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Things to see and do

  • Botanical Gardens
    3.5 stars

    At the base of Penang Hill you'll find the Botanical Gardens, an ideal spot to while away an afternoon. The land was originally a stone quarry and was set up as a nursery for plants of economic value in 1884. While admission is free, the gardens are a little out of the way, so if you take a cab, ... read more

  • Tropical Spice Garden
    3 stars

    If you're a budding gardener, the 500 species of plants and herbs at the tranquil Tropical Spice Garden could be worth a look. Take bus U101 along the winding coastal road between Batu Feringgi and Teluk Bahang and ask the driver to drop you off on Jalan Teluk Bahang in front of the entrance. Flag ... read more

  • Penang State Park
    4 stars

    Penang State Park, on the northern tip of Penang near Teluk Bahang fishing village, was one of Malaysia's first forest reserves and has two accessible trails running through it. The trail to Muka Head takes about two hours each way and is the easier of the two routes but likely to be busier at peak ... read more

  • Batu Muang
    3 stars

    The waterside area of this fishing village is comprised of a couple of piers with fishy fishing boats moored to them, the odd derelict boat, a temple built around a giant's footprint and a large seafood restaurant and terrace. The giant's footprint is part of a rock formation where coins are tossed ... read more

  • War Museum
    3 stars

    The museum lies on top of the hill on the site of a British coastal defence against the Japanese. Built in the 1930s, it's comprised of underground military tunnels that used to house intelligence and logistics as well as POWs and possible torture sites. The complex was largely forgotten by ... read more

  • Snake Temple
    2 stars

    This temple seems like a bit of a gimmick. The snakes are most likely doped and not lulled by the incense as the story goes, yet they do adorn the temple like plastic replicas from a Christmas cracker. The main business revolves around getting your photograph taken with a large python or paying to ... read more

  • Kek Lok Si
    3.5 stars

    This Buddhist temple is the largest in Malaysia and sprawls up the hill dominating the town of Air Itam. To access the complex you have to weave your way through an ascending corridor of souvenir shops, after which you'll arrive at Liberation Pond, where you can pay 2 ringgit to feed the turtles ... read more

  • Escape theme park
    4 stars

    Relying on the natural environment rather than plastic fantasy and freaky life-size cartoon characters for its ambiance, this refreshing new-age amusement park encourages environmentalism and physical activity. With grass roofs, a recycled water system and engine-free attractions, the park aims ... read more

  • Penang Hill
    4 stars

    From the 821m-high summit at Penang Hill, or Bukit Bendera, you can enjoy fantastic views over Georgetown and soak up the cooler mountain air, just like the British did when they set up Peninsula Malaysia's first hill station here. Weekends and peak holiday seasons in May and June can be very, very ... read more

  • Goddess of Mercy Temple
    3.5 stars

    As one of Penang’s oldest and most celebrated buildings, the Goddess of Mercy Temple is also one of the island’s most historically revealing. It was the Brits, of course, who laid claim to having ‘discovered’ Penang when Captain Francis Light founded Georgetown on behalf of the East India ... read more

  • Boat trips
    4 stars

    Penang offers plenty of beautiful views, vistas and vantage points but for a different perspective of the island, heading out to sea is a must. For many, a boat ride is the perfect way to while away an afternoon, so here are some of Penang’s best options. The cheapest and easiest way to see the ... read more

  • The best views in Penang
    4 stars

    Penang is a photogenic island, and whether it’s urban perspectives, pastoral panoramas or seducing seascapes that float your camera lens’ boat, plenty of great vistas are to be found. Here are some of our favourite places. Penang Hill: At around 830m, the apex of Penang Hill is the highest ... read more

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