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Penang 槟城(Malay: Pulau Pinang) is an island-state off the northwestern coast of Peninsular Malaysia. It comprises two halves - Penang Island, where the capital city of George Town is located, and a strip of mainland Peninsula named Seberang Perai (formerly Province Wellesley).

Penang's beaches are nice, though a little lacklustre when compared to those in some other Malaysian states, but this is more than compensated for by the island's rich multicultural history dating back to the beginnings of British colonisation in the 18th. century, and is full of Malay, Chinese, Indian and European influences. Penang is also well known domestically and in Singapore for being the "food paradise" of Malaysia.


Penang IslandEdit

Map of Penang (click through to enlarge)

  • George Town — the capital city of Penang and is a favourite spot for visitors as it has many attractive pre-Second World War houses and shophouses, as well as 19th century churches, temples, mosques, and colonial buildings. George Town is a UNESCO World Heritage site (it was inscribed as one of the Historic Cities of the Straits of Malacca together with the city of Melaka). The city is clean, safe and well managed. Very walkable as there are pavement along most roads and the condition of the pavement is very good. Good free maps are available at the Tourist Information Counter located in the centre of the airport arrival halls. One thing to note is that if you eat in a coffeeshop, you must order a drink even if you don't need one or have your own drink in your backpack. Some coffeeshop levy a RM0.50 (Jul 2015) table charge if no drink has been ordered.
  • Batu Ferringhi — on the north coast with white sandy beaches, luxurious hotels and restaurants, a favorite spot for both locals and visitors with loads of water sport activities.
  • Bayan Lepas — Penang's main electronic manufacturing area and location of its international airport. Georgetown's satellite town.
  • Balik Pulau — literally "Back of The Island" in Malay; a small town nestled among Malay villages, fruit orchards, and padi fields.
  • Teluk Bahang — a quiet little fishing village at the northwestern tip of the island

Mainland (Seberang Perai)Edit

  • Bandar Perda — 20 minutes from Butterworth and 15 minutes from Penang Bridge
  • Nibong Tebal — capital of Seberang Perai Selatan district
  • Simpang Ampat — a small town famous for its nearby seafood at Bukit Tambun and Batu Kawan


Roof of the Khoo Kongsi clan house, Georgetown

Penang was part of the Malay sultanate of Kedah until 1786, when Captain Francis Light built a fort at the site of present-day Georgetown and managed to get the island ceded to the British East India Company. The island, along with Malacca and Singapore, was one of the three British Straits Settlements.

The name Penang comes from the Malay word Pinang, means the betel nut (槟榔) tree (Areca catechu). The name Pulau Pinang translated literally from Malay means "betel nut island". The original name of Penang was Pulau Ka-satu or "First Island", it was renamed to Prince of Wales Island on 12 Aug 1786 to commemorate the birthday of the Prince of Wales, later, George IV. During the early and middle part of the last century, Penang Island was also known as "The Pearl of the Orient".

The capital city, Georgetown, was named after King George III of Great Britain. Today, Penang Island is Malaysia's second largest city and has the highest population density in Malaysia. In addition, Penang is the only state where the ethnic Chinese are the majority. Penang also has the third-largest economy amongst the states of Malaysia, after Selangor and Johor, incredibly for its tiny size.

The cargo trade has largely shifted down to Port Klang and Singapore since Penang lost its free-port status in 1969, but now Penang makes a good living off tourism and electronics manufacturing. The multi-national corporations that operate factories in Penang's Free Trade Zones include Intel, AMD, AVX, BBraun, Dell, Flextronics, Agilent, Osram, Motorola, Seagate, and Jabil Circuit. Penang was granted Cyber-City status on 21 June, 2004. At the World Heritage Committee Session in July 2008, Georgetown and Malacca were listed as UNESCO World Heritage Sites.


The state of Penang is made up of two parts, Penang Island, a turtle-shaped island in the Straits of Malacca 8km west of Peninsular Malaysia, and Seberang Perai (formerly Province Wellesley), a rectangular-shaped district that is situated on Peninsular Malaysia.

Georgetown is Penang's capital city and Malaysia's second largest city. It is located on Penang Island. Development of the east coast of the island is slowly linking Georgetown, in the northeast, to the industrial town of Bayan Lepas in the southeast, thereby urbanising the entire eastern seaboard of Penang Island. The northern coast, including Batu Ferringhi, is also being heavily developed and features the island's best beaches and resorts. The island's western side is still relatively undeveloped and has a serene "kampung" lifestyle (village) feel about it.


Penang, like the rest of Malaysia, has an equatorial climate. This means temperatures of between about 22°C/72°F (night) and 30°C/86°F (day), between 70% and 90% humidity, and an annual total rainfall of about 2400mm. The driest months are usually January and February. The wettest period is usually from September to November with August also being quite wet; frequent thunderstorms can be expected in these months.

When to goEdit

Dragon boat competition, normally held in May/June

Penang's high season is around Christmas, New Year's Day, and Chinese New Year (check the lunar calendar; it could fall on the end of January or early to mid February), when the east coast of Malaysia is drenched and hordes of sun-seeking tourists descend on the island. Accommodation tends to be packed, and priced accordingly.

Get inEdit

By planeEdit

Recently refurbished Penang Bayan Lepas International Airport (IATA: PEN) is one of Malaysia's larger and better-equipped airports, operated by Malaysia Airports.

The airport is on the southeastern coast of the island, some 30 min from George Town. Take Rapid Penang bus number 401E from the terminal building to KOMTAR (first bus 05:30, last bus 23:35, every 30min; fare MYR2.70, exact change necessary), ☎ +60 4 643-4411. Journey time on 401E to the airport can take as much as 90 minutes (September 2013). If you are going to the northern beaches bus 102 runs there directly from the airport approx. every 45 minutes, fare MYR4 to Batu Ferringhi (Dec 2014). This bus also goes via KOMTAR in Georgetown and will take 2 hours or more to reach it's terminus at Teluk Bahang in the north west of the island.

The airport is serviced by Malaysia Airlines, Thai Airways, Dragonair, SilkAir AirAsia, Jetstar Airways, Tiger Airways[24], Firefly [25], China Airlines, China Southern and Qatar Airways [26].

Direct domestic flights are available to Kuala Lumpur, Johor Bahru, Kota Bharu, Kota Kinabalu, Kuching, Miri, Kuantan, and Langkawi. Direct international flights are available to Hong Kong, Taipei, Ho Chi Minh City, Guangzhou, Singapore, Bangkok, Phuket, Doha, Jakarta, Surabaya, Medan and Banda Aceh.

From the airport, you can take a bus to Komtar bus terminal for onward journey to other parts of Penang. The bus stop is in front of the arrival hall before the car park. Rapid Penang operates 2 bus routes from airport to Komtar - No. 401 and 102, and it costs RM2.70 (August 2019). When coming in from Komtar to airport, it is possible to take 3 bus routes - No. 401, 401E and 102 from Lane 5 in Komtar bust terminal. Note that exact fare is to be paid as the bus drivers do not give changes.

There are two water refilling stations inside the international departure waiting areas. Do keep empty bottle to refill before boarding the plane (if necessary) after disposing of all water at the security check

By carEdit

Penang is connected to the mainland and the North-South Expressway by the Penang Bridge. As traffic is usually congested in the morning and evening. The Penang Second Bridge or Sultan Abdul Halim Muadzam Shah Bridge connecting Batu Kawan and Batu Maung has been opened in 2014. There is no toll for vehicles heading to the mainland, but vehicles headed to the island via Penang First Bridge must pay a toll of RM1.40 for motorcycles, RM7 for cars, RM12 for vans and buses with two axles and four wheels [27].

By trainEdit

KTMB [28] operates electric train service to Butterworth train station where you can catch a 20 mins ferry to George Town (Penang Island). The ferry terminal is a few minutes walk from the train station. Tickets can be booked at the train station, the ferry terminal, or online [29]. The journey to/from Kuala Lumpur takes 4 hours and cost RM59-RM79 one way. There is also a hourly commuter train (no reservation required) connecting Butterworth to Padang Besar (Thai border) in the north to Padang Rengas in the south.

An overnight train (#35) departs Bangkok Hualamphong daily at 2:45PM Thai time, scheduled to arrive in Butterworth at 1:45PM Malaysian time. Trains are second-class sleeper cars, air conditioned, and cost THB1,210, with a THB104 surcharge for bicycles. From Butterworth to Bangkok, Train #36 departs Butterworth daily 2:00pm arriving Bangkok 10:30am the next day. There are buses that head for Phuket from Hatyai, Ko Samui ferry terminal from Surat Thani, Ko Tao from Chumphon, and River Kwai from Nakhon Pathom.

By busEdit

Long distance buses in Georgetown arrive/depart at the new bus terminal at Sungai Nibong, 12km south of the city center (~30 minutes), and 7km from the Penang airport (~15 minutes). A taxi to the city centre costs RM20. Rapid Penang bus #401 connects the bus terminal with KOMTAR and Pengkalan Weld (Weld Quay), this us operates from approximately 0530 so there is not long to wait if arriving early morning on a night-bus, despite what waiting taxi drivers may tell you. Major coach operators include Fivestars [30] ,Konsortium [31], Plusliner / Nice [32], Transnasional [33], and Mutiara.

