Hike:Batu Ferringghi to Teluk Bahang

Distance: 5.2KM

Time: 2.30-3.00 hours 
This trail is one of the more well used trails you could try in the Batu Ferringghi area. It crosses a steep hill ridge and leads you down to the Teluk Bahang Recreational Forest. Although short in distance,you gotta be prepared for the steep ascents and decent along the trail.

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Trail Map courtesy of my new Garmin Forerunner 405.

The starting point for this trail is opposite the Bayview Beach Resort.As you pass Bayview (heading on the road toward Teluk Bahang),you’ll notice an Indian Eatery and  beside it a small path going away into the bush.

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Along the trail you’ll be able to get glimpses of the majestic Bukit Laksamana

Park your car here and take this unpaved path and in 5 minutes you’ll come across a junction.The path that goes straight leads you to the once famous Chin Farm Waterfall while the right fork continues up along our trail.

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Hills of Northern Penang. Steep,untamed and wild!

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Chin Farm Waterfall,once a tourist spot in Penang,today relatively unknown to many.

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At the junction you’ll see a path diverging off to the right.Take this turn.

In 5 minutes of taking this turn you will come to yet another junction.Take the left turn and continue beside the river till you come across a huge water tower.

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Chin Farm Water Tower.

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Forestry Department has done a good job in erecting a signboard along the trail.

After the watertower the trail is quite clear and well marked.Continue on,passing a river and finally you’ll be standing in front of the grand Batu Ferringghi Resevoir.

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You’ll be surprised as to what you’ll find along the way.

 You could take a short rest here,as the rest of the trail meanders through thick jungle after this point.

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The still waters of the Batu Ferringghi Resevoir

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Batu Ferringghi Resevoir. Follow the arrow down.

At the reservoir,you’ll see a small arrow pointing down towards the dried river bed. Go down this path and cross over to the other side.Be careful as the stones might be slippery!

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Looking up to the dam from the dried river bed.

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Dam Overflow

As you come to the other side you’ll see yet another signboard which leads to a clear path  into the forest.Brace yourself as the path might be really steep and requires some effort. After 40-50 minutes of climbing you’ll come to Rain Gauge 15.Continue another 15-20 minutes and you’ll be at a junction with a signboard.The trail ahead continues up ahead while another leads steeply down on your right.It is marked as “Simpang 4”.Follow this downward branch.

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Take “Simpang 4”

It will take another 1-1.15 hours of steep descent before you finally come to the Teluk Bahang Recreational Park. At all junctions after the signboard on the hill,be sure to take the “Simpang 4” turning.

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Part of this trail is called “Denai Permatang”.

Along the way,look out for the viewpoint where the Foresty Department has built a watchtower looking down at the idyllic township of Teluk Bahang. On reaching Teluk Bahang Recreational Park,you could either take a taxi from the Butterly Farm or walk to Teluk Bahang town and take a bus back to Batu Ferringghi. Happy Hiking!!

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Teluk Bahang

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Finishing Point.

Ayer Itam to Sungai Pinang

If you are a Penangite or if you’re on a long stay in Penang,I would say this is one trail you MUST try.Beautiful waterfalls,breathtaking views,interesting landscapes easily make this one of the best trails if not the best in Penang. The trail starts of at the Ayer Itam Dam (Refer to my account on “Ayer Itam to Tiger Hill” on how to get there).

ImageFlora

ImageA waterfall on the way up to the 5 way junction. 

Take path on the right side of the dam and continue till you come to a small junction with a cemented trail going up to your right.It is the same trail which leads to Tiger Hill (You could refer to my previous account to know more).Continue along this trail for 45 minutes till you come to a 5 way junction.Take a short rest here if you feel exhausted.We usually break for a meal once we reach this junction before continuing on.At this 5 way junction take the trail which leads straight ahead down into a valley.

ImageTake this trail down 

As you go into this valley,you’ll notice there are many junctions diverging to the right and to the left.Take the trail marked with the “Red” Signboard (I dont read Chinese but i’m presuming it says “Tua Pek Kong” Temple) until you reach a small Chinese shrine along the path.

ImageFollow this signboard. Leads you to the Tua Pek Kong Temple along the trail

This too is an excellent place to break for a meal.A gentle reminder to all who embark on this trail:-Do bring lunch with you!It took us almost 4-5 hours to complete this trail and another 3 hours to get back to our starting point so skipping lunch is out of the question!!

ImageBitter gourd.

