Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Giggle Pickle & Templestiltskin

Day 3 (28 March 2009). Yup! Loadsa giggle, colourful pickle and temple temple temple...

Sweet sour pickle! Or locally known as jeruk (even writing about it makes my mouth watery - argh.... on a fasting month! CONTROL!), the taste sweet but sourish OR is it sourish yet sweet? Hemm... Any Malaysia wanna verify this? Hehehhee....

You can pick & mix those of the same price of the same gram. Normally it's a heaven from pregnant ladies (not sure whether this apply for Caucasian as well), and it is usually made from fruits such as papaya, nutmeg, mango, guava etc. If you ever drop by, you can ask the workers there to taste, am sure they will allow it. The best place to get these items as well as other authentic Penang ingredients will be a Chow Rasta Market, what I especially like is their dodol (toffee-like food delicacy popular in Indonesia, Malaysia & Philippines.)... Super yummy!

Chow Rasta not only well know for the pickle but also the 2nd hand bookshop. Gosh! Reminded me when I was in my secondary school, due to insufficient allowances; I will always drop by Central Market or PJ State 2nd hand book shop to get my Enid Blyton books. How I miss those good old days (Now? I hardly read a book, let alone newspaper). What did I get there? Well, hehehe...... Barbara Cartland books. Have you read her books before, very very THE VINTAGE! Heheheh.... where love was very straight forward and pure.

Templestiltskin? Am clueless of the meaning, all I know is that when I type temple; it reminded me of Rumpelstiltskin. And I thought it's cute to join the 2 words, don’t you just think so too. Hehhee...

After the quick shopping trip we headed down on our Heritage Trail again, this time around Andrea & Rad joining us - YEAY! GURL POWER!

We decided to park our car somewhere and walk around that area, despite that the state government retain the old architecture & ambience of surrounding area, they manage to keep it very clean (surprisingly - way to go Penangnites!).

The one that caught my eyes was the OOOOOOOLD barber shop, old chair, old mirror, and old barber....hehhehehee.... nostalgic & charming I thought.

Cheah Kongsi or Cheah Clan Hall/Residence was the first of the five great Hokkien clans to be established in Penang, it is an impressive building fusing Malay, Chinese and European influences in traditional Straits Chinese fashion (more history here). We don't know what to expect as we enter the arch gate as it look relatively small, but what we saw next was.... breathtaking.

The colours, the carving, the architecture, all well kept, a hidden gem of Penang I must say. We did a self-tour (as usual) with loads of NOISE and camera CLICKING sound.

And then when I see LAWN, I immediately feel like a kid again - jumping and screaming (Yeah! I think some tourist thought we were retarded or something...hehheheee).

The biggest that I have ever seen Khoo Kongsi or Khoo Clan Hall/Residence.

It is also the grandest clan temple in the country as it has retained its authentic historic setting, which includes an association building, a traditional theatre and the late 19th century rowhouses for clan members, all clustered around a granite-paved square.

Located in Cannon Square in the heart of the oldest part of the city of George Town, the capital of Penang. However, it doesn't have the house interior as Cheah Kongsi, perhaps because the house are located in another building and it was not kept as part of the historical value.

For more of the Khoo origin, you can visit their website which comprises very detail family tree and evolution.

We walked pass Dr. Sun Yet Sen's revolutionary movement base here on Armenian Street (Yup! Impressive huh, Malaysia being part of China history - well... sort off), he is a Chinese revolutionary and political leader during the overthrow of the Qing Dynasty, ie last imperial dynasty of China. I remembered learning his history during my school days.

Hainan Temple or Thean Ho Keong or Temple of the Heavenly Queen, was founded before 1866 and it is dedicated to the goddess Mar Chor, the patron saint of seafarers.

Apparently, the China Hainan men migrated to Penang in the 19th century, the key occupations were dominated by other Chinese dialect groups, and thus they turned to niche occupations by becoming sailors or cooks. This explained why the Hainanese Chicken Rice is so popular in all 3 Strait Settlement states (Penang, Malacca & Singapore).

The Blue Mansion - Cheong Fatt Tze Mansion. The last one is my absolute favourite, came here twice and I highly recommend anyone tourist or locals to visit. As it is one of the place where they provide guided tour explaining the architecture of the mansion as well as the history. Since it's a guided tour, you must be on time yah!

A little backgrounder about THE Mr. Cheong Fatt Tze himself. He came from a poor Hakka family who migrated to Java (1850s) and from there to Penang (1890s) to seek his fortune during Second Opium War from 1856-1862 in China between the Chinese and the English. He started as a shopkeeper in Indonesia and he established a trading company with the help of his father-in-law. Gradually, he began to accumulate his wealth through hard work and perseverance. More info here.

The mansion built by the merchant Cheong Fatt Tze at the end of 19th century has 38 rooms, 5 granite-paved courtyards, 7 staircases & 220 vernacular timber louvre windows. In 2000 in won UNESCO 'Most Excellent' Heritage Conservation Award plus many others. The mansion was originally built with careful attention to the principles of Feng Shui. As for the blue coloured wall, it is the result of mixing lime with natural blue dye made from the Indigo plant imported from India.

