Holiday in Penang – Penang Trip Planning Guide

Why holiday in Penang?

Penang trip planning and Penang itinerary

Signage on Penang Hill with the wording: "You've NEVER been to Penang "Unless you've been to Penang Hill"
Signage on the Penang Hill with the wording: “You’ve NEVER been to Penang “Unless you’ve been to Penang Hill”

An island of rich Chinese legacy, Penang has a variety of sanctuaries, ruins, galleries, safeguarded timberlands, and lovely shorelines that make an outing here more than advantageous. Finish it off with the way that this island is said to be the nation’s natural sustenance capital, and its no big surprise that tourism assumes an immense part in its economy. From the water’s edge at the Clan Jetties to the beautiful blue sheen of the Cheong Fatt Tze Mansion, Penang is genuinely noteworthy. If you call Malacca as ‘Mini Malaysia’, you can comfortably label Penang as ‘Malaysia in Miniature“. Once a part of the Straits Settlements, its historical areas together with Malacca’s historical district, are included in UNESCO’s protected heritage list. That’s why a holiday in Penang is a must while on any Malaysian vacation trip.

When to visit Penang?

If climatic conditions are your main concerns, please be aware Penang has a tropical climate. This is similar to the rest of Malaysia. Here, September – October are relatively wetter months and December through the February are relatively drier months. The daytime temperatures range between 30°C-33°C and nighttime varies from 24°C – 25°C. So any time of the year is a good time to visit for holiday in Penang. Just keep in mind, you always need to carry a small umbrella. It’s not easy to predict precisely when a drizzle, if not rain may occur.

How to Go to Penang?

There are many options available to go to Penang. The best choice depends on from where you are going there. Those following our suggested tinerary, need a flight from Malacca. If going from Singapore , may also consider a direct flight and same is true for the Bangkok. You have an option of going to Penang by a flight from Kuala Lumpur too. However, from there, other options are also available. We look here all choices one by one.

How to go to Penang from Malacca

Malacca to Penang flights

If you are traveling as per our suggested itinerary, and you are traveling from Malacca to Penang. In this case, the best way to go there is by a direct flight of Malindo Air. Cheap, easy and best way to arrive at your destination for holiday in Penang. You can take a Grab from the airport to your hotel or the place you are staying anywhere on the island. You can even go to the mainland if your plans are to go to Butterworth. However, most tourists stay on the island, either at Batu Ferringhi or the Georgetown and going Penang by air from Malacca is the best way. Beside Grab, you can also use other modes of ground transportation.

From Malacca, another way is to travel to Kuala Lumpur by bus and then take another bus to Penang or go to KLIA2 and take a flight to Penang. We’d mention various options to travel from Kuala Lumpur to Penang separately on this page.

Malacca to Penang train

Trains are not possible directly from Malacca but you can go to nearby Pulau Subang/Tampin train station. From there can take a train to Penang via Kuala Lumpur’s KL Sentral Station. KTM ETS Malaysia Railway also operates once daily train to Penang’s Butterworth station. It takes six hours and twenty minutes from Tampin/Pulau Subang (near Malacca) to Butterworth, Penang). As mentioned, trains are not frequent and you must check the schedule before you go to the train station.

From the Butterworth train station you can walk to ferry terminal to reach the Penang island. Ferry ticket are very cheap and travel time may be 20-50 minutes including waiting time for ferries.

Malacca to Penang by bus

You can get a direct bus from Malaccaa to Penang without passing through Kuala Lumpur. This is seven hour journey and cost arount RM 40-55 (USD10-12). If you prefer, you can also go to Kuala Lumpur and then take another bus to Penang. Its hassle but if you have your reason to use this option, its not imporrible. If you plan direct journey, you may book early online to avoid feeling soryy for no seat availability.

Both day and night trip buses are available. Buses from Malacca go to two places in Penang. One is Butterworth Terminal and the other one is Sungai Nibong. If you are going for hoilday in Penang island, take the bus going to Sungai Nibong Terminal as that one is located on the island of Penang. Alternatively, you can also go to the Butterworth Terminal and can easily find a ferry from the nearby ferry terminal to go to Penang island.

