Taiwan (Western Part) – 9 days Free n Easy Journey; Day 1

Hi there!! Welcome to my next e-travel write-up. Sorry. this was a trip more than a year ago but it is never too late to share, right?

Yes, it’s Taiwan again but this time is more of a free and easy journey where my family and I took a 9 days trip to the western part of Taiwan from the south to the north passage.

Although it was free and easy, it took a few months of planning to ensure that my trip there was as smooth and as accommodating as possible. We took the transport the locals took and also stayed in hostels or 1 or 2 star hotels. Simple reason was most of the time we were on walking and exploring, and we just need a place to shower and sleeps. So, accommodation wasn’t our top priority.

Ok… let’s start our e-travel. The journey started from Kuala Lumpur KLIA2 and it was a direct flight to Tao-yuan International airport in Taiwan.

It was in fact my first time in this low cost carrier airport. I am quite impressed with the size and also the number of shops in here.  

Yup… what a trip to start off with a heavy storm heading our way. Flight was delayed as usual. This was taken from the skybridge connection main terminal building to the satellite building to catch the international flight.

‘Yoda’ himself making a ‘presence’ in KLIA2. =P

M&M ‘attacking’  Petronas Twin Tower…….

After a 5 hours or so flight and with delay….. we finally touched down in Tao-yuan International Airport which was close to midnight.  Luckily we still could catch the public buses operating after midnight but very limited. Took the Kuo Kang bus at its stop point to head to Taipei city.

Cost? Well NTD125 per person. Journey took as around 1 hr++ and with stopping points in the city. So do plan where you want to get down. (especially after midnight)

Our stopped was near the Taipei Railway station and we had to walked about 30 min before getting to our hostel.

My supper after we checked in our hostel. Bought from Familymart. Taste good! Haha guess I was hungry.

Anyway.. that’s for today. Catch up with my next posting my this new e-travel series. If you have not followed me yet, pls do so by clicking on ‘follow me’

 

Penang, Malaysia; Morning walk in the Chowrasta Day Market (2)

Nice to have you back with me on this ‘e-walk’.

Last posting on this very short series on my morning walk in Chowrasta Day market.

Still in Kuala Kangsar Road which a stone throw away from Chowrasta Road.

Vendor selling colourful cloths. Ladies choosing and deciding what they want…..

  

With the background, is the Komtar Tower; the tallest office building on the island. 65 storeys

Walking back to Penang road to the main entrance of Chowrasta Market building which house for permanent stalls for the vendors.

 

 

hmmm.. .what do they have here? They have Tambun biscuit which are oven-backed biscuits rounds/balls of flaky pastry filled with a sweet or savoury paste made from grounded green beans (tau sar). They also have medicated oil which some are made from nutmeg oil.

… more stalls inside to choose from.

A closer snap shot. Oh yes, further back you can see pickled sour/sweet fruits which are worth trying. =)

 

ok…. that’s all for this series. Just a short one and also a break from my series on Taiwan. So which country will it be next? Want to know? If yes, then click on ‘Follow me’ and join me on my e-journey. =)

Penang, Malaysia; Morning walk in the Chowrasta Day Market (1)

Hi there!! Welcome back. This series is about my morning walk in the day market in Penang Island on one of the weekends when I was back there.

Walking along Penang Road, I wanted to see the day market that I have heard a lot about, which is the Chowrasta day market; along Chowrasta Road next to the Chowrasta Market building.

This is the beginning of Campbell Street which  is a street within the buffer zone of the George Town Unesco World Heritage Site. It runs from Penang Road to the junction of Buckingham Street and Carnarvon Street.

  

The street was named after the Penang Inspector General (1866-1891) Sir George William Robert Campbell, who was also the acting Lieutenant-Governor of Penang between 1872 and 1873. It used to run from Pitt Street, which was much older. The locals called it Sin Kay, meaning “new street” but I will not be covering here in this series.

Stalls along Penang Road.

This is the Chowrasta Road where you can see vendors setting up their stalls on both sides of the road. Usually in the morning, the road is closed to traffic; maybe except for motorbikes slowly zooming in and out.

Lots of activities and daily requirement needed can be found here.

mmm… anything that interest you here? thermoflash or tiffin carrier?

At the T-junction of Chowrasta Road is Kuala Kangsar Road (not the Kuala Kangsar in Ipoh state).  On this street you can find lots of old coffee shops where you can grab your breakfast and hot coffee while you enjoy watching the hive of activities across the street.

Look at the space in between. It looks packed right? well it is if there are lots of people.

 

 

 

Hope you are enjoying this ‘e-trip’. Another post on this series before I go on to my new series. So, do follow me on my series in this blog. Tata!!

Malaysia; Penang’s Rifle Range Morning Market for breakfast

Hi.. sorry for deviating from my Taiwan’s Tainan history walk. Well.. thought I change the site for this one posting before I go back to my 2nd Day walk in Tainan.

Rifle Range? Well. it is no  more one (but it used to be). It is one the most densely populated area in Penang Island. Built back in 1969. It was also the 1st country low cost high rise accommodation.

There are total 9 blocks of 17-storey buildings within an area of 16.7ha, with every floor consisting of 20 units of single bedrooms and four two bedroom units.

That total up to a 3,888 units within the flats, the average size of a unit is merely 340 sq ft! So can also imagine the number of cars and motorbikes in these area. A Penangites can tell you if you choose to park your car near the flats in the evening, the chances of your car being blocked by other cars is almost 100%!!

But lately they have improved the parking system and also the flow is much better. Yup, you can say that its been a while since I was here (more like a few years ago)

They have also repainted the blocks and it does look more eye pleasing as compared to before.