Aeroline [34] provides a luxury service to Queensbay Mall from Kuala Lumpur (separate services from the Corus Hotel and Sunway Pyramid shopping centre) for RM60 (Dec 2014). On board facilities include sandwiches and drinks, superior seating and personal video screens with a choice of movies. Book and select seat online. From Queensbay Mall catch local buses 304, 307 or 401E into Georgetown from the bus stop nearby for RM2, it takes 20-30 minutes.

Busses from Kuala Lumpur depart from TBS terminal (Terminal Bersepadu Selatan), takes 4+ hours depending on traffic and cost around 40 Ringet (as of Sept 2018). You can prebook online or book at the bus terminal. Buses from Kota Bharu, Perhentian Islands cost RM35 and take around 5-6 hours. Buses to/from Johor Bahru and Singapore take 10 hrs and cost RM 60 or SGD$45.

It's possible to travel by bus to and from Thailand. Tickets are available from travel shops in and around Penang Road. Krabi takes 8 hrs (RM59), Phuket 12-14 hrs (RM76), Bangkok 18 hrs (RM125). Given these travel times to Phuket and Bangkok, consider budget airlines such as Air Asia or Fireflyz.

By minivanEdit

Minivan service is more expensive than bus service and is available between Georgetown and cities in Thailand such as Ko Phi Phi, Ko Lanta 1200Baht (nov 2013) is posible to have it for 1000Baht just ask around (dec 2014), Phuket, Trang, Surat Thani, Krabi, Ko Samui, Ko Pha Ngan, Bangkok and Hat Yai (RM30) on daily basis. Service is available to the Perhentian Islands for 130-150 RM, boat included. There are many agencies across from the bus depot in Hat Yai, so don't take the first price you are offered. It should be no more than 300 BHT even though they will try to tell you otherwise!

By boatEdit

Ferry service in Penang

Penang Port [35] operates ferries to/from Butterworth daily from 5:30AM till 1:00AM running every 15 minutes. Ferry rates are RM1.20 for adults, RM0.60 for children, RM1.40 for bicycles, RM2.00 for motorbikes, RM7.70 for cars, and additional fees for larger vehicles [36]

  • Superfast Ferry Venture [37] operates fast A/C boats to and from Penang (RM70, 180 min) (the ferry can be cold, so bring warm clothes), Bookings can be made online, but the ticket needs to be printed out. You are allowed on deck, overpriced drinks and snacks are served and there are toilets onboard.

Langkawi Ferry Services [38] operates ferry service from Penang to Langkawi at 8:15am and 8:30am daily, and from Langkawi to Penang at 2:30pm and 5:15pm daily. The 8:15am ferry involves a stopover at Pulau Payar Marine Park; ☎ +60 4 2642088 in Penang, ☎ +60 4 9663779 in Langkawi. One-way trip costs RM70 for adult, RM51.3 for child (2-11 years old) and RM31.3 for infant (below 2 years old), when booking online (port handling charges included). Trip takes 2 hr and 45 min and leaves Penang from Swettenham Pier in Georgetown, and arrives in Kuah, the main town in Langkawi. Advance booking can be made via the web site and the ticket needs to be printed out. It can also be done at the terminal at the service desk for RM1 per ticket. Credit cards are not accepted at the terminal, although there are numerous ATMs in the attached shopping mall. The ferry in service is very old and offers no facilities other than simple air-conditioned seating. The ride can be bumpy depending on weather conditions and access to the deck is prohibited. There is proper locked storage for luggage at the rear of the ship upon boarding. There is no restaurant. Check-in is at least 30 minutes before scheduled departure time. The staff on board are famously rude, so be prepared to be yelled at and treated like a little child. Ignoring their mundane requests often works.

Langkawi Ferry Services [39] operates ferries from the Belwan port in Medan to Penang on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, returning to Penang on Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday. The boat leaves at 9:00am at the journey takes 6 hours. Tel: +604264-2088 in Penang; +62614521666 / +62614527555 in Medan. Adult: RM110 one-way, RM180 return; child: RM60 one-way, RM100 return.

NOTE: As of sometime mid 2010 this ferry and all other companies ferrying to Medan have stopped. There are ferries to other places such as Dumai in Sumatra.

Get aroundEdit


One of the best ways to sight see is to walk around Georgetown; but wear light clothes, start early in the morning, and put on plenty of sun-block during the daytime. When crossing the roads, remember to look both ways, even on a one-way street. Walking tours are available by local residents and Georgetown personalities, arrangement can be made direct or through hotels or guest houses. Individual tours usually start at 9.00 am and are tailored to suit.

By busEdit

RapidPenang [40], the local bus service, features new buses. All bus stations and bus stops which are serviced by the RapidPenang buses are labeled with proper signboards to ensure user-friendliness. Buses are somewhat frequent on the main artery to Batu Ferringhi. Rapid Penang bus 101 bound for Teluk Bahang goes through midtown Pulau Tikus, (northwest end of) Gurney Drive, Tanjung Tokong, Tanjung Bungah, Batu Ferringhi and terminates at the Penang National Park entrance. Avoid so-called 'minibuses' because they usually go as far as Tanjung Bungah and can be poorly maintained.

Be aware that you have to hand over the exact fare, as the driver doesn't have change (of course you can pay more and resign the change). So when arriving e.g. at Penang airport from abroad, you won't get far with your freshly ATM-dispensed RM 50 notes. The fare from the airport to KOMTAR is RM 2.70, so buy a snack or similar in the arrival hall.

Rapid Penang bus 203 and 204 to Air Itam (RM1.50 adult) departs westward on Lebuh Chulia (the main backpacker hotel road) or southbound from the KOMTAR building are handy for visiting both Kek Lok Si Temple and Penang Hill (Bukit Bendera) Funiciular Base Station, approximately 30mins south west of the city centre. The driver will inform you of when to alight. Bus 204 departs from the funicular base station to return to Komtar and onward.

The main hub for buses in Georgetown is KOMTAR, the tallest building in town. The secondary hub is located at the Pengkalan Weld (Weld Quay) ferry terminal. All buses depart from the ferry terminal will stopover at KOMTAR, but city centre-bound buses destined for KOMTAR may not go all the way to the ferry terminal; ask the bus operator. There is a new long-distance bus terminal at Sungai Nibong, refer to by bus entry.

Municipal Council of Penang Island [41] provides a free CAT shuttle bus hop on hop off service in Georgetown which runs approximately between the Pengkalan Weld ferry terminal and KOMTAR every 20 min daily 6AM-12am, (including Sundays & public holidays). Visit [42] for more details. An unofficial route map detailing the location of the CAT shuttle bus stops can be found here [43].

Also, foreigners can purchase a Rapid Passport [44] for only RM30 and enjoy a week of unlimited travel onboard all rapid Penang buses.

RapidPenang has a very useful iPhone app ("rapid penang mobile icis") which features a GPS powered route planner and updated arrival/departure times based on the GPS equipped on the busses.

This website [45] gives a useful list of bus numbers, their destinations, and route maps.

The Penang Hop On Hop Off buses services [46] offers value for money - RM45 for a 24 hour pass if you intend to be out and about in the island, covering most tourist attractions.

By trishawEdit

These three-wheeled human-powered vehicles might be the best idea for a pleasant city tour. One can stop at any point to take a photo or buy souvenirs. Many trishaw riders are also excellent 'tour guides'. Negotiate the fare first before getting on a trishaw; it is advisable to hire them by the hour(around Myr30 per hour) for extended sightseeing.

By carEdit

Car rentals may be a viable option, especially if you are planning to get off the beaten track and explore the rural western or southern coast of the island. Take note that Penang Island has quite a number of one-way streets and narrow roads. Many Penangites ride motorbikes and quite many of them have disregard for pedestrians, cars, and even their own lives, so you must be very careful when driving on the roads. Avoid driving during the rush hours between 7:30-9:30AM and 5:30-7:30PM. Motorcycle riders can be undisciplined and tourists should be extra vigilant of them.


Taxis in Penang are equipped with meters but most drivers are reluctant to use the meters. Always haggle with the taxi driver and agree on a price beforehand.

At some high-end hotels, particularly on Batu Ferringhi, you may find blue SUVs marked "Teksi Executif" (Executive Taxi). These taxis do use the meter, but are hard to find on the streets.

As of May 2013, a taxi from the Queensbay Mall to Georgetown will cost 30 ringgit fixed (drivers around the mall will refuse to use the meter), though a bus ticket (bus 401E and others in the 300 series) are plentiful and cost 2 ringgit.

Grab, a mobile app similar to Uber that is prevalent throughout much of Asia, is used extensively in Penang. Prices are very cheap when using GrabCar. A trip from Penang Airport to the north end of Georgetown was 21 MYR. Airport taxis have a surcharge and will cost you 50 MYR and up to get to Georgetown (April 2016).


