Malaysia: the verdict

Siem Reap, 5 January 2020

Since Penang is only a small island, for a nice change we don’t need to check into an airport hotel before taking leave of Malaysia and travelling on to Cambodia. We’re transitting Kuala Lumpur Airport a third and final time before safely arriving in Siem Reap around mid-day.

Travel stats (Malaysia) By land: 230 km. By water: 120 km. Duration: 10 days.

Travel stats (total) By land: 11,160 km. By water: 535 km. By air: 28,992. Duration: 159 days.

In Malaysia we consumed more than a few beers, yet all of them imported. Tiger, Skol, Carlsberg and Guinness are readily available just about anywhere, as is a white beer version of Kronenbourg. In Langkawi we were pleased to find Hoegaarden at £1 a bottle (duty free), and cans of Tiger and Skol go for about the same at Pantai Cenang’s beach bars. In Penang, prices are more or less double of those found in Langkawi.

Ten days in Malaysia have simply flown by, so let’s present the marks awarded by Lauren.

The people score 8/10. In the short time we were in Malaysia, we’ve only met a few local Malaysians, but they were all very nice, with a special shoutout to Sam in Langkawi, who was a very gracious host and cooked up a mean curry! Since Penang is so multi-cultural, we ended up meeting native Indian people more than anything else, but they were a good laugh too.

The food scores 9/10. My last laksa was a bit of a sloppy mess, which is the only thing keeping Malaysian food from a perfect score. Malay, Chinese, Singaporean, Western and Indian, is there any cuisine Malaysia doesn’t nail?

The transport scores 9/10. We did try to figure out the public bus system at one point, but it was a bit all over the place. Not a problem, however, as taxis are dirt cheap, fast and efficient, and scooter rental is available at low prices everywhere.

Nice and easy this one, beyond a shadow of a doubt, Malaysia has hereby earned itself Lauren’s Certificate of Excellence! Yam Seng!!

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