Departure point from Malacca is Melaka Sentral Bus Terminal (some buses also depart from Alor Gaja town in Melaka State). The bus operator that offers bus services from Malacca to Penang include Billion Stars, Transnasional and Cepat & Cekap Express .

Roughly its distance is 508 km, average traveling time: 07h25m, the total of nine bus operator brands run their buses from Malacca to Penang.

How to go from Kuala Lumpur to Penang

A lot of choices are available for this question that how to go from Kuala Lumpur to Penang. Lets check one by one.

Going Penang from KL by train

In order to go from Kuala Lumpur to Penang, you can take train from KL Sentral station for Penang’s Butterworth station. From the Butterworth which is located on the mainland, you can take any other ground transportation to reach your destination in the island. Most trains leave in the evenings and reach Butterworth before or by the midnight.

KL Sentral to Butterworth : The Electric Train will take 3 hours 40 mins to reach Butterworth. The old style afternoon Express Rakyat will take almost double the time of the electric train (ETS).

Once you reach Butterworth, you can walk to ferry terminal to go to the Penang island.

Travel time from mainland to the island: Ferry from Butterworth to Pengkalan Weld (on the island side of Penang) may take about 20 mins to 60 minutes depending on connection at the ferry terminal.

Total journey time from Kuala Lumpur to Penang island will therefore be between 4-5 hours.

Though the ticket is slightly expensive than the bus, this is the most convenient, comfortable and time-saving way to go for holiday in Penang.

Penang from KL by air

In case you want to go from Kuala Lumpur to Penang by air, can take a flight to Penang from Kuala Lumpur. Malindo Air flies from KLIA terminal 1 and Air Asia flies from KLIA2 terminal.

Travel time: It may take about 45 minutes to reach KLIA or KLIA2 from the Kuala Lumpur city. You need to reach two hours before the flight. And flight takes one hour to reach Penang. From the Penang airpirt, you may need about 40-50 minutes more to reach your hotel in Georgetown or Batu Ferringhi or somewhere else on the island. So the total travel time would be almost five hours. The cost will be slightly higher too. So you may consider train as the better option unless you like the air travel too much.

How to go from Kuala Lumpur to Penang by bus?

The travel time from Kuala Lumpur to Penang by bus is about five hours as it covers the distance of about 355 km. Bus operators which ply buses between Kuala Lumpur and Penang include Sri Maju Group, Supernice, Era Mesra, Antar Holiday, Transnasional, Konsortium Bas Ekspres, Kulim First Travel & Tours and many more.

Departure points include TBS (Terminal Bersepadu Selatan), 1 Utama Shopping Centre (1U Bus Terminal), Hentian Bas Duta, Terminal KTM, KL Sentral, Putrajaya Sentral, Selangor, Kajang, Selangor, Puchong Tesco, Terminal Shah Alam, Selangor, Klang Sentral, Selangor, and Sabak Bernam, Selangor. If you are first time traveller, or don’t want to be confused with so many departure points, chose either TBS (Terminal Bersepadu Selatan) or KL Sentral, whichever is nearer to your place of stay.

Most buses depart from TBS (Terminal Bersepadu Selatan) and many from KL Sentral. From other places, very few buses depart. If you are traveling for a holiday in Penang island, where most tourists go, chose Sungai Nibong Terminal in Penang as the destination. Sungai Nibong is located on the island. Butterworth terminal is on the mainland and you would need to go to the island by ferry which may take further 20-50 minutes more, though it’s not expensive.

Some Quick Liner Express buses provide wifi and power plug whereas some Konsortium buses have TV and reclining chairs. Check before booking as these services may be temporarily unavailable.

From Sungai Nibong Bus Terminal you can take RapidPenang bus to go to various parts of the island. It takes Pengkalan Weld (Weld Quay) road to take you to Georgetown. If you need to go to other part of the island you can find other types of ground transportations there.

Singapore to Penang – Best way to travel

The best and quick way to go Penang from Singapore is by air. Many cheap Flights from Singapore Changi to Penang are available. Just search from the search forms on this page.