Almost all locals in Penang are able to speak Malay, the national language of Malaysia. The ethnic Chinese in Penang (who form the majority) usually speak a localized variant of Hokkien known as Penang Hokkien, which Minnan speakers from Taiwan and Fujian may have some difficulty understanding due to the slang and some loan words from Malay. Most ethnic Chinese are also able to speak Mandarin, and many are also able to speak Cantonese and Hakka. Teochew is mainly spoken in Seberang Perai, the mainland side of Penang. Ethnic Indians usually converse with each other in Tamil and ethnic Malays usually converse with each other in Malay, but quite a good number of Indian and Malay Penangites can converse in Hokkien.

English is spoken fluently by most professionals and businessmen, as well as by service staff working in hotels and tourist attractions. Most other locals under the age of 50 will be able to communicate in broken English, supplemented by non-verbal forms of communication such as pointing and gesturing. When in doubt, gravitate toward younger locals, as English is a required subject in Malaysian schools. Nearly all teenagers or adults in their 20s or 30s should be able to speak reasonably fluent English.


See Georgetown for detailed attractions located in town.

  • UNESCO World Heritage Zone & Armenian Street, old historical area in the heart of the UNESCO Heritage Zone in downtown Georgetown. The area contains a melange of late 19th century colonial and settler architecture, texturized by a community that still maintains a traditional way of urban life. For walking, highlights include Armenian Street, Pitt Street, Love Lane, Little India, the esplanade and Beach Road. Within this area, the Khoo Kongsi clan temple, Kapitan Keling Mosque, and Pinang Peranakan Mansion are highlights. A small flea market starts every evening at the park near the Armenian Street & Lebuh Acheh junction (pickpocket alert). Mostly, its used second hand junk for sale, but there may be the occasional find. Further towards Penang Road, the Cheong Fatt Tze mansion on Leith Street that exemplifies early Chinese courtyard houses is also a favorite.
  • Penang Street Art, [47] In conjuction with Penang’s Georgetown Festival, certain old walls within our dear capital has gained a new lease of life, thanks to the awesome efforts of Lithuanian artist, Ernest Zacharevic, Penang Street Art artist. The artworks are funny, fascinating, and very much open to everyone’s interpretations. GPS Coordinates: N5.41300 E100.33954
  • Penang Hill / Bukit Bendera (升旗山), "Penang. Probably has the best view of Georgetown, especially at night. Go up via the Penang Hill Railway (Return fare: Malaysians - Adult RM10, Child RM4; foreign tourists: Adult RM30, Child RM15). The train takes 5 minutes to reach the summit. The service runs from 6:30AM-9PM daily, accessible by taxi or Rapid Penang bus no. 204 to the last stop (RM2). The train, which was upgraded in 2011, is a fascinating little cable train service that lifts you out of the heat and humidity of the coastal plain and up to a fabulous view and cool breezes. The 19th-century English travel writer, Isabella Bird, called the temperature on the hill 'delicious' because it can be very much cooler than at sea level. More than a century later, Ms. Bird's statement still holds true. The more adventurous (and fit) may want to hike up the hill (800m elevation, bring water). Starting points for a trek up the hill is from the tarred road at the entrance of the Botanic Gardens (the more adventurous can start from the Moon Gate 300m from the entrance of the Botanic Gardens but trails are not well marked so best to follow a local during weekends/evenings). The hike takes about 2-3 hrs depending on fitness level. At the summit, you can take a leisurely stroll, or ride a buggy, along a track that runs for about 1km into residences built around turn of the 20th century. Food and refreshments can be found in the David Brown restaurant, which commands a nice view of Georgetown, or the food court.  edit
  • Penang Botanic Gardens,Jl Kebun Bunga, [48], ☎ +60 4 227-0428 (for group tour arrangement), Fax:+60 4 228-6075 [email protected]. Open daily, 5AM-8PM. Take Rapid Penang bus no.10 from KOMTAR for RM2. The gardens were established by Charles Curtis of Britain way back in 1884; it's generally known as the Waterfall Gardens by the local community because of a little waterfall located within it. Many locals will come to the gardens to perform their daily exercises like walking, jogging, jungle trekking, aerobic dance, and to practice Tai Chi, (太极) or Qi Gong, (气功). The garden hosts an annual international floral fest as well as a world music festival. [49]. Free admission.
Ban Po Thar, Kek Lok Si Temple
  • Kek Lok Si-Temple of Supreme Bliss (极乐寺). A sprawling hillside structure that is reputed to be the largest Buddhist temple in South-East Asia, with the Khmer/Thai/Chinese style Ban Po Thar (Ten Thousand Buddhas Tower) and various Buddha images in the main temple complex. Furthermore, a mini-funicular train (RM4) connects to the summit of the hill featuring a giant 36.5m high statue of Kuan Yin, the Goddess of Mercy. The current bronze version was completed after donations from mainland Chinese in 2003. Photographers will find it well worth the inclined elevator ride up. During the Chinese New Year period, the temple is decorated with hundreds of lanterns which turns it into a night-time wonderland. Located near the village of Air Itam; a taxi from Georgetown will set you back RM 20-25; catching a bus from the station next to the Komtar or 7-Eleven at Lebuh Chulia will cost you RM4 (take Rapid Penang bus no. 203/201 to Air Itam, the last stop). The complex reeks of commercialism with shops at every level and Buddhists may find little sacred at this site. Try to avoid the busy weekends. During the fifteen days of Chinese New Year the temple is colourfully lit and opened to the throngs of tourist and worshippers till 11pm.  edit
  • Tropical Spice Garden - The Tropical Spice Garden, which is in a 8 acre valley fronting the shores of Teluk Bahang showcases a landscaped garden that consists of tropical plant collections from all over the world. The garden has over 100 varieties of tropical spice and herb plants and a huge collection of other exotic flora.
View of Penang Bridge and Georgetown from Penang Hill
  • Entopia Penang, 830 Jalan Teluk Bahang, [50], ☎ +60 4 885-1253. Opens 365 days a year, 9AM-6PM daily (last entry at 5pm). The first tropical butterfly farm ever set up in the tropical world, with an average flying population of 7000 butterflies. Stepping in, you will be surrounded by a myriad of fluttering butterflies within a seemingly natural settings, giving the feel of being in an enchanted forest bejeweled with colourful gems of nature. Its modern enclosure also houses an assortment of other invertebrates, reptiles and amphibians. Also features a souvenir outlet and a cafe. Admission fee (with MYKad/without MYKad) is RM49/RM65 per adult and RM29/RM45 per child (4-12 years old).
  • Pulau Jerejak Resort, (Jerejak Island), ☎ +60 4 658-7111, Fax:+60 4 659-7700, [email protected], [51]. This 362 hectare tropical island, is located directly across the channel from the Bayan Lepas Free Industrial Zone, on the south eastern coast of Penang island. The island is now open to the public as a recreational resort. Numerous outdoor activities including nature & historical trekking, mountain biking, and archery are available; personal care such as aromatherapy massage, foot treatment, body scrub are also available. Unfortunately, swimming around the area is not advised given the pollution. Ferries to the island start at 6:30AM and continue until 12:30PM. Return trip fare for guests with room / event reservations: Adult RM6, Children RM3. Day trippers: Adult RM16 (include meals), Children RM3. Various accommodation option available: tent for 2 person costs RM80 per night, 2-bed room RM115, chalet RM220 or promotional 3D/2N package for 2 person costs RM499.
  • Tropical Fruit Farm, [52] - 25-acre farm lies in the scenic hills near Balik Pulau. You can view the many kinds of fruit trees there and sample fresh fruit at reasonable price. A small stall near the entrance sells fresh fruit juice and fruit dishes. You can also enjoy a great view of the north-western coastline of the island.
  • Bao Sheng Durian Farm [53] - Located about 10 min from the Teluk Bahang Dam, the farm offers a durian buffet (early reservation required) and a variety of tropical fruits during the local fruit & durian season (May - Aug).
  • Snake Temple, (蛇庙), built in 1850 in memory of the renowned Chinese monk Chor Soo Kong. The Snake Temple is situated in the small town of Bayan Lepas on the edge of a highway and is famous for the fact that it has pit vipers living within the temple grounds. Legend has it that Chor Soo Kong, who was also a healer, gave shelter to the snakes of jungle. After the completion of the temple, snakes appeared on their own accord. Today, the snake population of the Temple of the Azure Cloud is very small, due to the urbanization of the area, but you can still see them coiled up on the altar tables, and you can touch them, if you are brave enough. Originally, the snakes were said to be rendered harmless by the smell of the burning incense, but today, to be safe, the resident vipers are devenomed. There is a snake museum beside the temple where there are snakes galore and you can see a staff member occasionally handling an albino Burmese python. Museum admission RM5 for adults, free admission for temple (9AM-6PM). Take Rapid Penang bus 401 or 401E from KOMTAR or 102 from Lebuh Chulia (2,70RM).
War Museum
  • War Museum Lot 1350, Mukim 12, Batu Maung, ☎ +60 4 626-5142, 391-0067 Fax:+60 4 626-4142, +60 4 644-8015. Daily 9AM-7PM (last admission). Admission fee RM35 (adult). Located at southeastern tip of Penang, it is a large military fortress built in 1930s by the British to protect the southern approaches to the island. The British Royal Engineers and a work force of local laborers blasted and dug into the hill to create a fort with underground military tunnels, an intelligence and logistic centre, halls, offices, ventilation shafts, artillery firing bays, sleeping quarters, cook houses as well as an infirmary. The site lay abandoned for 60 years before it was reopened by a private entrepreneur. Historical accuracy should not be the prime motivation for visitors, with the attraction being quite kitschy and generous with self-researched "facts".
  • Toy Museum, Jl Tanjung Bungah, (10 km northwest of Georgtown beside the Copthorne Hotel, take Rapid Penang bus 101 or 103 from KOMTAR) - there are more than 100,000 toys on display. open daily 9AM-8PM, admission fee RM20 for adults (2012).
  • Penang Bird Park, Jl Todak (near the Sunway Carnival Mall), Bandar Seberang Jaya, ☎ +60 4 399-1899. [54] - A small bird park located on the mainland (Seberang Perai) about 10 min from the Penang Bridge. Take a walk under nice shady trees and view dozens of kinds of birds including ostriches, sea eagles, peafowls, hornbills, flamingos, macaws, and grey parrots. There are also two walk-through aviaries and a fish pond. Some of the enclosures do need a touch of paint, but kids should love this place. Open daily from 9AM-7PM
  • Amazing Nibong Tebal. See the synchronised flashes of light gently hovering over mangrove trees that line the river bank. The specific species of mangrove tree which attracts these fireflies is the berembang (sonneratia caseolaris). Firefly watching at Sungai Kerian is increasingly drawing visitors and the fire fly is an icon of Nibong Tebal. The fireflies emit light at the lower abdomen not only to attract mates but also to scare away predators. Their abdomens are filled with a chemical called lucibufagens which in fact tastes pretty nasty.
  • Penang Peranakan Heritage. this is where you can find the remaining peranakan home used to be lived by a rich family,  edit

