Friday, February 24, 2012
Thursday, February 23, 2012
~ looking out to the sea, Pantai Cenang
Langkawi seems to be more famous than Alor Setar despite Alor Setar being the state capital. In fact, some of my colleagues here actually had their honeymoon in Langkawi! Grin. I grew up in Alor Setar and Langkawi is just a 1 hour ferry ride away... I have only been to Langkawi twice. In fact the first time was after I have left Kedah. Funny how things turn out huh.
~ On the way to the ferry, Kuala Kedah
A famous folklore associated with Langkawi was on Mahsuri. Mahsuri was a beautiful young woman lived in Langkawi long time ago. She was accused of adultery by the village chief's wife who was jealous of her beauty. Mahsuri pleaded for her innocence but nobody believed her. She was executed by stabbing. It was said that when she was stabbed, white blood flowed from her wound signifying her innocence. Before she passed on, she cursed Langkawi to have seven generations of bad luck. Apparently Langkawi did suffer for seven generations of misfortune but flourished thereafter. Now Mahsuri's Tomb (Makam Mahsuri) is one of the attraction in Langkawi.
Anyway, this trip was a little different. We did not stay by the beach, instead overlooking the golden green paddy fields.
~ View from Sunset Valley, Langkawi
All credit to my friend, she was the one scouting out possible accommations, and finally made booking for this one - Sunset Valley.
Beautiful place but I find the service a little lacking. Also although I appreciate that they are trying to maintain and keeping the place at its best, but I can't help feeling a lot of rules or restriction were being set. Or maybe it was just the way it was presented to us.
~ Still around Sunset Valley
In our group, there were 7 adults and 2 kids - 1 and 1/2 years old and 5 months old. 5 adults and 1 kiddo stayed for 2 nights while the other for an extra night. Booking were made for the 2 room Forest House and the other on Farmer's House. It was a pretty comfortable and unique stay, though I stood out like a sore thumb, being the odd number. They have set up an extra bed in one of the rooms in Forest House but it was so crowded and I was like an extra limb hanging out. Um.. something like that.
We didn't do a lot this trip, the beach, some good dinners and lazing around :P
Though the Langkawi Sky Bridge did interest me...
~ just outside of Sunset Valley
Don't think people associate rubber trees with Langkawi but hey, it's still in Kedah. It's kind of nostalgic as I remember stretches and stretches of rubber plantations (not forgetting the smell of it) when travelling on the road from Alor Setar towards south, via the old road (not highway). The North South Highway gives view of flat plains of paddy fields. Also, postage for local mails was 20 cents and the most frequently seen stamps for 20 cents was rubber tree. :)
Side note: My first 20 minutes run today... didn't think I would survive...LOL
Saturday, February 4, 2012
This is not a popular destination if you are a tourist travelling to Malaysia. I suspect even if one make time for Penang, the much popular neighbour, they might just forgo this rice bowl state. In fact, I think most of the people who gets here are to get to Kuala Kedah for the ferry to Langkawi. But, this is the place where I spent all my school years, till I left for uni.. where Thursday nights were my favourite night because weekends in Kedah are Friday and Saturday. Sunday is a working day.
Ok... a little about Alor Setar. Between 2004 and 2008, it was known as Alor Star when granted status as "city" (bandar), I can't exactly remember the reason though, in fact I didn't quite remember the year (I got that from Wiki page) though yes, I remember having to change how I spelt Alor Setar. Strange thing.
Alor Setar is the state capital of Kedah, a northern state in West Malaysia, just south of Perlis. Kedah is also called the Rice Bowl of Malaysia because of paddy agriculture and rice production. Also of interest (I suppose) that the first and 4th Prime Minister of Malaysia was born in Kedah :)
The picture above - that is Masjid Zahir (Zahir Mosque), located in the heart of Alor Setar, along the street, stood the Balai Seni Negeri (State Art Gallery), Balai Nobat (Hall of Drums), Balai Besar (Grand Audience Hall) and Muzium Di Raja (Royal Kedah Museum). It was a good walk, looking at those buildings. The added bonus was I used to stay a stone throw's away :P
That, unfortunately is the only picture I have on Masjid Zahir from the last trip, from a moving car. I probably won't be able to tempt anybody to visit Alor Setar but hey, I'm bias :P
The building on the left - That's Balai Nobat (Hall of Drums).
That's Telekom Tower, a baby compared to the Petronas Twin Tower :P
A walk straight on leads to the Balai Seni Negeri (State Art Gallery) and the other buildings.
And a trip home isn't complete without a good bowl of asam laksa. Of course I ate much more food in Alor Setar, just didn't take any picture cos I was busy stuffing myself silly :P
Food in Alor Setar are great! All of us (my friends and I) gained a few kg from just the 2 days home. :P
Side note: Time for dinner!