Many island destinations have grabbed my heart over the years. Welcome to week 363 (3/29/2018) of Travel Photo Thursday and some of the islands I would love to visit again (and maybe) again.
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Kampa Island, Prague
Steps from Prague’s iconic Charles Bridge is the picturesque and whimsy Kampa Island. I can’t imagine that anyone could visit Prague without spending some time here. The island is home to numerous museums, restaurants, love-locked bridges, and the Lennon wall. Kampa Island also holds the distinction of being voted one of the world’s most beautiful islands.
You can also enjoy beautiful views of downtown Prague, from the island’s shores.
Adding a love lock is popular.
Koh Chang, Thailand
I’ve spent more than a few days chilling out on Koh Chang (chang means elephant), in both high and low season. Koh Chang is one of those island destinations that’s easily accessible. You can bus it from Bangkok to the ferry pier in a few hours, and then it’s a quick ferry ride to the sandy island beaches. The high season offers more dining choices, but also higher prices. In the low season, you can stay in a first class resort with the ocean at your doorstep for a quarter of what it would cost during the November to April tourist months. I had an oceanfront villa at the Kacha Resort & Spa on White Sands Beach for about $35.00/night (This was a few years ago, so prices have probably increased, but shop around and you could be pleasantly surprised). One of the things I loved, besides the ocean being steps away, was the pool situated 30 seconds away from my villa. I had a midnight swim almost every night during my stay. The luxury spa was another relaxing treat, at deeply discounted off-season rates. Koh Chang is also large enough to offer quite a number of off the beaten track options.
The sunset at White Sands Beach, which is one of the most popular beaches on the island, is not to be missed. During high season, be sure to arrive early in the day to claim a sun chair close to one of the beachside restaurants/bars.
Off the beaten path at Kaibee Beach.
When you visit Koh Chang be sure to go snorkeling.
I’ve been to the island of Penang a number of times. It’s one of those island destinations that has something to offer everyone. Historic Georgetown is home to a number of interesting and quirky museums and art centres, good restaurants (including some of the best Indian food I’ve ever eaten.) You can spend days discovering the many colourful murals covering the town’s walls. If you’re there in August, you can celebrate Ghost Month. The temples are decorated for the occasion, and many family clans put on traditional Chinese opera performances. Be sure to spend a night at one of the converted clan houses on the jetty. Along with a comfy affordable room, you’ll get to savour some of the best ocean scenery in Asia. Pristine beaches are a short bus or taxi ride from the downtown core.
Rickshaw Man Mural, Georgetown
Check-out more of Penang’s street art/murals HERE.
Penang is well known for its traditional medicine halls. You might even walk away with a few traditional herbs and potions to cure whatever ails you.
The white sand beaches in the seaside town of Batu Ferringhi are a short bus or taxi ride away from Georgetown.
I love the food culture in Penang. You can find delicious food anywhere, from food carts and hawker stalls to fine dining restaurants. Some of my best meals came from food carts and small local restaurants with one signature dish. My first time eating durian (stinky fruit) was on the side of the road. The vendor was kind enough to sell a smaller than usual portion since I was only one person. Durian will never be my favourite fruit. However, if you ever have the opportunity to try it fresh off the tree, go for it.
Another favourite of mine is Char Kwey (Kway) Teow, and the best I ate was at the Sin Hua hawker stall on Burma Road opposite the Pulau Tikus Police Station. Apparently, duck eggs give the dish a distinctive taste and flavour.
Which island destinations hold a spot in your heart? Let us know in the comments.
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