Now, the mansion is used as a hotel-cum-museum and as part of a restoration project. The mansion has been featured in various films including the 1993 Oscar-winning French film "Indochine" starring Catherine Deneuve, and has also been featured in programs broadcast on various international TV channels (CNN, BCC).

Next post will on my accident with a trailer in this Penang trip plus my fall that tore 50% of my ligament.

Hyperlink credits : Wikipedia, Travel Guide Malaysia , Visit Penang, Cheong Fatt Tze Mansion, Penang Travel Tip, Borders Australia


Rafael Lam said...

I remember the Khoo Clan Hall/Residence and that nice temple when I was in George Town!
Thanks for sharing some nice colorful photos!

Rafael Lam said...

Re: Thanks Lily Riani! Yes the view of Crown hotel is awesome!
If you stay for more than 2-3 days I recommend you choose the Hard Rock hotel,
the price are more reasonable and the view are similar!

Lily Riani said...


got it. i skip hk and fly directly to macau then, i did miss few sightseeing places during my last dec visit due to rain rain rain. i will revisit even st. paul since i didnt manage to go during day time.

its simple love said...

I love the photos, like the first one, that have the red paper lanterns highlighted with just their color exposed. So intriguing. And I love pickles1 Those look scrumptious.


martie said...

Gorgeous photos - keep traveling!!

Biqque said...

lawa la u edit gambar2 ni...malasnyer laaaaaaaaaaa nak belajar!

Lily Riani said...


thank you! if you are ever in asia, do drop by. i will take you around :D


thanks for your compliment.


you download picasa. lepas uh you just main main jek... senangs sesangat. some people use photo shop, ilustrater etc... tak pandai i.

btw, yg b/w with red enhance tuh, original memang cam tuh, i brown kan sikit jek. canon ada function to enhance the colour you you selected. as well as colour swap.

Bananazą®‡ said...

Gosh!!!sweet sour pickles my favorite, almost drown my keyboard with saliva haha. Love to see 'old' Penang and the prewar buildings nice pictures. Oh now got Blue Mansion..tQ

fufu said...

cheong fatt tze?? i didnt have time to visit when i was in penang last yr >< argh... so wanna go back right now... but well love your first picture!

Sympathy for the Devil said...

Sweet sour pickle ---> MY FAVE!!!!!

Sympathy for the Devil said...

btw that Hainan temple really is interesting!

Lily Riani said...


jeruk/asam... yummy, sliver dropping heheheheee. i guess you need to visit penang again ;)


i didn't even cover everything. i myself need to go back again.


yesssss.... yummy huh. yes, in terms of photography, hainan temple is the best and most enjoyable one.

christine said...

Great photos, what an amazing place!!

MKL said...

Penang is really amazing for these reasons:

Always hot weather
Always great friendly people
Always great food
You can go to temples, beaches, nightclubs, shopping malls, everything's top in Penang.

If someone asked me about 1 must see place in Malaysia, I would definitely say: Penang!

eugene said...

Hey, next time you come here again, must call me lo,let me give you a treat or two,muhhibah ma...

Selamat Hari Raya

Marsi @ The Cottage Cheese said...

Wow, those pickles look amazing! And yes, it is legend that Caucasian woman have pickle cravings when expecting a baby (pickles and ice cream, so they say). As always, your photos are just gorgeous. Thanks so much for your sweet comment (and all of your comments!). I'm taking my sweet time getting back to blogging, and trying to spend lots of time with family and friends this autumn. But I do hope to be back to regular blogging soon. Hugs, Marsi

Emm said...

What a lovely post!! I love the architecture there. It is strange but Indochine was my favourite film for several years. In fact, it might just be my favourite film of all time and Rumpelstiltskin was my favourite childhood fairy tale!!

Lily Riani said...


thanks for your lovely comment.


i agree, you must come again with lily.


i definitely will but plan might change as i have change role to regional. sigh....


gee thanks :D appreciate your appreciation. i cant wait for your updates.


indochine - i havent watch this movie, perhaps i should rent and watch it. i think you would like penang & malacca as they have the similar history.

Liudmila said...

I laughed to see you jumping on all photos. It's so good to be so young! By the way, why you dont have that terrible kerchiefs?

Lily Riani said...


hehehhe.... it was quite fun jumping around.

i guess i havent receive my calling to wear yet, perhaps later i would :D

Tina said...

looks lovely. i bet people had a hard time getting a book off the top shelf in the bookshop lol

Shingo T said...

Noticed you do the jump in almost every picture posts. Loved the colors of the old houses.

And great photoshopping skills, liked how you use black and white to contrast with the red lanterns and such.

Lily Riani said...


i was wondering how they even find a book. LOL

shingo t,

yup! crazy jump, crazy me.

thank you thank you... learning.

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