Malaysia has a variety of travel spots that suits travellers’ different preferences. Many travel here for a beach holiday, diving trip, shopping spree, or exploration of our tropical forests. If you are looking for a glimpse of the real Malaysia, or just a fun night out, Penang mixes old world charm with a modern and vibrant night life. These 10 places well represent Penang as one of Malaysia’s most iconic travel destinations and home to an amazing array of sights, activities and events.
1) Kek Lok Si Temple
Kek Lok Si or, so-called the temple of chief happiness is considered to be the biggest and the most majestic Buddhist complex in the South-East of Asia. This entire temple was built over a period from 1890 to 1930, an inspirational initiative of Beow Lean, the Abbot. Kek Lok Si Temple is not just a center for Chinese culture and Buddha teaching, but also an unique heritage treasures that have Mahayana Buddhism and traditional Chinese rituals blend into a harmonious whole, in temple architecture and daily activities of worshipers. The main focus in the complex is the striking seven-storey Pagoda of Rama VI and the 30.2 metres tall bronze statue of Kuan Yin.
By the way, this is not the only one cult religious building in Penang. You can add such points as St. George’s Church, ancient Kapitan Keling Mosque and Snake Temple to the list of your touristic route.
2) Penang National Park
This is the untouched particle of a tropic forest, full of the narrow bridges, beautiful beaches, impressive signal tower, and jungle inhabitants – monkeys, turtles, varans and other exotic animals. You know, to describe the beauty of Malaysian nature it is needful to write one more article! So, never miss your chance to visit Penang National Park.
3) Penang Hill
Penang Hill, formerly known as Bukit Bendera, was used as a retreat during the British colonial period, and is now a popular tourist destination in Penang. Standing at the top of the hill at 833 meter above sea level, you get the best view of Penang Island. The top of the hill is accessible via the Penang Hill Railway from its base station at Air Itam. The ticket costs RM10 for Malaysian and RM30 for foreigners.
Komtar is the tallest building in Penang and the sixth tallest building in Malaysia located in the heart of George Town. It is a multipurpose complex consists of retail outlets, transportation hub and administrative offices for the Penang State Government. Being the symbol of Penang, you can easily spot this building from anywhere in Georgetown.
5) Batu Ferringhi Beach
For the beach lovers, you will never want to miss the popular beach, full of chic restaurants, and water activities. Batu Ferringhi is one of the prime tourist destinations in Penang where it is situated along the coastal road north-west of Georgetown. If you are here just for a beach holiday, you can also chck out the string of international- standard resorts situated in this area. Food, pubs and souvenir stalls are also available along the beach line. You can practically buy everything here without driving out to town.
6) Nightlife at Chulia Street
Nightlife is a happening affair in Georgetown. Chulia Street is packed with backpackers dotted with many little pubs/bars serving cheap beers and hot snacks. Some of them host live entertainments and acts regularly. You could enjoy will not be disappointed as several island bars host live acts regularly. For those who are looking for dance clubs, there are also a few clubs set along this street. They all have loud music and strong drinks, making it all the more easier to move to the beats.
7) Entopia, formerly known as Penang Butterfly Farm
Located in Teluk Bahang, Entopia Butterfly Farm is one of Penang’s best known tourist spots. The eight-hectare butterfly sanctuary houses features more than 4,000 butterflies. Tickets are priced at RM49 for adults and RM29 for kids aged between 4 and 12 as well as senior citizens above 60 years old.
It is not only about butterfly, but giant millipedes, spiders, bees, snakes and other interesting insects and bugs. It stands to reason that this place is very popular among tourists. It brings a lot of joy in your life.
8) Penang Bird Park
This is another amazing place in Penang which is worth visiting. The bird park houses more than 300 kinds of bird, of which more than 150 species are of Malaysian Species. More than 3,000 birds in this park are carefully and scientifically housed in more than 150 cages for the breeding and conservation purpose. If you like birds, flowers, inspiring landscapes, the Bird Park in Penang is worth visiting.
The park is situated on the territory of Penang state, but outside the island. It is not a problem to get there by car. Rental car services are mostly concentrated in the airport, predicted to take you whenever you want.
9) Clan Jetties Chinese Floating Village
This is an interesting historical place in Georgetown, attracting people with its original style. This is a complete village on stilts above the water where Chinese clans live since the 19th century when they came to Malaysia. To enlarge their chances clans were established, so together they could survive in their new environment. There are more than 1,500 people live in this place which comprises six villages, in every village lives on clan and every village has their own temple. The houses are built of a special kind of wood, which makes them resistant to the influences of the seawater. If you would like to put up a night at this village to learn more about its history, the price for a room is equal to the standard price of a hotel.
Georgetown is the main point of interest of Penang Island. It is a busy town with the different architectures, night clubs, old-aged buildings and shopping malls. On the other hand, the city is also rich in cultural heritage, well-developed city transportation, and unique ethnicity, making it a colorful and multicultural capital of Penang.
This article is contributed by Stanley Kirchner.
Stanley Kirchner is an experienced traveler and writer. After spending over a decade wandering the world, he could give an advice to young adventurers on almost any travel destination.