Events and festivalsEdit

  • Hari Raya Puasa. Muslim holiday celebrating the end of the fasting month
  • Chinese New Year. Chinese festival celebrating the lunar new year. Fourteen days later, during the full moon, there is a festival in which the gods from numerous temples around the island are brought out for a procession, with the route including Chulia St.
  • Thaipusam. A Hindu festival celebrated on the full moon in the Hindu-Tamil month of Thai (Jan/Feb).
  • Vesak, (Wesak). A Buddhist festival celebrated mainly by the Chinese community on the full moon of the 5th or 6th lunar month. It is characterized by a street parade. Temples will typically be filled with devotees and there will be a variety of activities by the various Buddhist associations and societies on this day.
  • George Town Festival, [55]. Held annually since 2010 to commemorate George Town's listing on the UNESCO heritage listing in 2008, it is a month long festival celebrating art, music, theatre, dance, opera and film. It usually runs from June to July and has attracted a lot of attention around the globe as one of the leading arts festivals in the region. It has a unique blend of local as well as international cultural showcases.
  •  OBSCURA Festival of Photography, [56]. This is one of Asia-Pacific's most successful and vibrant photography festivals. The festival includes print exhibitions and slideshows, workshops, talks, a photobook micro-festival, portfolio reviews and fringe events. OBSCURA Festival takes place in August annually and visitors come from all across Asia, Europe and the Americas to participate.
  • Penang International Dragon Boat Festival, [57]. Staged annually since 1979 and has successfully attracted teams from all over the world including Australia, China, Hong Kong, Japan, Indonesia, the Netherlands, the Philippines, South Africa, Thailand, Canada, and the USA. The event is now usually held at the Teluk Bahang Dam.
  • Penang Bon Odori Carnival. A Japanese traditional carnival usually with Japanese culture, drum and dance performances.
  • The Feast of St. Anne. Late July at St. Anne's Church, Bukit Mertajam. A Christian religious festival that includes a candle-light procession at the church.
  • Nine Emperor Gods vegetarian festival, held at Taoist temples for 9 days of the 9th lunar month in the Chinese calendar, normally at the end of Sept or Oct.
  • Deepavali. The Hindu Festival of Lights which, according to legend, celebrates the triumph of Lord Rama over the demon Raavana.
  • Penang Floral Festival. Held at the Penang Botanic Gardens annually.
  • Songkran (Thai water festival). Held around Wat Chayamangkalaram Buddhist Temple in April every year.[58]


Teluk Bahang beach
  • Beaches - The secluded and unspoiled beaches of Teluk Duyung (aka Monkey Beach), Muka Head, Pantai Kerachut, and Teluk Kampi are located on the north-western coast of the island, part of the Penang National Park (free entry). There is a pre-war lighthouse that is accessible from Monkey Beach involving a ~100m hike, boosting views of the pristine natural surroundings. You can reach these beaches by either hiking (1-3 hours from the entrance of the national park in Teluk Bahang) or by hiring a fisherman's sampan (wooden, often motorized, boat) from Teluk Bahang or Batu Ferringhi. The entrance of Penang National Park is located less than 1km down the road northwest of the small roundabout as one approaches from Batu Ferringhi.
  • Jungle Trekking and Camping - The Penang National Park was gazetted as a reserve in 1928 and boost a good many trails through virgin jungle. Camping is permissible wiithin Penang National Park but please check with authorities at the entrance. There are also hiking trails from the Botanic Gardens leading up to Penang Hill. The most frequented ones involves the tarred road that takes ~2.5 hours to complete starting from the entrance of Botanic Gardens. Be warned the hike involves ~800m in elevation and requires moderate fitness. The trails are very popular with locals over weekends and in evenings. There are natural trails criss-crossing Penang Hill but they are unmarked and should not be attempted unless one is with a guide or experienced local.
  • Golfing
    • Bukit Jambul, (Golf & Country Club), 2 Jl Bukit Jambul, ☎ +60 4 644-2255, Fax+60 4 644-2400, ([email protected]). Course designer: Robert Trent Jones Jr.
    • Bukit Jawi Golf Resort, Lot 414, Mlk6 Jl Paya Kemian Sempayi, [59], Sungai Jawi, Seberang Prai Selatan, ☎ +60 4 582-0759, Fax:+60 4 582-2613 ([email protected]).
  • 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. You can try out jet skis and parasailing near most of the hotels along Batu Feringhi beach.
  • Snorkelling is possible on day-trips to Pulau Payar Marine Park. These generally come in the form of arranged tours where hotel pickup would take you to Swettenham Pier in Georgetown to board a boat that takes 2+ hours to get to the marine park. Departs hotel 0715 and returns 1730.
  • Cycling (Explore Balik Pulau), Sungai Rusa,Balik Pulau, +60 16 4522 100, [1]. Explore Balik Pulau. Explore Balik Pulau offers daily guided cycling tour around the beautiful countryside area of Penang. See the other side of Penang, vastly different from the hustle and bustle of Georgetown. A friendly local guide will take you through the back roads of Balik Pulau, through Malay and Chinese Villages,orchard, plantation and fishing jetties. Schedule tour daily. Pick up can be arranged at your hotel in Georgetown or beach area by booking ahead.  edit
  • Nightlife can be found in Upper Penang Road, opposite the Eastern & Oriental (E&O) Hotel. It is a very popular place to be at night among locals and tourists alike. The rooftop of City Bayview Hotel (right around the corner of the E&O) now host a bar/lounge called Three Sixty Degree Skybar. Just down the road from E&O, "32 at the mansion" has a beach-fronting restaurant/bar. There are local indie band performances on weekends at China House (Victoria Street). Along Weld Quay, there is a lounge/bar called Jammin' overlooking the pier and adjoining jetties on top of Via Pre, an Italian restaurant. In Batu Ferringhi, Bora Bora (next to the Ship restaurant) is a laid back beach bar where you get sand between your toes over drinks.


Shopping mallsEdit

  • 1st Avenue Penang, [2]. A compact and relatively new mall located in the heart of Georgetown along Jalan Magazine, 1st Avenue Shopping Mall spreads over 7 retail levels with clothing, electronics and a cinema on the top floor.  edit
  • Gurney Plaza, Gurney Drive, [3]. One of the largest shopping mall in Georgetown with a good selection of international mid-to-upmarket brands like Coach, Rolex, Uniqlo, Topshop, AX, Calvin Klein. Gurney Plaza includes a upmarket supermarket (well stocked with cheeses and wines), a 12-screen cinema, and Parkson departmental store.  edit
  • Gurney Paragon, Gurney Drive, [4]. Located next to Gurney Plaza, Gurney Paragon is the newest shopping mall with a blend of fast fashion (H&M) and luxury brands (Canali, Michael Kors, Tumi, etc.). The mall has a good section dedicated to restaurants, with sea-fronting views. There is also a dedicated IMAX screen in this mall operated by Tanjung Golden Village Cinemas  edit
  • Queensbay Mall, [5]. The largest mall in Penang. Offers a wide variety of fast fashion (Forever 21, Uniqlo, Esprit, FCUK, Gap, MNG Mango, Lacoste), Aeon department store, Borders and Popular bookstore, and a cinema operated by Golden Screen Cinema. Accessible via RapidPenang 304, 308 and 401E.  edit
  • Straits Quay, [6]. Located in Tanjung Tokong, Straits Quay is primarily food-and-bev focused, with a few apparel and lifestyle (spa, hair saloon) outlets. It boost a marina where boat excursions and custom rentals are available. Straits Quay also houses the Penang Performing Arts Center (Penang PAC), where local and foreign productions can be found from time to time.  edit.
  • Prangin Mall, (Located next to KOMTAR building), [7]. Ground floor is populated with smartphone vendors, while the bulk of the mall is populated with small local boutiques. Prangin Mall is connected to 1st Avenue and KOMTAR via footbridge on the second floor.  edit
  • Penang Time Square, [8]. Opened in Oct 2009. Second Phase was completed in 2016 and M Mall O2O was opened.  edit
  • Sunway Carnival Mall, [9]. On Mainland.  edit

