarama Burmese Temple (Address : 24 Lorong Burmah, 10250 Penang, Hours: 5am – 6pm daily), the oldest Burmese Temple in Malaysia opposite the Thai temple, Wat Chayamangkalaram (Reclining Buddha). The main prayer hall is decorated with well crafted wood carvings and your would see this gigantic statue of Buddha.

Dharmikarama Burmese Temple makes an excellent location for photographers, because there is so much beauty and colours all around.

It is believed that Arahant Upagutta has the power to help one overcome obstacles and problems, exorcism of evil and fulfillment of wishes e.g. related to examinations.

You can actually go up the bell tower and look down the grounds below.

Posing with the pair of “Guardian Protectors of the World” statues in the garden.

The temple is at its busiest during festivals such as Vesak Day as well as the Burmese Thingyan (Water Festival) in April – a celebration similar to Thailand’s Songkran festival, in which devotees splash water at each other and pay respect to elders. We highly recommend visiting this temple in Penang. It is unlike any other temples in the area.

Next, we visited Wat Chayamangkalaram, a Thai Buddhist temple opposite Dharmikarama Burmese Temple, most notable for its Reclining Buddha statue. The statue is the 3rd largest of its kind in the world (33 meters in length). The Thai temple was much smaller compared to the Burmese Temple. If you’ve seen other temples in Thailand or elsewhere, you may be disappointed here. Definitely not a place where you’ll spend an hour or so, a short visit (20-30 mins) will suffice. Take the chance to visit both temples if you are visiting.

Next, Sister’s Char Koay Teow, named so because the Char Kway Teow stall was previously operated by a pair of sisters (Address : Lam Heng Cafe, 183 MacAlister Road, Georgetown, 11400, Penang, Closed Mondays, Hours : 8.30am-12.30pm, 1.30pm-4.30pm). Today, the stall is run by the elder son of the younger sister. The fried Koay Teow here is not so oily and noticeably used lesser dark soya sauce than Singapore’s version of Char Koay Teow. We adored the huge fresh prawns and the charred noodles (Good “wok hei” – literally translated as the essence imparted by a hot wok on food during stir frying). The cockles and crab meat completes the dish. Sheer deliciousness on a plate.

Do also try out the Nyonya otak-otak from the same coffee-shop. We liked the fresh turmeric and coconut milk used to make the otak-otak.

Next, we visited Kek Lok Si - A Buddhist temple situated in Air Itam in Penang and is one of the best known temples on the island. (Address : Add : No. 1, Tokong Kek Lok Si, 11500, George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia Tel : 04-8283317, Opens 7 days a week from 9am to 6pm, Free entry).

Immerse yourself in the soothing Buddhist realm of Kek Lok Si temple. Kek Lok Si can be divided into 2 parts. The gigantic Guanyin statue at the top while the pagoda’s at the bottom of the Hill. Michael drove us to the top of the temple first to view the 30.2m bronze statue of the Goddess of Mercy. She seemed like a guardian watching over all mortals before her. Understand that the bronze statue replaced the previous white plaster Kuan Yin statue which was damaged due to a fire earlier. The head of the previous white statue (which survived the fire) was preserved and placed on top of the building where you take the Inclined Lift, that serves the 2 levels (RM4 per adult for a return trip).

The Pagoda of a Million Buddhas (万佛宝塔) at extra cost of RM2 per person.

(Full Image here)

Views from the top of the pagoda…

Visiting Kek Lok Si is truly a pilgrimage! Take your time to visit this temple. We recommend that you to take cab or private transport to Kek Lok Si as there’s really lots of steps to conquer. If you plan to walk from Air Itam market, it will take you at least 25 – 30 mins (up-slope) on foot to Kek Lok Si.




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Travel@HamHamFarm - The World, Here We Come!

Day 3

(1/2)

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Malaysia

(Penang)

(23 May 2013 - 26 May 2013)

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