06:50 06/07/2013 Our first 10 minutes in Pudu Sentral was like a scene of that in Amazing Race. Sprinting, asking for directions, while searching our bus counter. Prior to this trip we scored our seats by booking online. It’s faster and convenient in getting bus tickets across Malaysia and even to neighboring countries Singapore and Thailand. I highly recommend them as they have lots of payment options such auto debit, credit card and even paypal. I just hope we have this kind of one stop online bus ticketing in the Philippines. This would surely cut-off the time queuing up in bus terminals. Back to our marathon in Pudu Sentral, the touts were very helpful in pointing us the right bus counter.
You might wonder why still need to visit the bus counter? The tickets we bought online must be verified first by respective bus companies to validate it’s authenticity and person’s travelling. Still, it’s less hassle compare to last minute ticket purchase prior to departure. We present our printed copy from our online reservation and no time the staff handed us the actual tickets. That was easy breezy!
We hastily look for our assigned gate and jump in to Alisan coach. The yellow-purple bus that will take us to Pulau Pinang. After we settled, suddenly one member of a group raise an eyebrow and questioning why we’re taking their assigned seats. We showed our tickets and compare with them. We’re wondering how could that be possible, since we choose that seat when we book online. With driver’s intervention we got enlightened. Unknowingly we sneak in to the 7:00 AM instead of 7:30. Poof! what a shameful moment, we gave up our seat and apologize to them. When we about to leave the bus the inspector told us we can take the 7AM schedule,so it’s not an issue eh? Whoa, that was a relief after that 10 seconds of embarrassment. A wise move on their part and advantage on our end, so a win-win situation.
We left Pudu Sentral around 7:20 AM, ten minutes earlier of our EDT. The sun was just about to rise while KL is still half asleep. We catch some forty winks in between that 5 hours journey.
About the Bus
I don’t find anything to scream about this bus, other than it’s spacious, comfortable reclining seats and more leg room. Which we guess common for a coach in Malaysia. We opted for regular coach since we don’t want to splurge on luxurious 5 hours trip if we gonna arrive on Penang on same time sans the extra comfort and amenities.
5 Hours Journey
Within 2-3 hours of bus travel, we only saw a vast field of Palm Oil plantations on both windows. It’s same scenery when you travel going south of peninsular Malaysia. The bus made an obligatory stop somewhere in Perak, for everyone’s comfort. While others visit the loo, we bought some refreshments, to alleviate our grumbling stomach. Along the route, an awe-inspiring view of limestone cliffs and lush greenery forest greeted us in Perak. That was unexpected, a total contrast of a booming city of Ipoh. An hour and several minutes passed . We haven’t notice that we’re already heading to Pulau Pinang (Penang Island) as we crossed the Penang Bridge, that links Mainland Penang.
An islet between Penang Mainland and Pulau Pinang grabs our attention and made us wondered. What is it for? Is that island inhabited? Is it a resort? Lot’s of query that remains unanswered. We shift our excitement upon gazing Georgetown from a distance. The picturesque view of Penang harbor that Doc Gelo usually photographed was truly stunning. We knew at that moment, we’ll keep visiting this lovely island.
Our 5 hours bus journey concluded at Sungai Nibong Bus Terminal. Alas! we set foot to the beautiful island of Penang. Another adventure awaits us!
Sky and Summer