Outdoor marketsEdit

  • Flea Market at Lorong Kulit, [10]. early morning to 1pm.  edit, Next to the City Stadium. Open in morning, and closes by 1pm. A good place to see life in Penang. Stalls sell many things from fruits & vegetables, cheap clothes, antiques, curios, vintage clothing, or other stuff. Rapid Penang bus 10, 11, 102, 201, 202, 203, 204, 304 and 502
  • Pasar Malam (Night Market), (along Batu Ferringhi a). 8PM-12midnight. Many stalls with jewellry, clothing, bags, souvenirs, lamps, etc. Visited by both locals and tourists..  edit
  • Little Penang Street Market (showcasing Penang's creativity and heritage, combining stalls with performances) happens on the last Sunday of every month, (at Upper Penang Rd, near the E&O Hotel), [11]. 10AM-5PM.  edit


Penang is famous throughout the country for its Chinese bakeries. For ethnic Chinese tourists from Singapore or elsewhere in Malaysia, a visit to one of these bakeries is a must, and friends and office colleagues would generally be expecting some pastries as souvenirs from someone returning from a trip to Penang.

  • Ghee Hiang(义香)[60], 95 Beach St, ☎ +60 4 262-0635, Fax:+60 4 263-5158. 216 Macalister Rd, ☎ +60 4 227-2222, Fax:+60 4 227-2522 [email protected] The oldest bakery in Penang, established since 1856; other well-known product includes sesame seed oil.
  • Him Heang (馨香), 162-A Burma Rd ☎ +60 4 228-6129, +60 4 228-6130. Arguably the most famous Chinese bakery in Penang, popular among locals and Singaporean tourists. Its most famous products are Tambun Pneah and Beh Teh Sor. Go early in the morning or order through phone first due to limited daily production.
  • Ng Kee Cake Shop (伍记), 61 Cintra Street, ☎ +60 4 261-2229. The shop produces and sells Cantonese traditional biscuits including wedding biscuits. One of the famous biscuits is pepper biscuit (咸切酥, Ham Chit Soo).
  • Sin Hock Seng (新福成), 316, Penang Rd, ☎ +60 4 263-2667. The shop sells more than one hundred different types of biscuit. Basically, you can find any kind of traditional biscuit there.
  • 'Heap Hoe Hin {協和興}, 6743, Jl Raja Uda, Butterworth. ☎ +60 4 3239812. The shop sells more than 450 kinds of biscuits. Open since 1949.
  • Loong Nam & Co (隆南), 213 Hutton Lane,Georgetown, Penang. ☎ +60 4 2272663. Oldest Biscuit Shop, a Biscuit Specialist Shop Since 1928 and you may find all kinds of Biscuits and local products at this shop. Also they are famous for their Roti Jari and Roti Kapai.


  • Times Books, Gurney Paragon, Gurney Drive.
  • MPH Book Store, Gurney Plaza, Gurney Drive.
  • Popular Book Co., Komtar. Also has stores at Gurney Plaza and Queensbay Mall.
  • Chowrasta Market, Lots of old second-hand books for sale, from John Grisham, Dan Brown, Stephen King, to the 1985 Malaysian Tax Law Conference. Some digging through the pile of books may be needed.
  • Chulia Street bookshops, several bookstores on Chulia street sell secondhand books at a higher price, but in better condition
  • Borders, Queensbay Mall, Persiaran Bayan Indah, Bayan Lepas, 11900 Penang.
  • Tan Mark Book Centre, 283 Jalan Burma.


Penang offers plenty of delicious and cheap Malaysian food, but is famed throughout the rest of the country for some specialities such as Char Kway Teow, Penang Laksa, and Nasi Kandar, which are found practically everywhere on the island. Penang is an island of countless food stalls, a veritable "food paradise". It is known to many around Asia for its culinary originality and diversity. However, Penangites find good food in many places usually unknown (and even odd) to tourists.

The best way to find good food is to ask the locals. Don't be surprised that some stalls that are set up beside a busy road or coffee shops located in some inconspicuous back alley are considered to serve very good food by the locals, sometimes even under a tree! The rule of thumb is to be adventurous with your tongue and to look at the condition of the stall and its surroundings. Generally, if a stall is being patronised by many locals, the food will be good to eat.

For restaurant listings, see Georgetown, Batu Ferringhi, etc.

For the most well-known Char Kway Teow, try "Sister's Char Koay Teow" at Macalister Road. Sister's Char Koay Teow however, is widely regarded as overpriced, overrated and unfriendly service by most locals. More popular albeit still relatively expensive Char Koay Teow can be found at Lorong Selamat together with a wide variety of other stalls which are popular with both locals and tourists alike.

  • The Royale Bintang Penang, No 1 & 2, Pengkalan Weld, George Town, 10300, Penang, Malaysia, (604) 259 8888, [12]. The Royale Bintang Penang is a gorgeous 4-star business hotel in George Town, Penang, Malaysia. It offers different kinds of rooms/suites all equipped with Wireless Internet connection, TV with ASTRO channels, IDD phone, safe, Mini-bar, coffee and tea maker, complimentary bottled water and more. Some of its facilities and services are Business Center, Restaurant, Spa, Gym and Swimming Pool. Get intimate with the area and visit these interesting and key places near the hotel: Cheong Fatt Tze Mansion, Clan Jetties, Kapitan Keling Mosque, Kuan Yin Temple, Fort Cornwallis.  edit
  • Naughty Nuri's Warung Georgetown, 114, Jalan Burma, 10050 Georgetown, Penang Malaysia, 0169898628, [13]. 1800-0000. The famous Naughty Nuri's from Ubud, Bali is in Georgetown too. Cozy Balinese feel of outdoor and indoor seating while eating its famous addictive pork ribs and beer. Some of the add ons like sports channel and pool table adds fun to the night. Located near to Tune Hotel and New World Park.  edit
  • Joo Leong Cafe 裕隆茶室 (Sungai Tiram), 179-H, Sungai Tiram, Bayan Lepas, Penang Malaysia, +60104124865, +60124984865, [14]. 0620-1100 / 1800-2300. Famous for Seafood Porridge, Seafood Instant Noodle, Classic Roti Bakar, Chinese Silver Pomfret Fillets and Fish Balls Rice Noodle (Beehoon), Porridge, Satay, Nasi Lemak, Butter Toast (even for dinner). Glass cup is for double eggs (and people order this during dinner time).  edit
  • Bao Sheng Durian Farm- A king of fruit experience in an organic durian farm. Located in Balik Pulau, Bao Sheng Durian Farm first opened in 1959 after ‘Durian Seng’s’ father - Chang Fatt Hin discovered durian grafting. Today, the farm is managed by his son who switched the 6.7-acre durian farm to organic farming practices free from harmful pesticides. Now coming to their 3rd generation of durian farmers, Durian Seng a.k.a Cheng Teik Seng together with his son and wife manage the durian farm that comes fully equipped with Standard Villa, Deluxe Villa, Tatami Room and pristine swimming pools. [61]

Penang cuisineEdit

If you've been travelling in Singapore or elsewhere in Malaysia, you'll see some familiar names, but don't be fooled: Penang laksa or hokkien mee are quite different from what you'd get in, say, Kuala Lumpur or Singapore. Topping the list are:

