Sunday, December 30, 2012

Lazy Langkawi - Part 2

Way back in March

The reason the beach area of Langkawi Island may have been so quiet, even though it was school holidays, is that all the holiday makers were most likely at Panorama Langkawi!

Stray and I and Co. hired some scooters, but they latter stayed behind this day. So, we made the pleasant ride out to the cable car, just the two of us. 
On arriving you'll find a theme park set up and atmosphere. Very well presented, lots of rides for the kids and shops, and ticket box for the journey up to the top of the Machinchang mountain.

No need to mention that the heat is relentless in this part of the world, and queuing in the sun for over an hour for your tickets, takes its toll...especially when you spend that hour staring at signage informing you that the next stage of lining up (for the actual skycab ride) could take up to 2 hours!

We were only about half an hour into the latter, winding our way through a well organised maize of railings, when an official started calling out for 2 people (a couple) travelling alone :) Since most Malaysian families visiting that day consisted of way more than two members...that would be US!!!!

I could have sworn I felt daggers going into my back as we were ushered to the front of the long queue. Nevermind, my fear of heights, especially dangling in a cabin on a single cable for nearly 2 km, overcame any guilt I may have felt.

When the car stopped, we naturally disembarked, however, we weren't at the top yet.

Above - You can see the most upper platforms and sky bridge to the right.

Once all the way to the top, this is what the skybridge (currently closed for maintenance) looks like from above and spectacular 360 degree views!
Verdict, well worth the visit, probably better not on school or public holiday.

Snap's other blog Chiang Mai Thai

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Lazy Langkawi - part 1

Way back in March...

From Penang to Langkawi may have been the shortest flight we've ever taken...but I'll have to research that a little further. In stark contrast, the island is quiet and sleepy and HOT!

From the airport we taxied to the AB Hotel, which is divided into two sections by the coastal road in the beach area Pantai Cenang (Cenang Beach), not the township. After checking in with the gals in the under cover, but outdoor reception area (protected by barred windows!) we were pointed across the road to our lodgings, roll of toiler paper in one hand (one per room) and the keys, in the other.

The hotel complex consists of duplex villas and your usual hotel style rooms on different levels. We spent our few days in a villa. Clean, basic, ample room, quiet (but no sat TV) with refurbished bathrooms and cute furry locals that liked to hang out on our balcony.
For an island that would seem to rely heavely on tourists, it was not what we expected, nor what we were accustomed to. There was no usual banter of sales people trying to entice you into a store or restaurant, or stopping you for chit chat, instead it was quite the opposite.

And, before anyone nay nay's me, I was not alone in my conclusion...there were 4 of us and the opinion was unanimous. They just don't like us much! We've travelled to over 12 countries and even more regions and islands, and I'm sad to say I won't return to Langkawi.

I reflect on what it must be like to be a tourist in my own country, and where I don't imagine our guests are greeted with rolling red carpets, I hope they don't leave feeling that we're unfriendly.
Near the township
Only about 1 out of 10 business owners showed any interest in welcoming us or attempting to assist us...usually just pointing us away, down the road, from their shop. Some even lowered their heads, ignoring us, pretending we weren't standing in front of their counters.

I really did break out into laughter when I tried to withdraw funds from one of the few ATM's and the machine spat my card out twice. Looking up I saw the 'Bank of Islam' sign...could have something to do with it!?

It's not all negative though. We enjoyed a great meal at a beachside restaurant (STEAK) owned by a foreigner and lovely breakfasts' cooked by a beautiful local lady and her family.

The island was VERY quiet, considering it was school holidays...but that come's back to bite us in the butt, so to speak, in a couple of days.

To be continued...

Snap's other blog Chiang Mai Thai

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Wow, while I wasn't looking....

Cooeee has received 50,609 Pageviews since hatching!

Snap's other blog Chiang Mai Thai

Feeling terribly guilty and anxious!

Feeling terribly guilty, because I've neglected my blogging friends and world. And, for not finishing our last adventure! Anxious, because I, we, are crash coursing our Thai a little, as we prepare to revisit in the new year.

Work for me, study for Stray, catching up with family, deweeding the jungle, termite damage and repairing it, has kept us both very busy over this past year since we returned from LOS.

We wish you all the most merry Christmas and an awesome new year, as we get back into the swing of travelling and blogging.


Snap's other blog Chiang Mai Thai