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Wednesday, September 12, 2012

bus to Butterworth from Kuala Lumpur +ferry to GEORGETOWN Penang Island

Nuff said about Kuala Lumpur,it's time to try another city.Destination,Penang!!!Let us make things clear first,Penang refers to the State in Malaysia North of the capital Kuala Lumpur and is also the name of its constituent island otherwise known as Pulau Penang.If you are reading this entry coz you want to know how to get to Penang,chances are,you want to go to Georgetown,the capital city and a UNESCO WORLD HERITAGE SITE.


HOW TO GET TO PENANG BY BUS

1.Take the train to PLAZA RAKYAT,next to it is Puduraya Bus Station 
where buses bound to Penang are.
2.You can either take the bus straight to Penang Island or as we did,
3. to Butterworth, then take the ferry to Georgetown Penang Island.

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from Kuala Lumpur to Penang by bus

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FACT:

A.Malaysians are very generous when it comes to approximate travel time.They put the bus ride from KL to Penang at +/-6hours.It's usually less than the estimated time unless there is a National Holiday in Malaysia.

 in response to one of my reader's comment (Doc Gelo)
here is a link to the bus companies with daily routes to Penang
http://www.journeymalaysia.com/ptapenang.htm#1


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Maybank Headquarters,(left) is a landmark near Puduraya Bus Station 
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Why BUTTERWORTH?----Because it's the best shortcut to Penang Island.If you are to take the bus straight from KL to Penang Island,it would have to pass through Penang bridge which is 25kms long,and according to Doc Gelo,it's not only the actual lenght of the bridge but the loop in the mainland which also makes the travel longer.


To add to that,the UNESCO Heritage Site of Georgetown,which I am sure is where you wanna go if you are a tourist,is located at the Northern end of Palau Penang.That means you still have to traverse more than half of the island after getting off the bridge.

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You can purchase your tickets inside the station or simple approach one of the barkers going around the area in front of the stations where many buses which couldn't fit inside the station are usually parked.Although I would suggest you get inside the station to buy tickets as it gives you more freedom to choose your time.In our case, we arrived 5minutes before 9am and immediately approached one of the barkers who said his bus leaves at 9:30.We were too eager and too much in a hurry.The bust left 11:30am.So we were lured to believed it will leave in 30minutes even if it wasn't the case. 

Be reminded:There are many bus companies with hourly trips to Penang, go inside the terminal.This is what I mean when I say you have more choices there,and more flexibility too.
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Buses are generally comfortable with enough leg room and reclining chairs.On our way to Penang,we paid RM35 each.The bus back to KL was a bit cheaper at RM31.Be mindful of your travel date.If it falls on a local holiday in Malaysia,I would suggest to buy your return ticket before crossing to Georgetown unless you want to take the risk of missing your desired departure time.I learned that from our friend in Penang,Filipino blogger based in Penang, Doc Gelo of http://docgelo.com/ .I forgot that our return day to KL coincides with the end of Hari Raya (end of one month of fasting for Muslims) so I didn't buy return tickets.Good thing Doc Gelo reminded us so we crossed to Butterworth again before midnight to secure the tickets.Thanks to him,if not,we might have missed our flight back to Manila.

The bus ride to Penang was smooth,thanks to the good and efficient highway system of Malaysia.Once the bus leaves the terminal,expect it to be a continuous ride to your destination,in our case,Butterworth.
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THE STOPOVER

There is one stop along the way and I think it was around 20 or 30 minutes.That allows for a quick snack or a heavy meal.My wife and I went around looking for something light to eat.I heard Penang is a haven for food so we made sure there's enough space in our stomach for the for the food adventure ahead.We settled for lanzones.
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CENTRAL BUS TERMINAL -PENANG
the commuter train from KL to Bangkok also passes here.:)

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Again,taking the ferry is a good option.It cuts directly trough Pulau Penang and docks in Georgetown itself.Talk about shorter trip plus a different view of the island.

The  FARE costs RM1.20 and that's good for a 2-way ride.Yes.The return trip is free.That said,as long as you are from Palau Penang,ferry ride is free.For example,you flew to Penang from KL and would like to cross to Butterworth,you don't have to pay a cent.Isn't that cool?
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If you are bringing your car (say,you rented one),you can also board it to the ferry rather than taking the bridge.The passenger section is at the upper deck and there are chairs provided but cars are also allowed to fit the sides of the upper section.Motorbikes and other cars fill the lower section.Passengers are to exit first before vehicles are allowed to roll out.
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view of Penang Island from Butterworth
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the famous Penang Bridge
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KOMTAR in the background,the tallest building in the island
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Once at Georgetown port,there are taxi waiting and buses too which are way cheaper. KL Rapid is the king of the road in Penang Island and you can reach almost any destination with it.
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The best way they say to know a city is by walking.I was too eager to absorb Penang in my system so we walked from the ferry terminal to our lodge in Love Lane.I thought the place is near but it's a few intersection away.I ended up tiring my wife carrying her bag.At any rate,I got familiar with some of the streets.I hardly noticed the distance coz I was too busy taking photos along the way and awed at the old houses we passed by.We were in Penang finally!

Penang Seriescoming up!!!
 
This post is part of my Malaysia2.0 Series:Feel free to read the rest of the entries here:http://www.pusangkalye.net/search/label/Malayisa2.0

___________________________
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and is the official carrier of 
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Visit http://www.airphilexpress.com for booking,
and following APX 

9 comments:

  1. i wanna experience that ferry ride yet.. last time, i went there i was riding the bus from sg and arrived there while the sun rises. i got awed because the sun rays just straight to penang island, like the picture is saying 'its another blessed day'. :P ei, can't wait for your penang series.. woot!!!

    ReplyDelete
  2. parang sobrang linis sa kanila tlga

    ReplyDelete
  3. this is a comprehensive bus travel guide from KL to Penang and back. what it only lacks, i think is the list of available bus liners that run from Pudu Raya to Penang and it's complete! well done, anton!

    i like teresa's photos specially the one with dokong.
    it's dokong, is it not? :)


    thanks for providing my link here! and you're most welcome to come back to penang (naks, akala mo akin ang isla? hahaha!)

    ReplyDelete
  4. buti pa ang pusang kalye, globe trotter na :) can't find time to travel with our work sched, ask rona haha :)

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