ImageFarms dot the trail.

At the temple take the trail that diverges down to the right.Keep in mind that this trail is descending downwards at all times so there is no possibility that the trail would be ascending at any part after the 5 way junction.

ImageThe forests of Penang.


Most of the time,you’ll be walking side by side with the catchment area of the well known Titi Kerawang Waterfall.

ImageParts of the trail go through forested areas.

Dont risk straying off the path to take a glimpse of the stream as at most times the riversides are steep and precarious.

ImageThe hillsides here are steep,especially along the sides of the Titi Kerawang Stream.

As you continue along the trail you would soon come across a signboard in a small durian farm pointing right with the words “Sungai Pinang” on it.

ImageFollow the signboard down

Take this fork and continue until you come across yet another junction.At this junction take the left turning.

ImageTake this left fork which leads you along a path beside rubber trees.

This will lead you to yet another junction.At this junction you have a choice of taking the right fork to see the Upper Titi Kerawang Catchment Waterfall or to continue straight on Sungai Pinang.

ImageLooking down at the Titi Kerawang catchment stream.

If youre a fan of beautiful places and landscapes,I suggest spare half an hour to behold the beauty of the Upper Titi Kerawang Catchment Waterfall.

ImageUpstream from Titi Kerawang

You’ll never regret it! To get to the Upper Titi Kerawang Catchment Waterfall,take the right fork which leads through a small gate and follow the steep decent down through the Durian Orchard. As you continue lower and lower,you’ll be able to hear the gush of the waterfall and see the stream that flows from it.

Continue all the way till you finally come to the end of the trail.If you wish to have a dip turn right and there would be a small path down to the stream beside the marked Durian Tree.

ImageUpper Titi Kerawang Catchment Waterfall

Spend some time and enjoy the ambience and beauty of this waterfall while its still there.To continue you could cross over the river and follow the trail on the other side of the bank (I do not know where it leads to) or come back the same way you used earlier and take the left fork all the way down to the main Balik Pulau-Teluk Bahang Road.

ImageThere is a trail going up the hillside on the other side of the stream.

ImageAnother look at the gushing waterfall

From the junction it would probably take another 30 to 45 minutes to get to the main road. This stretch is also equally scenic with views of Bukit Laksamana and Pantai Acheh.

ImageHills of Sungai Pinang.

ImageThe lofty peak of Bukit Laksamana in all its majesty

ImageLooking down to Pantai Acheh and the mangroves of Balik Pulau.

ImageDurian flowers.Watch your heads if your coming during durian season.The place is filled with durians!

Once youre at the main road,you have an option of following the road to the right down to the Sungai Pinang township (and take Rapid Penang 404 or 501 to Balik Pulau) or going left to Titi Kerawang which is just 5-10 minutes away and take Rapid Penang 501 to either Teluk Bahang or Balik Pulau from here.ImageTiti Kerawang Waterfall.A mere 5-10 minutes walk away from the end of the trail  

Georgetown Heritage Celebrations 2013

A glimpse into the Georgetown of the past
1.Indian Muslim Cultural & Heritage Celebration

Indian Muslim Cultural & Heritage Celebration was centered around the Kapitan Keling Mosque and in Queens Street.

ImageKapitan Keling Mosque

ImageMinaret 

ImageFlying high

Image Nasi Kandar Festival

ImageNasi Kandar

.ImageThrough the doors of the past.

Image1940’s Tamil Muslim Class.

ImageHistory

ImageClose up

ImageGrinding Spices

ImageGiling,giling,giling!

ImageCulture

ImageFez Cap.

ImageIndian Muslims

ImageLooking Down

ImageMotifs 

ImageFloral Motifs 

ImageThe Milk Seller

ImageSusu Tarik!

ImageFilming for an Indian Muslim program.

ImageTraditional Indian Muslim attire. 

2. Armenian Street and Beyond

ImageA thousand colours

ImagePetunias.

ImageImpressive doors.

ImageAquatic Plants in one of the heritage houses.

ImageSights of Penang.

ImageAcheen Street.

ImageFusion of colours

ImageKhoo Kongsi

ImageTeochew Temple

ImageFor traditional Chinese puppet show

Ayer Itam to Tiger Hill

Hi guys,i’m finally back blogging after a hectic semester in Curtin this year. Well soon after my arrival on the island I was back in the wilderness of Penang.

