Travelfish correspondent Mark Thompson
Originally from the northeast of England, Mark studied classical music and worked for five years in London as agent and manager to a bunch of temperamental orchestral conductors.
In 2008 he swapped the London music scene for a much more peaceful existence in Galle on the south coast of Sri Lanka, where he was finally able to indulge his inner grammar geek and divide his time between EFL teaching and writing.
After authoring a book on the history of Galle Fort, he continued his inadvertent tour of UNESCO world heritage cities and moved to George Town, Penang in 2011. Mark’s efforts to research and write his next book on the history of Penang have been hampered by too much time spent discovering George Town’s burgeoning arts scene and fabled food culture.
Posts by Mark Thompson:
As the culinary capital of Malaysia, Penang is quite literally bursting with flavour. Many of its famous dishes have almost become synonymous with the island itself, but none more so than Penang laksa, which found international fame in 2011 when it came seventh on the CNN ‘World’s Fifty Most Delicious Foods‘ list. Otherwise known as … read the full post
Part of what makes Penang unique is its established mixture of cultures and faiths, but if you are only in Georgetown for a short time, how can you experience all of its varied customs and traditions? Conveniently enough, Penang’s 18th-century town planners have already solved the problem, and a short walk along Jalan Masjid Kapitan … read the full post
If you’ve come to Penang to experience its fantastic local cuisine, a cafe serving Mexican and Mediterreanean specials may not necessarily be top of your must-visit list. However, like Georgetown itself, The Daily Dose Cafe is a heady fusion of cultural influences, and with its pan-continental menu, great stash of wines and some of the … read the full post
There is no shortage of accommodation in Penang but to be frank, many of Georgetown’s tired-looking budget hostels may not really cut it with today’s discerning backpacker. However, Ryokan on Lebuh Muntri is bucking the trend and has successfully bridged the gap between the drab hostels on nearby Lebuh Chulia and the clutch of high-end … read the full post
As a country with one of the highest number of annual public holidays in the world, most Malaysians like an excuse to celebrate and what better reason than New Year’s Eve? While it is not traditionally known as a party island, Penang nevertheless buzzes at New Year and offers enough different options to make your … read the full post
Penangites love a good festival, and Christmas is no exception. There are plenty of opportunities to catch some tropical Yuletide cheer in Penang; here are some of the best places to shop, worship, eat, drink and be merry over the festive season. It’s not just about the big day itself but also the build-up, so … read the full post
When you arrive in Penang and realise that just about every second shophouse is a restaurant, you might find it hard to decide where to eat. So how do you solve this culinary conundrum? Follow the steady trail of Penangites down Lebuh Carnarvon and bag yourself a table at Tek Sen. If the lunch-hour queue … read the full post