Penang – Singapore Flight Time or the Singapore – Penang Flight time.

Non-stop flight time from Singapore to Penang is 1 hour 25 minutes and the same is the duration for Penang – Singapore flight.

In case you also include airport waiting time, which is about two hours, required for check-in and boarding, its total travel time of three and a half hours from the Changi Airport to Penang. This is much less than the bus or train travel time, which has hassles of changing buses and trains and the waiting hours for the same.

How to go to Penang Malaysia from elsewhere?

Getting to Penang island, Malaysia is easier from many other places too. Direct flights are available from a number of airports. Here are some departure points from where you can get to Penang directly or with little hassle:

Singapore, Langkawi, Surabaya, Kota Kinabalu, Malacca, Jakarta, Johot Bahru, Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur, Medan, Hong Kong , Kota Bahru, Kuching, Kunming, Guangzhou, Phuket, Taipei, Ho Chi, Minh City, Hanoi, Doha, Banda Aceh, etcetra.

Where to Stay in Penang?

Picking an inn that flawlessly satisfies your desires for a holiday in Penang:

Hard Rock Hotel Penang

Hard Rock Hotel Penang is situated on the acclaimed shorelines of Batu Ferringhi. The resort highlights 249 rooms with its hip and smart enrichment and is appropriate for all families, couples or single explorers. A fairly nice choice for accommodation when you are travelling for a holiday in Penang.

Eastern And Oriental Hotel

Located at 10 Lebuh Farquhar, 10200 Georgetown, Pulau Pinang. Its a work of art and lavish convenience appropriate for those that ache for the wistfulness, general outlines, and impacts of pilgrim Malaysia. Absolutely right choice for a holiday in Penang.

Complimentary daily papers, 24-hour room administration, web, and small-scale bars are a couple of the pleasantries that anticipate visitors upon registration.

Shangri-La’s Rasa Sayang Resort and Spa

Shangri-La’s Rasa Sayang Resort and Spa is situated alongside the quiet waters of the eminent Batu Feringgi Beach. It offers vacationers visiting for a holiday in Penang, a lavish withdraw in evident Malaysian style. The area enables advantageous access to the shoreline. All rooms and suites are very much brightened in conventional Minangkabau style.

ParkRoyal Penang Hotel

Location: Batu Ferringhi Beach. Regardless of whether on an excursion for work or occasion, every one of the 309 rooms at this 5-star property is intended to enable visitors to unwind in solace and style. In-room offices are also provided in selected rooms.

Evergreen Laurel Hotel

Located at 53 Persiaran Gurney, Gurney Drive, this inn is preferably arranged far from the clog of the city, yet only a couple of minutes from the flourishing business area and inside strolling separation from different sights, nearby shops and eateries. Business winds up easy here, and joy and relaxation are unadulterated.

G Hotel Penang

G Hotel Penang is located at 168A, Persiaran Gurney, Gurney Drive, Penang.

Great and stunning lodging with a pinch of cool innovation. It additionally offers comfortable rooms with a fantastic determination of originator furniture. G Hotel Penang ignores Penang’s most famous lane Gurney drive. Customers can appreciate the advantages of being close to the ocean.

Solitary Pine Hotel

Situated in Batu Ferringhi. Disconnected in a perfect spot on the Penang coastline, this rich Batu Ferringhi property is the main five-star boutique inn in the territory. Getting a charge out of contemporary inside plans while catching a beachfront area, Lone Pine Hotel is an accommodating property.

23 Lovelane Penang Hotel

Located at 23 Love Lane, Georgetown, Penang, and hence its name! Every one of the ten rooms in this 5-star inn is custom fitted to fulfill visitors’ needs. Incorporated into all rooms are a pressing board, cooling, LCD/plasma screen TV, and remote web gets to. Additionally to be found at the lodging are airplane terminal exchange, clothing administration etcetra.

Inn Equatorial Penang

The Hotel Equatorial Penang is strategically placed near the Bayan Lepas new zone. It offers simple access to Penang International Airport and Georgetown downtown area. It is the island’s only golf and traditional resort. Deliberately arranged on the South-Eastern piece of Penang island.

