Sitting 94km north of Taiping, the dusty, industrial port of BUTTERWORTH looks over a narrow strait to a far more attractive Pulau Pinang from an intricate concrete mesh of flyovers, highways and rail lines. With ferries crossing to the island every few minutes from early morning until late into the evening, the only reason to spend any time here is in transit. The bus station, ferry pier, long-distance-taxi stand and train station are all next door to each other, so this shouldn’t take long – just follow the signed pedestrian overpasses to whichever you need.

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