Georgetown, the biggest city in Penang, Malaysia, came as a surprise to us. A pleasant surprise.
Georgetown, which is a UNESCO World Site, has some of the most amazing street art done in 2012 by the Lithuanian artist, Ernest Zacharevic.
It’s a modern city with buildings, malls, offices and restaurants, but, it also has structures from the colonial era.
How many days in Penang
2 days is enough just to cover the major attractions of Georgetown. It is surely one of the better places in Malaysia. There is so much to do in Penang and 2 days is a minimum requirement.
How to reach your hotel in Penang, Georgetown
We traveled from Kuala Lumpur to Georgetown by the KTM ETS train. The train stop is Butterworth, from where you can take a ferry to Georgetown or hire a cab to the city, depending on where you are staying.
There is an international airport in Penang and it is not very far from the city.
The train journey from KL Sentral, Kuala Lumpur to Penang was very comfortable with the train being of an international standard. This journey from KL Sentral to Butterworth takes about 4 hours and from there about 15 minutes of ferry time to reach Georgetown.
Where to Stay in Penang
Georgetown is the place to stay. With all the tourist interest places nearby, at walking distances, it becomes an ideal spot for your stay.
Our stay at Hotel Prestige, Georgetown
This hotel turned out to be a gem. With very few reviews on booking.com, we were not sure whether to select this one. But, then we noticed that this was fully renovated very recently and had re-opened after a long period of renovation. Looking at the rooms and the hotel structure, the prices seemed to be too good to be true, but, believe me, it was too good and the hotel was true to the pictures on the site. You have to experience the unique rooms, designed mostly in glass and gold and rose gold-colored metal frames of The Prestige.
What to see in Penang
This street art, done by Ernest Zacharevic, is marvelous. It is not graffiti, but proper paintings and is my favorite art type. Real-life objects which are already present on the wall or near the wall are integrated and made a part of the painting, giving a very realistic 3rd dimension to it.
Most of the original paintings involve kids playing around. This makes the painting alive and they are very pleasing to watch. The paintings are done in a comparatively small area of the town and are within walking distance of one another. Be sure not to miss out on this one, especially if you are an art lover. About two hours are required to cover all the original work of Ernest Zacharevic.
Colonial Architecture of Georgetown
Very near to the beautiful street art of Penang are the buildings with Colonial architecture. These buildings are well maintained and are pleasing to watch.
At night, many of the buildings are lit up with focus lamps and a good 1 hour can be spent watching them.
Love Lane which is a lazy street in the day time suddenly turns into an extremely lively place as night approaches and this continues till late in the night.
One has to visit this place for having some good drinks and food after the long day visiting the varipus touristy places.
The atmosphere here is electric with lots of bars and restaurants and a good varety of street food.