Penang island is the favourite holidays destination of the Saudi. We only saw Georgetown, which is the capital of the island and it seemed to us a very attractive city and we think that surely it would be worth to stay longer in Penang if we would have had more time to do so. Penang is united to continental Malaysia by the Penang bridge and it is longest bridge of Southeast Asia.
How to arriveFrom Tanah Rata to there are many buses, we took a bus at 8 in the morning which leaves from the bus station at the Main Road and costs 23RM. It takes 6 hours to drive 201kms., in taxi it would have costed 280RM, it’s a fixed price. The bus indicates that it goes to Penang and it stops first in Butterworth and later in Georgetown.
It left us in the new bus-station in the south of the city, around 15 minutes of the centre. To arrive to the centre in taxi costs 20RM.
To eat & To sleepWe slept in the Cititel hotel (66 Jalan Penang, 10000 Penang, Tel. 0060-4 3701188, Fax 0060-4 3701185,, [email protected]). We paid 185RM for a double room with breakfast, it is a modern hotel, of recent construction and has a nice indoor swimming pool with jacuzzi and sauna. In addition it’s also very well located, very central.

Another option and a little bit more expensive is the delicious Eastern & Oriental Hotel (10 Lebuh Farquhar, 10200 Penang, Tel. 0060-4 2222000, Fax 0060-4 2616333,, [email protected]). The double room costs 354RM and the one with sea view 415RM. It’s really worth to go, either to have a drink, either to eat something in the bakery or in the pub or the elegant restaurant.

A cheaper option, with simple rooms and also quiet and clean (some without windows) is the Crystal Guesthouse (294 Chulia Street, 10200 Penang, Tel. 0060-4 2638068), double room costs 40RM. In the Crystal Guesthouse also they make massages and reflexology, 45 minutes they cost 30RM.

In order to eat we recommend Ecco Café (402 Chulia Street, Tel. 0060-42623178, [email protected]), where they do delicious pizzas and Italian-Malaysian pasta home made.

Most of big hotel chains offer thematic buffets for dinner: Asian, western, seafood... we went "Eastern & western" of the Sheraton hotel (3, Haul Larut, 10050 Penang, Tel. 0060-4 2261888, Fax 0060-42267114,, res649_p[email protected]) for 59RM per person.
What to see & doGeorgetown has a nice colonial part of which they have rehabilitated only some of the precious buildings, some host governmental institutions. The city offers a free shuttle bus that goes around the centre, and it stops at all the places that are worth to see. The schedule is from 7 to 19 and Saturdays until the 14 hours, and it is worth to take it since it represents the ideal solution if you don’t have much time to visit the city and you want to go around the colonial centre. There is a map with the route of this  bus in all the hotels.
It’s also very nice to take a walk by China Town, by the markets of Little India (if we you’re able to resist the bad smells).

The Fort Cornwallis is surrounded by walls and is where on 1786 Francis Light founded Georgetown. The entrance costs 3RM and the most interesting thing is that inside we found an exhibition with Penang’s history.

It is worth to go up the tower of the building of the Komtar:, it has 65 floors and on the ground floor it has the greater commercial centre of Georgetown.

Also it is recommendable to visit Watt Chaiyamangkalaran, the Chinese Buddhist temple. Inside we found one of the biggest lying Buddhas of the world, it makes 33 meters. Right opposite the street there is another Buddhist, Thai temple.