The Tastiest Vegetarian+Vegan Delivery Restaurants in Penang

During the lockdown in Penang, Jonas and I have become somewhat vegetarian delivery food connoisseurs in our area of George Town. Our kitchen is slightly underequipped and we tried to limit our supermarket visits during the height of the pandemic in Penang. That’s why we ordered most of our meals (twice a day) online. Over the course of 121 days in Penang, we’ve ordered from 31 different restaurants. We only included our favorites on this list. Most of our food came through Foodpanda and Grab, although we also used Folo. We were happy to support local restaurants and delivery drivers,Continue reading

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Pandemic in Penang: A Play-by-Play from Two Digital Nomads in Malaysia

Before you judge our decision to stay in Malaysia and not ‘repatriate’ ourselves, scroll to the bottom to read our motivations for riding out the pandemic in Penang/George Town. If coronavirus statistics trigger your anxiety, this journal might not be for you. Also, I wrote this, so not everything here reflects Jonas’ views. My sources for Malaysia come from the trilingual news website Malaysia Kini, which has an excellent COVID-19 tracker which adds new functionality almost twice a week, and our elevator. My world stats come from the Johns Hopkins University COVID-19 Dashboard, which unfortunately keeps butchering country names. TheContinue reading

Kayaking to Pulau Tikus: a Sacred Island near George Town, Penang

We kayaked to Pulau Tikus on the 10th of July, 2020. If you want to know where and how to rent a kayak in Penang, click here. To get tips on what to bring, click here or visit my extensive kayak gear guide if you’re very, very serious. The Idea One boring afternoon in lockdown I was scrolling on the map on my phone. Looking nearby my location in George Town, I spotted a small island not far from Penang Island. On my OSM map, it was a nameless rock, but it had a building. Perhaps a lighthouse? Google Maps showedContinue reading

Penang National Park and the Meromictic Lake at Pantai Keracut

Events in this story happened on Tuesday the 30th of June 2020. We hiked in Penang National Park to the meromictic lake at Turtle Beach (Pantai Keracut). This is during the Recovery Movement Control Order (RMCO) during the easing of the restrictions during the coronavirus outbreak. You can read my pandemic in Penang diary here. Preparations and Getting the Grab We took three liters of water in my hydration bladder and another 1.5 liters in a bottle in Jonas’ bag. Our lessons from previous hikes in the hills of Penang and on its beaches taught us it’s a good ideaContinue reading

Penang Hill to Ourselves: Funicular + Hiking without the People

Events in this story happened on Tuesday the 9th of June 2020. It was the last day of the Malaysian government’s Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO). You can read more about our experiences of the coronavirus pandemic in Penang in the dedicated diary. We took the funicular up Penang Hill and then hiked it down to the botanic gardens. Click here to skip to the Penang Hill Tips + Map. Preparations I can’t even remember the last nature hike we went on. I think it might have been in Kota Bharu before we came to Penang. We’d been less thanContinue reading

6 Stories from Hosts + Guests in Lockdown: Hospitality in the Time of Corona

Our world has shrunk a great deal since the globe went on lockdown for the coronavirus. Blindsided by the sudden changes, travelers had to make some tough decisions mid-adventure. Amidst the chaos, I knew there would be some people out there who remained kind and trusting of virtual strangers. People who would keep their doors open when they were told to keep it shut. I’d been thinking about the people showing or experiencing hospitality under such extraordinary circumstances. So I asked around looking for stories from both hosts and guests to share their experiences. Many people responded with their stories,Continue reading

Getting a SIM Card in Malaysia

This article is a comprehensive guide to getting the best prepaid SIM card in Malaysia. “RM” is short for Malaysian Ringgit—their currency. Click “In Short” in the table of contents to skip over the text and get a step-by-step guide. Telecom in Malaysia Malaysia is a country that has two parts: a mainland Asian part called ‘Peninsular Malaysia’ and an island part on Borneo referred to as ‘East Malaysia’. Peninsular Malaysia is where its capital city Kuala Lumpur (KL) is located. Though East Malaysia is larger in size, more than 80% of the country’s population lives in Peninsular Malaysia. AsContinue reading

Hat Yai to Kota Bharu: Hitchhiking from Thailand to Malaysia via Tak Bai

Things in this story happened on Thursday the 27th of February, 2020. Jonas and I hitchhiked from Hat Yai (Songkhla) in southern Thailand to Kota Bharu (Kelantan) in Malaysia. We took the Tak Bai river border crossing. This is my first time in Malaysia and Jonas’ second visit. Taking a Grab to the Hitchhiking Spot After five days of enjoying a few of the sights in Hat Yai, it was time for us to move on. Besides finding a new spot to hitchhike from, we didn’t need to prepare much for this hitchhiking day. Jonas and I found two viableContinue reading

Koh Lanta to Hat Yai via the Khao Kop Cave: A Seven-Star Hitch

Events described in this article happened on Sunday the 23rd of February, 2020. Jonas and I departed the islands of Koh Lanta Yai and Koh Lanta Noi to hitchhike across the Thai mainland to Hat Yai. Our drivers were on vacation themselves and took us to a cave system called ‘Tham Le Khao Kop’ in Trang Province.  Preparing to Leave Koh Lanta for Hat Yai After Ao Nang, we had taken a boat across the Andaman Sea for 53 kilometers. We landed at the Saladan Pier in Koh Lanta, where our arranged transport brought us to a southern resort nearContinue reading