18/03/2017 – such an easy day
trip distance: 75km
total trip distance:10 299km
Today I have 70km to cycle before to start tomorrow the climb to Cameron Highlands. my alarm went off at 5am and I snoozed it until 6am. even though I arrived in Tapah, the last town before Cameron Highlands, way before noon. I found a hostel, booked a room with a great discount, go for it if you plan to stay in Tapah it’s called hotel Kawan. before that I tried few homestays but it looks like in Malaysia homestays are more for Malay people rather than for tourists. they’ve had most of the time a good excuse to decline. This morning I had my first encounter with three dogs, still puppies so they were just trying to impress themselves but I apprehend when it will be bigger dogs. I heard many stories about dogs biting cyclists.I saw as well two dead snakes on the side of the road. the first one was pretty small while the second one was quite impressive.
even though the start was a bit hard, those 70km were easy to ride and I don’t even feel tired after it.
Climbing up to Cameron Highlands
I found a waterfall on the way!
19/03/2017 – woooow tea fields are stunning!
I started the climb at 6am and the beginning was pretty easy. As I stopped to drink some water, I haven’t seen those two dogs on the side of the road and they started to come to me barking. I won’t start cycling again as it will drive them crazy. Instead I started to whistle to them and they started to move their tails. Even tho they were still barking, I knew I wasn’t too much in trouble with those two. a little bit later, in a big climb, two other dogs started to bark at me and one of them just ran after me for quite a while. I’ve been pedalling so fast! Note for later, always keep some power under the pedal in case of dogs in the steep hills. 15km before to reach the top, it started to rain pretty heavily. I found a shelter under a bus stop. Usually rains are for an hour maximum and then it’s sunny again. Not this time. A Pakistani on its way to Tanah Rata just stopped under the bus stop as well and we had a chat while waiting the rain has gone. He is here in Malaysia since 3 years, working for the national electricity company making dams. When I explained him where I wanted to go by bicycle he couldn’t believe it. He told me, “I don’t understand man, everyone dreams to be able to come in Europe and you, you are here with your bike… it doesn’t make sense to me” he wanted to know if I was going through Pakistan, I don’t know yet. Then we started to speak about religions. This is the subject everyone will ask you about.
After the rain and the big climb… reward
He needed to be back to work in less than an hour so he started to drive his motorbike under the rain. I followed him 30 minutes later as it didn’t seems to stop. On the opposite line there was a huge line of cars maybe due to a landslide or flooding a bit below. As I was cycling under the heavy rain on a flooded road full of mud, everyone was encouraging me to keep going up. It was great! They gave me some good power to keep going and the rain was making the air cooler and cycling uphills actually way easier than under the sun.
Tea Fields with Dani who stayed at the same hostel as me
When I reached the tea fields I was STOKED!!! This is amazingly beautiful! I’ve never seen something like this before! I loved it and actually the sun appeared at the same time I started to take some photographs. Magic! Overall it was a great day climbing up. Not too steep. I really enjoyed it!
3 days in Tanah Rata
I originally planned to stay in Tanah Rata just for a couple of days and one night. Well, this place was so amazing that I did stay a bit longer than expected. As well, the air is way dryer than down at the sea level and I can’t be bored of those beautiful tea fields.
Exploring Mossy Forest
More tea fields
Such a nice pattern isn’t it?
22/03/2017 back to the hot sun!
trip dist: 96,91km
total trip dist:10 457km
Time to leave Tanah Rata and the Cameron Highlands to cycle back down to Ipoh. I started at night as usual and I got 20km of hard climb. 10% steep hills but when I reached the top just after the sunrise, it was downhill for all the way. I got a top speed of 61km/h and went down for 70km I arrived in Ipoh at 11am and it was damn hot and humid again. Found the cheapest hostel ever 4€ / night and it was a really good one!
23/03/2017 – psychology podcasts
trip distance 113.8km
total trip distance 10 571km
It’s been such a great ride today! nothing in particular to notice. just easy. I had 1 big climb and that was all. In Malaysia if you stick to the coast and don’t go from one side to another all is pretty flat. Today I listened a few podcasts. The first one was a Tim Ferris Show How to not be Evil, an interview of Dr. Phil Zimbardo who made the Stanford prison experiment project. It was about how we behave in society and how every one can be a hero by setting boundaries to anormal behaviors even tho there is other people who could act. This is a worth listening one!Listen it just right here
Then I listened the Jerrod Carmichael’s interview by Tim Ferriss and it resonated a lot with what I realised while travelling the world. I needed those travels to realise it but that’s my thing. You can realise it in many other ways. My favourite sentence was
“You can be whatever you want. We all are free. But the problem is that we don’t realise how free we are.” – Jerrod Carmichael
“Everyone’s looking for rules to follow, and the sooner you realize there aren’t any, the better art can be.” – Jerrod Carmichael
It is maybe one of my favourite podcasts of all time and you can listen to it right here
24/03/2017 – I met Alex on my way to Penang
trip dist: 61.58km
total trip dist: 10 632km
This morning I had a late start. I know that I only have around 60km so no need to wake at 5am. I started at 7:30am. The sky was overcast so it was easy to cycle and as I was cycling towards the coast the little breeze was perfect. In the morning I met Alex from Belarus. He cycled all the way to here. I hope that we can meet again in Bangkok so I can interview him for my podcast before he flights off back to his country.Then I reached the ferry to Penang! For my bicycle and myself it cost me 1,4 Rm which is 20 cents of Euro. Really cheap as it is very close. I arrived to George Town city classified at the Unesco world heritage. I understood why. So many history in here! It’s as well the place where there is the only train station without any trains. People use to wait for the train in this big building then, two hours before the train actually left they were carried by boat to the actual train on the mainland.
Alex from Belarus and Alex from France
I stayed 4 days here and left to Langkawi by boat and with a new toy….
Went for a hike with Justin and found a good pier to hang the hammock
This guy gave us a free ride back home!
Then we stopped for the sunset
This is in a Chinese temple
Some many lives stacked on top of each other and tonight I was part of it
29/03/2017 – Langkawi
trip dist: 32,30km
total trip dist: 10 665km
So today, I bought a new toy! The DJI Mavic Pro, prefect size to travel the world with. its bag can carry the drone, the remote and two extra batteries and fits perfectly in my panniers.
In addition, there is a few modes to make it follow me while cycling without to have anything to do.
I will try this on Langkawi. Here the boat was a bit longer than the precedent one. It’s a 3 hours ride.
On Langkawi, I’ve cycled to Cenang, the place to be. I’m still travelling for a little while with Justin, an American dude from Washington state who is into photography and he actually bought a drone as well.
On Langkawi I’ve been hiking alone as he was sick and I’ve been to pretty nice places!
I went on a hike in the jungle and found those mushies
In the jungle I found those waterfalls
My first ever fly with the drone!!
Then I found an abandoned building looking like a Star wars ship
In the abandoned building
And those islands… amazing!!
Everyone like the drone, a great way to connect 🙂