LOG ENTRY 51
Distance: 520 km
Koh Samui - Nakhon Si Thammarat - Hat Yai - Sadao - Penang (Butterworth)
The ferry from Nathon, the main city of Koh Samui, sadly but steadily sailed with us towards the mainland. We had a great two weeks on the island, already missing Mom, Rudi, Monika and the endless adventures I’ve experienced. Felt like that this was the first time in my life that I am really free. I’ve have been to numerous African countries before, from windy Cape Town to the misty jungles of Zimbabwe and the white sandy beaches of Kenya but somehow the amount of freedom and fun I had in the past two weeks overshadowed all my previous experiences. Needless to say how much a barely twenty years old guy enjoyed every second of this island paradise. Every girl seemed to like me, and no, not for the money as many of you would think rightly as we are talking about Thailand.
The last picture of Koh Samui
As the ferry anchored at Donsak port we regained full control over our head, no hangover or melancholic feelings anymore just the determination to reach our final destination today, Penang.
Penang is a state in Northwest Malaysia and also the name of its constituting island in the Strait of Malacca. The distance from Donsak to there was 520 kilometers. First we headed to Nakhon si Thammarat and then continued towards Hat Yai and Sadao, the border town between Malaysia and Thailand. The way to Sadao was really familiar as we did the same trip a week earlier to renew our Thai visas. Luckily the V-strom’s can do around 420 kilometers with one full tank in this climate with the 140 km/h cruising speed and extra 50 plus kg of gear. We fueled up in Donsak and it got us easily to Hat Yai where we planned the next refueling. Hat Yai is the largest city in Southern Thailand and a major trading port so it had a really nice and large service station we stopped a week earlier too.
Crossing the border was peanuts. Unlike the hours or even weeks we experienced in Pakistan and India, crossing here took about five minutes. Hungarians can travel to Malaysia without a need of a visa and also the bikes can enter without the Carnet. The first thing we noticed in Malaysia that the roads are much better than in Thailand. We had no complain about Thai roads, especially after India and Pakistan but roads in Malaysia were more like n Europe. The first few cities we passed through was however dirty and seemed unfriendly. Maybe just our eyes got really used to Thailand but somehow the cities we passed through looked really run down and dirty. This however changed quickly as we approached to Penang.
With Mr Joe front of the House of Bikers
We had a Malaysian rider contact who we called from a public phone and we set up a meeting with him in the outskirts of Penang. Mr Joe as he called himself took us to his friend’s motorcycle shop which was totally breathtaking. In the shop he had brand new models of bikes, all the major European motorcycle gears and a MotoGp themed restaurant. He invited us for a dinner and offered us free T-shirts of any brand we wanted. He was such a nice and welcoming guy, we felt home in Malaysia really quickly.
After the dinner he took us to a hotel in downtown Penang which called Berlin Hotel. It had very spacious and nice room for 92 ringit. The plan is to do some sightseeing tomorrow morning here and then head down to Kuala Lumpur which is a mere 370 kilometers from here, an easy ride on these highways.
House of Riders restaurant