Probably the single most heavily developed stretch of tourist resorts in the entire country, the scenery and the beaches have undeniably suffered under the assault of all that concrete. Still, while the beaches aren't the best in Malaysia, there are still miles of white sand and palm trees left. Fierce competition keeps hotel prices low and there's some great food to be found too. Also a notable fact making the decision to visit Batu Ferringhi an easier one is, that the more you approach to the west, the less the touristisation has infected the beaches. Beaches near the famous night-bazar are very nice with perfect water quality.
From east to west (that is, moving further 'out' from George Town and the airport), the main beaches are Tanjung Bungah, Batu Ferringhi proper, and Teluk Bahang.
Taxis trawl up and down the windy roads of the north coast. Fares are negotiable but tourists will have a hard time getting anywhere for less than RM 15.
Butterfly Farm, 830 Jalan Teluk Bahang, Phone:+60 4 885-1253, Fax:+60 4 885-1741, mailto:email@example.com, . Mon-Fri 9AM-5.30PM (Last entry at 5PM), Weekend & Public Holidays 9AM-6PM (Last entry at 5.30PM). Open 365 days all year round except half-day on Chinese New Year eve. More than just a tourist attraction, it is set up as a 'live museum' to educate the public as well as a research centre to develop breeding methods. The farm houses about 4000 Malaysian butterflies of 120 different species, including most famouse in Malaysia the Rajah Brooke's Bird wing of the Papilionidae family. The farm also exhibits dead-leaf mantis, orchid mantis and Trogonoptera. Admission (including Govt. Tax): Adult RM15 and children RM7.50. Additional charge: Camera / Digital camera RM1 per piece and Video / Digital Video Camera RM5 per piece.
Muka Head Lighthouse is located at the northwestern cape of the Penang island, this impressive lighthouse serves as a beacon to sailors and ships in the region. The tower, while not as accessible as other structures on the island, offers spectacular ocean views. There is 2 ways to reach the site: taking boat from Teluk Bahang jetty or climb over the hills by foot.
Toy Museum, Tanjung Bungah, Mobile phone:+60 12 460-2096. M-Su 9AM-9PM. This is the latest attraction in Penang, located at in front of Copthrone Orchid Hotel. Rank as Asia's first and World's largest toy museum, the owner Ir Loh Lean Cheng spends his 30 years to collect over 100,000 toys, dolls, models and other fun collections. The vast collection includes characters from cartoons, comics, computer games, sports, movies, novels, shows and the music world. Dozens of amazingly realistic, life-size figures add to the Fun. Admission fee: Adult and children above 3-feet RM10, children below 3-feet RM6.
Tropical Fruit Farm, 18 Miles Stone, Jalan Teluk Bahang, Phone:+60 4 866-5168, Fax:+60 4 866-5170. In this 25-acre tropical fruit farm, about 200 types of tropical and sub-tropical fruits are planted. Durian, the King of Fruits, despite their odour, are undeniably rich, sweet and creamy. There is a shuttle bus service that picking visitors from few hotels to the farm and vise versa.
Various species of durian
Shuttle Bus Schedule (estimate)
Fruit tasting while visiting Tropical Fruit Farm.
Jungle trekking & camping - Enjoy walking through the reserved forest in Teluk Bahang, Muka Head go to northwestern cape of the island and stay nights over there, you will experience an unforgettable life with beaches, sea and the sky.
Shopping at the famous "pasar malam" (night market) stretching 1KM along the road from Rasa Sayang Resorts & Spa Hotel to Park Royal Hotel, or the 2Ferringhi Night Bazaar (over 100 stalls) located right in the middle of the 1KM night market, near the iconic "The Ship" Restaurant.
Sunbathe on the beach, enjoy the foot or body massage could be a good idea to rest and relax.
Watersports are on the agenda for many visitors, although the waters are a bit too murky for scuba diving and a bit too calm for surfing or more extreme pursuits. Beware of the jellyfish! If stung, apply vinegar and if you experience chest pain, consider seeing the doctor for something to combat the allergic reaction.
Food is a must on your list while you're in Batu Ferringhi. Ask around the 300 over traders of the night market, or the hotel staffs, and they'll surely point you to some not too "touristy" spots, or something up to your preferences.
Cheap stuff from the night bazaar, also known as the Pasar Malam.
There are plenty of places to eat all around, although discerning gourmands might want to explore less watered-down Malaysian cuisine in George Town.
One option worth a special trip are the seafood restaurants at the pier of Teluk Bahang, at the northwestern tip of the island, past the hotels and the little village. The famed "End of the World" has closed, but quite a few have sprung up to take its place.
For families, or those who just want to get out of the resort, you can't go past the hawker centres and fresh fruit stalls on the side of the road. At the hawker centres the kids can pick and choose what they like from the different shops, you just pay the bill when it is delivered to your table. For best results, stick with the Asian cuisines, the attempts at Western food are not worth eating.