  • Mee Sotong - Hameed’s spicy Mee Rebus, noodles served with a fishy, spicy sauce made with chilli and cuttle fish, has been at the Kota Selera Hawker Center in Padang Kota Lama (Fort Cornwallis) for nearly 30 years.
  • Assam Laksa (亚三叻沙)- A far cry from the sweet, coconutty Singapore version, this noodle soup comes with sour broth flavored with tamarind (assam) with pureed fish, fruits, veggies and a generous helping of chili mixed in. Watch out, the combination is powerful and will have the uninitiated breathing fire! Famous assam laksa include Balik Pulau New Market, Air Itam market, Gottlieb Road, Gurney Drive, etc.
  • Penang Char Koay Teow (炒馃条) - The definitive version of the ubiquitous stir-fried flat rice noodles, tossed with bean sprouts, cockles, and anything else the chef has handy. Eggs are additional and cockles can be opt out, if preferred by the customer; request when placing order. Some say the best Char Koay Teow can be found at Lorong Selamat but it costs at least RM8 per plate and that only if you have the patience of a saint to wait for it. Another choice is Ah Leng Char Koay Teow and the Char Koay Teow in Bukit Emas Restaurant, Seberang Perai.
  • Penang Nasi Kandar - White rice (nasi) with anything else that you want with it! Usually served with fried chicken, fried fish, prawns, squid, hardboiled eggs, various vegetables, and a curry (which is poured onto the rice). Be careful though! Taking too many of the 'side dishes' can be quite expensive. Can be found at various places around Georgetown. The most popular restaurant selling nasi kandar is Nasi Kandar Line Clear in Penang Road , Restoran Kapitan at Chulia Street and Kayu Nasi Kandar in the Bayan Lepas area.
  • Hokkien Mee - Two types of noodles in prawn and pork soup with slices of pork, prawns, hard boiled egg, vegetable, beans sprout and sprinkling of deep fried shallots.
  • Koay Teow Th'ng (粿条汤)- Flat rice noodles (Koay Teow) in clear chicken soup (Th'ng) with slices of chicken, pork and fish cake. Garnish with chopped spring onions. Some places have duck meat and other organ meats as extras. Some say the shops in Hutton Lane and a couple of shops opposite Tandoori House are a good choices for this dish. You can also get good KTT at Gurney Drive, though at higher prices.
  • Lobak, or Lorbak (卤肉)- Minced pork wrapped in tofu skin) - Very famous in Penang, Lorbak is similar to sausage (Lor means a kind of sauce whereas bak means meat in Hokkien). You can choose the accompanying servings of prawn fritters, tofu, fish cakes, Taiwan sausages, century egg (preserved duck egg, unique taste and texture. Usually eaten with pickled young ginger) and others. Locals dip Lorbak in sweet sauce and chilli sauce. Can be found in rather consistent quality all over Penang. Also available at Gurney Drive's hawker centre and New World Park.
  • Penang Sar Hor Fun (炒河粉) - A local dish with koay teow (flat rice cakes) in a delicious broth of beaten eggs and seafood bits. Goes best with pickled green chillies.
  • Seafood - As you might expect on an island, seafood is abundant. Head for the fishing village of Teluk Bahang in the north, or go to Batu Maung / Teluk Kumbar in the south for fresh fare at local prices. You can also get good seafood at Batu Ferringhi beach.
  • Or Chen (Oyster Omelette) (Chinese:蚝煎)- This is a popular dish available in multiple locations all around Georgetown. The food centre at Gurney Drive is a tourist-friendly place to get an oyster omelette. It is next to the Gurney Plaza shopping centre and a stone's throw away from G Hotel. Expect to queue for ten to fifteen minutes; the price ranges from RM 8 to RM 16 depending on the portion you are ordering.
  • Pasembor (Indian mixed fruits) - Despite its name, this dish does not contain any fruit. Basically it is cucumber plus your chosen ingredients covered in spicy peanut sauce. You can choose to add squid, sausage, tofu, local crackers, crabs, potato, eggs, and fish cake, among other possibilities. Prices range from RM 5 to RM 20, depending on the ingredients you want on your pasembor. Available at the food centre at Gurney Drive.
  • Lor Mee (Noodles)卤面 - A bowl of yellow noodles in sticky brown coloured sauce. Unique to this part of Malaysia and a must try, lor mee can be found on the road called "Lebuh Presgrave" in town. There is a little link house converted to a restaurant that serves them. Also available in other hawker centres. Depending on the cook, it may or may not contain innards such as intestines, stomach, and liver. You can ask them first and if they do serve innards, you may request a serving without them. Lor mee are commonly served with shreds of chicken breast and some pork slices. Prices range from RM 3 to RM 6.
  • Satay (Malay: sate) 沙爹- the famous meat-on-a-stick, is a traditional Malay food typically made from marinated meat - chicken, mutton or beef, skewered onto bamboo sticks and grilled over hot charcoals. A fresh salad of cucumbers & onions are served together with a spicy-sweet peanut dipping sauce for dipping.

Traditional foodsEdit

  • Nutmeg, (豆蔻) products - In traditional medicine, nutmeg oil or balm were used for illnesses related to the nervous and digestive systems. Preserved nutmeg strips either in dry or wet form are used as a snack by locals.
  • Traditional biscuits such as Tambun Pneah (淡文饼), Beh Teh Sor (马蹄酥), Heong Pneah (香饼), Pong Pneah (清糖饼), Tau Sar Pneah (豆沙饼) and etc.

Desserts include:

  • Kaya, (a type of jam) - A mixture of eggs and cocount milk to be spread over anything you want. According to some, the best kaya is at a little coffee shop at the end of Madras Lane. To impress the locals, order some kaya toast and dip it in some half-boiled egg.
  • Coconut tart - If you have eaten egg tart before then instead of the egg put in some coconut and voila! You get coconut tart and definitely the best is at Cintra Lane.
  • Cendol - A mixture of blended ice with big mushy red beans with gula melaka (brown sugar) thrown in. This will satisfy anyone even if it is raining. Cendol can be found anywhere but the best is at Penang Road.
  • Durian Fruit 榴梿 - Penang's durian is unique in the world. Best way to eat is at the stall (don't try to take it back to your hotel). They open the durian for you. You pay what you eat. The medium durian will cost RM8-15. You don't have to worry about buying rotten durians. Stalls are usually located by the roadside next to durian plantations, along the road from Teluk Bahang (almoust end station of bus 101) to Balik Pulau (end station of bus 401E or 401), and along the road from Air Itam to Relau. Within Georgetown, there is one at Jalan Anson, opposite Jl Dunlop, and another along Jl Macalister.

And wash it all down with some...

  • Teh Tarik (literally, Pulled Tea) - This sweet tea-with-milk drink is "pulled" by the vendor, that is, the drink is poured into the serving cup from a can/pot that is moved from near the cup to a considerable height above it. This is repeated until frothy. (Like most Malaysian drinks, it's very sweet, but you can ask for "less sweet" (or "kurang manis" in Malay) - and it won't be quite so sweet.) Enjoy at any Mamak (Indian Muslim) stall or restaurant along Penang Road in the evening, chit chat with friends, while watching the culture of Penangites.


Most of Penang's fancier accommodation is in the form of beach resorts on the main tourist beach of Batu Feringghi. More backpacker-friendly options, as well as a few classical luxury hotels, can be found in Georgetown. You can find many budget hotels at Chulia Street, Muntri Street, and Love Lane area. See those articles for details; the following listings cover only accommodations elsewhere on the island.

Batu Ferringhi beach area:

  • PARKROYAL Penang, Batu Ferringhi Beach, Phone:+60 4 881-1133, Fax:+60 4 881-2233, mailto:[email protected],]. 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, [63], owned and operated by famous Eastern & Oriental Hotel in Georgetown. Superb standard of accommodation and food, with prices to match.
  • Hard Rock Hotel Penang [64], Batu Ferringhi Beach, 11100 Penang, Tel: +60 4 8811711 Fax: +60 4 8812155
  • Shangri-La's Golden Sands Resort, [65].
  • Holiday Inn Resort Penang, [66].
  • Hydro Hotel Penang, [67]. Middle-of-the-range hotel facing the beach with superb view.

-" Lost Paradise Resort " Dr Chew: +60194707218 [68] Lost Paradise Resort is a seafront tropical haven which is located in the famed “Batu Ferringhi” area of Penang. Nestled within 90,000 sq ft of private and pristine beach. the resort is surrounded by a huge garden rich with a myriad of tropical trees and flowering plants.


  • Boutel-Dato Koyah Penang, TNo. 17, Jln. Dato Koyah, Penang. (A 3-storey heritage house at the heart of Georgetown, Penang. It is ideally located within walking distant to most places in Georgetown.), +60 16-661-3178(Lainux) or +60 16-207-8948(Kimi), [15]. checkin: 3:00pm; checkout: 12:00pm. - each floor is individual unit with bathroom & small kitchen(for simple cooking only) - bathroom with rain shower head & solar water heater - air conditioned - 2 queen sized beds & can sleep 4 adults  edit
  • Seven Terraces, 2-16 Stewart Lane, ☎ +60 4 264 2333, [69]. One of the most stylish boutique hotels in the heritage enclave. Refurbished pre-war Chinese residences that comes with pool and restaurant specializing in nonya cuisine.
  • Eastern & Oriental Hotel Penang, 10 Farquhar St, ☎ +60 4 222-2000, (Fax:+60 4 262-6333, [email protected]), [70]. Location: 5⁰ 25'23.01"N ; 100⁰ 20'8.96"E. Founded in 1884 by legendary hoteliers the Sarkies brothers, the E&O is Penang's grand old colonial hotel. Rooms from RM400++.
  • Hotel Penaga, Corner of Jl Hutton & Lebuh Clarke, +60 4 261-1891, [16]. Rooms and suites individually furnished with antique cabinets, benches and chairs. The classics of mid 20th century furniture design are also in every room. They also have world class facilities such as the Penaga Spa, a business centre, a garden, and a swimming pool. From RM443.70.  edit
  • Hotel Royal Penang, (formerly Dorsett Penang Hotel), 3 Jl. Larut, (Larut Rd), ☎ +60 4 2267888. (Fax:+60 4 2296601), [72]. This 273-room Singapore-managed, is a short drive from Komtar and the food hub of Macalister Rd. From RM480++ for deluxe room.
  • Hotel Jen Penang, (formerly Traders Hotel Penang), Magazine Rd, (toll free in Malaysia 1-300-88-7388), ☎ +60 4 262-2622, (Fax:+60 4 262-6526), ([email protected]), [73]. Next to Komtar and Prangin Mall, in the heart of Georgetown.

