Penang is referred to as a jewel of Malaysia’s culture and tradition. This city contains the natural beauty intertwined with the unique architecture. Besides, Penang, which played a role as a center of trading green tea, spices and cloth from China, has been also ancient and magnificent for thousands of decades. Nowadays, in the light of the new era, Penang’s ancient beauties are all worldwide famous and attractive. This article “Penang Travel Tips” will be together with you to explore this land and hoard lots of your self-sufficient travel experience. I’m sure it will not disappoint you.
1. Penang travel general expenses:
#1 Moving expenses:
There are 3 main options to move around Penang:
1. Grab a taxi
2. Ride a 3 wheeler (Trishaw)
3. Rent a bicycle or bike
Grab a taxi/grabtaxi
No longer being a new way with us to travel around, grabbing a taxi is the most convenient and fastest way to go among attractive destinations.
But there are some tips if you have intention to use a taxi in Penang:
– Taxi will be labels as “no bargain” but the drivers rarely enforce meter use. So you need to accept the price before you decide to step on the car
– Taxi in the night might have higher cost, in some case it is double increasing.
Ride a 3-wheeler (Trishaw)
This is one of the best way to explore the heritage town (Georgetown). One-hour trishaw ride can get you to most street art and take quick photos of the old street and temples. Almost trishaw pullers are elderly men will pedal the bikes but electrically associated so it will not make you feel guilty for them.
The cost is more expensive than taxi since the pullers have to do more work. And be sure that you negotiate the price before riding. The cost will be around 50-60 RM per hour per 1 trishaw (can drive 2 people)
Rent a bicycle or scooter
For renting a bicycle, it is the cheapest options and also very easy to find a places to get this service. In Penang, you can go to Leaf Bike Rental, Metro Bike or Freedom Leisure Cycle Supply.
The cost is around 10 RM per 24 hours
For renting a scooter, you need to show owner your drive license. And you can choose the models, the price also varies by models.
Average cost is around 40-50 RM per 24 hours and you need to deposit 100 RM (depends on shop)
#2 Food cost:
Costs of eating in Penang are somewhat cheaper than in Kuala Lumpur and also locally. Moreover, there are many dishes that are suitable for tourists from all over the world. Just with 20-25 USD, you will have a full and tasty meal.
#3 Accommodation cost:
Depending on whether you love the tranquility or you love the noisy, you have a wide choice of accommodation. There are two main areas: the old town of Georgetown and the central city near Komtar (the highest building in Penang). A night in Penang costs about 20-25 USD for a budget hotel and about 100-150 USD for a deluxe room.
2. Penang travel tips to save cost:
#1 Selecting hotels in Georgetown:
You can find many budget hotels as well as stay homes in this place. In low season, you will even be able to rent a room which costs only 10-15 USD with full facilities. In case you go with your group and want to enjoy the sea atmosphere, Batu Ferringi is an ideal choice for you.
#2 Walking/motorbike rental to explore Penang:
With the characteristic of many small streets, you can walk following famous wall paintings in Penang. Besides, you can also rent a motorbike to discover every street in Penang without depending on a bus or taxi
#3 Booking tickets of entertainment and attractions before going:
One of the top Penang travel tips is booking all kind of tickets for a tour because it is much better than purchasing directly. Additionally, it will be time-saving that helps you to plan your trip more appropriately and to avoid queuing too long , especially in crowded entertainment areas and sightseeing areas.
Read also: Voucher for entertainment activities in Penang (Updated April 2019)
3. Top attractive destinations in Penang 2019:
#1 Penang Hill:
Penang Hill impresses a lot of tourists by the spectacular sceneries and the system of cable cars that helps you easily get the top of the hill without spending too much time and effort. In Penang Hill, you can enjoy the array of tropical rainforest with diverse plant and wildlife species.
Standing on the top of this hill, you can see clearly the mountain of Langkawi and Kedah. Most people come here to enjoying the atmosphere, going picnic, detecting natural beauty. Furthermore, it is impossible not to mention the upright train going up Penang Hill. This is one of the oldest trains in Malaysia and is the most interesting route to admire the beautiful sightseeing.
#2 Georgetown – The wall paintings of Penang road
It is often said that you should have a map to explore all the locations of Penang wall paintings.
Wall paintings are the unique features of this ancient city. They are drawn up on old moss walls by talented artists. You will see a large number of pictures such as children playing Ferris, on the motorbike or standing next to the window. There are also giant cats, cyclo or even very small chairs…
Currently, however, you will have to queue to waiting for photographing since a great number of tourists coming here each day have increased.
