Last month before we made our way back to California, we visited Kelantan. It had been more than 25 years since I was last in Kelantan and I don't remember all that much about Kota Bharu. There were two things I remembered most about that first trip. One, I couldn't understand a word of the Kelantanese dialect, and two, I enjoyed the different foods there.
This time around, I did not have difficulty understanding anyone, probably because they mostly spoke the proper Bahasa Malaysia except with their Kelantanese accent, and the food was as fabulous as I remembered! Er, except for the tough squid that I had at the food market!
One of the things that surprised me most, something I never knew about Kelantan, was the number of Buddhist temples found there. And I am not talking about little temples! These are large temples with large statues of Buddha in them. I did not associate Kelantan with Buddhist temples. In Sabah and Sarawak, and even Penang, yes, but Kelantan?
This is the entrance to the Thai Buddhist temple called Wat Photivihan.
This reclining Buddha is huge. You would expect to see a Buddha statue like this in Thailand but this Buddha is found at Wat Photivihan in Tumpat, Kelantan.
A pose with Zawi. Zawi was kind enough to take us around Kota Bharu and surrounding areas when we visited Kelantan.
This sitting Buddha is found at Phram Buddha Bharameedharm Charmruslok ... whatever that means!
I thought it strange that there were dragons in this Buddhist temple and statues of Chinese deities.
In the evening, after a day of sight-seeing Buddhist temples and being driven to some other attractions in Kota Bharu, we met up with a few bloggers and their friends and family at a restaurant serving Kelantanese cuisine. It was a popular restaurant and Doug was impressed by the food he ate.
L-R: Awin, Zawi, Pakpayne, Kamal, Doug and Captain Yusuf, and Duncan in the front. Wan Aziz is not in the picture.
Doug is now keen to see the other states in Peninsular Malaysia after that visit to Kelantan!