Gurney Drive area:

  • Evergreen Laurel Hotel Penang, 53 Gurney Drive (Pesiaran Gurney), [74]. ☎ +60 4 226-9988, (Fax:+60 4 226-9989) ([email protected]). Located on Persiaran Gurney or Gurney Drive, one of the most popular places in Penang, Evergreen Laurel Hotel Penang gives guests access to a deluge of lively restaurants that come to life at night. It delivers first-rate services such as Airport transfer, Laundry service, Room service, Massage service and Sauna. It also offers delightful facilities like Business center, Coffee Shop, Meeting facilities, Restaurant, Poolside bar and more.
  • G Hotel, 168A Gurney Drive, ☎ +60 4 238-0000, (Fax:+60 4 238-0088), ([email protected]), [75]. Brand new post-modern luxury hotel in town with direct sea views. Comfortable, hip and funky.
  • Gurney Hotel, 18 Gurney Drive (Persiaran Gurney), [76], ☎ +60 4 370-7000, (Fax:+60 4 370-5000) ([email protected]).

Budget options:

  • 75 Travellers Lodge, (Formerly W & O Guest House) 75 Jl. Muntri, ☎ +60 4 262-3378, ([email protected]). Right in the middle of Chinatown. Free 1 hr internet included in the room rate with 24 hr WiFi. Dorm beds from RM12. Single from RM18-22, double/twin rooms RM25-35.
  • Cintra Heritage House, 1 Lebuh Cintra (Near intersection of Cintra and Chulia), + 6 04 262 8232 (), [17]. checkin: 2PM; checkout: 12PM. Boutique hotel in the historical area. The hotel are shop houses featuring the Southern Chinese Eclectic style and which was built around 1840 -1900’s and once served as a Hair Dressing Saloon for the Japanese Officers and local administrators of Penang during the Post period from 1940’s – 1960 ‘ RM 150 to RM 220 for private room with attached bathroom.  edit
  • Eastern Hotel, 509 Chulia St. ☎ +60 4 261-4597, (Fax:+60 4 261-0008).
  • Hotel 1926, 227 Jl. Burmah, ☎ +60 4 228-1926, (Fax:+60 4 227-7926). Heritage boutique hotel. Room Rate: RM80-100.
  • Hotel Oasis, 23 Love Lane, ☎ +60 4 226-2126, (Fax:+60 4 261-3884).
  • Hostel Red Inn, 55, Love Lane (walk in to Love Lane from ''7''-Eleven Chulia St.), +60 4 261-3931, [18]. checkin: 1PM; checkout: 11AM. New and stylish. Laundry service, DVD, clean toilets, breakfast included, use of computer for free internet (no printer). RM28-100.  edit
  • Love Lane Inn, 54 Love Lane, just off Chulia St. ☎+60 16 422-7111 (Jimmy) or +60 419 8409 (reception) or ([[email protected]]). Friendly and helpful owner Jimmy has been in business for 13 years. Shared bathroom, clean, comfortable beds. Rooms: RM32-50 double, Family room 60-75, Single 30 (January 2016), Dorm 15. A/C plus 10RM. Free WiFi.
  • Old Penang Guesthouse, 53 Love Lane, ☎ +60 4 263-8805, [email protected], [77]. Budget heritage. A modern fitout in a historic restored pre-war building. A/C, WiFi, breakfast included. towels provided. satTV and DVDs, security lockers for rent, hot water shower, high quality spring mattress with linens and duvets, courtyard, laundry service, luggage storage, travel information and tour desk and 24 hr reception. RM23-90.
  • Oasis Hotel, Chulia St. This is the old backpacker's standby ("Swiss Hotel under new management"). The atmospheric courtyard where backpackers used to hang out is no more. RM35 for a single.
  • Oriental Guest House, (formerly known as W&O Guesthouse), 81 Jl. Muntri, ☎ +60 4 261-3378, ([email protected]). 2 storey shop house building with the same owner as 75 Travellers Lodge a few doors away. Large airy rooms with windows, fan, sink. Friendly, clean and efficient, right in the middle of Chinatown. Cafe (known as Western Oriental Cafe) with TV. Breakfast, lunch and dinner in front of reception. Internet is free for guests and RM3/hr, RM2/half hr for others, laundry service, taxi, arrange local tours, sell boat, bus and train tickets and help to apply for Thailand visas. Single RM32, 30 if you stay for 3 nights, shared bathroom (January 2016), double/twin RM20-30, triple RM30-40.
  • Reggae Hotel and Guesthouse, 57 Love lane. Dorm rate: RM25. Opened Sept 2011, clean with a nice bar/restaurant/patio area. Western-style bathroom with hot shower. Free wifi. Dorm beds have individual 'stalls' with curtain for privacy and a small mirrored cabinet and two power plugs. Scooter rental in front is not run by Reggae, but the scooters are reliable if a little on the pricy side - RM30 for the day with RM20 deposit.
  • [email protected] St, 62, Lebuh Muntri (Muntri St) (via Upper Penang Rd. A stone's throw away from Cititel Hotel and Cheong Fatt Sze Mansion.), +60 4 250-0287 (), [19]. checkin: 2PM; checkout: 12PM. Boutique hostel with a chic, comfortable and secure environment. Bar and cafe serving daily breakfast and beers in the evening, laundry service, bunk and suites, lockers, light boxes, clean toilets, library and iPad2 for surfing, printing facilities. RM33-RM38 for bunk beds & RM 136 for suite with full facilities.  edit
  • SD Guesthouse at 2 locations. [78], 15 Love Lane, ☎ +60 4 264-3743, and 28 Muntri St, ☎ +60 4 261-6102, ([email protected]). From RM18-55, free and coffee, very nice location and service.
  • Star Lodge, 39 Jl. Muntri, ☎ +60 4 262-6378, ([email protected]). All rooms with windows, fan, sink, toilet and hot shower. Single rooms RM45 (shared bathroom), double/twin rooms RM52-? (private bathroom), triple rooms RM45-60. For A/C add on RM10/day. Free 1 hr internet included in the room rate plus free 24 hr WiFi.

Bayan Lepas area:

  • Eastin Hotel Penang, 1 Solok Bayan Indah, Queensbay, +60 4 612 1111, [20].  edit
  • Equatorial Penang, 1 Jl Bukit Jambul, ☎ +60 4 643-8111, Fax:+60 4 881-1180, ([email protected]), [79]. On the east coast of Penang, convenient for the airport and its industrial area.
  • Georgetown City Hotel, 1-Stop Midlands Park, Burmah Road 10350 Georgetown, Penang, +604 227 7111. The Georgetown City Hotel, Penang, formerly known as Berjaya Penang Hotel, is a four-star hotel managed by One Network Hotel Management Sdn Bhd. It is strategically situated in the heart of Penang, the food hub of Malaysia. Being part of the “1-Stop Midlands Park” business and entertainment complex, it provides many shopping, leisure and entertainment opportunities. Visit hotel website at  edit
  • Pinangtree Serviced Residences, 32 Solok Tavoy 10250, +60124586980. checkin: 2.00pm; checkout: 12.00pm. 2 storey peranakan styled with 3 air-con bedrooms, 2 bathrooms/toilets. Near Penang street foods, supermarkets and public transport. Simple cooking and self laundry allowed. Comes with TV & Wifi.  edit
  • Tune Hotel - Downtown Penang (Tune Hotel - Downtown Penang), Section 15, 100 Burmah Road, 10050 George Town, Penang, Malaysia, +604 2275 807, [21]. Located along Jalan Burmah. A variety of eateries within walking distance from the hotel.  edit
  • Jo and Jim Lim, Clove Hall (11 Clove Hall Road,Georgetown,10050, Penang), +6042290818. clove-hall is a private Edwardian Anglo-Malay bungalow located in a quiet residential street. It provides an intimate escape from the heat and the bustle of busy George Town but is well within walking distance to it. Opened since 2009, it features six individual suites with wooden floors, four poster beds, mosquito nets and ceiling fans. RM675 and RM575.  edit
  • Hotel Chulia Mansion, 413,Lebuh Chulia (Gerogetown), +6042618788, [22]. checkin: 1400; checkout: 1200. Chulia Mansion:established with an environmental-friendly concept, in the core of Penang, Georgetown. Us55 onward.  edit
  • The Royale Bintang Penang, No 1 & 2, Pengkalan Weld, George Town, 10300, Penang, Malaysia, (604) 259 8888, [23]. The Royale Bintang Penang is a gorgeous 4-star business hotel in George Town, Penang, Malaysia. It offers different kinds of rooms/suites all equipped with Wireless Internet connection, TV with ASTRO channels, IDD phone, safe, Mini-bar, coffee and tea maker, complimentary bottled water and more. Some of its facilities and services are Business Center, Restaurant, Spa, Gym and Swimming Pool. Get intimate with the area and visit these interesting and key places near the hotel: Cheong Fatt Tze Mansion, Clan Jetties, Kapitan Keling Mosque, Kuan Yin Temple, Fort Cornwallis.  edit
  • Mansion One Serviced Apartment (Mansion One), 57 Jalan Sultan Ahmad Shah (Persiaran Gurney), 0166708017. ( Available for daily,weekly and monthly rental.  edit


