Couldn’t wake up early as planned – bed was too comfortable. When we did eventually, went to buffet breakfast over at the Sarkies Annex. The variety was huge but we were saving the space for the makan ahead. Food taste was just alright but they had fresh juice (using a mean little juicer)!
Armed with a map, we walked eastwards towards the Padang and Esplanade, along the way snapping shots of old cathedrals and administration buildings.
Sitting at the tip of Georgetown was a Fort Cornwallis. 2rm per entry for view of the small fort that didn’t had anything much left but some cannons and a old chapel. Just round the corner was the Queen Victoria clocktower and the a fountain.
Walked along Lebuh Pantai, and turning eastwards on Lebuh China towards the sea again, there was the bus interchange and another 5mins we saw the clan jetties.
This interesting kelong styled area had became touristy with many choosing to conduct business at their homes selling memorabilia to the visiting tourists. I supposed it would have looked better back in the days.
Went back to the Rapid bus interchange (there was a info office that had small brochure for passengers on taking buses) and boarded the free CAT bus to go towards Komtar, tallest building in Penang as of 2014. Alighted at bus stop 8 to start on our food journey.
Went over to Ho Ping cafe and ordered the Char Koay Teow (5rm) and Mee Goreng(5rm). The Koay Teow tasted ok, fried differently without the usual sweet sauce. The Mee Goreng was tasty though, with unfamiliar slices of potato and fried flour gelling well in this slightly saucy mix.
As we walked southwards towards Komtar, ended up sitting in a Joo Hooi cafe which had a really crowded Chendul mobile stall outside. Ordered the laksa (4.5rm, that had a “famous” laksa stall sign) and also brought in Chendul (2.3rm, from the stall outside, that rendered a sit in cost of 50cents, most probably because they weren’t paying anything for the permanent sitting area. Additionally, there was a need to buy a drink in order to eat-in too. The assam laksa was indeed delicious and tasted different from the Singapore version. The Chendul was a good cooler for hot weather but I didn’t felt it was far superior.
Further southwards across the bridge, we arrived at Komtar ICT, digital mall like Sim Lim. Got our screen protector for the iPhone and the iPad mini for only 58rm, slightly cheaper than Singapore. From ICT, we went to 2 other interlinked retail malls, Pranglin mall and 1st Avenue, the latter being the newer one. Pranglin had a Lucky Plaza feel but both malls had lots of walking space, typical of most Malaysia malls. We ended up at Oldtown coffee to take a break from so much walking.
Trekked back and along the way, bought some Penang instant noodles for 8rm per pack of 4 only to find it for 7.5rm at another stall. Oh well. Went into a Nasi Kandar stall that we thought was recommended by one of the tourism brochure. Ordered chicken, egg and vege for 8rm. Tasted pretty good as it was served with 4 different curries! We only knew that we have entered the wrong restaurant after we saw the name on the receipt, the correct one was actually one more store later but heck it was nice. Asked the shop owner about getting to Gurney Plaza and was told that taxi there would be around 15rm. Flagged down one, asked the price and was told the same. Got in and we were on our way.
Gurney Plaza was located facing the sea, where we could see the famous lighthouse. This was a Capitalmall mall and the layout was oh so familiar, only that it was in RM and much less people. After getting some stuff, proceeded to walk over to Gurney Paragon mall for a second round of shopping though this new mall didn’t had as many shoppable shops like Gurney Plaza in our opinion.
Then it was time for dinner and so we walked towards the Gurney drive open air food center that was something like Newton Center. Ordered Chee Cheong Fun (3.60rm), Wan Tan Noodles (4rm), Hao Jian (10 rm) and Curry Mee (4rm), supposedly the must eats too. Only the Hao Jian and the Curry Mee made the difference in my opinion. The oysters in the Hao Jian tasted pretty fresh. The Curry Mee had pig blood, cuttlefish and fried bean curd and the pig blood and cuttlefish was really soft and tasted like pudding! The curry was really different in that the taste was derived from the chilli itself and unlike the sweet curry we have in Singapore. The meal was really filling and we decided to walk back.
The walk along Gurney Drive was ok as there were things to see like various restaurants that lined along the road. However it got boring on the 2nd half of the journey, as there were nothing but boring office buildings and the walking pavements became sporadically unavailable. In the end, we took really long (1.5hr?) to get back to our hotel. So even though it looked doable on the map itself, it definitely was not worth the effort.
Back in the room, it was just all about getting relaxed from the tiring day out and snoozing in bed.