Hello there! It has been 10 days into February. Chinese New Year is around the corner, in fact, it’s next week (over the weekend!). I took on a short break to Penang, returning just last Friday. It was a good break for me without kids and I can explore into stuff that I usually won’t do when I am with them. Maybe, when they are old, I will bring them to do what I like.
So, what did I do in Penang? One of the highlights, for me, was trekking trip to the National Park. Reached the park before 10am, chose a trail when I was there and let’s go! It would be nice if I get to explore the rest of the trails but the time just doesn’t allow that as I will have to camp overnight. Camping wasn’t part of my plan so I skipped that.
Next up, will be lots of photos and may take a long time to load [pardon me].
The little hut next to the starting point into the park is where the guard will jot down the trail(s) that I will be embarking. I had wanted to go on a 6hrs trail but that would means another 6hrs back. It will be dark by then so decided against it.
A fishing village not far off the beach from where I was.
I took a left turn into the trail that led me to canopy walk but it was closed for maintenance. Walked further up the trail to Pantai Kerachut but it definitely looked more deserted than the other trails. So, I headed back up to the trail that will lead me to Teluk Duyung (Monkey beach) and Muka Head Lighthouse.
The initial walk wasn’t too bad, it was shady and flat walking surface. Nevertheless, I feel that we need to have a good pair of trekking/hiking shoes. Why?…..
… Because I need to climb down this path using rope and up the rocks to the other side and a few paths that are near to the edge, therefore, a good pair of trekking shoes will be good as the loose dry soil and fallen leaves can be quite slippery.
Did you see what I saw there? :)
Big fat army ants!!! Nah… they didn’t come after me and I left them alone so we were good :P
There isn’t any monkeys or other dangerous creatures while I was trekking. I saw a few tree lizards and something else but it ran away before I could get a closer look at it. So, I think whatever that animal was, is pretty tame.
This is Monkey beach where I can find food and replenish my water if I need but I brought sufficient so I didn’t stay too long at the beach since I wanted to go up to the lighthouse. It’s about 40-45mins to the top.
The path that led me to the lighthouse wasn’t too bad, no steep path, started off nice and easy but as I proceeded on, what greeted me ahead was high rocky steps. I was okay with the trail but for people who seldom hike may find it a bit challenging as your stamina may deplete quite fast. People with knee problem will have to go slow and easy too, especially when going down the hill.
Tips: Best is, to have a trekking stick to help you ease off some pressure on your knees. Loosen up (or warm up) your calf and thigh muscles by cupping your palms and hit them lightly before you start and even along the way when you feel achy. Take rest in between but not more than 5mins as when your body cools down, it will be harder to restart the engine and will use more energy.
While I was on my way up, I met the same lady who started off with me but she was faster as I took time to take pictures. Soon, she was nowhere to be seen after we parted our way at the signboard. Then, I saw her again. It was so nice to (at least) see someone, ha-ha! after 30mins into the trail. We spoke for a while. “It’s definitely worth the climb up though it’s a long walk”. “Fighting!” she said before we parted again.
Met quite a number of cadets (they were on their way down) when I am almost there, about 100m more to go. They were friendly and many said “Hi” and “Fighting!” as they cheered me on. Ha-Ha!
I rested a while, went up to the lighthouse before heading back. It was worth the 40-45 mins up from Monkey beach! The scenery was good :)
While trekking back to the main gate, I saw monkeys grabbing food from people and ate cautiously while watching out for other monkeys. They don’t seem aggressive but best is, not to feed them any food (I was told). This was at the Monkey beach.
It took me about 3.5 hours to and fro. Wasn’t too out of breathe but legs were a bit sore for a day or so. It really wasn’t that bad as I can still walk up and down the stairs without much difficulty. Overall, I love the hike. I would have gone for the other trails if time permits :)
I took bus 101 to reach the park and it’s was pretty easy to locate the place. Just that looking for bus stop at some places in Penang can be quite challenging as some places don’t have a proper bus stop, it can be just a pole (without bus info) outside some rundown huts or small shops. >.<
Thank God for the beauty of nature and how He has created them.
Till the next post on another highlight of the trip! ~ Jean.