  • Penang Tourism Action Council, [80] 56th Floor, KOMTAR, ☎ +60 4 262-0202, Fax:+60 4 263-1020 [email protected]
  • Tourism Malaysia, [81].
    • Penang Tourist Centre, Bangunan Penang Port Bhd, Pesara King Edward. ☎ +60 4 261-6663
    • Penang Development Corporation Tourism Division, 1 Persiaran Mahsuri, Bayan Baru. ☎ +60 4 643-2111, Fax:+60 4 643-2405
    • Tourism Information Centre, Level 3, Concourse KOMTAR. Phone:+60 4 261-4461
    • Tourism Malaysia Penang Branch, 56th Floor, KOMTAR. Phone:+60 4 261-0058 / 264-3494. Fax:+60 4 262-3688 [email protected]
  • Staynest- Online Marketplace for accommodations, (Hotels, Serviced Apartments, Guest House, Hostel, Boutique Hotels), No Booking Fees, List your space for free. [84], ([85]).☎ Phone:+60 4 226-1388. Fax:+60 4 376 9065

Emergency numbersEdit

  • Ambulance - Police - Fire: ☎ 999
  • Rescue (Civil Defense): 991
  • All the abovementioned numbers: ☎ 112 from mobile phones
  • Tourist police:, ☎ +60 4 222-1522
  • Telegram service: ☎ 100
  • International and domestic operator assisted service: ☎ 101
  • Directory enquiry service: ☎ 103
  • Multilingual international service: ☎ 198

Stay safeEdit

Penang is a relatively safe place for travellers, however it has its share of crime. Apply common sense as you would when you're at your home country. Precautions should be taken to guard against snatch-thieves, pickpockets and scams. Some other precautions:

  • Avoid walking alone or be extra cautious in deserted places, alleys, and streets, especially after dark. Love Lane has become safer in the last few years, when it was a red-light strip but muggings and snatch-thefts can occasionally happen. Some suburbs like Jelutong have higher crime rates but these are usually off the tourist trail.
  • Don't accept rides from unlicensed unmarked taxis known as Kereta Sapu. Be wary of strangers offering a ride in their car.
  • Be wary when carrying valuables (camera, handbags, etc.) in motorbike or bicycle baskets. Thieves (usually also on motorcycles) may target these when you're stopped at a traffic light.
  • Use the safe in your hotel room if available to store valuables. Do not leave valuables in your car.
  • Be careful when placing your cellphone, handbag, camera, valuables on the table when dining at roadside stalls, food courts, or open-air restaurants. Quick fingered thieves may walk by and swipe them when you are not looking...
  • Do be wary of purse-snatchers - especially when wearing jewelry and/or carrying bags. Some of these felons practice the art of 'ride-by' grabbing handbags which can result in serious injury to the victim. So ladies: walk against traffic and keep the handbag on the side away from the road or better still, don't carry one. Safety in numbers may apply.
  • Do be wary of the (sometimes aggressive) long-tail macaques at the botanical gardens. Don't eat when entering the gardens. The monkeys love food (including ice-cream) and may try to get it..
  • Look out for men who grope people on the bus (it happens to both male and females!). In the event this happens, get off the bus to a fairly populated, well lit street, in the event the perpetrator may choose to follow you. You can easily look help from other locals or the 'Polis' (police).
  • Be careful about your surroundings in waters off Batu Feringhi beach, where you may be harmed by unregulated & haphazardly piloted jet skis and/at other water activities. Jellyfish (including the rarely seen but dangerous box jellyfish) can be a risk at certain times of the year. Be careful for strong currents off Kerachut Beach during the monsoon season (usually June-Oct). The sea off Kerachut Beach may be infested with jellyfish during certain months, so swimming during this times is not advisable.
  • Look both ways when crossing the road. Do not assume vehicles will stop for you at pedestrian crossings.
  • But don't be too paranoid and enjoy Penang.
  • Be careful with street food. Easy to get food poisoning.


  • Immigration Dept Georgetown Office, [86] Beach St, ☎ +60 4 250-3410, Fax:+60 4 262-8090

Consulates in Penang

  • Bangladesh, 15 Bishop St, ☎ +60 4 262-1085
  • Canada, 3007 Tkt. Perusahaan 5, Kaw Perusahaan Perai, ☎ +60 4 389-3300
  • Denmark, 1st Floor Wisma Rajab, 82 Bishop St, ☎ +60 4 262-4886 Fax:+60 4 261-4963
  • Finland, 8th Floor Wisma Penang Garden, 42 Jl Sultan Ahmad Shah, ☎ +60 4 229-4300 Fax:+60 4 227-4533
  • France, 2nd Floor Wisma Rajab, 82 Bishop St, ☎ +60 4 262-9707
  • Germany, Plot 205-206 Jl Kampung Jawa, Free Industrial Zone 3, , ☎ +60 4 641-5707
  • Hungary, Plot 226-228 Jalan Kampung Jawa Free Industrial Zone 3, Phone:+60 4 644-9937
  • Indonesia, 467 Burma Rd, [88], ☎ +60 4 227-4686
  • Japan, Level 28, Menara, BHL, 51 Jl Sultan Ahmad Shah, [89], ☎ +60 4 226-3030, Fax:+60 4 226-1030. Office hour: Weekdays, closed on Weekends & Public Holidays. Office: 8:30AM-12:30PM, 2PM-5PM. Visa counter: 8:30AM-12PM, 2PM-4PM.
  • Netherlands, 202 Jl Sultan Azlan Shah, ☎ +60 4 647-3333
  • Norway, 4 Jl Sepoy Lines, , ☎ +60 4 226-3459
  • Russia, 37 Green Hall, , ☎ +60 4 262-2944
  • Sri Lanka, 1 Bishop St, ☎ +60 4 261-3093
  • Sweden, 3rd Floor, Standard Chartered Bank Chambers, 2 Beach St, ☎ +60 4 262-5333
  • United Kingdom, 3rd Floor, Standard Chartered Bank Chambers, 2 Beach St, ☎ +60 4 262-5333
  • Thailand, 1 JlTunku Abdul Rahman, ☎ +60 4 226-8029,+60 4 226-9484, Fax:+60 4 226-3121, ([email protected]). Office hour for visa applications: 9AM-noon, closed on Malay and Thai holidays.
  • Turkey 3rd Floor, Standard Chartered Bank Chambers, 2 Beach St, ☎ +60 4 262-5333


  • TAGS Spine & Joint Specialists @ The One, Jalan Mahsuri, Bayan Lepas (Tel: 1.700.81.9182 / Web: / Services: Chiropractic, Orthopedics, Physiotherapy, Rehabilitation, Sports Medicine, DTS Spinal Decompression, Swiss Dolorclast Shockwave ESWT, NSFi Insight Advanced Spinal Screening, Knee Bracing, Scoliosis Bracing, Powerplate, Orthotics )

Get outEdit

  • Pulau Aman - A small island between the first Penang Bridge and the new bridge. The ferry is at Batu Kawan's Batu Musang Jetty (you need own transport to get there- 45 min drive from Georgetown). The 5 min boat trip costs RM6 for a return journey. From Mon-Fri the boat departs Batu Musang for Pulau Aman at 10am, 1pm, 4pm and 7pm. The trip from Pulau Aman for Bukit Tambun at 8am, 12noon, 3pm and 6pm. On weekends, the boats are always running. For enquiries, you can contact the Seberang Perai Fishermen Association at +604 397 9796 or +604 530 7185. Most locals come here to enjoy the live Mantis Prawn of your choice (relatively cheap vs price on Penang island) and bring to the restaurant for them to steam. The Mee Udang is popular too. There's also some hiking treks and it's a good place for fishing.
  • Perhentian Islands - Pulau Perhentian. Many agents, including guest houses, in Georgetown sell transfers to the islands which includes minibus transfer and a two-way ferry ticket (140RM August 2014), to travel indpendently requires a bus to Kota Bahru followed by a second bus to Kuals Besut for the boat jetty to the islands so this makes sense. You can leave Georgetown at 5am (hotel pickup) and be on the islands by midday.
  • Taiping- a town in north Perak State
  • Medan - on Sumatra, Indonesia. There is no longer a ferry to Medan, as the price of flights to Medan became cheaper than the ferry. You can fly to Medan with several airlines.
  • Bangkok - If planning going on into Thailand, your best bet is to hop on the Butterworth-Bangkok International Express. It's dirt cheap (RM112-lower berth), very comfortable, super clean sheets, and blankets laundered after each use) and wide cosy beds. Train leaves everyday at 14:20 from Butterworth Station and arrives in Bangkok just about time for lunch the next day. You can, of course, jump off at Surat Thani (if going to the islands of Ko Samui and Phang Nga), arriving in the wee hours of the night like 03:00 or 04:00, as well as Hua Hin around 07:00. It's not worth your while for short trips such as Hat Yai because all tickets are charged at sleeping berth prices and your berth is only made ready at the Hat Yai station stopover.


This is a usable article. It has information for getting in as well as some complete entries for restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please plunge forward and help it grow!