Archive for the 'Penang' Category

Feb 27 2013

Review: Roommates Guesthouse Penang

Published by under Penang

Floor to ceiling glass: more than your average hostel dorm.

Hostels in Georgetown are undergoing something of a renaissance at the moment. As attention moves away from the tired establishments along the traditional backpacker row, Lebuh Chulia, a host of more happening hangouts are beginning to emerge, and Roommates Guesthouse on Lorong Chulia is one of the most recent new kids on the block. Located … read the full post

Feb 17 2013

Review: Penang Hill

Published by under Penang

A hi-tech twenty-first century funicular train has replaced the old red-and-white carriages.

Although much of Georgetown is predominantly Chinese in character, the settlement was actually founded by the British, back in 1786. Remnants of Penang’s colonial heritage are still to be found all over town, from the Palladian splendour of St. George’s Church to the archetypically English Eastern & Oriental Hotel, but nowhere is the British influence … read the full post

Feb 14 2013

Penang street art

Published by under Penang

The bike is real. The children are not.

Having been declared a UNESCO heritage city in 2008, it is no surprise that Georgetown is now capitalising on this status and establishing a strong reputation for the arts. The Penang Island Jazz Festival and the George Town Festival have become international events, and you don’t have to wander far through the streets of Penang’s … read the full post

Feb 05 2013

Review: Ko Chai Lai vegetarian restaurant, Penang

Published by under Penang

Lunchtime vegetarian buffet. Strictly no meat.

A vegetarian friend recently asked for a meat- and fish-free char kuay teow at one of Penang’s hawker stalls. Minus the prawns, cockles, pork fat, prawn paste and Chinese sausage, the result was an uninspiring mess of noodles and a few beansprouts in a bland brown sauce. Perhaps the experiment was ill-advised, but there is … read the full post

Jan 30 2013

Lunar or Chinese New Year in Penang

Published by under Penang

Hokkien New Year (photo courtesy of Penang Global Tourism).

As the state with the highest proportion of Chinese in Malaysia, Penang pulls out all the stops for its Lunar New Year, when the whole island resounds to the bangs of firecrackers and the beat of the lion dancers’ drums. Penang’s strong Chinese heritage makes it one of the best places outside China to experience … read the full post

Jan 23 2013

Taxis in Penang

Published by under Penang

Despite what the sticker says, you will have to haggle for your Penang taxi

Across Southeast Asia, bargaining with taxi drivers is often a necessary part of the travelling experience, and can range from being mildly annoying to severely inconvenient. So imagine your relief when you arrive in Penang and find ‘THIS IS A METERED TAXI. HAGGLING IS PROHIBITED’ plastered all over the sides of the red-and-white taxis. Easy, … read the full post

Jan 16 2013

Penang laksa

Published by under Penang

Penang Laksa, also known as Asam Laksa

As the culinary capital of Malaysia, Penang is quite literally bursting with flavour. Many of its famous dishes have almost become synonymous with the island itself, but none more so than Penang laksa, which found international fame in 2011 when it came seventh on the CNN ‘World’s Fifty Most Delicious Foods‘ list. Otherwise known as … read the full post

Jan 09 2013

Street of Harmony: A walking tour through Penang’s cultures

Published by under Penang

Part of what makes Penang unique is its established mixture of cultures and faiths, but if you are only in Georgetown for a short time, how can you experience all of its varied customs and traditions? Conveniently enough, Penang’s 18th-century town planners have already solved the problem, and a short walk along Jalan Masjid Kapitan … read the full post

Jan 02 2013

Review: The Daily Dose Cafe, Penang

Published by under Penang

Kick back with a good book.

If you’ve come to Penang to experience its fantastic local cuisine, a cafe serving Mexican and Mediterreanean specials may not necessarily be top of your must-visit list. However, like Georgetown itself, The Daily Dose Cafe is a heady fusion of cultural influences, and with its pan-continental menu, great stash of wines and some of the … read the full post

Dec 26 2012

Review: Ryokan Hostel, Penang

Published by under Penang

Ryokan Hostel on Muntri Street

There is no shortage of accommodation in Penang but to be frank, many of Georgetown’s tired-looking budget hostels may not really cut it with today’s discerning backpacker. However, Ryokan on Lebuh Muntri is bucking the trend and has successfully bridged the gap between the drab hostels on nearby Lebuh Chulia and the clutch of high-end … read the full post

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