If you wonder what activities can be done or places to be visited in Penang, check out this Penang Travel Guide. Penang is one of the most sought-after destinations in Malaysia. The island that is located in the northern part of Peninsular Malaysia is rich in cultural heritage and history. There are many monuments and colonial buildings that you can visit in Penang. The delicious local cuisines and gorgeous beaches enhance the tourism aspect of the island further. Since it is such a great place to have a holiday, many tourists seek to travel to this island.
Penang Travel Guide – The Background of Penang Island
Penang Island got its name from a local tree that can be found widely on the island – Penang tree, or betel nut tree. The word Penang is not the original name of the island. The first name of the island was Pulau Ka-Satu or First Island. It was then renamed as Prince of Wales Island to commemorate the birthday of the Prince of Wales at that time, George IV. It eventually changes its name to Penang Island as we all know today.
Penang is made of two parts – the island and the mainland. Most of the tourist attractions are situated on the island itself. The peak season for the island is during the holidays such as Chinese New Year, New Year, Christmas, and school holidays. In the peak season, you can expect to see more crowds in the capital city of Georgetown. Plus, hotel prices also rise quite significantly during this time.
Penang Travel Guide – How to Get to Penang
Since it is an island, you can reach Penang Island by ferry, car or plane. There is a ferry service that you can take from several different locations. You can take the ferry from Langkawi or Butterworth (mainland). If you come from Kuala Lumpur, you can take a bus from KL and stop at Penang Sentral in Butterworth. The ferry terminal is only within a walking distance from the bus station. The ferry terminal, which is also known as Pengkalan Sultan Abdul Halim, provides several ferry trips to the island.
You can expect an available ferry every 20 minutes or so. The first ferry of the day departs at 5.20 in the morning, and the last one will be at 12.40pm. The fare for the ferry is only RM1.20 for adults and RM0.60 for children. If you are to travel to Penang Island by car, you can take the PLUS Highway from KL and enter the island via one of the two bridges – Penang Bridge or Penang Second Bridge (Jambatan Sultan Abdul Halim Mu’adzam Shah). You can use the former by taking the PLUS Exit 161 and the toll for the bridge is RM7.00 for cars. The former also has a toll with RM8.50 of charge for cars, and you can enter the bridge by taking Exit 157.
Penang Travel Guide – Best Places to Visit in Penang
If you are to have a holiday in Penang, there are plenty of places that you can visit. Make sure you arrange your plan accordingly for you to be able to finish exploring the island. It might be a small island, but it normally takes several days for the visitors to finish visiting all the famous attractions.
Must-Visit Places in Penang
- Street Art Murals
- Fort Cornwallis
- Penang Hill
- Gurney Drive
- Kek Lok Si Temple
- Cheong Fatt Sze Mansion
- Batu Ferringhi Beach
- Night Markets at Tanjong Bungah
- ESCAPE Adventureland
- Penang National Park
- Penang City Hall
- Chulia Street
To know more about the fun places in Penang, check out this Free things to do in Penang article.
Penang Travel Guide – The Accommodations
There are many hotels situated very near to the famous attractions I listed above. The hotels range from a budget hotel and all the way up to the most luxurious, five-star hotels.
Some of the best budget hotels in Penang are
- Hotel Chennai
- Hotel Regal Malaysia
- The 80’s Guesthouse
- Inn Residence 18
- Grand Inn Hotel
If you wish to enjoy a little bit of privacy but without breaking any bank account, you may select one of the mid-range hotels below:
Some of the best mid-range hotels in Penang are
- Glow Penang
- Hotel Sentral Georgetown
- Neo+ Penang
- Cititel Express Penang
- Chulia Mansion
For those who would like to have a memorable stay and luxurious holiday experience, you may choose to stay at one of the world’s class hotels in Penang.
Some of the best luxury hotels in Penang are
- Shangri-La’s Rasa Sayang Resort & Spa
- Eastern & Oriental Hotel
- PARKROYAL Penang Resort
- G Hotel Gurney
- Hotel Equatorial Penang
You may make your hotel reservation via Tripfez as the website provides you with the best price offering from many hotel websites. You can get a discount up to 80%, and this savings allows you to save more and travel more!
Penang Travel Guide – Best Places to Eat
You cannot go to Penang without having a taste of its delicious local foods. There are many restaurants and hawkers on the island that you can choose. The foods are mouthwatering and cheap.
Must-Try Restaurants & Hawkers
- 1885 Restaurant in Mandarin & Oriental Hotel – 10, Lebuh Farquhar
- The Sire Restaurant – Lebuh King
- Farquhar Mansion Fine Dining & Lounge – 33, Farquhar Street
- New Lane Hawker Center – Off Macalister Road
- Nasi Kandar Line Clear – 177, Penang Road
- 42 La Boheme – 42, Jalan Sri Bahari
- Mamak Mee Goreng at Bangkok Lane – 270, Jalan Burma, Lorong Bangkok
- Penang Road Famous Teochew Cendol – Lebuh Keng Kwee, off Penang Road
Penang Travel Guide – Fun Activities to Do
Besides than visiting interesting places in Penang, there are also several fun activities that you can do while having a holiday on the island. These fun activities will not cost you any money and will not put you in a state of boringness. Followings are some of the fun, free things to do in Penang:
Free Things To Do in Penang
- Visit Heritage Walk
- Enjoy nightlife in Batu Ferringhi
- Visit Penang Flea Market
- Lounge on Beautiful Beach in Tanjong Bungah and Batu Ferringhi
- Hiking at Penang National Park
Penang Travel Guide – Shopping Malls in Penang
Now, if you have extra cash to splurge, you may go on a shopping spree at one of the many shopping malls in Georgetown, Penang. Some of the famous malls on the island are:
Must-Visit Shopping Malls in Georgetown
- The Queensbay Mall – Persiaran Bayan Indah, Queens Bay
- Gurney Paragon – Persiaran Gurney
- 1st Avenue Mall – Jalan Magazine
- Plaza Gurney – Persiaran Gurney
- Straits Quay – Jalan Seri Tanjung Pinang, Tanjung Tokong
- Prangin Mall – Jalan Dr. Lim Chwee Leong
- Penang Times Square – Jalan Dato Keramat
Indeed, Penang is one of the best places in Malaysia for vacations. The weather is sunny and warm, the city is lively, the foods are tasty, and the people are very friendly. We bet you will enjoy your trip to this island. Do you find this Penang Travel Guide beneficial and helpful? Spread the love and share it with others!