Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Penang & Langkawi, Malaysia

Penang is an absolutely beautiful island, just off the coast of West Malaysia

I came out here with high expectations after hearing other expats raving about this place, and I was not let down

Went to check out Kek Lok Si, a traditional Chinese Buddhist temple

This place was amazing - situated on the top of a foothill with really great views of the island

The entrance gate to Kek Lok Si, just outside of which I ran into a monster lizard (this thing was huge)

Here is that beautiful view that I was talking about above

There's lush green everywhere you look on this island

Inside of Kek Lok Si temple is an amazing array of Buddha statues

Heading up to the main pagoda area, the sights were unique to say the least

There was also a sense of calm here, and I was shocked by the lack of visitors (though I was told it was low season)

A far-reaching row of Buddahs; this was a little trippy (man I'm starting to sound like a hippie, been kicking it with too many backpackers)

I'm not too sure what these dangling balloon type of things are, but they're really cool

After reaching the top of the temple, I was so impressed with the above array of balloons (that's how I'll refer to them for now, forgive my cultural ignorance)

Construction of the largest bronze buddah in all of Asia

Up top on the temple, standing next to the pagoda and viewing the beautiful mountains

Kek Lok Si lit up at night

Also took a ferry out to Langkawi, which is just underneath Phuket (meaning beautiful beaches)

Stayed in this hotel/cottage that was nestled away in a sanctuary

This was the view from the balcony of my room

With your feet planted in the ocean, you turn around and see rain forests.....amazing

Gorgeous sunsets here.......I wonder if the locals ever take this for granted

Had to get one more, I hadn't seen a sunset like this since Dubai (but it was still really different - beach vs. desert, you get the picture)

As the sun went down, fishing boats started to appear everywhere

The next day I went out exploring; it was literally like I had the beach to myself

Eventually I had to leave this private paradise and get back on the ferry back to Penang

On the way back to Penang, I caught a quick shot of a school of fish following the boat

Back to paradise, but slightly a bit more crowded - Malaysia is great

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