Thursday, July 26, 2018

Kuantan (Pahang) - Nava K Travel Guide (Part 2)

Where else and what else for us in Kuantan (Kuantan Part 1 & Vistana Kuantan)? Well, food spotting or perhaps better for me to say as dinner hunger tucking in. Food of course is a compulsory matter right, no matter where we are? Whether we have crossed the horizon for out of the country travel venturing or within our own country in-bound? Precisely. Weather in Kuantan on this day, hell-hack of a weather. Rainy day. Rain which started pouring, mind you, one of the heaviest for causing sky darkness as early as 6.00pm and we on the other hand, braving rain for heading to Ana Ikan Bakar Petai. At the suggestion of our Kuantan friend who have been driving us around from the time we arrived in Kuantan. According to him further, Ana Ikan Bakar Petai seemingly is the populous. In other words, the popularity. Ana Ikan Bakar Petai is the one that draws much more customers compared to the rest of the other ikan bakar/grilled fish eateries I bet you will notice while on your way to within this specific long stretch of road. Ana Ikan Bakar Petai and the rest however are simultaneous. Meaning, these are the unassuming, basic, stall kinda concept eateries and most probably, I'm guessing by the way, offering the same kinda food.    

Thankfully, counting our blessings due to parking availability right in front of Ana Ikan Bakar Petai instead of further along the road, we literally dashed inside and sat at one of the bench kinda tables among the already swarmed by groups and groups of mostly Malay customers. And then what? No service coming towards us and we blinking staring at each other. Goodness gracious! Eventually, after taking a look at the wall menu across where we were seated, we also figuring out that we have to make our way to the front for opting between the various types of fish. Our choice pointed at, subsequently telling them which style of ikan bakar. But trust me, service still didn't compute. Not sure why, neither could we comprehend why and what's with like jack-asses keeping us waiting for around 10 minutes for no apparent reason. As if we were invisible. Finally, at their own leisure service. Duh! On our way back to our table, we included a plate of Sata and Kerabu Manga/Mango Salad. Sata? What is Sata? Sata is basically Kuantan Malay style minced spiced fish meat, banana leaves wrapped and grilled on open grill.

Sata and Kerabu Mango paid for and self-service carried, we thereafter sinking our teeth into these two dishes. Not bad. Tangy, sweet, crunchy mango salad, and sata, only if these were still hot, we would have double or even triple loved them.

While still at nibbling, we called for other dishes and drinks. Drinks of course, do I have to say? Cruising by within minutes, but dishes crawling at tortoise speed from the walking in slow motion young hip-hop boys. Mmmmm?? Oh-My-Kuantan! Nasi Goreng Kampung and Nasi Goreng Ikan Masin/Salted Fish, Malay style fried filling rice dishes did put a smile on us. Similarly, Ikan Bakar Petai paired alongside two types of sambal/spicy dip capturing our mouth and tummy happiness. Ikan Bakar Petai, the main highlight in Ana Ikan Bakar Petai, not overly spicy sambal, fresh catch and petai, banana leaf parceled and grilled, must be praised. Yum! My kinda according to my liking delight. Conclusively, Ana Ikan Bakar Petai should be mentioned as a wondrous Kuantan food trailing. 

Up next? Kuantan Waterfront. Sadly though. Due to rain, darkness and bridge across were the only vision seeing in this, one of Kuantan's sightseeing spots. In the end, 10 minutes most to most and with no other sightseeing possibilities at this 9th night hour, I was dropped off in Vistana. Other half-half and our friend on the contrary, heading to one of the karaoke water holes for? What else? Must be? Alcohol is the night pleasure friendship bonding.   
Next morning, yes, our previous day didn't materialise Panching Sivan Temple, Gua Charas. Yes, our god seeking mission. Waze leading the way and we being her obedient followers, as well taking a breakfast break at one of the coffee shops along the road. Nothing much actually. Just a simple meal consisting of fried mee and hot beverages. 

Back on track for continuing our god seeking mission via the rocking our car and us back and forth long stretch of potholes, muddy, swinging left and ride inner road, we arrived in Panching Sivan Temple. Paying parking, not free mind you, thereafter, climbing the shaky, narrow metal staircase till atop. Quite a trembling climb. Be careful.

Panching Sivan Temple by the way is Hinduism and Buddhism in one. Basically, two beliefs to two different religion. Those divine god deities you will be passing by once you are atop are definitely the indicators and prior to the long walk into the cave which will lead you towards right till the end to Sleeping Buddha. Prayers of course is must? Regardless which religion? Sure. We prayed.

Thereafter, reverting back to the kingdom of Lord Shiva we had earlier passed by. Lord Shiva! Touching us graciously, gracefully and religiously. Wow! What a discovery. Never knew Panching Sivan Temple Gua Charas will be this spectacular. Paying for prayers, yes, nothing is free in Hindu Temples if you don't know and we simultaneously praying under the guidance of the priest.

All Hinduism ours fulfilling, indeed, we routed out from the same staircase to return to the car park. (Video) My one and a half days Kuantan discovery basically over and done at this afternoon hour. Any regret exploring this part of Malaysia? Of course not. In fact, maybe I should return again to Kuantan for other discoveries I am yet to conquer. Hopefully! Keeping my fingers crossed.  

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