Eight Rooms – Macalister Mansion

Located at 228 Jalan Macalister, Georgetown, Penang. On the off chance that what you’re searching for is a strategically placed lodging in Penang, look no more distant than Eight Rooms – Macalister Mansion. From here, visitors can appreciate simple access to everything that the exuberant city brings to the table. For touring choices and nearby attractions, one need not look further.

1881 Chong Tian Hotel

Location: 36-42 Jalan Pintal Tali, , Georgetown, Penang. When visiting Penang, you’ll feel comfortable at 1881 Chong Tian Hotel, which offers quality convenience and excellent administration. From here, visitors can appreciate simple access to everything that the enthusiastic city brings to the table. This cutting-edge inn is in the region of popular city attractions.

Fig Tree Hill Resort

Location: 460, 461, off Jalan Kenari, mkm 10, Sungai Ara, Bayan Lepas, Penang. Worked in, Fig Tree Hill Resort is a particular expansion to Penang and a brilliant decision for voyagers. From here, visitors can appreciate simple access to everything that the energetic city brings to the table. With its advantageous area, the inn offers simple access to the city’s must-see.

Brilliant Sands Resort by Shangri-La

Situated in the dynamic region of Batu Feringgi Beach in Penang, this delightful four-star property is a superb place to remain. A phenomenal resort for a family assembling, it flaunts 387 visitors rooms that offer a little settlement with splendid offices.

Bayview Beach Resort

The lodging is situated in a calmer more grand zone of the city as close-by mountains, and the ocean gives the foundation. Located on Batu Ferringhi Beach, the Penang International Airport is just a 45-minute head out while the focal point of Georgetown is around twenty.

Sunway Hotel Georgetown

Location: 33, New Lane (off Macalister Road), Georgetown. This lodging is situated in Georgetown, the core of the city considered by UNESCO to be a world legacy site. The area offers simple access to Penang Bridge, Penang International Airport and Ferry Terminal and all significant business focus.

The Traders Hotel

Location: Magazine Road, Georgetown, Penang. The Traders Hotel, Penang, is situated in the core of noteworthy George Town and is the city’s head business lodging and tradition focus. With present-day work and conferencing offices, meeting rooms, and assembly halls ready to suit up to 600 individuals, the Traders Hotel.

Where to Eat in Penang?

What to eat in Penang

Penang is notable for its bounty of eminent, real sellers’ joys which local people guarantee can’t be copied somewhere else. In Penang, vendor nourishment is as tasty as – if not more than – the best gourmet involvement in any city. It is additionally extremely prevalent. Numerous Malaysians hold Penang as the best-scavenged goal in the locale, not as a result of some fantastic eateries but instead for the modest diners and slow down that line the avenues. Food lovers having holiday in Penang won’t regret. 

Since Penang is synonymous with great sustenance (eating variety is by all accounts Penangites’ most loved leisure activity), there are numerous spots where one can locate a decent grouping of vendor slows down and eateries on the island, particularly in Georgetown. The island is well known for their Nyonya-roused flavors. Malacca might be more popular for their Nyonya culture, yet as far as cooking, it is the Penang Nyonya flavors that catch the hearts (and stomachs) of many having holiday in Penang.

Must try food in Penang

Among Penang’s most well known culinary enjoyments are Penang Char Kuay Teow, Assam Laksa, Tar Sau Peah, Rojak Pasembur, Nasi Kandar, and Hokkien Mee. While having holiday in Penang these are must try foods without which you’d definitely regret.

Penang Tourist Attractions

We’ve recorded the Penang’s attractions so whenever you ensure to counsel this A – Z list, so you don’t pass up anything.

List of places to visit while on holiday in Penang

• Arulmigu Karumariamman Temple
• Batu Ferringhi
• Bukit Mertajam Recreational Forest
• Bukit Panchor Forest
• Clan Jetties
• Cheong Fatt Tze
• Eastern and Oriental Heritage Building at Penang
• Escape Adventureplay
• Hainanese Mariners’ Lodge/Penang Heritage Trust
• Han Jiang Ancestral
• Kapitan Keling Mosque
• Kuan Yin Temple
• Mengkuang Dam
• Millionaires’ Row
• Nattukotai Chettiar Temple

Georgetown, Penanag Heritage Tour, Click here.
Georgetown, Penang Heritage Tour 

Browse this site for more detailed info on must visit places in Penang and the best Penang tourist attraction which you can’t affort to miss!

