Penang Travel Guide

Browse 121 travel reviews, 97 travel blogs and 4,973 travel photos from real travelers to Penang.

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Penang Overview

Penang is considered to be one of the main tourist stops for visitors in Malaysia. Also known as Pulau Pinang (in Malay which translates to Penang Island). This beautiful island is also known as Pearl of the Orient.

It is a veritable melting pot of cultures, ranging from Malaysian, Chinese, Indian, and various European from over the years, and it is known for being one of the best places in Malaysia for food lovers, and has garnished a reputation in recent years for being the IT capital of the country. It is home to such cities as Georgetown and Batu Ferringhi, although the territory is actually split between the island and a tiny section of the mainland where cities such as Butterworth and Bandar Perda are located.

Its British names are a testament to the times when the island was under the ownership of the British East India Company as part of the Straits Settlement (together with Malacca and Singapore), although these days such remnants are things of the past. The island was one of the major shipping routes until 1969 when it lost its free port status, although fragments of that way of life still remain.

The region is divided into separate sections: the island itself and the area known as Province Wellesley, which is a small section on the peninsula itself. In a way, Penang boasts the best of both worlds, with a little bit of mainland mixed in with a little bit of island, offering its residents a little bit of both, depending on the preference. The same can be said of visitors.

Georgetown is the capital, and is probably the main tourist headquarters. A major city in almost every way, it was added to the UNESCO World Heritage list in 2008 as a result of its 19th century churches, mosques, colonial buildings, and various other architectural wonders. Meanwhile, Batu Ferringhi is the main beach resort, with plenty of pristinely-white beaches and restaurants boasting amazing Malaysian food. Nature enthusiasts will find themselves amazed as well, with places like the Penang Botanic Gardens or the Penang Butterfly Farm, but in all honesty anyone who comes to Penang will find some reason to fall in love with the area, regardless of their preferences.

Popular Nearby Destinations

Batu Ferringhi, where the translation means Foreigner's rock, is the famous famous beach for both tourist and locals Penang, Malaysia. While the beach is definitely not the best beach in Mala…
22reviews 3blogs
Georgetown has been named by the British after King George III, but is unmistakebly a Chinese city. It is the capital of the island and state of Penang on the West Coast of Malaysia. Th…
28travelers 54reviews 31blogs