This section is dedicated to take away all your "I wish someone had told me that before I went!" experiences. This way, you are better prepared for what to expect, what not to expect and can spend less time settling in, and more time making new friends in your chosen hostel. We share our insider knowledge of tips, tricks and important things to look out for in Penang Island. To help you make friends with Penang Island before you visit, we've included a few helpful and fun things you should know about the area. Enjoy!
George Town, the main city on Penang Island, is filled with impressive historical buildings that line its streets. It is these buildings that earned the town a UNESCO World Heritage Site listing in 2008. The Chinese had a strong influence over much of the area when it was settled and as such there are some beautiful Chinese temples to visit, such as Cheong Fatt Tze Mansion and Khoo Khongsi. They are all within walking distance of each other and you can get a map from an information center that depicts all of the spots to see and how to go about them on the walking tour. Along with the Chinese architecture, you will also find some British buildings within the area such as Fort Cornwallis and the Victorian Clocktower that were built during the war.
Any trip to George Town must include a journey to the top of Penang Hill to overlook the city and the island. It is a strenuous, steep, two-hour hike to the top if you are up to the challenge. For those who want the impressive views without the hassle of the walk, you can organize for a tuk tuk driver to take you up and bring you back down. There are some other attractions that you can see around the island -- ask at the information desk about transport to and from these other attractions.
Hostels in George Town are spread throughout the city center. It is only a small place, so you are within walking distance of all attractions within the George Town city center and anything else that you may need.
Written by local enthusiast for Penang Island hostelsGlobetrotter