Ever interesting Penang – The Town of Street Art
Penang is a beautiful, charming, and unique city. Just a one hour flight from Thailand, you can land in George Town, the capital of Penang, a town of street art and drawings that complement the imagination for people who pass by. This world heritage town is filled with classic old-world atmosphere and various local dishes that you will never get bored of even after countless visits.
PENANG ISLAND – THE CHARM OF THE OLD WORLD
Start your trip by visiting Penang Times Square in George Town to find accommodation. This is the urban area full of convenient utilities and is also where Komtar is located, the tallest building of Penang which has many department stores and entertainment corners. Komtar is also a center of transportation between important places in Penang. In this area, there are various kinds of hotels for you to choose from, whether it is a cheap hostel or a chic boutique hotel. Most tourist attractions in George Town are in the same areas, which makes them easy to explore on foot. If you don’t like walking, there is also a bicycle rental service that you can use. One of the attractions that you should not miss is George Town’s Old Town, an area that was registered as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2008 for its classic Sino-Portuguese architecture timelessly expressed on the 200-year-old buildings. During your exploration around this heritage destination, you will also find street art scattered on the walls which are deemed a unique part of the Old Town. The art includes both paintings and sculpted iron figures which make tourists want to explore all the alleys to capture their pictures. Penang is also known for its street food and local desserts which are found abundantly. You can have a break in a café, choosing one from a beautiful selection, and spend time drinking your favorite cup in a nice coffee shop. Not very far from the old town is the Camera Museum which exhibits several old models of cameras and old photos. If you keep walking for a short while, you will also find China Street and Little India with many nice restaurants and souvenir shops to explore.
Do not miss signature dishes like Asam Laksa (spicy soup noodles), Chee Cheong Fun (Penang rice noodle rolls), Rojak (fried dish served with sauce), Cha Kway Teaw (Penang stir-fried noodles), and Penang Prawn Lam Mee (egg noodles with prawn). All of these dishes can be found at Gurney Drive Night Market, a popular place for seaside street food in George Town.
DO YOU KNOW?
The main roads for street arts in Penang include Armenian Street - a place enriched with Sino-Portuguese architecture, Lebuh Armenian – the road where the famous mural ‘children on the bicycle’ and beautiful story-telling iron pieces are located, and Lebuh Chulia – a street where you can find photogenic ‘children on the swing’ and ‘children playing basketball’ artworks.
DO YOU KNOW?
Between March and April every year, Penang hosts the Penang World Music Festival, which sees international artists come together to perform in this huge music event. During the festival, you can also find food stalls, hand-made artwork galleries, and a children‘s zone. This event is held at Botanic Gardens and the entrance fee is 90 RM.
Spend a quality evening by heading up Penang Hill, an 823-meter high view point, that allows you to make a sweet memory with a panoramic view of George Town and Penang Island. On Penang Hill, you can also visit a Hindu shrine with unique architecture, the Owl Museum where you can explore various owl artworks, a bird park, a flower garden, and several trails for you to experience the clean air and green nature. If you need to recharge your energy along the way, there are also pavilions where you can stop by for a sitting break with a good view as well as street food and drinks. Penang Hill is open to the public every day and the tram service runs from 6:00 – 23:00 (ticket counter closes at 22:30).
If you want to try Indian food, buy some souvenirs, and explore Hindu-styled architecture, then Little India is an area you should not miss, but if you would like to have a relaxing day strolling along the beach, watching the sun set, and enjoying the evening twilight with the sound of waves in the background, then Golden Beach is the place for you.
Source : My World Vol.106 Mar - Apr 2017