We overnight-ed in Bangkok before flying into Penang and good thing we did too! Although we didn’t need to be at Bangkok airport until 10 am we thought we would play it safe and overnight there rather than do the three hour drive from Hua Hin.

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We booked a hotel in the airport grounds, so that we could just walk to our flight in the morning, booked a car from Hua Hin straight after Bruce finished work, packed our bags checked out of our apartment all good and organised. The three hour drive, which was suppose to be during the quieter time, took over five hours so we finally arrived in Bangkok at about 8pm tired, hungry and sick of sitting in the car. We did keep reminding ourselves that it was a good thing we decided to overnight in Bangkok the day before we flew out and that we weren’t in a shared minivan!

Anyway we found somewhere to eat and flew to Penang in the morning and didn’t even have any excess baggage!

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We caught a cab to the beautiful old historical area of Georgetown where we have been staying for a week. We are staying in a hotel near a wonderful co-working space that Bruce found which has very fast internet and is  just around the corner. It is in a lovely old building and provides free talks and workshops about start ups and other business things.

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Although Bruce is now working four days a week we have tried to do as much exploring as we can on the weekends and in the evenings and I have been touristing a bit on my own. Penang has a fantastic free CAT bus which goes around the center of Georgetown and nice air conditioned buses that go further a field. A big change from the last time we were here!

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Penang state consists of Penang Island and Butterworth on the mainland. It is home to 1.7 million people and although multicultural it is predominantly Chinese. Georgetown, it’s capital is  a lovely multicultural city which was awarded the UNESCO Heritage status in 2008. There are some wonderful buildings found everywhere.

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It is wonderful place to explore with beautiful colonial buildings, street art paintings and sculpture works and amazing street food. The interesting thing about Georgetown is the different streets and cultural areas like Little India full of colour and music in the evenings, the Chinese areas and the Chinese Jetties which belong to certain families.

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Georgetown has temples, clan houses, churches and a Mosque all in the same street which attests to many cultures harmoniously co-existing although I heard it has not always been the case, as you can imagine!

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We have enjoyed the street food and eaten something new each night and Bruce has even rekindled some creative desires! He had fun playing the drums (tins and kettle) during our wander through a street market on the weekend. Had other tourists taking photos of him…might be a superstar next! (I wasn’t so great on the electric shovel guitar!)

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We haven’t yet explored the other areas of Penang much. We did go to a nice lunch at Straits Quay where Bruce chose his boat and we found a drinkable wine! Next week we are moving to the Gurney Drive area to experience the ‘posher’area and enjoy an apartment with a washing machine! Also hoping to visit the beach areas for a look.

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Loving Penang!