Significant note on travel and eating in Penang Island, Malaysia

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There are hundreds of beautiful islands within Malaysia, most of them can be visited during your travels but not all offer a place to stay overnight. The islands of Malaysia are divided into the islands at the western peninsula, the eastern peninsula and the islands around Borneo. All are equally stunning, though there enough differences between each island. Most popular islands are Langkawi, Penang, Perhentian, Redang, and Tioman. Around Borneo, you have Lankayan, Selingan, Mataking and of course Sipadan.

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About Penang

Penang, also known as the Pearl of the orient, is one of the most touristic locations of Malaysia. The island (285 square meters) is situated on the northwest side of the Peninsular Malaysia. There are loads of activities and sights on the island. Hanging around on the beach is also considered a fine option.

It does not cost too much for a trip to Penang Island – the island has beautiful scenery, features characteristics of traditional local culture.

Penang – Geoge town via BBC

How to get there?

From Hanoi, travelers must transit to Kuala Lumpur before arriving at Penang Airport. From Saigon, there is a direct flight to Penang, the return fare is about 70$. From the airport, there are many ways to travel to the city, the most economical way is taking bus with the highest price at RM 2.7 (equivalent to 0,8 USD):  Bus 401, 401E and bus  AT going  straight to George town, the last station is Jetti Beach station, Bus 101 runs through Batu Ferringhi beach,  Bus 204  to Penang hill, bus 203 to Kek Lok Si.

Bike
Rent a bike (about RM10 / day equivalent to 2,5 USD / day) to travel around George Town. If you want to go further, use taxi, bus or Grab, Uber is also convenient. Also, with a Vietnamese motorcycle license, you can rent a motorbike here for RM25 / day (around VND 6 USD/ day). However, you must deposit a minimum of RM100 (approximately 25 USD).

In particular, George Town has a C.A.T bus – Central Area Transit (hub service in the city center), which stops at most of George Town’s famous attractions, free for guests. The car is equipped with air conditioning, clean, comfortable. In front of and behind the car, there are electronic boards for easier identification….

Where to put your head down?

Hotels in Penang are quite cheap. Only about  17USD / night, you can rent a neat, clean room in the center of George town. The hotel is conveniently located on Lebuh Chulia road, with many eateries and coffee shops close by. Most of the hotel offers car rental services and some tours of the day if required.

Penang street art via Slow Vegan Travel Blog

Things to do?

Penang – George Town is recognized by UNESCO as a world cultural heritage site that can not be missed here. The Old Quarter is clean with many lovely souvenirs or old style cafes that always hold visitors.

Visit the Peranakan The Green Mansion (29, Church Street) is a TripAdvisor page that evaluates the standing of 1/134 things to do when arriving in Penang. Ticket price RM20 / person (about 5 USD/ person) with tour guides speaking English, Chinese. Free for children under 6 years old. Cheong Fatt Tze the blue mansion (14 Leith street) is cheaper, 17 RM/person, but the sightseeing area is limited to avoid staying overnight. In addition, visitors looking to experience the lunch and dinner of Peranakan style can refer to prices on the main page of The blue mansion. These two architectures most clearly show the culture of the Peranakan people in Malaysia. For those who love culture, history here is so interesting to explore.

Street painting is a feature of George Town. The cute, lively mural makes visitors so excited to capture every moment with them.

Cuisine?

Penang is famous for the diverse street food in small markets. At night, just walk around a few streets, visitors easily see the food market is so good and cheap, affordable for most of the backpackers.

A few notes: Malaysia is driving on the left, so keep this in mind when renting a car; There are very few taxis, you have to ask the price before boarding the car; Prepare sunscreen because Penang weather is very hot at noon. However, clean air, many trees should not make you uncomfortable.

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