#3 Tropical Spice Garden, Botanical Garden in Penang:
These gardens used to be trading locations of famous aromas, herbs, and spices. Nowadays, you can visit Spice and Botanic Garden in Penang or if you are looking for a garden with a natural and fresh atmosphere, Penang herb garden and butterfly garden are good places that you should drop by. The discovery special gardens in Penang will definitely bring to you cool feelings and exciting experience for your journey.
Penang Botanical Gardens
Address: 673A, Jalan Kebun Bunga, Pulau Tikus, George Town
Opening hours: 5:00 AM – 8:00 PM
Ticket price: Free
Tropical Spice Garden
Address: Lot 595 Mukim, 2, Jalan Teluk Bahang, Teluk Bahang, George Town
Opening hours: 9:00 AM – 6:00 PM
Read also: Difference between Tropical Spice Garden and Botanical Garden in Penang
#4 Kek Lok Si Temple:
Although Malaysia is not a purely Buddhist country, there are some unique religious attractions, of which there are Kek Lok Si in Penang. This temple, near Penang Hill, has an extremely peaceful space with the natural landscape.
However, the point of making the beauty of Kek Lok Si is the architectural works in the temple campus. You can visit the temple’s Chedi, which has kept the image of over 1000 Buddhist with the architecture between China-Burma and Malaysia along with the bronze Bodhisattva statue and other Buddhist works. Kek Lok Si is a Buddhist work and is the largest Buddhist worship in Malaysia.
#5 Wat Chiaya Mangkalaram Temple:
Wat Chiaya Mangkalaram Temple is also a Buddhist work but it is a typical Thai temple. You will easily detect that the Buddha statue lies like the statue at Wat Pho (Bangkok, Thailand). This statue is recognized as the third largest reclining Buddha statue in the world. In addition, Wat Chiaya Mangkalaram Temple also has many other Thai Buddhist works with golden Chedi, curved roof, naga statue, decorative mosaic.
#6 Cheong Fatt Tze – The Blue Mansion:
Cheong Fatt Tze Mansion once belonged to a Chinese merchant a few decades ago. He cleverly combined traditional Chinese style, Feng Shui, modern Western architecture and culture of Penang in this large house. The house is still freshly indigo blue after ages so you can find easily when arriving in Georgetown.
Address: 14, Leith Street, George Town
Opening hours: 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Tour guide price: 16 RM / tour (by English but other languages can be booked beforehand)
Best time to visit: Later in the afternoon to enjoy some alcoholic drinks.
#7 Leong San Tong Khoo Kongsi:
If Kek Lok Si is “the sanctuary” of Buddha, Koo Kongsi is a symbol of the Chinese community’s solidary. Penang Khoo Kongsi used to be the worship hall of the Khoo, which was built based on the basic architecture of China many centuries ago. From the head of the dragon, the Phoenix to flower, nature pictures, all of them was carved in a sophisticated way to create a special space of worship.
Address: 18, Cannon Square, George Town, George Town
Opening hours: 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Ticket price: 10 RM for adult and 1 RM for child
#8 Penang Camera Museum:
If you are a camera lover, this museum is your real heaven. You can see any kinds of cameras here from Leica, Polaroid to dedicated cameras for reporters or new technique cameras. Moreover, you can also learn about the history of the camera when visiting Penang Camera Museum.
Address: George Town, Penang, Malaysia
(The Penang Camera Museum Address is changed from November 2018. You should be careful with the old information on the internet)
Opening hours: 09:00 – 19:00
#9 Snake Temple:
Snake Temple is also a Chinese temple, but it is famous for “its inhabitants” not its architecture or Buddha statues. You should be really careful because this is home to the reptiles. The legend recounts that an ancient monk saved a snake so this temple has become the home of this animal since then. Therefore, they never harm tourists. Moreover, this history of this place never recorded any cases of tourists being bitten. However, it is better that you should not poke any snakes in Snake Temple.
Address: Jalan Sultan Azlan Shah, Bayan Lepas Industrial Park, 11900 Bayan Lepas, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
Ticket price: Free entrance.
– With 40 RM you can have 2 pictures of you holding the snakes (You will have a printed and soft copy picture)
– You can touch and hold the snakes which the staff allows because some of snakes are dangerous.
If you are a person who loves new things, natural scenery, cultural works, Penang will be your favorite destination. This article “Penang Travel Tips” is always together with you to conquer this beautiful old town, Penang