What to Do in Penang?

This is the question asked by every visitor on holiday in Penang. Penang appreciates a large Chinese and Tamil people group, alongside the indigenous Malay occupants. You will, therefore, locate an excellent and different nourishment scene that incorporates red hot curries, toothsome noodles, and plenty of road sustenance delights. The majority of this is circled by a lovely design. And the common focus of Penang is a UNESCO World Heritage Site in its own particular right.

What to do in Georgetown Penang?

penang street view with old buildings
Penang – view of a street with old shop houses

If you are a heritage lover and happen to be on a holiday in Penang, you’d definitely love to investigate genuinely old structures and also historical centers, posts, greenhouses, and sanctuaries. Guests to Penang will not be shy of spots to visit and sights to look at on a trek here.

What to do in Penang at night?

Penang Nightlife and things to do at night

Bars and nightclubs are concentrated on the Upper Penang Road. Go for it if you are on holiday in Penang and fond of these things. Beach bars, rooftop bars and more are there for you.

Shopping on Jalan Batu Ferringhi for those interested in buying cheap things from night markets.

Hawker food lovers can enjoy good food in open air settings at New Lane Hawker Center near Sunway Hotel Georgetown. Others include Gurney Drive Hawker Center, and Long beach Food Court on Jalan Batu Ferringhi.

Music lovers can go to Hard Rock Cafe or Reggae Mansion. There are several music festivals and if there is anyone while you are on holiday in Penang, you can go. For example, in March-April you can enjoy Penang World Music Festival and the Penang Island Jazz Festival in August.

Join dances, if you enjoy it. Slippery Senoritas, Jammin, M2 Club, Soju Room, Storm are some places where you can enjoy dances.

Penang Sunset Cruise which starts at 1700 hours can show you wonderful sunset in the sea passes through many forests and wetlands.

Activities at Komtar Tower

Buy The Top SkyWalk Tickets
The Top SkyWalk Tickets

At the 65-68 of the Komtar Tower is The Top. It has a glass walkway that lets you watch the world go by below. The Rainbow Skywalk and Observatory Deck offer breathtaking views of George Town and beyond from the Georgetown’s highest point. You can also find Jurassic Research Center, 7D Discovery Motion Theater, and Tech Dome Penang. You can also enjoy Ocean Explorer, Dino Gym, Magic Mirror Maza, Musical Carousel and Jelly Bump. Besides, UFOX spaceship adventure, Tongkat Ali King gallery medicinal herb, Durian – the King of Fruits gallery, TOP Boutique Aquarium as well as Penang State Gallery are also located at The Top. Whether you on holiday in Penang alone or with family and kids, you’d love to go to these places.

What to do in Penang Hill?

Penang view from Penang Hill
View from Penang Hill

Having a holiday in Penang without going to Penang Hill is totally unjustified. Visiting Penang Hill is a must while you are on a holiday in Penang. Pay attention to the following activities while on the on the hill.

Use funicular train to go up the hill.

See well preserved old British colonial and Asian landmarks. These incluse Bel Retiro Bungalow as well. Hill mosque and Sri Aruloli Thirumurugan Temple are also places if you like to go to religious places

Watch beautiful view of the island and return after viewing stunning view of the island at night.

Observe the its flora, fauna and the Nature on the hill away from the urban crowded places down the hill.

Tempat shopping murah di Penang and shopping malls of Penang

Many Malaysians often ask about the “tempat shopping murah di Penang” which means something like where to buy cheaper things in Penang. Of course, everyone wishes to shop more and spend less, so we try to give Penang shopping mall list and brief info about the shopping malls in Penang. Little bit of shopping while on holiday in Penang, especially some souviniers, would remind you later about your memorable visit to Penang. 

Gurney Plaza

Department stores, cinemas, 380 retail shops, and many other things are there in Gurney Plaza.

