Batu Ferringhi is the northern coast of Penang, Malaysia.
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-market are very nice, though with less than perfect water quality because of the extensive powered water sports and infestations of jellyfish.
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.
From Kuala Lumpur, a 45 minute flight to Penang Airport, or several hours by bus. On Penang Island (and neighbouring Butterworth), Penang's Rapid Transit bus system is very efficient, with a fleet of modern buses (some even have free wi-fi). It's possible to catch a bus all the way to Batu Ferringhi from the airport, or you might have to go to the central transport hub, Komtar in Georgetown, first. Bus drivers are usually quite helpful. Taxis are the alternative - they almost never use the meter, so negotiate a price first.
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. Most hotels have shuttle services too. Penang Rapid Transit buses are fairly regular till about 11pm, plying the route from Georgetown through Tanjung Bungah, Batu Ferringhi to Teluk Bahang. One bus route goes down the western coast from Teluk Bahang, but with an average frequency of 2 hours at best, and reputedly can't be relied on. 7-day Rapid Transit Passport cards (30RM) give unlimited travel, though are available from limited locations including Komtar and the airport (see website for complete details - www.rapidpg.com.my/). Rapid Transit has a useful iPhone app, which is linked to GPS-equipped buses to estimate arrival of buses at a bus stop. Bus stops can be unmarked, so ask a local.
- Butterfly Farm, 830 Jalan Teluk Bahang, Phone:+60 4 885-1253, Fax:+60 4 885-1741, mailto:[email protected], . 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 RM27 and children RM15.
- 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.
- Tropical Spice Garden is between Batu Ferringhi and Teluk Bahang, easily reachable by bus or taxi. The well-done eco-tourism site was set up in 2003 on an old 8-acre rubber plantation, with three trails meandering through the beautiful jungle landscape. Around 500 species of spices, herbs and exotic flora to explore. At one corner is Tree Monkey Cafe (predominantly Thai food) set on a deck in the middle of a rainforest and sea views, and a gift shop and cooking school - these are accessible from the exit gate so you don't have to pay an entry fee to get to them. Entry fee to the garden is reasonable, and guided tours are available and recommended.
- 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. A guided tour and ratings are available - this attraction is at its best when fruits are in season. There is a shuttle bus service that picking visitors from few hotels to the farm and vise versa. Mosquito repellent is provided but it is advised you bring your own, as there is a lot of stagnant water for breeding.
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 over 300 traders in 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.
- Rainbow Modern Western Cuisine (Rainbow Cafe), 26, Permai 32, Lebuh Lembah Permai 4, Off Jalan Permai, Tanjung Bungah, 11200 Penang., ☎ 04-8995190, . 11:30am-3:00pm & 6:00pm-10:00pm. Rainbow Modern Western Cuisine serve healthy, quality, delicious, value for money food & beverage. No M.S.G. or artificial flavoring or food enhancer being used in the cooking, Only herbs & spices. All the meals are freshly cooked - individually cooked upon order - the home cooking style. They serve light bites, soups, sandwiches, pasta, mains, desserts and beverages. They serve pure fresh fruits juice with any sugar and water being added. Fresh brewed coffee & chilled beers also available. Rainbow Cafe, located in a residential area with the park located right in front & directly opposite the cafe. A true real taste of food & beverage the natural way and delicious too. RM10:00.
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!
- Rainbow Modern Western Cuisine (Rainbow Cafe), 26, Permai 32, Lebuh Lembah Permai 4, Off Jalan Permai, Tanjung Bungah, 11200 Penang., ☎ 019-44129799, . 11:30am-3:00pm & 6:00pm - 10:00pm. Rainbow Modern Western Cuisine, served healthy, quality, value for money and no M.S.G. or artificial flavouring or food enhancer being used in the cooking, only herbs & spices. Also available fresh pure fruit juice without any sugar or water being added. Fresh brewed coffee and chilled beer also available. They serve Light Bites, soup, sanwiches, pasta, main, dessert and beverages. Rainbow Modern Western Cuisine serve it customers, freshly cooked meals - the home style cooked meals. RM10.00.
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.
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. A simple room with a fan begin at around RM40-60 per night, it's much cheaper to sleep in Georgetown (also much more services and better local meals) and travel back and forth by public bus. If arriving by bus get off at the post office and walk down to the beach.
- penang-resorts Holiday Apartments, Batu Ferrinhghi (Near the beach), ☎ 012-4269180, . Self-Catered Apartments /Condominiums/ Bungalows
- Sapphire Resorts-Penang Island Holiday Apartment at Batu Ferringhi, Tel: +60 014-3493464 (Meg)
- Eden Seaview Condominium, Batu Ferringhi, Tel: +60 016-4522505 (Mr. Tan)
Offering fully furnished units with basic amenities for rental.
- Boomerang Lodge, Batu Ferrinhghi (On the beach), ☎ 014 7256619, . checkin: 1400; checkout: 1000. Beach Front Chalet and Cafe
- 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 
- 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.
- E.T Budget Guest House, 47,Batu Ferringi, Tel: 04-8811553.
- Ismail's Beach Guest House, Batu Ferringhi, Tel: 04-8812569.
- Feringghibackpacker Beach Front Chalet, Batu Feringhi, Tel: 013-4829292
- Boomerang Lodge Guest House, Batu Ferringhi, Tel: 014-7256619
- Daniel's Beach Guest House, Batu Ferringhi, Tel: 016-4112874
- Bayview Beach Resort Penang, Batu Ferringhi, Phone:+60 4 881-2123, Fax:+60 4 881-2140, Tollfree reservation within Malaysia: 1-800-888218, mailto:[email protected],  .
- Hydro Hotel, Miami Beach, Batu Ferringhi, http://www.hydrohotelpenang.com. Located a couple of kilometres before the main Batu Ferringhi strip, the Hydro Hotel is cheaper because of its location, which offers some advantages. Miami Beach is just across the road (accessible by elevated walkway), and is relatively unspoilt compared with Batu Ferringh - little or no pollution, no jet skis, picturesque with large granite boulders and a pleasant view. Rapid Transit bus stops right outside hotel driveway on both sides of the road (bus stop not marked on side heading to Batu Ferringhi), and is very regular during the day/evening. Staff generally helpful, standard good for price - pick of rooms probably VIP suites, large suites with 2 balconies having sea views... clean, spacious without being especially glamorous.
- D'Feringghi, . Claims to be a "budget boutique hotel". Dirty rooms all with aircon, shower cubicle, coffee-/teamaker. Desk staff unfriendly. RM80-110.
- PARKROYAL Penang, Batu Ferringhi Beach, Phone:+60 4 881-1133, Fax:+60 4 881-2233, mailto:[email protected], http://www.parkroyalhotels.com/penang]. 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. Great deals and coupons are found on their Facebook page
- Lone Pine Penang, , owned and operated by famous Eastern & Oriental Hotel in Georgetown. Superb standard of accommodation and food, with prices to match.
- Hard Rock Hotel Penang , Batu Ferringhi Beach, 11100 Penang, Tel: +60 4 8811711 Fax: +60 4 8812155
- Shangri-La's Golden Sands Resort, .
- Holiday Inn Resort Penang, .