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Ok enough. Let get to the interesting part. To get to the food court, I have to go through the wet market and then a long alley passing small stalls on both side selling from clothes to accessories. Lots of things to looks at and also the prices are reasonable too.

Me walking through……

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Stall selling clothes….

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After going through….. then we are at the food court. Yup a long alley of food court with lots of food choice to pick from under 1 roof; chinese food, malay food, Indian food  and hawker food.

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so, what do you like to eat?

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Looks at the crowd. Most of the tables were taken up. You can order and they will deliver the food to your table.

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This stall is selling nasi lemak (coconut rice) with a small fired fish for Rm1.20 (used to be rm1.00). Heard that this stall has been selling for more than 20 years here (or maybe even more).

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This was the stall I stopped by to have my breakfast.

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This is their mee suah kor…. and yes, it is indeed yummy!!! To me, it is as good the one famous in Taiwan.

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Dry char hor fun….

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This was some side fried snacks which I bought from a food vendor nearby. Nice and crispy.

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This is a place I would come again for breakfast and also to do some shopping as parking has improved so much. Oh yes… the wet market also sell fresh seafood at a very much reasonable price as compared to other area of Penang Island. =)

Malaysia – ASICS Penang Bridge International Marathon 2014 Run – Longest Bridge in S.E.A

Hi … Just wanted to share with you my experience on running on the longest bridge in South Eat Asia last weekend; 22/Nov 2014. This is the first time it was held on this bridge as it was just open to the public in March 2014. Previous runs were held on the 1st Penang Bridge since 1985.

The Sultan Abdul Halim Muadzam Shah Bridge or Penang Second Bridge was completed on Feb 2014 and it is 24km in length (Length over water is 16.9km) and it’s main span is 250m long.

Each year, this run attracts thousands of people locally and also internationally. This year’s run saw more than 62,000 people participating in the Full Marathon, Half Marathon, 10km and also the 7km Fun Run. The races started in staggered time where the Full Marathon started as early as 1.30am. For me, I took the 10km Men run which only started at 7.30am. Yup, so the bridge was totally crowded with people from early morning. LOL!!!

Anyway.. here are some shots. Runners warming up and getting ready for the run.

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While some lazying at the side while waiting for the race to start to enjoy the beautiful sunrise.

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Shot of the Penang Second Bridge from the shore from the island side.

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Starting point for the runners. All ladies gathering up waiting for the countdown.

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Look at the crowd!! That’s just only for the ladies open. I believe the line stretches all the way back to 200m to 300m behind (or even more).

 

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It took about 30 mins to get 99% of the ladies to cross the starting line before the men could get ready for their starting.

 

This was the starting for the Men’s 10km run. Yup… you can see that the sun was already up in full force.

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Approaching the Main  Span…

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Some runners taking a slow walk to enjoy the view.

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Yeah… the finishing line..

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Anyway.. to cut it short. I made it within the stipulated time and I got my Medal. Kinda nice right?

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My goal for 2015… is to run the Half Marathon for this run. =)

 

Malaysia – A Ride through Penang’s 2nd Bridge (in B&W)

Finally I get to post this. I had taken photos earlier which was taken at night but it turn out bad. Guess I was traveling in a bus and bus was jumping here and there. This time I got it right. LOL!!

This trip was from Penang Island to the mainland Peninsular Malaysia trip. It is actually my 2 trip on this new Penang 2nd Bridge (it’s official name – Sultan Abdul Halim Muadzam Shah Bridge) since it opened in 1 March 2014.

During my trip back to Kuala Lumpur, the bus I took has decided to take the new route instead of the ‘old’ Penang Bridge (haha… it is already close to 29 years since it first open to the traffic) .

To get to the bridge, the bus had to take to coastal road is passing the Free Industrial Zone where most of the multinational companies are set up.

A shot of the coast with the background view of the bridge at it’s mainspan.

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Construction of an elevated highway is in progress in the middle of the 2 carriageway. So traffic was slow but moving. (luckily it was not a working day else it will be massive jam.)

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Another shot of the mainspan. Actually the mainspan is very much closer to the island as that point is the deepest part along the whole stretch of the 16.9km of bridge length on the water.

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Entering the bridge. The exit is from Batu Maung on Island and arrive at Batu Kawan on mainland

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The total length of the bridge is 24km (overland and water). Dual carriage and a dedicated motorbikes lane on each side.

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Mainspan. This part is most beautiful at night when they lighted it up.

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Coming down the mainspan, and if you can see far at the background, you will see the round dual carriage way is like a ‘snake’ like.

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See it? Have you ever wonder why?

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Exiting the bridge. On the other side is the toll which all vehicles have to pay toll. The price? Mmm… the government has yet to determine. So for the time being, everyone is enjoying the toll-free bridge.

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Another toll? Yup. This is to toll which connects to the North South Expressway. Big arch right?

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Close up shot.

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Anyway that’s it. Hope you enjoy my ride on the Penang’s 2nd Bridge. Stay tune for my other posting. =)

Malaysia; Penang’s 2nd bridge to open to traffic..

Tomorrow 1st March 2014, Penang’s 2nd bridge will be open to traffic. It is the longest bridge in South East Asia. It’s length is 24km; 16km out in the waters and 8 km on land.

This 2nd bridge will help to ease the traffic on the 1st bridge which is more than 20years old and is only slight more than half the length of the 2nd bridge.

Me passing the entry point to the 2nd bridge which is hours away from the opening.

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Anyway, once I have more on this, I will share with my readers.

P.S. If any of your are interested in marathon, they may organize a marathon on this 2nd bridge in November this year. So do keep a look out. 😊