Gurney Paragon

Paragon or The Gurney Paragon is higher end shopping place along Gurney Drive.


It was once a very popular mall but later lost its original glamor. Now it is being revived. ICT Digital Mall at Komtar was developed in 2010. It is the biggest IT department store at Penang Island that sells all kinds of electronic products including gadgets, phones, and computer related products. Sky bridges now connect it with the neighboring 1st Avenue and Prangin malls.

Prangin Mall

Though not a big mall itself, the Prangin Mall, together with neighboring malls – ICT@Komtar and 1st Avenue – together embody the largest retail area on Penang Island. Prangin Mall caters mainly to lower- and middle-income earners as there is a large number of cheaply priced retail shops. So this is one of the tempat shopping murah di Penang, where prices are relatively lower.

Queensbay Mall

Queensbay Mall is the largest on in Penang. You can find here places like Dome, Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, Starbucks, AEON deparment and grocery store, Golden Screen Cinema, etc.

1st Avenue Mall

1st Avenue Mall Penang is a stylish shopping mall located in the heart of George Town. It offers fashion, leisure, entertainment and plenty of dining outlets for the style conscious people. This mall is favorite of yougsters and travellors, both. 8th Floor has a double volume glass curtain wall which allows a panoramic view over the city of Georgetown.

Straits Quay

Straits Quay offers liesure walk, shop and nourishment facilities. Every weekend you can find a ‘market’ there in the center of the court with affordable stuff.

Lorong Kulit Flea Market

The Lorong Kulit Flea Market is another place which can comfortably be called as the tempat shopping murah di Penang! Yes its cheap and you can bargain a lot. You can buy a varity of thing be it shoes, Thai talismans, old postcards, collectors items, brass figurines, toys, fruits, vegetables, old watches, old film cameras, books, plants, mooncake wooden moulds, enamel plates, stamps, old money bills, electrical items, records and things like these. Sometimes you may find someone selling items which are scavanged from the landfills or even stoeln shoes. Warning: Police warns not to buy stolen items, but how can a tourist recognize its stolen or not? That’s the question, we can’t answer.

What to buy in Penang?

Penang must buy things

At Chowrasta market, Lower Penang road-near police station, you can buy nutmeg oil, preserved nutmeg, and nutmeg balm. You can also buy nutmeg products from Ghee Hup Nutmeg Factory at 202-A Jalan Teluk Bahang, Balik Pulau.

Nyonya beaded shoes, Malay traditional “capal” at Kompleks Dato’ Kailan, Kepala Batas.

Pak Ali’s Jeruk Madu – sweet pickled fruits, can be had from 24, Jalan Pantai Jerjak, Gelugor.

Kuih Bahulu – a baked traditional Malay cake made up of sugar, eggs and flour.

Tau Sar Piah (a round-shaped Chinese pastry) by Him Heang, 162, Jalan Burma, George Town.

Thin Seng Soy Sauce from its factory located at 79 Jalan Gemas off Jalan Terrengannu. They produce it in a traditional ways and is a cheap buy too.

Rojak Orang Hitam Putih Paste for fruit salad dish. Rojak fruit salad is a popular Penang delecacy.

Kebaya, silk dressing gown, and batik sarongs. Many shops sell. One example: Sams Batik House on Jalan Penang.

Penang Batik – a traditional hand painted textile fabric. You may also consider a visit to Penang Batik Factory to see how it is crafted. The tour is free and there is a shop on the site. Location: 651 Jalan Teluk Bahang.

Meera Sahib Spices from 116, Penang St, Georgetown.

Clove balm, mung bean pastry, and bean paste biscuits: You can buy from Chowrasta Market or Pasar Chowrasta.

Roti Jari – a Malaysian snack popular among local elders is made by Hup Hoe Biscuit, 1629, Jalan Besar, Simpang Ampat, Penang.

Penang White Coffee – the coffee beans roasted with palm oil, ground and brewed and served with milk which gives it a white color. Can be had from 20B, Jalan Bagan Jermal, George Town.

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Managing Director, Sindh Ventures Sdn Bhd, Melaka, Malaysia.

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