We have 26 places to stay in and around Penang.
All manner of accommodation options are available in central Georgetown, so there’s no real reason to stay outside of the UNESCO World Heritage zone. Budget lodgings are scattered throughout the area with a concentration around Lebuh Chulia, Lebuh Muntri and Love Lane and usually means a dorm, but many are worthy of “boutique” status with clean comfy beds in smart digs (although the odd fleapit still remains).
Exclusively flashpacker places are a little thin, but look for privates in hostels or budget rooms in swankier hotels and guesthouses. Where you’ll find the best value in town is mid to top range with an outstanding choice of gorgeous renovated heritage buildings converted to boutique hotels—worth a splash-out even if your budget only allows one night. Note that in some hotels rooms may not have windows or ensuite bathrooms, check before booking. A two ringgit per night heritage tax is often not included in quoted rates, and is payable on check-in.
If you’ve come to Penang for a beach holiday, the reality is that it doesn’t compare to many other beaches in Malaysia. Staying in Batu Ferringhi is expensive and often means spending a lot more money than in Georgetown, or making do with a rundown room in a very simple guesthouse. Budget places are scarce, so if you’re keen on staying here but don’t have much to spend, try to book ahead.