|Bye bye Penang|
Then we found out there was an overnight train from Penang. Train 36 leaves Butterworth (the city on the mainland opposite Georgetown) every afternoon and trundles up through the night over the border and into Bangkok stopping at Hua Hin on the way. The train is run by Thai Railways who have a good reputation and all reviews we read online were great - so we decided to go for it.
You can buy tickets up to one month in advance. This is a popular route so we got our tickets right away. We bought ours at the ticket office at the Weld Jetty from where the Georgetown to Butterworth ferry operates. I don't know if there is anywhere else to buy the tickets.
On travel day our super landlady kindly gave us a ride from our apartment to the ferry terminal. The ferry leaves every 15 or 20 minutes or so from Georgetown to Butterworth and is free in this direction. We said our final goodbye and headed for the ferry.
|Inside the basic Georgetown to Butterworth Ferry|
|Passing the ferry going to opposite way|
|Butterworth Station Waiting Room|
|A commuter train was not what we were expecting for the beginning of our journey.|
|Scenery from out of the train window|
|Choosing our food for later|
|Our food was waiting for us on the train|
|Top bunk (no window and narrower) & Bottom bunk (window and wider)|
The atmosphere on the train was friendly, with a mix of locals and tourists on board. We stowed our luggage under our seats and even though we bought padlocks, I would have had no security worries. The bathrooms were basic, and while peeing when the train rattles along takes a little skill, I found cleaning my teeth even harder. But it was all fine. The bunks were really comfortable and the sheets and blankets were clean. We rattled into Hua Hin at around 6.30am moderately rested and grateful for a fun experience. Much better than a boring old airplane!!
|Welcome to Hua Hin|