A Travellerspoint blog

Penang May 11th 2011

Hotter and hotter

overcast 35 °C

Up early this morning for our Tour of Penang Island. One of the best things about our tour was our guide who told us we would finish the tour Sweaty, Slimy, Saturated, and possibly Smelly. We climbed what appeared to be hundreds of steps to the main Chinese Buddhist temple which is set up high on a hill overlooking Penang.. The Temple spreads over a hilltop and is topped with a pagoda which is built in various styles according to the major donations from Thailand Burma and China. Some of the old colonial settlement still exists and the Government conservation laws have allowed monstrous new towers to overlook the scattered mansions of the pre-Merdeka or Independence Day of 1957 when English Rule ended peacefully. We then saw the main Thai and Burmese buddhist temples with their Gilt dragons and Buddhas including a very large reclining Buddha in the Thai Temple.
We then drove down to the Coastal resort area of Batu Ferengghi which is named for the Foreigners who holiday there and their multi-million dollar mansions which have been allowed to spring up on the previously unspoiled hilltops of the Penang Island coast. We passed the appropriately named Tsunami Café and saw the area where 10 poor fishermen were killed in the December 2007 Tsunami. We also visited the restored mansion of a poor chinese settler who became a millionaire towards the end of the 19th and start of the 20th Centuries. His house which had fallen on hard times was restored by another Millionaire in the past decade or so after he sought out period relics from the original era.
After a very good buffet lunch at a 5 star hotel we visited a batik factory and saw how the Batik is made with wax being used to stop the Stamped patterns running when the dyes are applied to the material which include silk and synthetics. After 6-7 hours in the steamy heat we passed the Cornwallis Fort built in the 18th Century by the General who lost America to the Americans and was sent to be the Governor General of India. Then back to the beautifully air conditioned Sun Princess and the Internet Café. Over the past 3 days we have not been eating at our formal Dinner sitting preferring to eat later and less formally. We see Shoshanna and Felix in passing and will probably see more of them during the sea days between Phuket and India.
have just been told by the Captain that Pirate Drill will be held on the 12th May as we approach the tip of India which starts the area of Pirate activity.

Posted by acudoc 02:46 Archived in Malaysia Tagged malaysia cruise family_travel Comments (0)

KUALA LUMPUR - HOT HOT!!!

A HOT TIME IN PORT KELANG

overcast 35 °C

Spent the day with our own taxi into KL from Port Kelang which is where we docked today - About an hour in an air-conditioned taxi was blessed relief. We saw the outside of the Sultan's Palace, the largest Chinese temple in KL and the Bird Park. Then went to the Petronas Towers where we again sought respite in the air-conditioning. We are really enjoying the cruise so far and find the Ship and its crew absolutely first rate. The Internet is slow but we expect that with satellite communications being the only way to connect. Tomorrow its off to Peneng for our last stop in Malaysia then its on to Phuket before a 3-day cruise to India. Celina and Melinda have taken literally hundreds of photos and I will start to upload some of these in the comming days. It is amazing how quickly one can use up 500 minutes of Internet time merely browsing checking on emails and blogging. We enjoy the regular Emails from Mark - particularly those relating to the family and the 2 greyhound amigos Tippy and Lucy and their mutant friend Bonny. If the Blues keep winning that will sustain this True Blue until I can really start the footy season in June.

Posted by acudoc 03:31 Archived in Malaysia Tagged ocean indian cruise family_travel Comments (0)

7th DAY SINGAPORE

A HOT TIME HAD BY ALL

sunny 33 °C

Just about to leave Singapore. We spent over 4 hours at the Singapore Zoo today and as always finished the day feeling like a wrung out wet blanket. Loved the White Tigers and the Proboscus monkeys who always remind us of Jimmy Durante. Josh found it "gross" when one pair casually stated making bacon. The Cruise has been very relaxing so far and we have managed not to eat too much thus far. Our first formal night went well and we all looked resplendent in our finery. Tomorrow it's off to Kuala Lumpur then Penang and Phuket before we sail around the tip of India to get to cochin in about a week's time. Shoshanna and Felix have been frustrated by their inability to connect to the Net as their iPad is not working well and they do not have global roaming. We sit together most nights. Internet time is very expensive on the ship so will upload photos at next oppportunity.

Posted by acudoc 03:58 Archived in Singapore Tagged india cruise holiday south africa asia Comments (0)

3rd Seaday from Perth

Near Christmas Is

sunny 29 °C

Well here we are on our 3 sailing day gradually restoring our energies and enjoying as much as the ship has to offer and having fun! 2 nights ago before we heard about our dog's efforts in tunnelling under Mark & Luise fence and then eating the neibhour's chooks we took part in a Magic Show. Melinda and i were on stage trying to catch Scott out at his coin and card tricks then Josh as one of the only 5 kids on board stole the show by apparently showing up one of the tricks. The magician later told us he always likes to have a kid on stage so it looks as if he has been tumbled. He then did the Houdini straight jacket escape with josh timing the escape. Yesterday we saw a movie and were frustrated by the slow speed of the satellite feed for Wifi. Tonite is a formal nite with our first opportunity to dress up. Melinda has been enjoying the Gym and dance classes. The food is really good with modest size portions served in the restaurant and the Horizon Lounge open for brekfast lunch and snacks at any time.
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Posted by acudoc 22:24 Archived in Australia Tagged ocean cruise family_travel Comments (0)

1st Full Day at Sea

Off the coast of West Australia

sunny 24 °C

Yesterday was an extremely tiring but ultimately successful day. Up at 5am and travelling across Australia to Perth and then hauling all of our "hand luggage" to the dock and eventually onto the ship. Sun Princess is an older ship than Star which we cruised on to Antarctica 2 years ago. Our cabin is not large but very comfy with a balcony which is very pleasant for 2 to lounge on. Celina is a little tired by yesterdays efforts and the stresses leading up to the cruise but slept very well last night. Will add photos as they become available. Lots to do on the ship every day from early to very late if you wanted to access the discos etc. No stress or pressure and we all sit together tonite for our dinner. Alternatively you can eat totally casually at the Horizon lounge 24/7 or at the Pizza restaurant in the evenings. our first formal nite is this Friday.

Posted by acudoc 23:22 Archived in Australia Tagged ocean indian cruise holiday Comments (0)

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