Ferringhi Garden, just south of the Parkroyal Plaza. A little pricey, but a wonderful atmosphere and a very wide ranging menu.
Gerai Makanan, hawker centre near the Golden Sands Resort Hotel, a dozen or so food and drink stalls. Covers a range of cuisines, with Indian, Chinese, Malay, Seafood and reasonably priced beer.
Khaleel Nasi, at the south end of Eden Parade mall, serves reasonable muslim Indian food such as roti, prata and nasi kandar. Good for breakfast, brunch or lunch and expect to pay RM8 per person for a filling meal and a soft drink.
Summer Beach House Seafood, good quality seafood restaurant at reasonable prices almost on the beach near the Lone Pine Hotel.
Fresh juice at the hawker centre about halfway through the markets. At RM2 each, these are a bargain and there are many different combinations, helpful if you are travelling with fussy kids!
There are lots of options with rack rates above RM500, but only in peak season (notably Christmas/New Year) will you have to pay this much. The cheaper places charge around RM50.
Boomerang Lodge, Batu Ferrinhghi (On the beach), ☎ 014 7256619. Beach Front Chalet and Cafe
Almost all backpacker accommodation, in the form of local guest houses opposite the beach past the Parkroyal Resort has been destroyed and it's really difficult to find some cheap bed in BF. A simple room with a fan begin at around RM40-60 per night, it's much cheaper to sleep in George town (also much more services and better local meals) and travel back&forth by public bus. If arriving by bus get off at the post office and walk down to the beach. For a bit better accommodation you can stay at Penang's first Budget-Boutique Hotel (also operating as hour hotel), here are budget hotels in Batu Ferringhi (many of them closed, checked in January 2011 but forgot to write down which ones):
EQ Ferringhi Hotel, No. 17 Lorong Sungai Emas, 11100 Batu Ferringhi, Pulau Penang, Malaysia, ☎ 6048851533, . Offers standard and triple sharing rooms, all of which are equipped with television, air conditioning, fan, high pressure water heater, bathroom and shower. Free Wi-Fi and satellite TV with ASTRO channels at the lobby.Best rates on official website start at MYR 88.00.
Shalini's Guest House, 56, Batu Ferringhi, Tel: 04-8811859.
Ah Beng Guest House, 54C, Batu Ferringi, Tel: 04-8811036.
Ali'sFerringi Guest House, 53&54B, Batu Ferringi, Tel: 04-8811316, Fax: 04-8814015.
Lazyboys Travelodge, Just off Batu Ferringi, behind the Happy Mart. Friendly staff and relaxed atmosphere, Rooms from 40RM, free wi-fi and internet, kitchen for cooking and laundry. Also music room full of instruments. 04-8812486 Mob: +60124009511 http://lazyboystravelodge.net/index.html
Baba's Guest House, 52, Batu Ferringhi, ☎ +6048811686. Rooms are pretty basic but still nice. Inside the building rooms have shared bathroom on the floor, but the rooms in front of the house have an own bathroom with shower. Air conditioned rooms start MYR 85 in the building and MYR 100 outside. Walk distance to beach: 25 meters. Staff: at least the owner speaks fluent English, and is very friendly. Perfect for backpackers who want to enjoy direct beach access and walk over the vast night-bazar. Very clean, NO BEDBUGS as reported on other travel-sites.Rates start MYR 75 double w/o air-con, up to MYR 100.
Mutiara Beach Resort, 1 Jalan Teluk Bahang, Toll free (Malaysia):1-800-88-3838 (Worldwide):800-8800-3838 Phone:+60 4 886-8888, Fax:+60 4 885-2829, mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org, . The hotel is located at Teluk Bahang Beach to the west of Batu Ferringhi, the sole hotel on one of Penang's nicest beaches. Good pool complete with a bar you can swim up to, decent facilities, but slowly starting to show its age. Rack rates ridiculous (RM650+) but steeply discounted rooms are available outside the highest peak season. RM650-RM8,400 per night.
Closed for refurbishing. Scheduled to reopen in 2007 as the Inter-Continental Penang.
Hard Rock Hotel Penang, Batu Ferringhi Beach, 11100 Penang, Tel: +60 4 8811711 Fax: +60 4 8812155
Grand Plaza Park Royal Penang, Batu Ferringhi Beach, Phone:+60 4 881-1133, Fax:+60 4 881-2233, mailto:email@example.com, http://penang.parkroyalhotels.com]. Great location for families - right in the middle of the night markets, short walk at night to a hawker centre and the second pool has a water slide. Check out the pool toy stalls at the markets for a range of water toys to help increase the fun. Try to get a side seaview room on the 2nd floor, the rooms open out onto a grassed terrace - terrific if you are travelling with kids. Be warned though, the Deluxe Coastal View rooms all face the local mosque, and the call to prayer will wake you up at 6am.