Penang is a food haven visited not just by the locals living in other parts of Malaysia but also tourists from abroad. Penang has seen a significant increase in tourists who make a special trip there just to indulge in delicious Penang street food.
But apart from eating, what else can you do there? In the past decade or so, the Malaysian government has been putting in extra effort to turn Penang into a place of interest with plenty of activities for everyone.
And if you are on a budget trip, here are 7 Free Things To Do In Penang.
#1 VISIT THE CHINESE TEMPLES
If you have visited Penang before, you would know that Chinese is the predominant race there. With its rich Chinese history, there are many places of worship catering to believers.
Two of the most well-known temples there are Kek Lok Si and Snake Temple where you get to see real snakes coiling on tree branches. Although you may feel sceptical about visiting such a place, rest assured that the snakes are pretty docile and appear to be half asleep most of the time.
#2 HIKE UP PENANG HILL
Formerly used as a retreat during the colonial periods, Penang Hill is now a popular tourist destination. Escape from the sweltering heat of Georgetown by hiking up the hill to enjoy the cooling temperatures.
Chill your day away in a tea kiosk or have lunch at one of the restaurants up on the hill. Of course, you should also take plenty of pictures of the magnificent view overlooking the Penang Bridge.
#3 WALK ALONG GURNEY DRIVE
Many will tell you that Gurney Drive is a touristy area you should avoid but we feel otherwise. Even if you are not a fan of crowds, this is a place that you have to go—especially if it is your first time in Penang.
The long stretch of road is flanked by a beach on one side and grand shopping malls on the other. You can visit the place in the early morning or night time when temperatures are cooler and there is a gentle sea breeze.
#4 EXPLORE PENANG STREET ART
Now, this is something you must not miss. Georgetown is famous for having beautiful wall paintings that reflect the culture and life of the locals and they are protected under the UNESCO Heritage Site.
And you might recall seeing many OOTDs taken against this iconic “wall of Penang”.
#5 TAKE A STROLL AT BOTANIC GARDENS
Located on Jalan Air Terjun in Georgetown, the Botanic Gardens is also referred to as the Waterfalls Gardens. This huge nature space contains plants of many species and has been around since 1884 when the British first set it up for the public to enjoy.
#6 TOUR STREET OF HARMONY
As its name suggests, Street of Harmony brings together different religions at one place. You will be able to spot places of worship and devotees from various religion groups walking around there.
Wander around and have a look at St. George’s Church, the Goddess of Mercy Temple, Sri Maha Mariamman Kovil and Masjid Kapitan Keling.
#7 HEAD DOWN TO LITTLE INDIA
When you visit Street of Harmony, you have to make time for Little India as well which is just across the street. Expect to see scores of shops selling the most colourful saris and fragrant spices.
The place is most lively during Hindu festivals such as Deepavali and Thaipusam.