It was less than two years ago when I decided it´s time to discover the world outside Europe. Listing the European countries I have been visiting in the past would be exhaustive as it has been quite some. I believe its enough I say that apart from some holidays in Turkey, Morocco or Tunisia I hadn’t seen much of other continents but that I know Europe quite well.
I always wanted to see more of the world but circumstances are what they are and as I didn’t have the courage to go alone I ended up not travelling too far away. Till I finally decided it´s now the time to start with or it will never happen so quite spontaneously I bought my first long haul flight ticket to Kuala Lumpur and went there in November 2014.
It was the best decision I could have made. Not only did I spend the best vacation ever, I also met so nice people and finally got over my fear of travelling alone. Nowadays one could say I´m a bit of a travel junkie. Once you start, you want more and more- so from that date on I went travelling as often as possible and finally decided that there is too much to see in this world so it might be better to take some month off to have time to discover some more countries.
Coming back to Malaysia I started staying two nights in KL itself visiting one day the Batu Caves – which I highly recommend. They are only half an hour away by train so make sure you arrive there in the morning as its hard to move up all the steps in the Midday heat. I can tell as unfortunately I first went with the wrong train in another direction so had to get back after a one hour drive to point 0 and start over again..
From KL I took the bus to Penang. I stayed in Georgetown, a town famous for its street art. From there you can go discovering the island by bus or renting a bike. I went to Batu Feringghi Beach, hiking in the Taman Negara Pulau Pinang National park and also visited the temples. If you look for some off the track beach, try your luck on the other side of the island. By pure coincidence I found the most beautiful beach where no other soul has been seen while I was staying there.
Though don´t necessarily go in November as I did – it was raining almost every day and on some occasions not only shortly but the whole day.
After Penang I went by ferry to Langkawi, one of the prettiest places I ever saw. I stayed in a laid back town called Kuala Periang from where you can discover the island easily. The beaches were even nicer as in Penang and even better- I didn’t get stung by any jellyfish again. The crystal clear water, the calmness and no rush, the activities you can make (as a first time in my life I tried out Paragliding which was pretty cool) – you (or at least I) got everything I you need for perfect holidays. Of course there are also these typical tourist places and beaches you can find anywhere – those are not worth visiting. But with a bit of luck and local help or just taking the bike and letting yourself be guided by destiny will bring you to the most astonishing places for sure.
One night I stayed at the peer with some new made friends and suddenly the water started shining like diamonds. It was always my dream to see the illuminating plankton and finally I got to see it just there. If you moved your fingers through the surface of the water, the water stared sparkling. Amazing! The same night we also saw a couple of falling stars which made this night one of the best ever.
Before heading back, I took another ferry to a small island in Thailand called Ko Lipe. Even though its so close to Malaysia, you still note the cultural differences. The food was great and the people were different. You can walk around the island in one hour, there are no cars and I did the best snorkeling so far in my life. The corals were so colorful and I saw a lot of nice fishes. On future occasions I might have seen bigger or different fishes, but the coral reef was the top of everything I experiences till today.
After four days in Thailand I went back by ferry to Langkawi and went back to KL by one of those cheap inland flights. Stayed one last night in KL and was pretty upset when I went back to Germany. Right three days after landing I bought my next flight ticket, this time to Costa Rica but the story about this trip will be told in another post.
Those are the famous Petrobras Towers in KL, astonishing…
And for advanced preparation I really like those LP Discover guides in general as you get more pictures and like this a better idea what to expect.