This  time it was Tiger Hill,one of the many peaks in the Penang Hill Range. Well there are many places we can embark from to reach this hill,but today I’m gonna focus on the one of the more popular routes from Air Itam. Starting point for this hike is just a 200-300 metre walk away from the Lower Kek Lok Si Car Park .

You will see the signboard below at this point.Take the road and continue along  the wider left path after the signboard

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This is where you begin!

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Part of the map up to Tiger Hill.

Continue along this path straight up and in about 15 to 20 minutes you will come across a shed beside a Chinese Temple.

Take a rest here and continue on along the same cemented track for 5 minutes until you come across another turning to the left leading to Air Itam Dam.

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Kek Lok Si

In 5 to 10 minutes after taking this turn you will be at the Ayer Itam Dam playground.Continue down to the dam and take the right turn which skirts the dam.

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The Air Itam Dam

In 10 minutes you will come across a small bridge which crosses the point where two streams meet.I call this place “Beth Nahrin” which in Aramaic means the land between two rivers.

We usually take breakfast in this spot before continuing.This time around we had a sumptuous meal at home so it was only an R and R pit stop.

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“Beth Nahrin”

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Dad’s friend soaking up the beauty at “Beth Nahrin” 

So yeah once you’re done refueling in “Beth Nahrin”,continue along the road for 5 minutes and you’ll be at yet another junction with a path that winds off to the right.

It’s cemented all the way, but that wont make you’re journey any easier.Continue up this steep road for the next 50 minutes,till you come across the next junction.

Do keep your eyes wide  open as this is one of the more interesting stretches along the whole hike.You might be suprised as to what you’ll see along the way!

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A forest reserve sign board along the way

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“Brain Flower”

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Mount Elvira Waterfall.A sight to behold along this stretch 

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Flowers strewn across the trail.Not the average thing you come across in Penang

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The cemented path finally ends at a four way junction.There would be an empty yellow signboard erected by the forestry department,where you could take a short rest (You’ll probably be really exhausted once you reach this point).

Take the path that diverges to the extreme right(goes in the opposite direction as the cemented path/parallel to it),just beside the path you took.

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Dad and friend having a short rest at the 4 way junction.At this junction,you should take the far right turning.

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Pitcher Plants are found in abundance here

For the next 20 minutes continue along this laterite trail which winds down into a small rubber estate.Take the right turning and continue  for 5-10 minutes till you reach a bridge crossing a stream.Here the trail parts into two separate paths.

I call this place the “Wadi”, a valley of farms in the middle of the tallest peaks in Penang. Take a deep breath,soak in the cool ambient air and enjoy the breathtaking scenery along this stretch.

As for the trail,take either one (i suggest the left trail as it is more scenic and exciting) and in 20 to 30 minutes you’ll reach the next junction.We were lucky to find the orchards in full fruit,with durians precariously dangling over our heads.

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Heading for the “Wadi”

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Some of the tallest peaks in Penang.

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The hill on the right is Bukit Laksamana.

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Ginger Flower

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Looking into the forest.

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Farm House in the “Wadi”

At the junction turn to your right if you wish to continue on to Tiger Hill.The left turning leads you to the colonial era-Tiger Hill Resevoir.

We made a pit stop at the reservoir.From the reservoir there is actually a series of steps beside the pipeline which leads you all the way up to the Tiger Hill Peak.There might be lots of vegetation covering the pipelines,but it’s generally quite clear to follow.

Follow the pipeline up for 30 to 40 minutes and you’ll be able to reach the 800 meter peak of Tiger Hill.

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Looking down from the upper reaches of the “Wadi”. The “Wadi is filled with Bunga Kantan plants,a key ingredient in the famous Penang Asam Laksa 

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The “Bunga Kantan”

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Was lucky to see this along the hike. The temptation was strong to take it back                         but the New Testament teaches us not to steal,so I left it there. You feel better when you know you did the right thing.

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Owh those durians!!

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A steep ascent in the “Wadi”

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Upper reaches of the “Wadi”

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The “Wadi”,a treasure trove of wonders

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Entering the Restricted zone.You’re own your own bro!

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Tiger Hill Reservoir.

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At the Tiger Hill Reservoir 

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The Colonial era Pump House

Once you reach the top of Tiger Hill,follow the tarred road beside the small shed till you connect to the main Penang Hill Road.Take the right turn, and from this point it would be another 45 minutes before you come to the Top Station.Happy hiking!

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Spathaglottis Plicata,a terrestrial orchid common in the Tiger Hill area.

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